It all started WITH...
A simple idea over breakfast at a local Windham coffee shop. Why not create a festival that celebrates music and culture in a way that is accessible, fun, and brings people together. We considered various names, and by the end of our meal we had decided to name the festival after one of Windham's nearby peaks. . . And so, the Blackdome Music Festival was created.
The Blackdome Music Festival opened with its first season on June 24, 2017. Summer is that time of the year when we head outdoors, reconnect with family and friends, and enjoy some of life’s simpler pleasures. The festival was born out of this idea to connect our cultural interests and experiences with the beauty of the Catksills.
The festival explores various genres of music, and the contrasts, influences and relationships between them. Whether hearing a new voice, or exploring a unique rhythm or instrument, the festival hopes to bridge the gap between diverse styles creating a distinctive offering of musical experiences.
Yako is the Founder and Producer of Blackdome Music Festival. He has spent 18 years working in the music industry, from artist management, to working with concert presenters, music festivals, and renowned artists. After experiencing the music industry from all different angles, he decided to create something of his own, combining his various interests into a music festival in the picturesque setting of the Catskill Mountains.
The Windham region has particular significance to him as his great uncle established roots in the area in the 1940s. His family has been visiting the area since then, and Yako was fortunate enough to spend his childhood winter breaks learning to ski at Windham Mountain. After working in artist management at IMG, a desire to work at a festival and love for the outdoors led him to Colorado, where he spent several years in the management department of the Aspen Music Festival. As a result of his personal experiences and professional background, he decided to create a festival that would allow for new experiences for both the local Windham community and visitors to the area.
Yako draws inspiration from his concert experiences at a number of unique venues and remarkable performances, and his witnessing first hand the impact that music can have on an audience. At Blackdome, Yako aims to feature both emerging and distinguished artists that are influenced by varying styles of music, and he looks forward to the opportunity to present this to Blackdome's audience.
Olivera is a Co-Founder of Blackdome Music Festival. She started playing piano at age 4 and obtained a Bachelor of Music from Manhattan School of Music. To the great disappointment of her arts-loving parents, she went on to a career in law. Today, she represents individuals and businesses in both transactional and litigation matters, including in the arts, music and fashion industry. She keeps an electric piano behind her office desk, and manages to occasionally play a few notes when time permits – which, sadly, is quite rare.
Music has left an indelible mark on her career and approach to work ethics. Blackdome provides a unique platform for musicians to perform outside of the traditional urban venue or concert-hall setting. It is also an opportunity for her to come full circle and fuse her interests into a project that helps and nurtures musicianship and performance.
“Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life” - Berthold Auerbach. We hope that Blackdome can do just that.