We see what’s rock ‘n’ rolling over at Kenosha Fusion in this exclusive Q&A with Aimee & Danny Crucianelli.
How did you both get involved with taking over Fusion?
We were concerned that it would close permanently so when we were offered the chance, we jumped at it. We wanted do our best to save a great venue like this and help promote local musicians and artists.
How long have you been operators at Fusion?
We took over at the end of August but were not able to open right away due to the unrest and pandemic.
What was the first show/event that you did at Fusion?
The Mask-a-Rave. We had 3 Dj’s and limited capacity as well as a strict mask rule. It was a very successful event and lots of fun.
To someone that is new in the area can you describe what Fusion is all about?
We are an eclectic music and art venue. Fusion provides a top-of-the-line sound and video system while allows an excellent experience for people at the venue and even for those who are not yet comfortable with going out and can stream online. Visit kenoshafusion.com to see some great videos of past performances and keep an eye on our Facebook page for upcoming events.
What goes into booking your entertainment?
Lots of time and conversations, and now in this day with what is going on, it is very difficult. Many bands are still not playing live.
Who is your dream act you’d love to book?
Foo Fighters or anything Dave Grohl. But honestly, most of our favorites have long passed on.
What makes Fusion so special?
Fusion has become a staple in Kenosha for great shows in an intimate setting. Performers enjoy playing on an actual stage complete with professional sound and lighting.
What kind of music can people expect at Fusion?
All kinds! We are also musicians, and both have wild tastes musically. That is one of the new aspects we bring to the table as the new operators, we look forward to having all genres of music on our stage.
Can you tell us about the monthly artists that decorate the walls of Fusion?
Each month we choose a local artist to grace our walls with their talent. The artist hangs their work in the beginning of the month and it stays until the end. Those artists hold a premiere and hopefully can sell some work. We are all dealing with our own struggles artists and musicians have really been hit hard we wanted to find a way to help out.
You’re both musicians, can you tell our readers a little bit about your musical background?
Aimee doesn’t really have much. She sang choir in high school and started playing the drums at 28. Danny, on the other hand, comes from a long lineage of musicians. His family has been performing live music in this town since the 1940s. Danny can play just about any instrument and started on the drums at the age of 12.
Besides the obvious 2020 issues, what has been the biggest challenge at Fusion?
Our talent deserves compensation. We want to pay our performers for their work. We really don’t want to do an admission fee, but sometimes it is needed to pay them. For anyone complaining about paying a cover at the door of Fusion or any other place in town, remember that this is money that is going to the performers. Let’s not be afraid to support our local artists and musicians.
Can you tell us about your Covid safety precautions?
We are taking it seriously and want to try to be as safe as possible.When entering you will find sanitizer and we have free masks available if you do not have one. We require the mask be worn while standing or moving about the venue and encourage social distancing. There are additional sanitizing stations throughout the building as well. Musicians must bring their own microphones and we provide various shields for some of the performers depending on what they play.
What do you have planned for this upcoming summer?
We have some very cool outdoor shows in our gorgeous beer garden. Lots of hands-on art projects and tons of open jams and open mics. You gotta stop in to find out about monthly special events!
What do you love about Downtown Kenosha?
Harborside! We live downtown now as well, so we love walking to get our coffee or a quick dinner. There are so many cool locally owned businesses in this area and they all support one another. It is super dog friendly. Our dog, Melody, loves it here – sometimes she might even make an appearance at Fusion!
5014 7th Avenue. Kenosha, WI
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(This article first appeared in the Downtown Kenosha Magazine Vol. 14 Issue 1. 2021)
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Q&A by Donny Stancato
Edited by Jason Hedman
Photos by Donny Stancato & Aimee Crucianelli