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Chris Hudson visits Bemidji

Headwaters Music and Arts hosts Chris Hudson for a workshop and a couple of performances in May. Chris is a multi-instrumentalist and singer-songwriter based out of Kansas City, MO. He’ll be bringing his guitar with him when he stops in Bemidji May 19 and 20 as a part of his Minnesota tour.

Leader and founding member of Gullywasher and Gullywasher Collective, the public will have a chance to hear Chris’ guitar stylings on May 19, 7-9, pm as he performs an intimate house concert at the home of Tom and Elisha Barry of Bemidji; attendance is limited to 25 guests. The event supports Headwaters’ Music Scholarship Program, and will include appetizers and beverages to pair with Chris’ music. Those who are not able to attend the house concert can plan to watch Chris live, on May 20 at Headwaters Music and Arts (519 Minnesota Ave, Bemidji) for a free will donation community concert at 7:30 pm. The event will follow a finger-picking workshop held 5:30-7 pm Friday, May 20 for guitar players of all ages. Both May 20 events are at Headwaters Music and Arts.

May 19 House Concert tickets are $30 per person while registration for the finger picking workshop is $10 per participant. The 7:30 pm May 20 Community Concert is free will donation at the door. Headwaters Music & Arts is an independent non-profit multidisciplinary organization whose mission is to provide opportunities for creativity through instruction and to inspire community through music and the arts.



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Bemidji Sings! Call for Vocalists

Headwaters Music & Arts invites amateur singers to take part in Bemidji Sings!, an annual vocal competition celebrating the musical talents of youth and adults who live, work or attend school in Bemidji.

Amateur singers 13+ who are interested in taking part must register to audition by 5 pm Monday, June 6. Auditions are scheduled for noon-6 pm Saturday, June 11 and and 10 am-2 pm Sunday, June 12, 2022. They will be in person, with the option to meet with judges via Zoom and will take less than one hour.

Bemidji Sings! is separated into two age divisions: 13-20 and 21 and over and up to 7 singers from each age division will be chosen to perform at the July 15 Bemidji Sings! Vocal Competition.

Singers will be chosen based on their audition performance where they will be asked to sing one song. Auditioning vocalists will be evaluated based on their vocal skills, presentation skills, audience response, and judge's overall impression. Only individual contestants are eligible – no multiple singers or additional instruments may be used.

Those that do move on to the July 15 Bemidji Sings! Vocal Competition will compete for cash prizes and the chance to compete at the Minnesota Sings Vocal Competition in October. The top two finalists in each age category will represent Bemidji at the statewide Minnesota Sings Vocal Competition October 1-2 in New Ulm, MN.

Bemidji Sings! is sponsored by Headwaters Music & Arts with support from Supple Studios.

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Headwaters Spring Planting Event

Headwaters Music & Arts has been celebrating brighter days with recent lighting projects at their downtown Bemidji campus. Having been the recipient of a 2022 Clean Energy Resource Teams Seed Grant for community-based clean energy efforts Headwaters has been doing their part with automated light switches and more efficient LED lighting throughout their building. In this eleventh round of CERT’s Seed Grants the group says, “CERT’s awarded seed grants to 74 innovative energy efficiency and renewable energy projects — over twice as many as last round — in communities from Warren to Winona, Morton to Mountain Iron, Long Prairie to Lindstrom."

Headwaters Music & Arts has taken concrete steps to reduce their carbon footprint and be more efficient in the last few years, including the CERT’s funded lighting improvements and their freshly installed mini split pump in the art studios. Headwaters invites the community to celebrate and learn more about these achievements on Earth Day April, 22, 2022 with a public native flora planting event at 4-5:30 pm. The fun, free, and educational event is a collaboration between Headwaters and Mississippi Headwaters Audubon Society that will include equal parts art and planting. Attendees will have the chance to plant native wildflowers and grasses that will be incorporated into Headwaters’ existing non-native perennial flower beds with the goal of beautification while also enhancing food, shelter, and nesting habitat for birds, native pollinators, and other beneficial insects. Participants will also have the chance to take part in a small painting project that day. This event may sound familiar to some who took part in a similar planting event that Headwaters and the Mississippi Headwaters Audubon Society held a few years ago. That successful project created a shady woodland pollinator garden right outside Headwaters’ front door to prevent erosion and offer habitat. Headwaters is excited and happy to create more flora spaces for the local fauna community and are pleased to have the public take part.

Headwaters Music & Arts is an independent non-profit multidisciplinary organization whose mission is to provide opportunities for creativity through instruction and to inspire community through music and the arts. For more information on the planting event contact Headwaters Music & Arts at 218.444.5606.

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Headwaters Music & Arts Holds Monroe Crossing Fundraiser Event

Headwaters Music & Arts (HMA) is excited to welcome Monroe Crossing back to Bemidji! For HMA’s biggest fundraiser of the year, world-class bluegrass entertainers Monroe Crossing will perform in concert at the Historic Chief Theater in Bemidji on Saturday, May 7, 2022. The show begins at 7 pm with an opening performance by No Rest for the Pickers followed by Monroe Crossing at 7:30.

Named in honor of Bill Monroe, Monroe Crossing dazzles audiences with an electrifying blend of classic bluegrass, bluegrass gospel, and heartfelt originals. Their airtight harmonies, razor sharp arrangements, and on-stage rapport make them audience favorites across the United States and Canada. The concert will highlight their most recent CD, “Monroe Crossing Plays Classic Country” honoring country legends such as Patsy Cline, Johnny Cash and Hank Williams.

$25 tickets are available at Headwaters Music & Arts, 218.444.5606, online at, or by stopping in at 519 Minnesota Ave NW, Bemidji. Admission is open seating, advance ticket purchase is recommended. Please consider becoming a sponsor for this fundraising event. Proceeds support our music scholarship fund and helps reduce student tuition based on financial need. Help us reach our goal to raise $5,000 to give the gift of creativity to kids in our community! Sponsors can expect VIP seating and recognition before and during the event.

“Everyone who came had the time of their life that evening. Your show was just of the freshest and original groups I have experienced....I was just blown away.” — Bill Adams, Habitat For Humanity, Waldorf MD

Become a sponsor here.

Download or print the poster here.

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April 1 First Friday

We are excited to host TWO events this coming First Friday, April 1.  Join us for an opening reception for the Headwaters Art Program Art Exhibit on April 1, 4:30-6 pm. The exhibit will be a group show featuring a mix of 2D and sculptural work from our art clubs and group pottery classes created during the 2021-22 school year. The public is invited to stop by throughout the month of April to check out the art and ceramics on display throughout our building as well as the newly renovated art and pottery studios!

We'll follow that with the first live music of the spring! Headwaters Open Mic and CoffeeHouse reconvenes on the First Friday of April at 7pm. Held in downtown Bemidji at Headwaters Music & Arts (519 MN Ave NW), this monthly community gathering offers a friendly open mic opportunity and welcoming environment for folks to listen and perform. Expect to enjoy fabulous performances by community artists and warm cups of coffee as April’s featured performer, Antonio Arce takes the stage with his guitar.

Antonio Arce moved to Northern Minnesota about three and a half years ago with his wife and their seven rescued shih tzus. He says he began playing locally at Brigid’s Pubs open mics “to get away from all of them,” an activity that he has missed since COVID-19 and the ensuing pandemic shut down such events. Antonio learned to play guitar when he was 11 years old from his father. The oldest son of a professional musician, they always had guitars at home. He remembers his father’s performances in Salta, Argentina, the city where Antonio was born. Learning guitar started as a practice but quickly formed into an obsession. Although Antonio picked up the guitar very quickly he was not careful enough to learn the names of the chords. For that matter, he doesn’t know the names of the notes in Spanish or English either. So Antonio basically learned to play by ear not knowing the name of one cord or note from another.

Antonio’s main repertoire is Música Romantica (Romantic Music) in the genres of Boleros and Trova. He loves to explain his songs, so people might feel the message when he performs. You can hear Antonio’s love for his music and guitar paired with his thoughtful explanations on April 1.

Held on the first Friday of most months, the Headwaters Open Mic offers a welcoming and supportive community for musicians and spoken-word performers. All ages and skill levels are encouraged to sign up for a 10 to 15 minute set. Read more here.

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We’re Hiring!

Headwaters Music & Arts invites you to join our team! We are seeking a part time bookkeeper as well as part time piano, guitar, violin, percussion and vocal instructors to help us provide opportunities for creativity through instruction and to inspire the community through music and the arts. Headwaters Music & Arts is an independent non-profit music and art program  located in the heart of downtown Bemidji. We were established in 1992 by a small, determined  group of visionaries with the goal to provide opportunities for creativity through instruction and  inspire the community through music and the arts. 

If these roles sound like something you would love to do, please apply by submitting a resume and three references to Executive Director, Tricia Andrews. Submit via email ( or by snail mail (519 Minnesota Ave NW, Bemidji, MN 56601). If you're not looking for a new role, we'd love for you to forward this message to folks in your professional and personal network who may be interested.

For each of these positions see the position descriptions below or call 218.444.5606 for more details. Thanks for helping us to spread this message! We're looking forward to having new members join our team soon!

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GivingTuesday With HMA on November 30

Headwaters Music & Arts takes part in the global giving campaign, GivingTuesday, on November 30. GivingTuesday is a global movement to celebrate a global day of generosity. It was launched in 2012 to make giving more central in daily life and is an opportunity for people around the world to come together to thank, help, give, show kindness, and share what they have with those in need. People can show their generosity in a variety of ways during GivingTuesday⁠⁠—whether it’s helping a neighbor, advocating for an issue, sharing a skill, or giving to causes—everyone has something to give and every act of generosity counts.

Headwaters has planned several GivingTuesday initiatives. They will show their appreciation for their downtown neighbors by personally delivering plates of home-made, heart shaped cookies on November 30, and will hold 24 hours of gratitude, posting on Facebook and Instagram throughout the day the many things we are grateful for. Headwaters will also kick off their end of year stewardship campaign on GivingTuesday. "Each donation helps us give the life-long gift of creativity to another young person through our music and art scholarship program" said Executive Director Tricia Andrews. "We are excited to have a chance to simply show our gratitude for the support we receive every day of the year." You can give early, or plan to give on November 30, here.

We invite you take part in Giving Tuesday with us virtually as well! Post about what you are grateful for in our community, or what you love about Headwaters, on Facebook or Instagram and use the hashtag #GivingTuesdayWithHMA and there is a good chance we will share your post and thoughts!



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Give to the Max 2021


Headwaters Music & Arts is excited to participate in the 13th annual Give to the Max taking place this year starting on Monday, November 1 and culminating on Thursday, November 18.  You are encouraged to give generously to your favorite Minnesota causes as part of Minnesota’s giving holiday.  We especially hope you give Headwaters a little love with a donation of $5 or more.  Each donation made through qualifies Headwaters for additional grants of $500 to $10,000 from the Give to the Max prize pool, thanks to the continued generosity of the Bush Foundation. While we put every donation to good use through our music and art scholarship program, just imagine what a difference $10,000 would make! To contribute to Headwaters Music & Arts on or before November 18, just go to our page on GiveMN. Thank you so much for your generous support!

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Announcing October 1 Headwaters Open Mic and CoffeeHouse feat. P^2

Headwaters Open Mic and CoffeeHouse returns October 1! Join us at Headwaters Music and Arts in downtown Bemidji (519 MN Ave NW) at 7pm to enjoy the sounds of community artists and our featured performer, P2  Sign-up begins at 6:30 or by email to

P2 is the musical collaboration of Prabin Lama (vocals & guitar) and Pete McDonnell (percussion), two Bemidji State professors that met over a shared love of music in their shared office spaces in the campus library.

A native of Katmandu, Nepal, Prabin found his voice singing with friends at his Indian boarding school. As an undergraduate in New Dehli, where the music of Dylan, Lennon, and the American 60’s scene was in full force, Prabin developed his talents over countless open mics with friends and local musicians.

Pete McDonnell, who originally hails from Chicago, found his niche as one of many drumming librarians in the profession.  He learned rock drumming from his college roommates, and eventually branched off into varied percussion styles. The drummer for Bemidji’s Mudsong, Pete also facilitates community-based rhythm events (a.k.a. drum circles).

Listeners appreciate the authenticity of P2  sound when performing classic American folk rock tunes.

Held on the first Friday of most months, the Headwaters Open Mic offers a welcoming and supportive community for musicians and spoken-word performers. All ages and skill levels are encouraged to sign up for a 10 to 15 minute set. 

Admission is $3 per person or $7 for families. Coffee & treats are available for purchase courtesy of Aurora Waasakone. 

Headwaters Open Mic and CoffeeHouse is a volunteer-led community event. You can contact John Henningsgaard at 218.444.9845 for more information.

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Meeting at the Headwaters Fall Kick Off

Join us to kick off the fall season at Headwaters Music & Arts! from 1 to 3 pm Saturday,  September 11. The public is invited to try out hands-on music and art activities and an instrument petting zoo, meet instructors, staff and volunteers, tour the building, learn about upcoming concerts, events and workshops, and register for our music program, art clubs, pottery, or parent-child music classes. Financial assistance is available for youth activities. Schmitt Music representatives will be on hand to assist with instrument selection and purchase plans. For more information contact executive director Tricia Andrews at 218.444.5606.