Garth Newel rings in the New Year with a Viennese Ball

Hello and welcome to the Allegheny Mountain Showcase featuring performers and venues that enrich the arts and cultural experience in the Allegheny Highlands of the two Virginias.  Up this week is an interview with Shawn Puller, Executive Director of the Garth Newel Music Center in Hot Springs, Va.

For their New Year’s Eve concert this year Shawn says the Garth Newel Music Center will be transporting the audience back to the Old World with a Viennese Ball.

“Well we’ve been doing the New Year’s for many years and our artistic directors really try to make it an interesting program,” said Shawn.  “This year was no different for that; they were inspired by some really fantastic works by Robert Shumann and Beethoven but everyone know that when you think of Viennese Balls and Viennese New Year that Johan Strauss, one of his waltzes must be played.  And so they’re doing this really great rendition of the Morgenblätter waltz by Strauss and that’s going to finish up the evening.”

And then, really exciting, we have some terrific competition ballroom dancers who will be part of the program.  They’ll be dancing to the final piece; they’re Corey and Lydia Flowers, we had them last year and they were getting people up and teaching them to dance during the dinner afterwards and it was just an incredible, incredible evening. We’re bringing them back and they just add such an amazing spirit to the whole evening.”

“It’s such a wonderful pairing and inside Garth Newel, it’s such an intimate setting so you’re really just swept up into the entire experience; you’re actually part of the performance rather than just being a passive observer of the performance.”

Corey and Lydia Flowers will also be offering private dancing lessons while in the area this year.

“Exactly!  Yeah, Corey and Lydia will be in residence here starting December 29th,” said Shawn. “They thought that as long as they’re here anyone who was interested in taking ballroom dancing lessons should go ahead and contact them.  Their lessons are $75.00 an hour.  I spoke with someone earlier who said that their daughter is getting married this year so they were very interested in taking some lessons prior to that event.”

Tickets for the dinner following the concert are already sold out.  But Shawn says don’t let that stop you from enjoying some truly beautiful music.

“This year has just been absolutely amazing at the music center,” he said. “We’ve sold out of our dinner tickets many times this year.  So the extraordinary six course meal that Chef Josh Elliott has prepared is sold out on New Year’s Eve, but at Garth Newel you can always come up on the day of the event for concert tickets, you can always get in for the concert, you’re always welcome here.”

Have other plans for New Year’s Eve? No worries; a New Year’s Day brunch and concert will celebrate the Roots of Romanticism.

“There’s an annual brunch that we do the next day,” said Shawn, “on New Year’s Day and that is a noon time concert followed by a brunch.  There’s still a few tickets left for the concert and meal experience.”

You’ll find more detailed information about the New Year’s Eve concert and New Year’s Day Brunch and concert at their website or by phone at 540-839-5018.

Be sure to tune in at 9am Friday, Dec 28th as Sage welcomes the band Zoo of Trees to the Morning Dew.

Story By

Heather Niday

Heather is our Program Director and Traffic Manager. She started with Allegheny Mountain Radio as a volunteer deejay. She then joined the AMR staff in February of 2007. Heather grew up in the Richmond, Virginia, area and now lives in Arbovale, West Virginia with her husband Chuck. Heather is a wonderful flute player, and choir director for Arbovale UMC. You can hear Heather along with Chuck on Tuesday nights from 6 to 8pm as they host two hours of jazz on Something Different.

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