Variety is spice of this year's concert series
Sept. 2, 2011

Ralph Stanley and the Clinch Mountain Boys
Ralph Stanley and the Clinch Mountain Boys
Michael Lewin
Michael Lewin

From bluegrass to classical to eclectic percussion, this year's Callaway Concert Series will feature a wide variety of musical genres,

"We're very excited about the caliber of musicians who will be appearing this year at Callaway Auditorium," said Dr. Toni Anderson, Chair of the Music Department. "Each and every performer is renowned in their field. They are the best of the best."

Dr. Anderson said she is grateful to the Callaway Foundation for its help in bringing such talent to the college.

"They have funded us from the beginning," she said. "They believe in our vision of bringing artists of international repute to this campus and to this community."

Ralph Stanley and the Clinch Mountain Boys
The opening concert will be at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 7 and will feature Ralph Stanley, "the king of bluegrass," and the Clinch Mountain Boys.

"We think Ralph Stanley will be very accessible to a lot of people," she said. "We've already heard from fans from Macon, as well as from Louisiana and Alabama. He has a huge following, and we hope to draw people who haven't been to the campus before."

Stanley has been performing for more than 60 years and has become one of the most influential country and bluegrass artists of all time. In 1946, he and his brother Carter formed the legendary Stanley Brothers duo and the Clinch Mountain Boys.

In 1984, Stanley received the National Heritage Award and was inducted into the International Bluegrass Music Hall of Honor in 1992. Eight years later, he was inducted into the Grand Ole Opry. In 2002, Stanley received his first Grammy award for his performance on the movie soundtrack for "O Brother Where Art Thou."

He received the Living Legend award from the Library of Congress and the National Medal of Arts in 2006. Stanley has recorded more than 170 albums.

Michael Lewin
On Nov. 3, classical pianist Michael Lewin will take the stage. Lewin has appeared as soloist with orchestras worldwide. His career was launched with victories in the Franz Liszt International Piano Competition in the Netherlands, the American Pianists Association Beethoven Fellowship and the William Kapell International Competition.

He made his New York recital debut in Lincoln Center in 1984, on which occasion the New York Times wrote that "his immense technique and ability qualify him eminently for success."

He is on the piano faculty of The Boston Conservatory, where he maintains a select studio of prize-winning students. A native of New York, he studied at the Juilliard School.

The season will end March 23 with the appearance of Nexus, which is made up of four master percussionists who have worked together for more than 30 years.

"Several of our students have been requesting Nexus for a few years now," Dr. Anderson said. "These guys are amazing."

The musicians are internationally renowned, not just for their virtuosity as individual and group performers and their innovation and creativity, but for their ability to create music out of just about anything: Swiss cowbells, Chinese drums, Tibetan prayer bowls, Middle Eastern hand drums and Southeast Asian water buffalo bells, to name just a few. With a repertoire ranging from military music to the novelty ragtime of the 1920s, from the haunting rhythms of Africa to the ground-breaking compositions of Toru Takemitsu, John Cage and Steve Reich, Nexus delivers a virtuosic spectacle of sound, rhythm and movement.

Season tickets are available for adults, $45, and students, $30. Tickets at the door will be adults, $20, and students, $10. Tickets may be purchased online by credit card at .

For more information, call (706) 880-8351 or e-mail .

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