Thousands of views, shares, combined likes; Your Pennsylvania’s Americana Region Festival is chugging right along! The experience continues through June 30.
Featuring diverse activities and performances spotlighting the talent of our Berks County community, there is currently a train song writing contest under way, as well as student recitals, special nights for Berks Jazz Fest, Lyons Fiddle Fest, Red Bridge Fiddle Fest, Yocum Institute for the Arts, Berks History Center, Albany Township History Center, and Barrio Alegria.
Livestream music lessons, how-to sessions for cooking, pottery, growing a Victory Garden, milking a cow, creating painted art, livestream open mic sessions, fishing demonstrations, bicycle trail rides, hex sign and powwow lectures, Latino poetry corner, explorations of ethnicity and ethnic culture, livestream worship services, partner presentations with Missouri’s Council of the Arts, Virginia’s Crooked Road Council, and so much more.
You can experience the festival live and explore past performances on the Americana Fest Facebook Page. Americana Fest in Berks County, Pennsylvania’s Americana Region, is an umbrella festival for the community and visitors, presenting a celebration of music, art, dance, culture, history, craftsmanship and gastronomical excellence.
Pennsylvania’s Americana Region Festival is raising money through donations to share with affiliate music, arts, history and teaching organizations within our home region of Reading and Berks County, PA. COVID 19 has greatly damaged the ability of our regional musicians, artists and presenters to earn a living and to share their talent with public groups as in the past. The associated fundraising effort is called Pennsylvania’s Americana Region Festival Healing Arts Fund and can be found online at https://www.facebook.com/donate/1271093436428045/?fundraiser_source=external_url
Here’s the lineup for the next few days and bonus content is added almost every day…
Weds, 6/3, 6:30 to 7:30pm – A one hour lesson on how to play Flamenco and Rhumba nylon-stringed guitar with Jason Hochman, founder of the New York Guitar Academy, live-streamed from New York.
7:30pm – A fascinating video showing all details of the Reading Railroad Train Museum’s (Hamburg) world-famous modular scale train layout. It fills a building!
Thursday, June 4, 10am – Yocum Institute presents another in their fest series of how to appreciate regional works of art.
7pm- singer/songwriter Vickie Kissinger performs a livestream concert.
8pm – A tour of Hamburg’s Reading Railroad Company Technical Museum with one of the nation’s largest display of actual rolling stock, locomotive engines, etc.
Friday, June 5: It’s Lyons Fiddle Festival Night featuring livestream and pre-recorded concerts as follows…
5pm: The youngest Lyons Fiddle Fest Grand Champion ever, Max Brown, performs a livestream concert.
5:30 – Judy Terwillger and the Crow Hill Band perform fiddle tunes and more.
7pm – Physician turned musician Russ Rentler performs a livestream concert utilizing multiple instruments at which he is highly proficient.
7:30 – Fiddler Kenny Gehret and Dave Kline present a half-hour journey of the fiddle/violins role in Americana Music.
8pm – Fiddler Gailanne Amundsen performs a one-hour livestream concert.
9pm – The first-ever Lyons Fiddle Fest grand champion, Travis “The Mad Fiddler” Wetzel, who now has performed on Nashville’s Grand Ole Opry many times, comes home with a one-hour livestream concert from his home in Tennessee.
10pm – Dave Kline & The Hex Highway Rangers, (an American singing cowboy trio), present a one-hour concert that they ore-filmed for this evening at Berks County’s historic Gruber Wagon Works.
Saturday June 6 – Berks Arts Council and Pennsylvania’s Americana Region Festival proudly present “A Night of Jazz, Blues & More”, plus bonus material as follows…
3:45pm – Trading Four. A two-time winner of the Chuck Loeb Memorial Scholarship Award, Trading Four Quartet is drummer Joel Evans from Muhlenberg High School grad and sophomore at Temple University; saxophonist Sashank Sridharan, Wilson High graduate and sophomore at Penn State University; pianist Isiah Nygard, junior at Kutztown High School; and bassist Cormick Costello, junior at Governor Mifflin. Their concert was recorded live at the 2019 Berks Jazz Fest and has never aired anywhere else.
4:30pm – Under the direction of guest conductor Terell Staffordshire, The Berks High School All-Star Band opened for the United States Air Force Rhythm in Blues Jazz Ensemble at the Double Tree by Hilton in Reading for this concert presentation.
5 to 6pm – Now famous in New York City due to numerous live television appearances, The Quarantined Quartet, a family of four from New York’s Guitar Academy, will perform a one-hour livestream concert of flamenco and rhumba Guitar.
6pm – The Noecker Brothers, three brothers taking music lessons at Meadowood Music, Blandon, rathe than forego their moment to demonstrate what they’ve learned this year, will perform their annual student recital for us here at the fest.
6:10pm – Al Chez & The Brothers of Funk Bog Band concert. In 2017, the Berks Arts Council presented the Reading Buccaneers Drum & Bugle Corp with the prestigious Pagoda Award. Al Chez, former member of the David Letterman Late Show Band, has performed with the Bucs and maintains a close connection with them. Chez and his dynamic band were the perfect choice to perform during the BAC presentation which was filmed live.
7:40pm – The Jazz Gets the Blues Sunday Brunch Concert was recorded live in 2017 at the Double Tree and featured Nick Colionne, Steve Cole, Eric Darius, Clarence Spady, Pat Bianchi, Alexis P Suter, Vickie Bell and the Berks Horns with Mike Anderson, Rob Diener and John Loos.
9:15pm – Brian Bromberg’s Unapologetically Funky Bombastic Big Band perform an amazing concert with Everette Harp on sax, Ray “The Weeper” Fuller on guitar, Tony Moore on drums, Tom Zink on keys, and The Berks Horns with Mike Eben, Mike Anderson, Rob Diener, John Loos and Bob Stoyko.
10:45pm – Our fabulous late night session featuring a two-hour and twenty-seven minute concert with Art Sherrod Jr. & The ASJ Orchestra’s Motown Soul Review and Aretha Franklin tribute. The concert was filmed at the 2019 Berks Jazz Fest featuring Jeff Kashiwa, Elan Trotman, Paul Brown, Kevin Whalen, Tracy Hamlin, Jeff Bradshaw, David P. Stevens, Benjie Porecki, with a 14-piece orchestra!
Sunday, June 7 –
3pm: Gospel singer Yvonne Hartman performs her first livestream concert.
6pm – We travel to Robesonia’s Ardounie Dairy Farm and get a how-to hand milk a dairy cow demonstration. Agriculture is a top industry in our region.
6:45pm – Dolores Kirschner from Clay on Main in Oley offers a how-to make clay soup bowls demonstration.
7pm – Illustrator/artist Craig Schaffer presents an informative half-hour how-to illustrate demonstration.
7:30pm – Carl Peterson presents Scottish culture, music and a how-to make traditional Scottish foods demonstration.
8pm – Singer/songwriter Benjamin Chandler performs a livestream concert.
9pm – Dave Kline takes us on a Tour de Peppers and Eggplants at the Temple Greenhouse.
9:15pm – The ever-popular Musical Martin Family, from Newmanstown, perform a backyard concert that you won’t want to miss!
Monday, June 8
10am – Zack DeSantis, founder of Berks County Quarantine Open Mic, performs his weekly livestream Morning Meditation during which he skillfully builds music tracks to create an entire musical composition.
5 to 6pm – Grammy Award winning David Cullen offers the first in a series of livestream guitar lessons.
7pm – Fest cast member, The Yodeling Chicken does its thing.
7:30 to 8:30pm – Kutztown University Pennsylvania German Cultural Center presents an amazing show about hex signs, barns stars and iconic Pennsylvania Dutch art that’s so common in our region.
5 to 6pm – Grammy Award winning David Cullen offers the second in a series of livestream guitar lessons during our fest.
6:30 to 7:30pm – Karlene Brintzenhoff and her sidekick Dr. Witzelsucht offer a how-to cook traditional Pennsylvania Dutch Chicken Pot Pie to Music livestream session from their kitchen in Kutztown.
7:30 – Fest cast member, The Pennsylvania Dutch Hippie makes his first concert appearance during our fest.
Wednesday, June 10
5 to 6pm – Grammy Award winning David Cullen offers the third in a series of livestream guitar lessons during our fest.
6 to 6:30pm – Radio personality Dan Neubert presents “The Happy Half-Hour” show, during which he’ll be sampling 15 to 30 local craft beers and offering flash-thought options about each brew.
6:30 pm – We return to Robesonia’s Ardounie Dairy Farm and get an agricultural education about how-to artificially inseminate a milk cow from the one of the region’s top insemination experts Austin Milligan.
7pm – The ever-popular Musical Martin Family from Newmanstown, perform a backyard concert that you won’t want to miss!
Note: Schedule subject to change with additions and deletions.