Common Ground on the Hill

June 19, 2012

Nearly 4,000 people will travel to the McDaniel College campus and nearby Farm Museum this summer for Common Ground on the Hill’s annual Traditions Weeks and Festival.

The July 7-8 Festival at the Carroll County Farm Museum will feature John Hammond, a Grammy Award winning blues legend, on Saturday and Bluegrass artist Sierra Hull, who recently graduated from the Berkley School of Music and performed at the White House, on Sunday. Other performers include the returning band The Ronstadt Generations, including the brother and nephew of Linda Ronstadt, W.C. Handy Award Winner Guy Davis, and Celtic masters Comas. For more information and ticket prices for the Festival, go to http://www.commongroundonthehill.org/festival2012.html.

Comas, a group from Scotland, Ireland and the United States, will also be teaching and performing during the two Traditions Weeks that surround the festival, along with alumnus Rob Caswell ’04, traveling all the way from Thailand, and an instructor from Hawaii, among others.

On campus from July 1-7 and July 8-13 are the two separate weeks of classes, concerts, dances and other activities in the traditional roots-based arts. Classes feature guitar, fiddle, banjo, mandolin, dulcimer, harmonica, harp, autoharp, piano, bass, pipes, tin whistle, band workshops, singing, dance, percussion, poetry, writing, storytelling, songwriting and a huge selection of visual arts, ranging from figure drawing to metal-smithing to Navajo weaving.

Also offered are a distinctive lecture series, a film series, and nonviolence institute.  Youth World Village is offered both weeks for children of camp enrollees. Concerts and dances are offered to the public at 8 p.m. July 3-6 and July 10-13 in Alumni Hall. Concert admission is $10 per person. Children under 12 are free.

Keynote speaker Leo Eaton, a PBS filmmaker, will address the participants at 8 p.m. July 2 and screen his film “Arts & the Mind,” which explores how different groups have made use of the arts to bring about social, mental and physiological change. Eaton will also teach a class drawing on the themes discussed in his address and encourage the class to discuss how the arts can be made more relevant in their own communities.

For more information on the festival and Traditions Weeks and to register, visit www.commongroundonthehill.com or call 410-857-2771.

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