Beginning July 7: Swannanoa Gathering


If you're interested in learning by doing and with compassionate community support, consider enrolling in The Swannanoa Gathering this summer. From July 7 through August 10, Warren Wilson College will host its annual five-week-long summer music program.

The Swannanoa Gathering includes a series of classes, workshops, dances, and performances of varying styles of music. Each week is devoted to one style, including traditional song, Celtic, old-time music and dance, guitar and contemporary folk music, as well as banjo and fiddle-centered courses. Concentration on a few classes is strongly recommended.

Each year, over 150 classes are offered from which students select their curriculum. Though enrollment for classes is limited, The Gathering hosts public performances during Traditional Song, Old-Time, and Fiddle/Mando & Banjo weeks, showcasing the music being taught.

Founded in 1991 by the College's President Emeritus Douglas Orr, Jr., The Gathering has since served hundred of musicians of all skill levels from around the country.

Workshops are held throughout campus, utilizing both indoor and outdoor venues such as the campus pavilion, gardens, patios, the outdoor amphitheatre, and the indoor theatre.

The classes and workshops are taught by a staff of some of the finest performers and teachers in the country. Children's programs are also offered during the weeks devoted to Traditional Song, Celtic, or Old-Time music.

In the Gathering’s history, over 13,000 people from all over the United States, Canada, and several European, Asian, and South American countries have attended the workshops. The Gathering has presented fourteen different programs, with over 600 of the world's greatest folk artists serving as the instructors.

One of the most important things about the Gathering is that it is a family affair, with students and family members continuing to return year after year, and local musicians playing in many of the public concerts.

“Some of these musicians are no longer with us, and for their music, wisdom and generosity of spirit, we celebrate the gift of their lives and honor their memories," says a 2011 bulletin for the event.

All public concerts will be performed on Warren Wilson College campus in Kitteridge Theatre and will begin at 7:30 pm. Tickets can be purchased for $20 for adults, $10 for children 12 and under.

Concerts open to the public are listed below:

Monday, July 8: Traditional Song Concert I

Wednesday, July 10: Traditional Song Concert II

Monday, July 22: Old-Time Concert I

Wednesday, July 24: Old-Time Concert II

Monday, August 5: Fiddle/Mando & Banjo Concert I

Tuesday, August 6: Fiddle/Mando & Banjo Concert II

Wednesday, August 7: Fiddle/Mando & Banjo Concert III

For more information, including enrollment and tickets, please visit


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