Summer Music Workshops at the Museum - The Birthplace of Country Music
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Summer Music Workshops at the Museum

Bristol, Tenn.-Va. (June 26, 2020) – The newly reopened Birthplace of Country Music Museum, a Smithsonian Affiliate located in Historic Downtown Bristol, Virginia-Tennessee, will offer fun Summer Music Workshops for youth and adults this July in place of its Pick Along Summer Camp, which has been cancelled due to the COVID-19 impact. These one-day, in-person workshops will be limited to 10 participants each and follow social distancing guidelines mandated by the state of Virginia to protect the health and safety of participants, volunteers, and staff. 

“We are slowly introducing new programming at the museum after a long closure due to the pandemic,” said Dr. Rene Rodgers, Head Curator of the museum. “One-day Summer Music Workshops with small class sizes help us better maintain a safe environment for learning as we engage the community with some really fun and exciting activities related to our Appalachian music heritage.”

The Birthplace of Country Music Museum closed its doors on March 16 of this year in accordance with mandates passed down from the Commonwealth of Virginia to help stop the spread of the virus. As Virginia entered Phase Two of reopening the state, the museum was opened its doors on June 11 with strict safety protocols in place. To read more about those safety measures, click here.

Dates for the Summer Music Workshops at the Birthplace of Country Music Museum are as follows:

  • Monday, July 20: Youth, Beginners
  • Saturday, July 25: All Ages
  • Monday, July 27: Youth, Intermediate

Beginner workshop for youth ages 8-18 will focus on introducing kids to an instrument (guitar, fiddle or banjo) and learning to play a few songs. They will also take a fun tour of the museum and WBCM Radio Bristol. No previous experience on an instrument is required. 

The intermediate workshop for ages 8 -18 is for youth with some experience with an instrument or those whom have participated in previous Pick Along Summer Camps. Additionally, participants will create a podcast for Radio Bristol and tour the special exhibit Real Folk: Passing on Trades & Traditions through the Virginia Folklife Program

The adult or all ages workshop is focused on the theme “Southwest Virginia Tunes and Tall Tales.” Participants will receive fiddle, guitar, or banjo instruction, study fiddle and banjo songs of Southwest Virginia and do a lesson about storytelling with a focus on Jack Tales from Virginia.

Registration for each Summer Music Workshop at the museum is $75 per person. Participants are welcome to bring their own instruments from home or rent from the museum for $5. Registrants are asked to pack and bring their own lunches and snacks for health and safety reasons; breaks will be offered throughout each day.. To learn more, visit click here.

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