Moscow Nights, an ensemble of energetic musicians from Russia, will be featured performers at the International Festival on Saturday, Feb. 16, at the Children’s Museum of Oak Ridge. Moscow Nights’ concerts offer audiences an entertaining glimpse of Old Russia through music, humor, song and dance, inviting audience participation.
Festival goers will experience entertainment, crafts and cuisines from cultures around the world at the family friendly event, with musical entertainment on stage throughout the day. Participants will dine on international cuisine, children will make international crafts to take home, and all will visit booths displaying crafts and traditions from world cultures.
The International Festival will be from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Feb. 16 at the Children’s Museum, 461 West Outer Dr., Oak Ridge. Food will be served from 11 a.m.-2 p.m.
New this year will be a Kids Fest from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., featuring crafts from Mexico and China, international food tasting and dancing. The Kids Fest is for children ages 7-13, the cost is $15 per person, and pre-registration is required. Accompanying adults are admitted with regular International Festival admission.
Moscow Nights is a versatile ensemble of folk musicians who are classically trained, performing traditional Russian folk music with instruments both traditional and obscure, including percussion “treshotki” and birch-bark whistles.
Vitaliy Bezrodnov, on bayan accordion, formed the group after traveling deep into the Russian countryside, interviewing village elders to preserve pre-revolution Russian culture. Other ensemble members are Sergey Pudov, on the balalaika-prima, originally from Magnitogorsk, Russia, and Anton Fadeev, on contra-bass balalaika.
The ensemble’s repertoire encompasses masterpieces of Russian folklore and represents the diversity of the culture, ranging from gently humorous songs, elaborate lyrical suites to pulsating dance music.
Other performers at the International Festival will include Good Thymes Ceilidh Scottish Fiddle Band; French Gypsy Swing; Early Bird Special; Song Yu, Chinese folk music; Carib Sounds Jamaican steel drums; Andrew Payzant on bagpipe; and Hmong folk music and dance. Dance will be presented by Lucia’s Arte Y Pasion Flamenca Dance, East Tennessee Chinese School Dancers, Chinese Christian Church, Tenpenny Rapper Sword Dancers, Spice of India Dancers with Sathiya Paranthaman. Bob Grimac will lead festival goers in Chinese ribbon dancing. Appalachian music and crafts exhibitors will be in the Appalachia Heritage exhibit area of the museum.
The Knoxville Area Model Railroaders will run model trains at the World of Trains exhibit during the festival. Garden tours will be available at 1, 2, and 3 p.m. guided by Garden Manager Bucky Smith. The International Festival is funded under an agreement with the Tennessee Arts Commission. WSI-Oak Ridge, USEC, Anderson County Sheriff’s Department and Oak Ridge Police Department are among sponsors of the event.
Admission to the International Festival is $12 for adults, $11 for seniors, $10 for children 3-18 and $1 off each category for museum members. For more information, call Carroll Welch at the Children’s Museum at (865) 482-1074, ext. 105, or see the Children’s Museum web site at www.childrensmuseumofoakridge.org.