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January 12, 2010

Virginia Arts Festival and CW expand partnership to bring diverse entertainment to Williamsburg

Colonial Williamsburg and the Virginia Arts Festival have expanded their partnership to bring nationally known performers to Williamsburg with a series of concerts throughout the year. Grammy-winning singer and guitarist Kathy Mattea headlines a winter concert weekend Feb. 26 – 28 with two performances in the Virginia Room of the Williamsburg Lodge. The weekend features special music and dining events and includes a hotel package.

Most recently, Colonial Williamsburg and the Virginia Arts Festival first collaborated for Festival Williamsburg 2009, which featured sold-out performances by Patti LuPone, Tiempo Libre and the Tommy Dorsey orchestra over Memorial Day weekend. Through the expanded partnership, the Virginia Arts Festival and Colonial Williamsburg bring great performances to Williamsburg in addition to the spring Arts Festival. Other guest artists will be announced later in the year.

“For more than a decade, the Virginia Arts Festival has enriched the communities of our region and beyond by bringing world-class performers to a wide range of venues in Hampton Roads,” said Colin Campbell, president of the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation. “Colonial Williamsburg attracts residents and travelers interested in culture and heritage, and we are delighted to partner with the festival team to present the finest musical traditions in the wonderful performance spaces of the Williamsburg Lodge. Coupled with the dining, hospitality and programs for which Colonial Williamsburg is well-known, this partnership represents an extraordinary opportunity.”

“The winter concert series with Kathy Mattea is a first step in building a program that will garner national attention. It is a fitting prelude to Festival Williamsburg, when Broadway star Kelli O’Hara appears in the Virginia Room May 29, 2010,” said Rob Cross, executive director of the Virginia Arts Festival.

Kathy Mattea’s two concerts at 5:30 and 8:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 27 highlight an entire weekend of musical performances. On Friday night, Feb. 26, local favorite Poisoned Dwarf, a musical group that includes Colonial Williamsburg’s manager of musical programs Lance Pedigo, performs its Celtic sounds in the Lodge Restaurant during “Pints, Pairings and Poisoned Dwarf,” featuring a special four-course dinner from executive chef Rhys Lewis served with a selection of ales from the isles.

Saturday afternoon, “Wine, Wit and Wisdom,” the popular wine pairing “class” with executive chef Rhys Lewis and sommelier Charles Birr at 2 p.m. in the Lodge Restaurant, offers a dose of humorous observation paired with chocolate, organic coffee, artisan cheeses and intriguing dessert wine selections.

Concert guests attending Mattea’s 8:30 p.m. performance can enjoy a pre-concert prix fixe dinner in the Lodge restaurant beginning at 5 p.m. After the concert, the duo Me & Jo will entertain during “Tapas and Tunes” in the Lodge lobby lounge. The weekend of music concludes Sunday with Song of the South Sunday brunch in the Lodge restaurant.

Tickets to the Kathy Mattea concerts are $35 and $45, and seating is limited. For tickets, dining or lodging reservations, and complete schedule of events for the weekend, visit” Concert tickets also are available at Ticketmaster.

Mattea is a crossover artist known for such classics as “18 Wheels and a Dozen Roses” and “Where’ve You Been.” She grew up near Charleston, W.Va., and the cultural heritage of mining and the Appalachians is apparent in her music. Her most recent album, “COAL,” is an ode to the work and the lives of coal miners.

Established in 1997, the mission of the Virginia Arts Festival is to bring world-class performing arts to citizens and visitors, impact the lives of students through outstanding educational programs, commission new works of national and international significance and make a tangible difference in Hampton Roads through regional partnerships and positive economic impact through the generation of cultural tourism.

Established in 1926, the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation is the not-for-profit educational institution that preserves and operates the restored 18th-century Revolutionary capital of Virginia as the nation’s largest living history museum. Colonial Williamsburg offers more than 1,000 guest rooms among five hotels, including the landmark Williamsburg Inn, four historic dining taverns and six restaurants, a new 20,000-square-foot spa, the Golden Horseshoe golf courses and 66,000 square feet of conference space centered at the restored Williamsburg Lodge.

Williamsburg is located in Virginia’s Tidewater region, 20 minutes from Newport News, within an hour’s drive of Richmond and Norfolk, and 150 miles south of Washington, D.C. For more information about Colonial Williamsburg, call 1-800-HISTORY or visit Colonial Williamsburg’s Web site at Purchase of Colonial Williamsburg products and services supports the foundation’s mission of preservation, research and education.

Media Contact:
Barbara Brown
(757) 220-7280