The Smithsonian Institute’s “New Harmonies: Celebrating American Roots Music” opens today at the library, where the traveling exhibit will be housed during its stay.
“New Harmonies,” which explores the early traditions of American music will be at the library through March 23, is sponsored by the University of West Georgia. The exhibit has been touring in Georgia since 2012.
The exhibit will give visitors an opportunity to learn about American history and culture through the origins and evolution of American music. Consisting of eight colorful interactive displays, the exhibit features stories, photographs and musical objects. It also includes a listening station where guests can hear samples of roots music.
The library was closed Friday, branch Manager Lisa Walton-Cagle said, to allow for an “installation workshop,” when the library hosted Smithsonian workers as well as representatives from other area libraries as they installed the exhibit.
Haralson County Tourism Coordinator Gail Priest said there are 25 volunteers working with the exhibit.
Volunteers have also been preparing for a ribbon-cutting ceremony today at the library. The library will be closed this morning, but will open to visitors starting at 1:30 p.m. The exhibit will then remain open until 4:30 p.m.
Immediately following the ribbon-cutting will be opening remarks by Bremen Mayor Sharon Sewell, RKR Construction and Mill Town Music Hall owner Randall Redding, and record producer and music executive Harold Shedd. There will also be a welcome by Georgia Humanities Council President Jamil Zainaldin and UWG College of Arts and Humanities Dean Dr. Randy Hendricks. Shedd will deliver the keynote address.
Local bands Bullsboro and Americana Express will perform at 2:30 p.m. next door at First United Methodist’s Branham Hall — which will also be the location of the ribbon-cutting ceremony in the case of inclement weather.
The library will be open for business during the exhibit’s stay, with the exception of this morning.
The Georgia Humanities Council, in partnership with the Smithsonian Institution, is sponsoring the exhibit, which shares America’s story by examining the roots of its music. The exhibit will highlight the unique story of Georgia’s musical traditions.
“New Harmonies” will spend six weeks in Bremen, during which time a number of musical performances will be held throughout the region in conjunction with the physical exhibit.
Mill Town Music Hall will be the location of some of these performances.
Mill Town Music Hall will host concerts to serve as companion programming to “New Harmonies” through March 9:
Friday, Feb. 22 – Rhonda Vincent and Gene Watson. Vincent is an award-winning bluegrass singer, is considered the “Queen of Bluegrass.”
Saturday, March 9 – Little Texas and Homegrown. Little Texas has eight top 10 country hits, including the number one single “My Love.” Homegrown was founded in Carrollton.
To purchase Mill Town Music Hall tickets in advance, call the box office at 770-537-6455.
Other local events include:
Sunday, Feb. 10 – Babbie Mason gospel concert at 6 p.m. at Bremen First Baptist Church, 331 Pacific Ave., Bremen.
Saturday, Feb. 16 – Thomas Dorsey and Birthplace Choir perform at 6 p.m. at Mt. Prospect Baptist Church, 133 Thomas Dorsey Drive, Villa Rica.
Sunday, Feb. 17 – Sacred harp singing at 9:30 a.m. at UWG’s Z-6 Dining Hall, West Georgia Drive, Carrollton.
Saturday, Feb. 23 – Southern Gospel Convention music at 6:30 p.m. at Steadman Baptist Church, 2885 Steadman Road, Tallapoosa.
Saturday, March 2 – Gospel music featuring Stan Whitmire with the West Georgia Region Sacred Music Singers at 6 p.m. at Bremen First Baptist Church.
Friday, March 8 – Shape note singing at 7 p.m. at Bethel Baptist Church, 2656 Bushmill Road, Bremen.
Sunday, March 10 – Children’s Choir at 3 p.m. at Hamilton-McPherson Fine Arts Center, 504 Laurel St., Bremen.
Saturday and Sunday, March 23 and 24 – Sacred harp singing at 9:30 a.m. at Emmaus Primitive Baptist Church, Oak Grove Church Road, Carrollton.
There are brochures available at the library for pick up that include details of all exhibit-related activities.