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Open mic

Auburn Public Theater hosts a weekly open mic night Tuesdays.

As an outsider who recently came here on business to visit the fine city of Auburn this past December, I would like to offer a fresh perspective on something you may not know about here in this great community.

I had the opportunity to play guitar and sing at the Auburn Public Theater’s Open Mic Night, which occurs at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday nights during parts of the year.

It is remarkable.

I have never seen or heard of a better open mic than what you have right here in Auburn. The delightful atmosphere includes cabaret tables with candles in a cozy, intimate setting. More than a dozen amateur and professional performers performed the evening I stopped by. The talent level of all the performers was extremely high.

All age groups were present in the audience and on stage. There were musical acts mostly, but there was a poetry reading and I understand there are comic performers, as well. It is a wholesome environment for any age, and it was good, clean fun. Individual performers like myself played and sang. Groups came and played. The first group that played was a group of high school students. They were very good. Just about every genre of music was represented: blues, rock, pop, rap and more.

There were acoustic acts and electric acts with drums. There were performers who played some songs on guitar and switched to the on-stage piano. If you came without an instrument and wanted to play, there were instruments on stage for anyone’s use. Being from Buffalo, it makes bringing a guitar difficult because guitars do not respond well to cold weather. So I used a very nice Ovation guitar that was available.

There is an incredible lighting and sound team of Doug Lord and his capable assistant Eric from Cayuga Community College. The lighting and sound is professionally produced. The feeling you have on this stage as a performer is overwhelming. At this open mic, you feel like a star on stage, and you are. The community supports this event ($2 at the door), and it is a bargain.

The master of ceremonies, Carey Eidel, is not only the director of APT, he is a talented actor and performer and keep the night moving right along. Among his acting credits includes a role in "Jurassic Park: The Lost World."

The Auburn Public Theater open mic has the best everything — lighting, sound, hosting, audience, fantastic performers — and all the little things as well. When you are there, you can feel the pride in the performers, the pride in the community, and the pride in those that put on this event and many other wonderful events in other parts of the Auburn Public Theater complex, and you feel good just being there.

Many performers who come to the open mic become headliners with their own concerts at APT, and become popular performers in Auburn and elsewhere. That is what compelled me to offer to write this article. If you attend this open mic, I believe you will feel good about your decision as well.

Tim Weir writes open mic reviews for, based in Buffalo. His goal has been to attend more than 36 open mics in the greater Buffalo/Niagara Falls area, and currently has been to 29 and counting. He also maintains a website called