By Breanne Massey
The Wardens are calling on their lifes work for musical inspiration.
Entertainers Bradley Bischoff, Scott Ward and Ray Schmidt will be performing at Pynelogs Cultural Centre at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, May 6th and again at 9:15 p.m.
We just started playing in B.C., said Mr. Bischoff with a hint of excitement in his voice, and were pretty excited about coming to Invermere for the first time.
The three-piece country band from the Bow Valley in Calgary was formed five years ago when a mutual passion was realized. Mr. Bischoff says the songs written by The Wardens trio are representative of their careers as park wardens in the backcountry of Canada.
Weve been building our name up in the Bow Valley for the past five years and weve played several areas and dates all over Alberta, he explained. Some even in Saskatchewan.
The performance coincides with the Wings Over The Rockies festival.
The first show sold out in no time, so we booked a second show, said Wings Over the Rockies events co-ordinator Jami Scheffer. We have sold 63 tickets for the second show (as of April 28th), and can only have 100 people, so more than half of the tickets are gone.
The Wardens show consists of rich stories from their time on the trail, ranging from keeping grizzly bears safe to rescuing stranded hikers and lonely nights in the mountains.
Our show is 100 per cent original material, said Mr. Bischoff. They are all songs that (chronicle) our careers as park wardens.
Mr. Ward began working summers in the backcountry as a warden, and as an avalanche forecaster during the winters in the Banff National Park in 1969. He became a search-and-rescue dog handler for the park in 1983 while busily responding to avalanches, missing persons and poaching cases. He received the Governor Generals Award for Exemplary Service as a Peace Officer in 2006.
Mr. Bischoff spent a total of 32 years working his way across Canada, spanning all the way from Iqaluit to Ucuelet. Mr. Schmidt has worked on the trail, fire and communications crew. He began working with the national parks in Banff, Yoho and the Kootenays in 2001.
The love of performing a unique playlist that honours their careers still rings true for everybody in The Wardens.
Thats what we write about, concluded Mr. Bischoff. Well be bringing our slideshow, which is magnificent, to Pynelogs to lend an extremely engaging backdrop to our songs as we perform.We set it up and it rolls behind us its just a lovely bit of theatre between the songs, the slideshow and the stories.
For more information, visit www.banffwardens.com. To purchase tickets to the second show, go to www.wingsovertherockies.org.