Enjoy the heritage of the southern highlands as Mountain State University's acclaimed Appalachian Visions series presents its annual spring festival on Saturday, April 21, at the John W. Eye Conference Center on the MSU campus.
A perfect springtime family event, the festival is free and open to all. Ample parking will be available in nearby campus lots.
The stage opens at 4 p.m. with performances by students in MSU's traditional music classes, followed by John Wyatt and the Appalachians at 5 p.m. and the Glenville State College Student Bluegrass Band at 6 p.m.
At 7 p.m. is the main stage performance from The Songcatchers, a locally grown multigenerational group with a growing national reputation. MSU's own Everett Lilly, who teaches some of the traditional music classes in addition to his work as director of the social work program, is joined by his 12-year-old daughter Ashley Lilly, and former student Bill Atkinson in old-time tight harmonies in the style of the Carter Family. Backing instrumentals come from Daniel Gravley on rhythm guitar, Brian Taylor on bass, 19-year-old Jordan Young on mandolin and 15-year-old Blaine Johnson on banjo.
The Songcatchers have played at the International Bluegrass Music Association Fanfest in Nashville and appeared with the legendary Doc Watson on a recent episode of the PBS performance show "Song of the Mountains."