Prince Albert songwriters fostering comfortable performance space with open mic nights

Laura Marshall, one of the hosts, performs at the first Songwriters’ Open Mic Night at the Jam Street Shared Arts Space in August. – Laura Marshall/Submitted

Three Prince Albert musicians are creating a comfortable and intimate space for songwriters to share their work.

Laura Marshall, Jenna Tokaruk and Stephanie Wilkinson hosted their first Songwriters’ Open Mic Night in August. Now, with the goal of hosting the event regularly, they’re holding another on Saturday at the Jam Street Shared Arts Space.

“We all kind of come from a bit of a different path with music, but we just wanted to create a place that’s comfortable for amateur musicians and songwriters to come out and play in a setting that’s not intimidating,” said Marshall.

Marshall said she’s always enjoyed writing songs. While she’s used to playing around the campfire with friends, she enjoys the rush of performing at open mics and small events.

Still, that can be daunting.

“It can feel very vulnerable to share songs that you’ve written. They’re often your personal stories, so sometimes it’s hard to find the right setting to share.”

The open mic night is intended for like-minded artists to gather and create connections. At the same time, Marshall explained, it fosters inspiration to continue creating music.

“I think when we create, we all kind of crave sharing that with some kind of an audience,” she said.

“When you go out and see other performers and songwriters, I always take a lot of inspiration from that.”

Marshall said all ages and experience levels are welcome. You can sign up to play one or two songs at the event, with time to socialize after the music.

The open mic night will take place from 7:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. Admission is by donation.

Marshall said they’re hoping to continue the event on a regular basis, possibly every season, depending on the response. In the summer, they had around 17 people join.