Kix Brooks to headline Secret City Festival in June

Kix Brooks with Mic

Country artist Kix Brooks performs at the Great Eastern Exposition in West Springfield, Mass., on Sept. 27. (Submitted photos)

Kix Brooks—one-half of the bestselling country duo Brooks and Dunn—will headline the Saturday night concert at the Secret City Festival in June.

The concert starts at 7 p.m. Saturday, June 14. Country-rock band Phoenix Drive will open.

“Kix Brooks enjoyed early career success as a songwriter before teaming up with Ronnie Dunn to form the highest-selling duo in the history of country music,” a press release said. “During their 20-year run together, Brooks and Dunn sold more than 30 million records, won more than 75 major industry awards, and celebrated 23 No. 1 hits.”

Brooks is now hosting the long-running syndicated radio program, American Country Countdown, where every week he counts country music’s Top 30 songs. Brooks has received many awards for his broadcasting abilities—including CMA National Broadcast Personality of the Year Award in 2009, 2011, and 2013—making him the first person to ever win a CMA Award in both the artist and broadcast categories. [Read more...]

UT Singers perform in last concert of season in Oak Ridge on Sunday

UT Singers

UT Singers, the University of Tennessee’s jazz choir

The UT Singers, the University of Tennessee’s jazz choir, will present their last concert of the season at Oak Ridge Unitarian Universalist Church.

The choir is directed by Wendel Werner, and the concert starts at 4 p.m. Sunday, April 6. The community is invited, and there is no cost to attend, a press release said.

ORUUC is located at 1500 Oak Ridge Turnpike in Oak Ridge. [Read more...]

Oak Ridge Civic Ballet presents ‘Sleeping Beauty,’ ‘Swan Lake’

Oak Ridge Civic Ballet Association

By Wendie Aurin

The Oak Ridge Civic Ballet Association is inviting the community to their fairy tale world with Tchaikovsky’s “Sleeping Beauty” and “Swan Lake” in April.

Professional guest artists Tory Morton and Erin-Elizabeth Morton will perform as Prince Seigfried and Odette in “Swan Lake.” Special guest Frank Murphy of Classic Hits 93.1 WNOX will portray the King in “Sleeping Beauty.”

Tickets are $20 for adults and $15 for seniors. Student tickets are $10, but ORCBA is proud to once again participate in the Penny 4 the Arts program, which allows up to three students to attend for a penny each with a paid adult or senior. Tickets may be purchased at the door, at, or at Flutterfly’s Consignment in the Manhattan Place Shopping Center. All productions are open seating. [Read more...]

Ulster Project serves up a ‘Taste of Ireland’

Peace Sculpture Northern Ireland

Peace sculpture on the ancient city wall of Derry/Londonderry, Northern Ireland. (Photo by T. Burns)

The Ulster Project of East Tennessee will host “Taste of Ireland”—a “sense-sational” celebration—on Saturday, April 5, from 6 to 10 p.m. in the Family Life Center at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Oak Ridge. Co-sponsored by the Knoxville and Oak Ridge chapters, the event will feature traditional Irish food and drink, live music, dance, and a silent auction.

Special musical guests, the local Irish/folk band, Shamrock Road, will entertain. Enjoy a buffet of traditional Irish favorite dishes and dessert between 6:30 and 8:30 p.m. Visit any of the four traditional Irish watering holes for something to accompany your meal or to quench your thirst from dancing a jig.

A “Taste of Ireland” is the perfect way to welcome spring and support the efforts to grow and sustain the peace process in Northern Ireland. The evening of food and entertainment costs $25 for adults and $20 for students (under 21) and seniors (65+). Tickets are available in Oak Ridge at Realty Center, 201 S. Tulane Ave.; at The Ferrell Shop in Historic Jackson Square; or through e-mail at [email protected]. Tickets will also be available at the door. [Read more...]

Doric String Quartet returns to Oak Ridge for ORCMA concert Saturday

Doric String Quartet

Doric String Quartet

The Oak Ridge Civic Music Association’s Chamber Series concert on Saturday features the Doric String Quartet. The concert will start at 7:30 p.m. at Oak Ridge Associated Universities Pollard Auditorium.

The Doric members are Alex Redington and Jonathan Stone, violins; Hélène Clément, viola; and John Myerscough, cello. The program includes Haydn’s String Quartet in B-flat, Opus 76 No. 4  “Sunrise”; Leos Janacek’s String Quartet No. 1 “Kreutzer Sonata”; and the Franz Schubert Quartet in G (D. 887).

The group spends time sharing their talents, techniques, and musical wisdom with young musicians in the area. Oak Ridge Symphony cellist Alicia Randisi-Hooker and her “Cello Leap Studio” is making arrangements for the quartet’s weeklong residency here. [Read more...]

‘Oak Ridge Has Talent’ fundraiser at Grove Theater on Friday

Ridge City Ramblers

Members of the Ridge City Ramblers, who will play at Oak Ridge Has Talent on Friday, are, from left, Gary Coleman, Mary Tuskan, Scott Linn, Abbie Hoerner, Oak Ridge Mayor Tom Beehan and Steve Reddick. (Submitted photos)

The Grove Theater will host a fundraising talent show on Friday that will feature 10 groups from Oak Ridge and East Tennessee.

The show, called “Oak Ridge Has Talent,” starts at 7 p.m. Friday. It will mark the kickoff of Friends of the Grove Theater, a new nonprofit organization dedicated to maintain the Historic Grove Theater as a performing arts center for the Oak Ridge area.

Representatives from Sound Company Children’s Youth Choir will perform along with ensembles from Oak Ridge Community Band, Oak Ridge Symphony, and dancers from the Oak Ridge Civic Ballet. Bands will include the Ridge City Ramblers, an Oak Ridge Bluegrass band; the MOOD, a classic rock band; and an Irish music session representing the Traditional Irish Arts of Knoxville. Miss East Tennessee Scholarship Talent winners will also perform, and a distinctive surprise from the Emory Valley Center is planned. Comedian and humorist Tyler Gouch will serve as the master of ceremonies. [Read more...]

Oak Ridge Symphony, Chorus perform Verdi, Shostakovich on Saturday

Dan Allcott

Dan Allcott


The Oak Ridge Symphony Orchestra will turn Saturday night into a magnificent musical evening when the Oak Ridge Civic Music Association presents a program of Verdi, Gorecki, and Shostakovich at the Oak Ridge High School Performing Arts Center.

Joining the orchestra for the concert at 7:30 p.m. Saturday will be the Oak Ridge Chorus along with the South Doyle High School Chorus for Giuseppe Verdi’s “Stabat Mater” and “Te Deum.”

Symphony conductor Dan Allcott wanted to do a Verdi choral work and chose these works in celebration of Verdi’s 200th birthday year. “The ‘Stabat Mater’ is one of my favorite works by the composer,” Allcott said. “Verdi was a small town boy who had a great work ethic, having composed 30 operas in his lifetime. These particular works were done in his later years.” [Read more...]

Comedy night at Grove features five comics Saturday

High Places Community Church

A comedy show at the Grove Theater on Saturday will feature five comics and one host.

A comedy show at the Grove Theater on Saturday will feature five comics and one host.

The 90-minute show, which will feature local and touring comedians, starts at 8 p.m. It will be hosted by comedian and magician Danny Whitson, a regular host for Side Splitters Comedy Club in Knoxville, who has performed at festivals, clubs, bars, and other special events up and down the East Coast.

Those who attend must be 18 to enter and 21 years old to drink. A cash bar will be available before show time and during intermission. Doors open at 7 p.m. To buy a ticket, call Whitson at (865) 255-0618. The ticket must be presented at the time of entry. They are $10 per ticket, per person. [Read more...]

TN Mountain Writers’ conference in Oak Ridge in April

The Tennessee Mountain Writers’ 26th Annual Conference, scheduled Thursday through Saturday, April 3-5, will be held at the DoubleTree Hotel in Oak Ridge. The conference will include writing contests, workshops, networking, manuscript evaluations, publishers, editors, book signings, a bookstore, vendors, and more.

The conference, which is funded in part under an agreement with the Tennessee Arts Commission and the National Endowment for the Arts, will kick off with a 6 p.m. reception on Thursday, April 3. Conference sessions will be held from 9 a.m. through 5:15 p.m. Friday, and from 8:30 a.m. to 3:15 p.m. Saturday, followed by the banquet on Saturday evening.  The Writer’s Block, a bookstore featuring works published by workshop leaders and conference participants, will be open all day Friday and on Saturday morning.  [Read more...]

First Cumberland Presbyterian has Family Kite Festival in April

Family Kite Festival Logo 2014

First Cumberland Presbyterian Church Of Oak Ridge has a free family kite festival in April.

It’s the Eighth Annual Family Kite Festival, and it’s scheduled from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday, April 26. The festival will be held on the front lawn of the church, which is at 127 Lafayette Drive, on the corner of Lafayette Drive and Laboratory Road.

“The Eighth Annual Family Kite Festival is totally free with free registration, treats, water, and even a free Family Kite Festival Kite Workshop beginning at noon, when kids and parents can build and decorate their own kite with free supplies and kit builder instructors provided by the event staff,” a press release said. [Read more...]

Oak Ridge talent showcase, pub quiz benefit Grove Theater on March 28, 29

High Places Community Church

An Oak Ridge talent show and pub quiz night will benefit the historic, renovated Grove Theater on March 28 and 29.

An Oak Ridge talent show and pub quiz night will benefit the historic, renovated Grove Theater on March 28 and 29.

On Friday, March 28, the new nonprofit organization Friends of the Grove Theater will have a showcase titled “Oak Ridge Has Talent.” It will benefit the Grove, a legacy of the Manhattan Project era that is celebrating 70 years of history and a decade since its re-opening by High Places Community Church, a press release said.

The Manhattan Project was a top-secret federal program to build the world’s first atomic bombs during World War II.

All proceeds from the March 28 show at the Grove will be used to maintain the facility as a performing arts center for Oak Ridge and East Tennessee organizations, the press release said. The show starts at 7 p.m., and it will include performances from community partners and other locals who want to support the Grove. Comedian and humorist Tyler Gooch will entertain between acts. [Read more...]