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August 28, 2007

"American Musicworks" kicks off summer season

Folk musicians Dean Shostak, Kelly Kennedy and Stephen Christoff explore the many cultures that make up American music during the concert, “American Musicworks.” Performances are at 5 p.m. Sundays, Sept. 2 and 16, Oct. 14 and 21, and Nov. 11, and Tuesdays, Sept. 18 and 25, Oct. 2, 9, 16 and 23, and Nov. 6, 13 and 20 in the Hennage Auditorium at Colonial Williamsburg’s DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum.

Perfect for the entire family, this concert features a wide range of music from fiddle tunes to clogging, and to authentic homemade American folk instruments—even a bottle band created by Jamestown Glasshouse to celebrate America’s 400th Anniversary. Families who arrive early have the opportunity to attend the pre-show “instrument petting zoo” that allows children to play musical instruments like those used in the show.

Dean Shostak is a world-renowned touring artist and a local musician from Williamsburg. He grew up playing violin, but also plays several 18th-century instruments, including the pocket violin, a miniature fiddle; the hurdy-gurdy, a French instrument similar to a violin; and the rare glass armonica, invented by Benjamin Franklin and made of glass bowls tuned by size and mounted inside one another. Dean has several critically acclaimed solo recordings, and his music has been featured on such television shows as NBC’s “Nightside” and PBS’s “Mister Roger’s Neighborhood.”

Kelly Kennedy, a featured Colonial Williamsburg performer, plays a variety of traditional folk instruments, as well as guitar, piano and harpsichord. Her solo albums have received national acclaim. In addition to solo acts, Kelly has accompanied Shostak both in performances and on recordings. Kennedy also is a vocalist, a dancer, actress and composer.

Stephen Christoff is a talented vocalist, guitarist and octave mandolin player whose style covers a wide range of genres, including grass-roots blues, Creole and swing. He has toured the United States and Europe, performing in such diverse venues as the Library of Congress, the Black Swamp Arts Festival and the College of William and Mary.

A separate ticket is required for this program. For more information and reservations, call 1-800-HISTORY.

The Museums of Colonial Williamsburg include the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum and the DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum and are located at 325 W. Francis St. Admission is included in any Colonial Williamsburg admission ticket or by separate museums ticket. For information call (757) 220-7724.

Established in 1926, the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation is the not-for-profit educational institution that preserves and operates the restored 18th-century Revolutionary capital of Virginia as a town-sized living history museum, telling the inspirational stories of our nation’s founding men and women. Within the restored and reconstructed buildings, historic interpreters, attired as colonial men and women from slaves to shopkeepers to soldiers, relate stories of colonial Virginia society and culture — stories of our journey to become Americans – while historic tradespeople research, demonstrate and preserve the 18th-century world of work and industry. As Colonial Williamsburg interprets life in the time of the American Revolution for its guests, it also invites them to interact with history. Williamsburg is located 150 miles south of Washington, D.C., off Interstate 64. For more information or reservations, call toll-free 1-800-HISTORY or visit Colonial Williamsburg on the Internet at

Media Contact:
Penna Rogers
(757) 220-7121