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Ballad Workshop with Donna Ray Norton

February 13 @ 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm

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Songs about love… and the trials and tribulations of it.

Join us on the eve of Valentine’s Day to learn about one of our area’s oldest traditions from 8th generation ballad singer Donna Ray Norton. She is from right here in Madison County, and has been carrying on this tradition since she was 17 years old. Donna Ray will share her knowledge of the old love songs, who she learned them from, and teach using the traditional knee-to-knee style. This event will be the perfect opportunity for you to learn a sweet song to sing to your lover for Valentine’s Day! If you hate Valentine’s Day, Donna Ray has a ballad for that as well! You won’t want to miss this. The evening will be casual, welcoming, non-judgmental, and you do not have to be a music major or musician to attend and have fun.

Ballads are old songs (some of them from the Middle Ages!) that tell stories about kings and queens, knights, ghosts, farmers, and mythical beasts. They have been passed down over the generations and Madison County has a rich ballad-singing tradition dating back to the 1700s. In the mountains, ballads are often called “Love Songs,” so what better thing to do the day before Valentine’s Day?

This is a PAWS event and is for MHU students and employees only.


February 13
7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
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Ramsey Center for Appalachian Studies
(828) 689-1115
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The LOFT (McConnell)
54 College St.
Mars Hill, NC 28754 United States
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