Scores of live music, comedy acts, film screenings and arts-related events are the stars of the four-day Alternating Currents (AC for short) festival that runs from today, Aug. 18, through Sunday, Aug. 21, in downtown Davenport and Rock Island.
“Alternating Currents gives us an opportunity to showcase the businesses and vibrant culture of downtown while at the same time offering four days of great entertainment,” said Jason Gilliland, director of events for the Davenport Development Partnership (DDP). Quad Citians can visit 25 indoor and outdoor venues and sample more than 120 entertainment choices during the five-year-old annual event hosted by DDP, an affiliate of the Quad Cities Chamber.
“The easiest way to navigate the festival is through the Alternating Currents app. Users can build their own adventure through downtown,” Mr. Gilliland said. “The best thing about Alternating Currents is that each person can have their own unique experience by picking the music or comedy shows, films or art exhibits that appeal to them. Maybe you’ll even discover an artist you never knew about that becomes your new favorite.”
Users will find the Alternating Currents app, which is available for Apple and Android devices, at alternatingcurrentsqc.com. There they can discover the full schedule of music, comedy, film, art and other fun stuff as well as access a map of the downtown venues. All Alternating Currents performances are free to attend. Visitors also are encouraged to travel from one venue to the next, easily identifiable by their yellow Alternating Currents venue signage.
On the app, users will discover music, comedy, film, art, Idea Factory panels, and other fun stuff through easy-to-navigate categories. New features included on this year’s app are:
- Discover trending artists.
- Find all the unique spots and experiences through the points of interest area.
- Skip the wait and order merchandise while attending shows for easy and fast pick up at the booth at River Music Experience.
- Stay up-to-date on news and sign up for real-time notifications and reminders.
- Navigate all festival locations easily using the in-app GPS.
AC also is home once again to the Stephen King Dollar Baby Film Festival. The horror king gave his blessing for local venues to show films based on his short stories. These unreleased, never-before-seen films will be shown for the free at Alternating Currents.
“The Dollar Baby program aligns so well with our mission to highlight up and coming creatives, and we are thrilled to add this programming to the Alternating Currents Film Festival this year,” Mr. Gilliland said. “This will be a fantastic opportunity to feature filmmakers and will be a popular attraction for festival goers.”
Among the 2022 Alternating Currents highlights are:
- Avey Grouws Band, which defies labels with its powerful Quad Cities sound of blues, roots, rock and soul, 9 p.m., Friday, River Music Experience Courtyard, Davenport.
- Live music featuring singer-songwriter/guitarist KAS and pianist Andrzej Kozlowski at Experiences of a Rock Island Girl, 5 p.m., Friday, Arts Alley, Rock Island.
- The witty and whimsical performance of Squonk returns to the event presented by Quad City Arts for six performances: 6 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. Friday; 11:30 a.m, 7 p.m. and 10 p.m. Saturday; and 1 p.m. Sunday, Davenport Skybridge parking lot.
- Diplomats of Solid Sound, a mixture of deep funk, blue-eyed soul and Americana, will perform three times: 5 p.m. Friday, River Music Experience Courtyard; 1:30 p.m. Saturday, Stompbox Brewing; and 9 p.m. Saturday, Rubys, Davenport.
- LIVE at Laborspace is an outdoor show featuring original QC music acts Subatlantic, Tambourine and Centaur Noir plus Ragged Records will spin records between sets at 4 p.m., Sunday, Rozz-Tox Courtyard, Rock Island.
- Alternative country band Logan Springer & The Wonderfully Wild will give two performances: 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Front Street Pub & Eatery; and 11 p.m. Saturday, Stompbox Brewing, Davenport.
- DJs will show off their “turntablist” skills at Respect the DJ: A Hip-Hop DJ Showcase at 9 p.m. Friday, RIBCO, Rock Island.
More than 50 film screenings will take place at the Figge Art Museum in downtown Davenport. For times, see the AC app.
- The Stephen King Rules Film Festival features 25 independent, unreleased films that the legendary horror author has allowed emerging filmmakers to adapt from his unproduced short stories, developed by Barker Street Cinema.
- The Last Minute Till Midnight directed by Adam Orton tells the story of a city riddled with crime and the last honest journalist’s obsession to expose a corrupt politician.
- Spider-Man Heartstrings is a stop motion short film created by recent high school graduate and QC native Damien Dakota Hobert.
- No Shortcuts directed by Patrick Boberg tells the story of Ryck who encounters a mysterious object that recharges his workout regiment.
Ready for a good laugh? Alternating Currents has over 30 comics performing.
- Named one of Variety’s 10 Comics to Watch for 2020, Brent Terhune has accumulated more than 65 million views across his social media channels and will do three comedy sets: 8 p.m. Friday, Zeke’s Island Café, 5 p.m Saturday, Zeke’s Island Café; 8 p.m. Saturday, Mockingbird on Main, Davenport.
- Alex Price has opened for acts like Dave Attell, Kyle Kinane and Hannibal Buress, and his hilarious take on life is from a perspective you’ve likely never considered, will perform in three comedy blocks: 10 p.m. Friday, Mockingbird On Main; 7 p.m. and 10 p.m. Saturday, Zeke’s Island Café, Davenport.
- Kristin Lytie cut her teeth in Chicago and will perform in three comedy blocks: 10 p.m. Friday, Mockingbird On Main; 5 p.m. Saturday, Zeke’s Island Café; 8 p.m. Saturday, Mockingbird On Main, Davenport.
- Art in the Park with Ragen Hartfield & Star Dog Gallery is a fine art exhibit with visual artists displaying work in media from watercolors to sculpture 5-10 p.m. Friday; 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Saturday, Kaiserslautern Square, Davenport.
- Learn how to dye a bandana or t-shirt at the Indigo Dyeing Workshop with Allied Barber & Supply at 1-3 p.m. Saturday, Davenport.
- Before I Die presented by Quad City Arts is a global art project that invites people to reflect on death and share their personal aspirations, Figge Art Museum, Davenport.
- Full Frontal Family Fun is a pop-up art exhibit of paintings and sculpture by Steve Banks and Terry Rathje at 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Friday & Saturday, 220 E. Second St., Davenport.
OTHER FUN STUFF
- Professional wrestling at the SCW Rumble in Rocktown at Wake Brewing 7-9 p.m. Friday & Saturday, Rock Island.
- Participants can don headphones and listen to a variety of music at Silent Disco, presented by Quad City Arts, at 9 p.m. Friday, Davenport Skybridge.
- Explore unique ideas, subjects, perspectives and challenges from the lens of those who live it with Idea Factory panels including Culture Chat with the hosts Derry Public Radio, a Stephen King Podcast 5 p.m. Saturday, Stompbox Brewing; Brewers Panel 12 p.m. Saturday, Stompbox Brewing; Comedy Chat 6:30 p.m. Saturday, Mockingbird on Main, Davenport.
- Made Market QC is a handmade and vintage market featuring over 100 vendors with trendy boutiques, vintage finds and the best handmade goods in the Midwest at 5-8 p.m. Friday; 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, The River Center, Davenport.
- QC Beats: in the Streets will block off the street in front of the Davenport Public Library for two live shows from QCBeats Artists David G. Smith and Kumate 5-7 p.m. Thursday.
Downtown Davenport venues will host music, film, comedy and art experiences. They include:
- 220 E. 2nd St.
- Allied Barber & Supply
- Armored Gardens
- Daq Faq
- Davenport Public Library
- Figge Art Museum
- Front Street Pub & Eatery
- Kaiserslautern Square
- LeClaire Park
- Mac’s Tavern
- Mississippi River Distilling Company Lounge
- Mockingbird On Main
- Raccoon Motel
- Ragged Records & Trash Can Annie
- The RiverCenter
- River Music Experience Courtyard
- Skybridge Parking Lot (south of River Dr.)
- Stompbox Brewing
- UP Skybar at the Current Hotel
- Zeke’s Island Café
Venues in Rock Island include:
- Arts Alley
- Laborspace / Rozz-Tox Courtyard
- Wake Brewing