RANGELY I For the Friends of the TANK, hosting a week’s worth of celebratory events at the formally christened TANK Center for Sonic Arts is a culmination of sorts.
In February, the 30-by-60-foot steel water tank, known for its ability to bend sound into loops and whorls as pliable as hot taffy, was opened via a Kickstarter campaign that raised more than $60,000 via 694 donors.
Now, with warming weather, longtime TANK artists gathering for June events and the search on for an executive director, organizers are ready for the TANK’s next phase of existence.
“Although the TANK opened in September, the week of June 20 is really our official beginning of availability to the community and visitors to experience this Rangely wonder,” said Lois LaFond, a TANK organizer who has been singing and recording in the space since the mid-1980s. “It’s also an opportunity for many of the former folks who, for nearly 40 years now, have been recording in the TANK to come back and celebrate the new TANK, really. And we love that it happens to be summer solstice because that’s a very special beginning for all of us.”
Solstice week celebrations kick off with several open house sessions when visitors can interact with visiting and local artists and experience the TANK for themselves Tuesday and Thursday, June 21 and 23, from 7 to 9 p.m. and Wednesday, June 22 from 10 a.m. to noon.
“We want these times to really be for the public so that people can do whatever they want in the space,” LaFond said. “One of (the TANK artists) will be in there during that period, so if people come in and aren’t sure what to do, we’ll be there to give them some guidance in how to jump-start being in the TANK.”
The evening of June 24, TANKsters will join Kickstarter donors who opted for a private dinner reward catered by Giovanni’s Italian Grill, followed by a recording and concert session with TANK artists. Tickets for remaining seats can be purchased for $150 by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
June 25 is the first of the TANK’s “Open Saturdays” from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., followed by a concert at 8 p.m. for Kickstarter donors who selected the performance as a reward. Starting July 2 through October, Open Saturday hours will run from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 6-9 p.m.
An after-church social hour from 5-6 p.m., followed by a public TANK concert from 7-9 p.m. on Sunday, June 26 wraps up the weekend’s events. The concert will be first-come, first-heard given the space’s 49-person maximum capacity.
Throughout the week, TANK artists will fulfill other rewards promised in the Kickstarter campaign, among them instrument and voice lessons, writing names on TANK walls and recording sung names into the TANK.
Local TANK supporter Elaine Urie is looking forward to more Rangely and Rio Blanco County residents experiencing the TANK throughout the week.
“The TANK is an antique-unique piece of art that is an intriguing addition to Rangely’s history and upcoming international interest,” she said. “It stands alone. There is no comparison to its ability to cause sounds to enter the human heart and soul.”
A current search for a half-time executive director position, LaFond says, is still underway. For a job description or to submit a cover letter or CV, go to tanksounds.org/ed/.