LAYTON - A comedy legend is coming to Davis County.
Bill Cosby will be among the performers stopping by the Ed Kenley Amphitheater in Layton for the Davis Arts Council’s Summer Nights With the Stars series. Cosby, who is set to hit the stage August 6, is the crown jewel in one of the arts council’s biggest summer seasons ever.
“I’m super excited, but I’d be lying if I didn’t say I was also terrified,” said Kirt Bateman, executive director of the arts council. “He’s just such an icon. I don’t know how to put how I feel about him into words.”
Bateman has been trying to get Cosby to come to Layton for years, feeling that his dignified brand of humor would be a perfect fit for the community.
“He doesn’t stoop to low-brow comedy,” said Bateman. “He tries to engage everybody from kids to adults. I’m just ecstatic that he’s coming.”
Cosby isn’t the only big name coming to the county, however. Well-known indie-rock duo the Indigo Girls are making a return visit to Ed Kenley on July 25, while popular country duo Thompson Square is coming Aug. 21. The real-life couple most recently won the 2013 American Country Music Award for Best Vocal Duo.
June 27 will mark the appearance of Three Dog Night, 1970s rock icons who had a string of hits including “Mama Told Me Not To Come,” “Eli’s Coming” and “Joy To the World” (known to many by the opening line, “Jeremiah was a bullfrog.”)
“I think we have one of our best lineups,” Bateman said, then laughed. “Of course, I probably say that every year.”
Also on the schedule for the upcoming season are Ryan Shupe and the Rubberband (June 14), the a capella group Eclipse (July 19), Herman’s Hermits Starring Peter Noone (July 30), The Crescent Super Band (Aug. 16) and “The Voice” winner Danielle Bradbury (Aug. 7).
There will also be three themed music shows, starting with “The Sounds of Motown,” featuring The Changing Lanes Experience, on July 17. September 6 will see the appearance of “The Music of Patsy Cline,” starring Erica Hansen, while “American Idol” finalist Bo Bice will end the season as part of the rock show “Blood, Sweat and Tears.”
The number of performers means that the arts council won’t perform their regular Shakespearean production this fall, though they will bring back “Show Layton Your Talent” on June 21. This year the competition will be a junior edition, open to performers 18 or younger.
“A lot of our previous winners have been juniors in high school,” said Bateman. “But we wanted to give kids the chance to audition without the anxiety that they’d be competing against adults.”
Those that do try their hand will be part of the biggest season in Bateman’s memory.
“The size is really dictated by artist availability and how it all fits together,” he said. “If someone’s available and a good fit for the audience, I want to snatch them up.”
Tickets go on sale to the general public April 22. For more information, visit davisarts.org.