We are thrilled to have classical banjoist John Bullard as part of our Spring Classical Music Series. He will be accompanied by Markus Compton on piano.
John Bullard plays five-string banjo, which you might expect from a southerner. But there’s a gothic twist: he plays classical music. If you think about it, it’s actually the perfect southern art—a gentleman playing classical music on a banjo. One minute he’s bush-hogging a field on his John Deere tractor, the next he’s on his porch playing a Bach partita. And to be clear: these aren’t bluegrass renditions, they’re exact classical transcriptions done by someone who’s been devotedly drawn to Baroque and Renaissance music for 30 years.
“Bullard’s playing is skillful and musical.” — Fanfare
Bullard’s new album, Classical Banjo: The Perfect Southern Art, is the summation of his life’s work. Over a dozen musicians and an eight-person choir helped make this unprecedented album of (mostly) complete works by Baroque and Romantic composers. Just as Cormac McCarthy is called “a writer’s writer,” you might call John Bullard “a banjo player’s banjo player.” Classical Banjo: The Perfect Southern Art presents a variety of tone color, beautifully executed ornamentation, and sensitive interpretations. The pieces are fragile and intimate in Bullard’s hands. Peaceful and austere. If you close your eyes you might think you’re listening to a harpsichord, but it’s not. It’s banjo as you’ve never heard it: as a perfect southern art.
Bullard has gained international attention for his work in developing and transcribing classical repertoire for the five-string banjo. Other critically acclaimed CD releases by Bullard include John Bullard – The Classical Banjo on the Dargason label and Bach on the Banjo on Albany Records. Music from John’s recordings has been included in several feature films such as the DreamWorks animated film The Rise of the Guardians and the award-winning The Edge of Heaven.
In 2005, he became the first classical banjoist to graduate from Virginia Commonwealth University’s Department of Music with a Bachelor of Music degree in Performance. Graduating magna cum laude, John was inducted into Pi Kappa Lambda, the prestigious national music honor society. John was on the faculty of the world-renowned Tennessee Banjo Institute along with such luminaries as Pete Seeger, Bela Fleck, and Tony Trischka. John is currently teaching banjo as an Affiliate Artist at Cairn University.
He has performed throughout the United States and has been featured on numerous radio and television programs.
Doors open at 7:00 and show starts at 8:00 PM
Concert Ticket Prices & Info:
All Tickets are General Admission
$15 in advance until 3:00 PM on the day of event
$20 at the door
Children: 12 years and below are free when accompanied by an adult
Tickets may be purchased in advance either online or by calling the Barns of Rose Hill Box Office at 540-955-2004 (Noon to 3:00 – Tuesday through Saturday). If you call when our Box Office is closed, please leave a message and we’ll return your call within 24 business hours. All sales are final. Exceptions for special circumstances may be made no later than 24 hours prior to performance.
Here’s John in Action: