Donny Parenteau has played some big stages in his life.
But none of those stages can compare to his performance this weekend. Parenteau has been chosen to be the halftime show for the Riders’ Canada Day game. The game is the first home game in the new Mosaic Stadium.
“It’s an awesome feeling, It’s an overwhelming feeling,” said the local singer, guitarist and fiddler. “It’s an honour, being from Saskatchewan, born and raised, coming back here to live in Prince Albert. I carry all of that with me when I go to do this.”
Parenteau, of course, is a Riders’ fan. He saw a lot of sports when touring in the US for 12 years with Neal McCoy, but since he’s been home it’s been all about the Riders.
“You’re looking at 45,000 people that are going to be there. It’s going to be pretty cool,” he said.
“This is the very first halftime show at a brand new Mosaic Stadium in Regina on the 150th birthday of Canada, and it’s me.”
Wherever he plays, Parenteau carries his culture with him. His guitar strap is a Métis sash.
“That’s my culture,” Parenteau said. “You’ll see exactly who I am.”
Parenteau wasn’t able to talk about what he’ll be playing during the performance. That’s something the Riders want to keep under wraps. But he did offer some words of wisdom for up and coming musicians.
“Never stop,” he said.
“Look at it this way. I’m a person that does not have a record deal. I don’t have a distribution deal. I don’t have a manager. I don’t have a booking agent – events like this can still happen. Never lose sight of your dreams. But when the opportunity comes and that door gets knocked on, you’d better be ready to fling it open.”