Upcoming Events

Fall Term 2018

8th – A showing of: The Ballad of Shirley Collins

Loyal Jones Appalachian Center


This year is the 59th anniversary of a seminal 1959 song-collecting trip around the Southern United States by pre-eminent ethnomusicologist Alan Lomax. On the trip with him as his ‘secretary’ was an unknown English singer called Shirley Collins. Alan had met her in the UK, where he’d been avoiding the attentions of the McCarthy witch-hunts, and they became lovers. Together they returned to an America on the cusp of the Civil Rights movement, and embarked on a road-trip where they collected a vital body of music that provides a peerless document of the time. Shirley was to go on to become the most significant English traditional singer of her age, before losing her voice in mysterious circumstances in the 1980s. This film juxtaposes this transatlantic road-trip from the start of her career with the story of her brave attempt (at the age of 80) to rediscover her voice and place in the pantheon of musical greats. The film is both a celebration of the power of tradition and an inspiring story of triumph over adversity, and one that explores the enduring flow of cultural exchange between the US and UK.

The film recently finished a prominent international festival run, and has completed it’s UK theatrical release. The US release is supported by Lush Cosmetics. Alongside regular screenings, we will be following the route of Shirley and Alan’s trip with a series of event screenings. We have already built our audience base through a successful Kickstarter campaign, and have backing from prominent musicians across the States who hold Shirley in high regard.

16th – Berea College Folk Roots Ensemble Homecoming Reunion & Concert

Loyal Jones Appalachian Center


Folk Roots Ensemble Alumni are invited to come and jam with current Folk Roots Ensemble members.  Rehearsal will be from 4 to 6 pm and the concert will be from 7 to 8:30 pm.  The alumni will perform one set and then the current incarnation of the group will perform a set, followed by a finale number with all participants.

5th – Appalachian Music Presentations

Loyal Jones Appalachian Center

10:40 am

Students from Liza DiSavino’s APS/MUS 224 course will be presenting their final projects.  Open to the public.

Spring Term 2019

25th – Songwriter Night with Liza & AJ

Loyal Jones Appalachian Center


Join Liza DiSavino and A.J. Bodnar for a night of music and fun!

Liza & A.J. are in their sixteenth year as faculty and performers at the accredited folk arts school Common Ground on the Hill in Westminster, Maryland. In addition to their performance schedule as a duo and as folk dance musicians, the two currently work at Berea College, KY, where A.J. plays for the dance program including the 75-year-old Country Dancers and sings lead for the Mariachi Band, and Liza leads the college Folk-Roots Ensemble and teaches classes in music education, Appalachian music, and songwriting. She also has served on the committee for the Celebration of Traditional Music for four years. Both appeared on the college’s nationally CBS broadcast Christmas special, and Liza and the Folk-Roots Ensemble appeared last year with the Chieftans, and they host the weekly web broadcast “Sound Politics” on WBER.