Ogden Twilight Concert Series announces expanded lineup, headliner Sylvan Esso

Tuesday , December 05, 2017 - 5:12 PM

MARK SAAL, Standard-Examiner Staff

OGDEN — Christmas came early for music lovers in Northern Utah.

On Tuesday, organizers of the Ogden Twilight Concert Series announced Sylvan Esso, an electronic pop duo from Durham, North Carolina, will play July 17, 2018, in the Ogden Amphitheater. What’s more, the concert will be part of a greatly expanded series aimed at filling the void left by the cancellation of next year’s Twilight Concert Series in Salt Lake City.

Jared Allen, founder of the Ogden series, said he’s excited for both Sylvan Esso and the rest of the 2018 lineup, which is in the process of being finalized.

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Traditionally, Ogden’s concert series has only been held in June. But Allen says when Ogden organizers heard Salt Lake’s 2018 Twilight series was canceled — after being “bummed out” — they thought, “What if we picked up the slack?”

As a result, next year’s Ogden Twilight Concert Series will consist of two sessions. The traditional Session 1 will again be Thursdays in June, with an added Session 2 featuring concerts during July and August.

• RELATED: Performance with The Shins marks Ogden Twilight's first sold out concert

“I really think this will put Ogden on the map,” Allen said of the expanded series. “You know that ‘wow’ factor we had with The Shins show last year? We’ll have a minimum of five concerts like that this next year.”

Indeed, it was The Shins concert in the Ogden Amphitheater that changed the thinking for future shows in the series. The goal of the Ogden Twilight series was always to simply break even, Allen says, which they did their first year. Then, the next year, they banked a bit of money from the series, and that gave them the confidence to — the following year — approach The Shins.

“Through the experiment and success of that Shins show, we learned we can book big and have success,” Allen said. “And we’re aiming for that tier of show every concert next year. We’re swinging for the fence every night.”

Organizers seem to have hit a formula for success in Ogden — a 7,000-seat outdoor amphitheater, combined with a $10 ticket.

“In any other city, with these bands, guests would be paying five times that amount,” Allen said.

The idea, he says, is to catch “bigger” bands as they travel between shows in larger cities across the West.

“Ogden is never going to be an anchor date for any of these bands,” Allen said. “So our goal is to pick up bands as they’re going to and from festivals — trying to route off of those shows.”

The Ogden Twilight Concert Series will offer something like eight or nine shows next year, according to Allen. Ogden will host the usual four shows on Thursdays in June, take a week off for the Fourth of July, then hit it hard July through August.

There’s also a chance there could be a late-May show as part of Session 2.

“We don’t know exactly how it will all come together, but we’ve already got three other headliners confirmed,” Allen said. “And we’re very close on many others.”

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Typically, Allen says they announce the concert series on March 1, but they had to announce the Sylvan Esso show now because the band wanted to take advantage of the publicity stemming from its recent Grammy nomination for its sophomore album, “What Now.” It was nominated in the category of Best Dance/Electronic Album.

Sylvan Esso features singer Amelia Meath and producer Nick Sanborn.

Individual tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday, Dec. 8, at 24tix.com. Those purchasing individual tickets (general admission or VIP) for the Sylvan Esso show will have the opportunity to upgrade to season tickets, at the same discount, when those go on sale.

And Allen says there’s a good chance they’ll announce one more concert — from Session 1 — in the near future; the rest will be revealed next March.

“I’d say 2018 will be a bit of an anomaly, but in the best possible way,” Allen said. “Then, when 2019 rolls around, we may just go back to June-only concerts. We’ll see how this next year goes.”

Contact Mark Saal at 801-625-4272, or msaal@standard.net. Follow him on Twitter at @Saalman. Friend him on Facebook at facebook.com/MarkSaal.

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