Wiklund vs Wiklund was the big winner at this year’s Red Deer Entertainment Awards.
The music duo and married couple, Melody and Dan Wiklund, went home with the artist/group of the year award at the third annual award ceremony at Bo’s Bar and Stage on Saturday.
“It feels great,” said Melody. “We were nominated alongside some amazing artists, so I’m surprised, to be honest. I’m not even sure what to say.”
Winning the award was a humbling experience, Dan added.
“To be recognized amongst our peers feels great,” he said. “It makes you feel like a lot of your hard work is worth it in the end. But that’s not totally what it’s about – we just love to make music.”
The Wiklunds have played in various bands for at least 10 years. Melody said they eventually decided to try to write music as a duo.
“It was new to us, and a bit of an experiment, but it’s been great. We’ve had wonderful support from the community and through friends. It was a scary step, but … it’s been a great adventure,” she said.
Dan said Wiklund vs Wiklund is working on a new album and “is looking forward to taking on this year and all it has to throw at us.”
Randi Boulton was named singer/songwriter of the year.
Jesse Roads, Red Deer Entertainment Awards producer and founder, said the event was bigger and better than ever.
“It’s way cooler this year,” he said. “We put a lot of work on it to make it look and feel as good as possible. It’s exciting to say the least.”
This was the first year the event was held at Bo’s Bar and Stage, a bigger venue than the first two award shows.
“It allows us to include more people and to connect with others as well. We’re able to have more members of the public instead of mostly nominees,” he said.
Roads said he wished he could give an award to every nominee.
“The list (of nominees) is absolutely incredible. Red Deer’s entertainment scene is so amazing. I’m excited for all of them here tonight,” he said.
Red Deer Entertainment Award winners
Guest of honour: Heath West
Promoter of the year: Quan Diep
Venue recognition award: Bo’s Bar and Stage
Open stage award: The Vat Pack
Achievement award: Nolan Nicoll – The Velvet Olive
Red Deer Scene award: Carl Stretton
Social contribution award: LV’s Vinyl Cafe – Lisa Spencer-Cook
The Central Alberta Film Festival and Red Deer Arts Council were recognized with awards as well.