Last updated: September 22. 2013 4:11PM - 905 Views
Staff Report

Chester McMillian
Chester McMillian
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The Blue Ridge Music Center will celebrate the music of Surry County with a special, free, performance-talk on Sunday, Sept. 29 2 p.m.

Round peak music is an old-time music style that originated in northwestern Surry County, North Carolina and spread around the globe. Music collectors, enthusiasts and folklorists, many of them already aware of the Grayson and Carroll County, VA traditions, came into the area in the 1960’s and discovered something amazingly intense and powerful. Word began to spread far beyond Surry County and southwestern Virginia. Additionally, recordings played on local radio stations inspired young people looking for something different to start coming to area fiddlers’ conventions. Awareness of the Round Peak tradition exploded and worldwide enthusiasm continues to the present day. Even though many of the early practitioners are gone, the tradition exists locally because younger musicians have kept it going. This special presentation will include some of the finest players from the region spanning three generations: Verlin Clifton, Bobby Patterson, Chester McMillian and Nick McMillian.

The Surry County Spotlight performance-talk starts at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 29. Reservations are highly recommended as seating is limited. Admission is free. To reserve your seats call (276) 236-5309 ext. 112 and please show up by 1:45 p.m. to keep your reservation. At 2 p.m. any open seats are given to drop-in visitors.

The Fall Heritage Series takes place in the indoor theater at the Blue Ridge Music Center on Sunday afternoons Sept. 29 - Oct. 13. Check the website for a complete schedule. Also enjoy free Mid Day Mountain Music 12-4 p.m. daily and the free Roots of American Music museum open 10 a.m.-5 p.m. daily through Oct. 27 when the center closes for the season. The Fall Heritage series is made possible with the support of the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation, National Park Service, and Eastern National. The Blue Ridge Music Center is located at milepost 213 on the Blue Ridge Parkway only 10 miles from Galax, Virginia and 20 miles from Mount Airy, North Carolina – the gateway to one of the most musical places on earth.

Upcoming events:

Oct. 6 SUN Mandolins of the Blue Ridge: Gerald Anderson, Scott Freeman, David Long and Carl Jones. 2 p.m. in BRMC indoor theater. Reserve in advance.

Oct. 13 SUN Tribute to Banjoist and Fiddler Wade Ward: Paul Brown, Peter Parrish and other guests. 2 p.m. in BRMC indoor theater. Reserve in advance.

About the Blue Ridge Music Center:

The Blue Ridge Music Center celebrates the music and musicians of the Blue Ridge. Established by the U.S. Congress in 1985, the site includes an outdoor amphitheater, indoor theater, visitor center, gift store and the Roots of American Music museum used to highlight an important strand of American musical culture, which is still alive and thriving in the region. The site is operated through a partnership between the National Park Service and the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation. The center and museum are open 10:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. daily through Oct. 27. Admission to Visitor’s Center and the Roots of American Music museum is free. Mid-day Mountain Music is offered free every day in the Blue Ridge Music Center breezeway from 12-4 p.m.

About the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation:

The Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation, under a cooperative agreement with the National Park Service and the U.S. Department of the Interior, is the primary fundraiser and trusted steward of the Blue Ridge Parkway. The Foundation is forever committed to preserving the past, enhancing the present, and safeguarding the future of America’s Favorite Journey®. We are proud to serve and support this extraordinary environment that connects the spirit of countless people through a twisting ribbon of mountain road. We are a strong defender of the Parkway, funding needed projects that enhance and protect the natural, cultural, historic, and recreational qualities that make the Blue Ridge Parkway an American treasure. Find out more at www.brpfoundation.org.

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