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Richmond Folk Festival announces additional details about this year’s virtual festivities

The Richmond Folk Festival is excited to announce additional details about the virtual event that will take place the weekend of October 9-11, bringing together the community through a special television program, radio broadcasts and online streaming.

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From the folks at Venture Richmond:

The Richmond Folk Festival is excited to announce additional details about the virtual event that will take place the weekend of October 9-11, bringing together the community through a special television program, radio broadcasts and online streaming.

Venture Richmond Events, in partnership with the National Council for the Traditional Arts (NCTA), the Virginia Humanities’ Virginia Folklife Program and the Children’s Museum will present new musical performances that are exclusive to this festival, highlights of favorite artists from past festivals, cooking demonstrations, a crafts marketplace and an official festival poster! The show will go on—a virtual event celebrating the roots, richness, and variety of American culture.

Additional artists to be featured in new musical performances include:

  • Eileen Ivers (Irish fiddle) Bronx, New York
  • Jason Samuels Smith & the Winard Harper Trio (tap dance) New York, New York
  • Martha & Emily Spencer (old-time) Whitetop, Virginia
  • Mythili Prakash Dance Ensemble (Bharata Natyam) Los Angeles, California
  • Pedrito Martinez (Afro-Cuban) New York, New York

Click here for extended artist bios, plus audio and video samples on our website.

Cooking Demonstrations

Each year at the Richmond Folk Festival the Virginia Folklife Stage showcases some of Virginia’s finest performers, artisans and chefs. Join us as we take a look back at a few of our favorite cooking demonstrations and learn from some of the best!

Join Frances Davis as she teaches how to make delicious fried dried apple pies. Like seafood? Learn from one of the best as Mary Stewart shares her Tangier Island crab bisque recipe. We also will revisit one of our favorite festival memories ever when sisters Clementine Macon and Deborah Pratt of Middlesex County, Virginia, renew their rivalry in the fourth year of the Oyster Shucking Smackdown series!

And in case that isn’t enough food for your plate, learn how to make traditional baklava with Sondus Moussa, and make Ghana’s most popular street food snack, a kelewele medley by RVA’s own Chef Ida MaMusu. All of your foodie favorites will be featured over the course of the virtual Folk Festival weekend.

Official Festival Poster

Fredericksburg native and VCU graduate Shannon Wright joins a talented collection of artists commissioned to design posters for the Richmond Folk Festival. Wright has been awarded prizes for illustration and editorial cartooning by the Virginia Press Association and the Society of Professional Journalists. Shannon says that her inspiration for the Folk Festival poster was the happiness and togetherness that music brings us even when we’re miles and miles apart. To watch a live unveiling of the official poster art, tune in to the Richmond Folk Festival’s Facebook page on Wednesday, September 23 from 5:00-6:00pm.

Craft Marketplace

The festival’s Craft Marketplace features artisans selling handcrafted and traditional items ranging from jewelry, specialty goods and original artwork. This year, although we won’t be live on the Riverfront, at Tredegar, you can still enjoy shopping from over 25 of your favorite festival merchants.

Click here to shop online.

Ways to watch and listen to this year’s virtual festival

This year’s virtual festival is a great opportunity for families to plan gatherings and watch parties at home in a safe, fun and responsible way. (Hours listed below comprise planned blocks of time encompassing television, live streaming and radio. Specific schedules for each platform will be released later in September.)

Friday, October 9 from 6:00-10:00pm Saturday, October 10 from 12:00-8:00pm Sunday, October 11 from 12:00-8:00pm

More artist announcements and additional details about the Richmond Folk Festival virtual celebration will be released later in September. Folk Fest Insider enewsletter subscribers will be among the first to receive updates and breaking news about the festival.

For more information about the Richmond Folk Festival, visit www.richmondfolkfestival.org. #RVAFolkFest – Text to Give! Text FOLK to 44321

Many thanks to our sponsors:

Altria, City of Richmond, Dominion Energy, WestRock, Capital One, Community Foundation, CarMax, NBC12 & CW Richmond, Richmond Times Dispatch, VPM, SummitMedia, National Park Service, Plan 9 Music, House of Hayes, Tonal Park Studios, Spacebomb Studios

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Richard Hayes is the co-founder of RVAHub. When he isn't rounding up neighborhood news, he's likely watching soccer or chasing down the latest and greatest board game.

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Friday Cheers Announces 2021 Concert Series

Each event in May and June features socially-distanced outdoor concerts with physically-spaced two, four and eight-person pods. Tickets must be purchased in advance, with no on-site ticket purchase available.

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Friday Cheers, presented by Hardywood Park Craft Brewery, returns May 7 for its 36th season of live music. Richmond’s longest running outdoor concert series is held on Brown’s Island on downtown’s historic and picturesque riverfront.

Each event in May and June features socially-distanced outdoor concerts with physically-spaced two, four and eight-person pods. Tickets must be purchased in advance, with no on-site ticket purchase available.

This year Cheers is celebrating all things local! Local bands, local food and local beer! Produced by Venture Richmond Events, this season’s Friday Cheers boasts a stellar line-up in a format designed to be safe for attendees.

“We are thrilled to present these shows in a safe and responsible way. Invite your friends and family out to enjoy the warm weather in one of Richmond’s most beautiful outdoor event venues,” said Stephen Lecky, director of events for Venture Richmond.

“Venture Richmond has helped make downtown Richmond a true cultural gem, and the team at Hardywood is thrilled for the opportunity to partner with them to bring people together over great music and delicious beer,” said Eric McKay, president and co-founder, Hardywood Park Craft Brewery.

2021 Season Lineup

May 7 – Cris Jacobs Band (8:00) with Deau Eyes (6:30) 

Watch Cris Jacobs Band on YouTube: https://youtu.be/hEKpHKXO8ZM

Watch Deau Eyes on YouTube: https://youtu.be/kq_cE6RS1rc

 

May 21 – Agents of Good Roots (8:00) with Leon III (6:30) 

Watch Agents of Good Roots on YouTube: https://youtu.be/KMYLnohwSos

Watch Leon III on YouTube: https://youtu.be/q0EVYI-WWTE

 

May 28 – An evening with Art of Noise RVA (6:30)

Watch Art of Noise on YouTube: https://youtu.be/wyGKMd4L40w

 

June 4 – NO BS! Brass (8:00) with Piranha Rama (6:30) 

Watch NO BS! Brass on YouTube: https://youtu.be/-O7-djsBv5g

Watch Piranha Rama on YouTube: https://youtu.be/69ozz5M6yDY

 

June 11 – An evening with Suggesting Rhythm (6:30)

Watch Suggesting Rhythm on YouTube: https://youtu.be/Nd1rMllrwL8 

 

June 18 – Mighty Joshua (8:00) and Erin & the Wildfire (6:30) 

Watch Mighty Joshua on YouTube: https://youtu.be/sqQL756RT9E

Watch Erin and the Wildfire on YouTube: https://youtu.be/mGHVPXo7ftA

 

June 25 – Butcher Brown (8:00) with (6:30) Shormey

Watch Butcher Brown on YouTube: https://youtu.be/Oune3jVNHEs

Watch Shormey on YouTube: https://youtu.be/hcY9VHzLwG0 

Advance tickets for individual shows to Friday Cheers are now available to purchase online at Ticketstobuy.com. Tickets must be purchased in advance online only. There will be no box office on site. Pods will be limited to two, four and eight-persons including children. A two-person pod is 4′ x 8′. A four-person pod is 8′ x 8′. An eight-person general admission pod is a 20ft circle, located in the back section of the island with limited views of the stage. Reserve your pod now to get your choice of spots on the island!

All ticket holders must agree to comply with safety precautions put in place during the event, as outlined on our website. All public health protocols will be strictly enforced, and contactless practices have been implemented for the safety of our guests and staff. Face masks or coverings are required and no admittance will be allowed without one. Social distancing and a face mask are required any time a patron is outside their pod including while walking to the entry points and waiting in line for check-in, porta-johns and beverage and food pickup. All food and beverage purchases will be online and contactless.   

Friday Cheers is Presented by: Hardywood Park Craft Brewery

Friday Cheers is Sponsored by: CoStar Group, Dominion Green Power, 103.7 Your Variety,  NBC12, CW Richmond and Cucumbers on Fire.

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VMFA acquires portrait by iconic 16th-century woman artist Lavinia Fontana

The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VMFA) announced their recent acquisition of Portrait of a Lady (1585) by Lavinia Fontana (1552-1614), a celebrated woman artist from Bologna. 

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The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VMFA) announced their recent acquisition of Portrait of a Lady (1585) by Lavinia Fontana (1552-1614), a celebrated woman artist from Bologna.

“Lavinia Fontana was a pioneer during her lifetime. The discovery and acquisition of this piece elevates VMFA’s collection of late Renaissance art,” says Alex Nyerges, VMFA’s CEO and Director. “Her work demonstrates the significant yet often unrecognized artistic contributions women have made throughout history.”

Fontana was one of the first women artists in Italy to work alongside her male colleagues. Owing to her talent and business acumen, she later became a trailblazer in her role as head of a successful studio. As early as the 1580s, Fontana’s portraiture was highly favored among Bolognese noble families. In the early 1600s, she moved to Rome where she became a painter at the papal court.

Best known for her portraits, Fontana was a renowned painter of the Mannerism movement during the Late Renaissance period. Her paintings reflect a maturation of the conventions of the Mannerist style and she plays an important role in the chapter of art history following the High Renaissance and immediately preceding the Baroque period. Despite the superficial naturalism that this portrait presents at first glance, the artist has cleverly manipulated the dimensions within the composition by subtly exaggerating the proportions of her sitter’s costume to give it a monumental aspect. The effect is magnified by the way that Fontana flattens the obscure background with its curiously positioned table, making the figure stand out in stark relief while simultaneously creating an image that is both spiritually intense and enigmatic. These contrivances, all of which are typical of earlier Mannerist artists such as Veronese and Tintoretto, allowed Fontana to create elegant compositions that flaunted her technical virtuosity.

The young woman in the portrait is dressed in an extravagant amount of gold, jewels, precious stones and pearls. During this era, pearls symbolized the purity of both body and soul. To further emphasize this aspect of her sitter’s moral character, Fontana depicts her toying gracefully with a rosary that is attached to her belt, a gesture that reminds the viewer of her pious dedication to daily prayer. Portraits of this kind were often part of the traditions surrounding aristocratic marital engagements. Fontana’s indulgence in representing the luxurious ornamentation, combined with her use of compositional elements intended to convey the Catholic piety and chastity of the sitter, ensure that the future bride is portrayed as a paragon of both wealth and virtue.

Although no evidence remains that might attest to the sitter’s identity, recent research has proposed that it could be an early portrait of Isabella Gonzaga (1565–1637). A member of a prestigious princely family of Mantua, Isabella inherited the minor principality of Sabbionetta from her father, and she was an influential presence at the courts of the duke of Milan and the king of Naples.

“Here is a woman’s regard for another woman during an era when the very contours of womanhood were principally being delineated by men. A noble woman in this society had to struggle to affirm her place, her dignity and her authority,” says Dr. Sylvain Cordier, VMFA’s Paul Mellon Curator and Head of the Department of European Art. “This representation of a confident and charismatic young noble woman will play a vital role in the development of the spectacular Grand Portrait Gallery that we are preparing for 2025. This gallery will assist our visitors to interrogate the constantly changing conventions governing gendered representation in European art over the course of several centuries.”

Portrait of a Lady is currently on view in VMFA’s Atrium. For more information about the museum’s collection of Renaissance art, visit www.VMFA.museum.

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Library of Virginia’s Weinstein Author Series celebrates Poetry Month in April

The Library of Virginia’s 2021 Carole Weinstein Author Series celebrates April as Poetry Month with a free virtual talk by poet, literary historian, and editor Kim Roberts on April 15 at 6:00 pm.

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The Library of Virginia’s 2021 Carole Weinstein Author Series celebrates April as Poetry Month with a free virtual talk by poet, literary historian, and editor Kim Roberts on April 15 at 6:00 pm. Her book By Broad Potomac’s Shore: Great Poems from the Early Days of Our Nation’s Capital uncovers great but hidden literature from lesser-known poets, including women, writers of color, LGBTQ+ writers, working-class writers, and those who were born enslaved.

The Carole Weinstein Author Series supports the literary arts by bringing both new and well-known authors to the Library of Virginia. Free and open to the public, the series focuses on Virginia authors and Virginia subjects across all genres.

2021 schedule:

April 15, 2021 (Virtual) KIM ROBERTS

By Broad Potomac’s Shore: Great Poems from the Early Days of Our Nation’s Capital

June 10, 2021 (In Person/Virtual as pandemic restrictions allow) VANESSA M. HOLDEN

Surviving Southampton: African American Women and Resistance in Nat Turner’s Community

September 14, 2021 (In Person/Virtual as pandemic restrictions allow)  KAREN L. COX 

No Common Ground: Confederate Monuments and the Ongoing Fight for Racial Justice

November 17, 2021 (In Person/Virtual as pandemic restrictions allow)  ALEXIS COE 

You Never Forget Your First: A Biography of George Washington

To learn more, visit the Library of Virginia website here.

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