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New look, new feel, new season at TFAC

The Tryon Fine Arts Center&39;s curtain rises for a beautiful woman with a hauntingly clear voice, a visual and emotional tribute to WWII, sleek-trouser gents with voices to match, a man that will make the piano dance and much more as TFAC reopens its renovated new theater with the 2009 ‐ 2010 Main Stage Season.

As TFAC enters its 41st year of supporting the arts in the Foothills Region, the center will take audiences on a tour of culture and imagination. TFAC will stir up an eclectic brew of musical and visual artists in its newly renovated space. &bsp;

&dquo;The magic of theater is as much about anticipation as it is about performance. We&squo;ve chosen events that let the artists and the audience simultaneously discover the full impact of each performance,&dquo; says executive director Chris Farrell. &dquo;Each event was chosen specifically for our community. To have the ability to bring such top quality artists and still be capable of charging affordable prices is a gift. When audiences see these incredible artists in such an intimate setting they will truly understand the depth and range of the 2009 season.&dquo;

The season opens with a national and international favorite, Elisabeth VonTrapp. Born and raised in Vermont, Elisabeth is the granddaughter of the legendary Maria and Baron von Trapp, whose story inspired &uot;The Sound of Music.&uot; Carrying on the legacy of the internationally renowned Trapp Family Singers, VonTrapp has enthralled audiences from European cathedrals to Washington D.C.&squo;s Kennedy Center. She will christen the new theater on Sept. 11 at 8 p.m.

Growing artists locally is one of the center&squo;s highest priorities; therefore, &uot;Sentimental Journey: Voices of WWII&uot; will cast from both established regional musicians and the pool of collegiate talent in our area.

&dquo;We have the great opportunity to do a regional premier for a very talented script writer, Michael Thomas. &39;Journey&39; has been touring the Midwest in preparation for a national release,&dquo; says Farrell. &dquo;Thomas chose Tryon as another release point because he knows our history and the depth of the artists that live here.&uot;

More than 100 veterans, their wives and children were interviewed for this project and their collected stories, both harrowing and hilarious, are woven into the tapestry of this one-of-a-kind musical revue that features 32 of the best-loved songs of the 1940s. &uot;Journey&uot; promises laughter, entertainment and insight for all ages on Nov. 10.

Moving into spring of 2010, TFAC looks back to &dquo;Yesterday.&dquo; To paraphrase Paul McCartney, the Tryon Fine Arts Center believes in yesterday. The stage will be consumed by the Beatles when McGuigan and his band take the stage in &uot;Yesterday and Today&uot; on March 5. It&39;s a tribute show with a new – interactive – twist. As the stage lights up the audience will become part of the beat.

Finally, on April 12 the Tryon Fine Arts Center is excited to host Grammy Award winning artist George Winston in a solo piano performance. Best known for his melodic rural folk piano style, George has always acknowledged that his main piano influences are the great New Orleans R&B pianists.

&dquo;This will be the 24th Grammy Award winner to perform in our venue,&dquo; observes Jimm Brink, associate artistic director. &dquo;The level of talent that has played on this stage is remarkable.&dquo;

From international artists to artistic tributes to America&squo;s history, Tryon Fine Arts Center continues to excite and enhance the artistry of the Foothills. Farrell says the 2009-10 season will surprise even the most avid patrons. &dquo;Tryon is a cultural destination and we&squo;re pleased to be at center stage. I am certain our audiences will agree,&dquo; Farrell states.

For more information visit www.tryonarts.org. The box office is located at 34 Melrose Ave., Tryon. For tickets call 828-859-8322 ext. 214.