While some open stages welcome anyone who wants to play, there are some that are by invitation, often as a spin-off of an open stage venue. When Callisto was invited to a “Best of the Open Stage” night at the Free Times Café we were looking forward to returning to the great food and ambiance but also anticipating some great music and new music connections.


On arrival, we were somewhat deflated to find the two other acts for the evening had canceled. Having traveled an hour and a half to get there (and our food already ordered), we weren’t about to go home. We looked at the evening that stretched out ahead of us and decided it would be more fun with some company. Using the various electronic gizmos at our disposal, by the time we had finished eating we had arranged some fine company, indeed. Rachael Cardiello , James Burrow and Andy Cragg (aka Runaway Brides) decided to forego a band rehearsal and join us. They invited friends Kate (accordion) and Rich (clarinet) to add their sound and Victoria Dobbs rounded it out with her original (and cover) tunes on ukulele. Add a few friends and family who answered the last minute call and we went from deflated to delighted.  Thanks to the spontaneity and support of everyone who came for a fantastic night! [Photos courtesy of Tricia Brubacher]