Central Pennsylvania Ragtime & American Music Festival returns September 24-26 – The Syncopated Times
America’s leading early ragtime and jazz musicians return for a weekend of Ragtime & Rails
FOUR ROCKHILL, PA. – The Central Pennsylvania Ragtime & American Music Festival is relaunched September 24-26 in the historic twin neighborhoods of Orbisonia and Rockhill Furnace, Pennsylvania.
The festival, launched in 2009, is one of America’s most intimate musical gatherings, bringing Grammy-nominated musicians to central PA, playing ragtime, jazz, and early American popular music. This year the festival brings back favorite artists Adam Swanson, Frederick Hodges, Richard Dowling, Bryan Wright, Brian Holland, Domingo Mancuello and Andrew Greene.
Tickets for the Central PA Ragtime & American Music Festival are on sale now at rockhillragtime.com. An All Access Pass costs $ 150, with individual events ranging from $ 10 to $ 35 each. The Ragtime In Rockhill BBQ Dinner Train is hosted by East Broad Top Railroad. Individual dinner train tickets cost $ 60 for adults and $ 55 for children, and are available on the EBT website, www.eastbroadtop.com/events.
“The Central PA Ragtime Festival is unlike any other music event in the United States,” said Andrew Greene, who is also the festival’s coordinator. “Where else can you hear America’s earliest forms of popular music in a city whose history is so closely tied to the genre? And this year, we’re excited to partner with the newly restored East Broad Top Railroad to create whole new experiences for our spectators.
The 2021 festival begins Friday, September 24 at the East Broad Top Railroad station, 421 Meadow Street, Rockhill, PA with a 7:00 p.m. screening of Buster Keaton’s 1927 silent film masterpiece THE GENERAL. The feature film is preceded by Monty Bank’s comedy short CHASING CHOO CHOOS. Silent films with live musical accompaniment are Frederick Hodges, of San Francisco, CA, and Adam Swanson, of Durango, CO. Festival attendees are encouraged to bring chairs and blankets for this outdoor film screening, with a rain location from the Presbyterian Church of Orbisonia. on Ridgely Street. At 9:00 p.m., the festival hosts a welcome reception at Iron Rail Bed & Breakfast, 471 Meadow Street, Rockhill, PA., Where festival musicians perform in an informal setting.
Saturday, September 25 will begin with a talk titled “Ragtime in Hollywood,” presented by Adam Swanson at Orbisonia Presbyterian Church on Ridgely Street. Starting at 10:00 a.m., the ragtime piano will be featured in free performances at Orbisonia Station on the East Broad Top Railroad. The East Broad Top Railroad will run diesel-powered tour trains at 11:00 a.m., 1:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m., and the nearby Rockhill Trolley Museum will offer streetcar rides throughout the day. At 2:30 p.m., the festival continues with an afternoon concert at the Presbyterian Church in Orbisonia. At 5:00 p.m., the EBT and the festival jointly present the Ragtime in Rockhill BBQ Dinner Train, which includes a train tour, dinner and a 90-minute concert.
Sunday, September 26 begins with a music-filled church service at St. Luke’s Lutheran Church, 100 S Jefferson Street, Mount Union, PA. From 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., the ragtime piano will once again be featured at the East Broad Top Railroad station, and the railroad will offer train tours at 11:00 a.m., 1:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. The festival ends with a 1:30 p.m. concert at the Presbyterian Church of Orbisonia.
For more information about the festival and to purchase tickets, please visit: www.rockhillragtime.com. For more information on the East Broad Top Railroad, visit: www.eastbroadtop.com.
Andrew Greene, festival coordinator