Halloween Spectacle combines art, music, fun

MARQUETTE – Are you a hero or a villain? If you ever wanted to be either one, you can play the part during the second annual Halloween Spectacle set for Saturday in and around downtown Marquette.

With “Heroes and Villains” as the theme, the procession begins at 6:40 p.m., followed by the main performance at 7 p.m. in the Marquette Commons building.

Anyone who wants to walk in the procession can assemble with other participants at 6:15 p.m. at one of four sites: Harlow Park, the Lower Harbor, the Rock Street parking lot or the Peter White Public Library.

People can pick their favorite fictional or nonfictional characters and join the fun.

Tiina Harris, community services manager for the city’s Arts and Culture Department, said the 2012 event attracted more than 1,000 spectators.

“That’s the reason we’re doing it again this year,” Harris said.

However, the spectacle also provides a vehicle to bring the community together, she said. For example, last year, spectators crashed through yellow tape to dance in the Commons – and they’re invited to do so again this year.

The first spectacle featured unique music and artwork, including giant papier-mache ravens.

“People just seemed to really, really enjoy the full experience,” Harris said.

She also stressed the spectacle is for all ages, and is not necessarily scary but more of a “fun, magical, mysterious” experience. In fact, she even called it “fantastic.”

“That’s what a spectacle really is,” Harris said.

Three artistic directors – Deb White, who’s in charge of the art; choreographer Jessica Pesola; and musical head Carrie Biolo – will blend their talents.

“Between the choreography and music,” Harris said, “it’s a very original performance.”

White said of the “Heroes and Villains” theme, “It’s that whole duality thing – good versus evil, black versus white, you know, dark versus light.”

She also said because no words are used in the performance, the story has to be easily grasped by the audience.

Included in the performance, according to Harris, will be the Marquette Folk Dancers, the Dead River Roller Derby, Peak Fitness, the belly-dancing group the Belladinas and other individuals. Music will include Log Jam and the Percussive Attack Camp.

Harris said percussion will play an important part in the spectacle.

“You can’t bring string instruments out in cold weather,” she said. “Drums resonate. The percussion adds so much to this performance.”

Harris said an area will be sectioned off for people in wheelchairs who want to view the event. Also, more volunteers are needed. Anyone interested in helping with the event can call 228-0472.

Christie Bleck can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 250. Her email address is cbleck@miningjournal.net