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Beloved Victoria band Carmanah calls it quits

Carmanah’s final show will be on May 20 at the McPherson Playhouse
Carmanah performs at the Capital Ballroom on Feb. 16. (Black Press Media file photo)

Carmanah is singing their swan song.

The Victoria-based alternative group won’t be releasing any more music as a band and will play their last show on May 20 at the McPherson Playhouse.

“It’s the end of a chapter,” Carmanah’s lead vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Laura Mina Mitic said. “It’s been really wonderful. We feel like the project has evolved so much and that’s sort of what’s motivating us to end this chapter. We’re going to make some big changes. Some of that is going to stay under wraps until closer to the show. All of the events in 2020 gave us the opportunity to sit down and reflect and see that we were desiring some bold new moves. This show is our way of sharing that with our local community and seeing where the adventure takes us next.”

Carmanah has been playing together for more than a decade and released Speak in Rhythms in 2018 and Iris in 2020.

“We’re really proud of what we’ve made,” Mitic said. “A career highlight is that we’ve been able to tour a lot, which has been so much fun. Some of the festival stages that I’m most proud of seeing our name on the bill for include Edmonton Folk Festival, Hillside Festival, Winnipeg Folk Festival and Rifflandia.”

Mitic said hometown shows are always great, but this last concert will be extra special as they will be showcasing their plans for the future.

“This is how we are going to first show some of the changes that are being made,” Mitic said. “We are looking forward to sharing the gratitude of the journey with everyone. We have a couple of tricks up our sleeves. This is where a lot of our friends and family are. This is the audience we grew with. The local music scene has been supportive. There are a lot of music lovers here.”

Carmanah has performed at the McPherson Playhouse before, but this will be their first time headlining a theatre show in Victoria.

“We’ve played on a lot of awesome stages around town, but headlining at the McPherson has been on our bucket list for quite a few years,” Mitic added. “It’s really exciting to see that our name is there. You can pay special attention at a theatre show because of the lighting and the sound.”

Victoria singer-songwriter Aidan Knight and MIINA will open the concert.

“I’ve been a fan of Aidan’s for quite a few years and love what he does,” Mitic said. “He’s been in the industry for a similar amount of time as us. We’ve never shared a stage with him before. He’s a really good fit for this show.”

MIINA is a new project consisting of Mitic and Carmanah keyboardist and vocalist Lo Waight. Mitic is unsure what the future will hold for MIINA.

Mitic hopes Carmanah is remembered for having a sound, energy and live show that is warm, welcoming and inclusive.

“We have wanted to make people feel and dance,” Mitic added. “People have really connected with us and said our music has meant something to them. I feel so honoured that our music has reached so many ears and hearts. It’s surreal that something we have created has resonated with people.”

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Brendan Mayer

About the Author: Brendan Mayer

I spent my upbringing in Saskatoon, and in 2021, I made the move to Vancouver Island.
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