Wadsworth performers to provide master class


Soprano Courtenay Budd sings with baritone Michael Kelly at last year’s Wadsworth concert. 

Continuing the Charles Wadsworth concert tradition is a big responsibility, according to the organizers of the upcoming “Friends of Wadsworth Concert – The Legacy Continues.”

“The Newnan Cultural Arts Commission is excited and honored to be able to continue this legacy,” said Kim Wright, chair of this year’s event, which will again have an associated Master Class for local students featuring visiting performers. “It also leaves us with the Wadsworth Master Class Program, where the visiting artists share their talents and knowledge with some of Newnan's most talented young students,” Wright said of the continuing spring event.

Musicians who will be in town for the April 26 concert at Wadsworth will lead the Master Class Program with local students at the Centre for Performing and Visual Arts.

“The classes will be conducted by Andrew Armstrong and myself,” said Courtenay Budd, a soprano who grew up in Newnan and was chosen by Wadsworth to continue the concert series in their hometown. The Wadsworth Master Class Program began in 2009 and has been sponsored regularly by local industry Cargill and the Newnan Rotary Club. “The arts and education have always been important to our company,” said Bradley Down of Cargill.

“The Newnan Rotary Club is pleased to sponsor the Master Class Program,” said Newnan Rotary President Walter Thompson. Budd said she doesn’t yet know if pianist Charles Wadsworth will be in attendance at this year’s classes.

“We have invited Charles to this year’s concert as our guest,” said Wright. “If he decides to attend, I wouldn’t think it out of the question that he could decide to give the audience an impromptu performance. It would be completely up to him, of course, but wouldn’t that be great.” The Wadsworth Legacy leaves Newnan “with this magical evening each year that I have to say, the first time I experienced it, I couldn’t believe I was still in Newnan,” said Wright.

Scheduled to join Budd in concert this year at the Wadsworth Auditorium are some familiar faces to Newnan audiences: violinist Chee-Yun, cellist Edward Arron, clarinetist Todd Palmer and pianists Jeewon Park and Andrew Armstrong.

“The Cultural Arts commission has been working diligently to make this year’s concert an event not to be missed,” said Wright. “Our team of commission members work so well together and we really enjoy being able to bring this special concert to Newnan.” The concert has sold out for the past four years, so those planning to attend should get tickets early, event organizers said.

General admission tickets for Friends of Wadsworth – The Legacy Continues are $20 and available at Let Them Eat Toffee on the downtown Court Square, the downtown Visitors Center in the historic Coweta County Courthouse, Morgan’s Jewelers in Ashley Park, and Bank of North Georgia at Thomas Crossroads.

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