Michael Johnson’s 40-Year Tradition Continues at Gustavus

Posted on December 6th, 2010 by

Michael Johnson in Concert, Bjorling Recital Hall

Michael Johnson in Concert, Bjorling Recital Hall

For more than forty years, Michael Johnson, singer, song-writer, storyteller, and guitarist, has delighted audiences at Gustavus Adolphus College. Michael once again returns to Björling Recital Hall on Friday, December 10, at 8:00 p.m. to re-new this 40-year tradition. This concert on the Gustavus campus is the only performance the national recording artist will present in southern Minnesota this Christmas season.

Johnson, originally from the Minneapolis area and now living in Nashville, first performed at Gustavus in April 1968 with the late John Denver as part of the trio of Denver, Boise and Johnson. Following his departure from the trio one year later, Michael spent a year acting with an off-Broadway company and returned to Minnesota and to singing. Since that time, he has studied and toured internationally eight times and has recorded eleven albums, which include ten hit singles and two #1 country songs of the year. Even those who don’t know his name will recognize his hits: Bluer Than Blue, Give Me Wings, Ponies, and Rooty Toot Toot for the Moon.

His web site is simply titled “Singer, Songwriter, Guitarist.” When asked what he would want you to know about him, Michael Johnson replies “Tell them I play guitar and that I am a soloist at heart.” He prefers the intimacy and spontaneity of solo performance, especially in a concert hall like Gustavus’ Björling Recital Hall, where acoustics and closeness to the audience allow Michael Johnson the showman to shine. “I love to talk to people and I love to make them laugh. And of course, I love to move them with my music. Without that, there is no reason to be on stage.”

After the concert, what one remembers of Michael’s performance is the texture of his voice, the meaning of the lyric and the music of the guitar. Singer, song and sound. And the feeling of being at home with a friend.

Tickets are available for Michael Johnson’s annual winter concert on December 10 at Gustavus and are $20.00 for adults and $17.00 for students, senior citizens & GA staff. Tickets are available at gustavustickets.com or by calling the Gustavus Ticket Center at (507) 933-7590. Any tickets remaining will go on sale one hour prior to the concert in Björling Recital Hall box office. The performance begins at 8:00 p.m.

Come celebrate a truly amazing 40-year tradition of Michael in concert at Gustavus. Become a part of the tradition and celebrate the Christmas season with Michael Johnson and with us.


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