The 1980s rock band Kansas will perform at a fundraiser for the Erik Ramstad Middle School music program on May 1 at the Minot Municipal Auditorium. The Minot Symphony Orchestra, which is donating its time and services, will also perform at the event. Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. for the 8 p.m. concert.
The $50 tickets for the concert go on sale March 12. Tickets can be purchased at Erik Ramstad Middle School Music Department, Jacobsen Music, Northwest Music and Sound, Budget Music and Video, and Minot Area Council for the Arts.
Concert organizers hope to sell up to a maximum of 4,000 tickets. All proceeds will go to the music program.
Jim Tschetter, principal at Erik Ramstad Middle School, announces that the 1980s rock group Kansas will perform at a fundraiser for Ramstad on May 1.
"If we can pack the place with 4,000 people, that would be a great thing," said Pat Schwan, the director of Ramstad's band program.
Schwan said he has been in touch with the Kansas drummer Phil Ehart since last fall. He first contacted them when he saw that they were touring to help music departments. "I was hoping they would consider coming to Minot," said Schwan. "I sent an email to Phil (Ehart) and he immediately replied."
"We've been helping music departments all over the country for the past two years," said Ehart in a press release. "When we were asked to help there, it just seemed like the logical and right thing to do. I want to see if we can replace some of the larger, more expensive musical instruments. Tympani, marimba, glockenspiel, etc., are quite expensive."
The Minot Symphony Orchestra was also eager to help, said conductor Dennis Simons.
"Being a musician, I can't think of a better cause for a fundraiser," he said.
Kansas has offered its services at a reduced rate and will make a donation to the school, said Schwan.
Schwan said the music department alone lost $200,000 worth of equipment in last summer's flood. That includes three pianos, all of the school's large percussion instruments, band chairs and music stands and $100,000 in sheet music. Erik Ramstad Middle School has been declared a total loss and the school is currently in temporary quarters at the Minot Municipal Auditorium.
The music department has also benefited from other donations and fundraisers. Every bit helps, said Schwan.
The band Kansas was formed in Topeka in 1973. Their hits included songs such as "Carry On Wayward Son" and "Dust in the Wind." The group is comprised of bassist Billy Greer, violinist David Ragsdale, guitarist Rich Williams, keyboardist and singer Steve Walsh and drummer Phil Ehart.