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SMCPA aims to make sparks fly with 4 sizzling Jan.-Feb. shows
Wednesday, 01 January 2020 13:47

From Staff Reports

 FRANKLIN — The Smoky Mountain Center for the Performing Arts is launching its 2020 season with four red-hot shows to heat up the frigid January and February mountain nights.

The SMCPA, which features a dazzling high-tech, 1,500-seat venue, opened in 2009.

The SMCPA shows for early 2020 will begin with a concert by country-music icon Ronnie Milsap at 7:30 p.m. Jan. 31.

Next, “Let the Good Times Roll — A Dinner Show” will be performed at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 13-15.

Six days later, up-and-coming songwriter-singer-banjo player Ashley Campbell, who is the youngest daughter of the late country-music legend, Glenn Campbell, will perform in concert at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 21. Her world-famous father died at age 81 on Aug. 8, 2017, following a long battle with Alzheimer’s disease

The final February show will feature the Christian pop-music band the Newsboys in concert at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 29.

Regarding Milsap, the SMPCA noted that the six-time Grammy Award-winning American country singer and pianist “is considered one of the most succesful country artists of all time. Born almost blind due to a congenital disorder, this virtuoso developed a keen interest in music in his childhood” that led to an amazing career.

“His expansive and rich body of work, spanning more than five decades, includes more than 28 records,” the SMCPA stated. “With multiple gold, platinum and double-platinum albums to his credit, Milsap was inducted into the County Music Hall of Fame” in 2014.

As for “Let the Good Times Roll — A Dinner Show,” an event promotion stated, “When a group of high school friends hear their favorite old hangout, The Burger Bop Diner, is about to be torn down, they gather one last time to relive the memories, music, romance and fun of their youth. As they recall the stories of days gone by, they are transported back in time to the doo-wop singing, poodle skirt-wearing joy of the 1950s.” Show tickets include fresh fruit salad, choice of hamburger or hot dog with “the fixings,” French fries, cole slow and a classic miniature ice cream sundae, complete with whipped cream and a cherry.

Concerning Ashley Campbell, an event release stated, “Already known for her work along her father, country legend Glenn Campbell, who during his final years as a touring musician leaned heavily on his youngest daughter as a banjo player, keyboardist and harmony vocalist. Ashley, now stepping out on her own, draws her musicality from a mix of wide-ranging influences, combining the old-school country sound of her father wth the contemporary Americana, a rootsy folk and country-pop.”

And finally, as for the Newsboys, the SMCPA stated, “Whether you’re an ‘American Idol’ wannabe or a politician seeking the presidency, you can’t escape this spiritual truth: Many are called, few are chosen. But what happens once you land among the chosen ones? The Newsboys could tell you first-hand.

“After all, how many groups boast a discography with 16 albums and five gold records?”

Further, the release noted, “While it might sound extreme, you’d be hard-pressed to find another group so successfully embraces tight pop, modern rock and worship music — and does it all with such focus.

“Their music sparkles with intensity, passion and melodic majesty from start to finish,” the SMCPA release stated. “Pop grooves this incessant and immediate don’t surface every day, but from the first listen, the Newsboys’ tracks stay with listeners a mighty long time.”



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