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Arts in the Gap offers opportunity to embrace Appalachian culture

12:39 PM, Jun 29, 2013   |    comments
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(WBIR-Harrogate) A university on the borders of Tennessee, Kentucky, and Virginia has launched a summer community arts program.

Lincoln Memorial University is embracing the culture of the area with a program called Arts in the Gap.

"LMU had a Mountain Heritage Literary Festival and Dale Ann and Steve both performed on stage and talked about song writing and sang some of their original songs," Tiffany Williams said.

That convinced her to enroll in their workshop.

This particular one week camp is called "Acoustic Music Week with Dale Ann Bradley and Steve Gulley" named for the well-known bluegrass artists who are teaching it.

"I think music is such a healer and a need just like oxygen and water," Dale Ann Bradley said.

The musician coaches singers in the class in breathing and timing and harmony. She's impressed.

"They've come ready to learn about music. They're all very talented and I think all the instructors would tell you there's a lot of ability which we've always know that in this area," Dale Ann Bradley said.

"It's a short time period but I've learned a lot during that time," Tiffany Williams said. "I have learned that singing high hurts, that I am not a soprano."

The non-credit courses offer a lot of choices,.

"We're offering classes in writing and music and painting and we want to tie it as much as we can to the area," Darnell Arnoult said.

She is both the program director for Arts in the Gap and a music student, this week. She's even worked on some solos with the help of Steve and Dale Ann.

The short workshops are offered on LMU's Harrogate campus and down the road in Cumberland Gap.

 "We want the Gap to become an arts community and we're developing that idea in collaboration with the town government at Cumberland Gap and also the park, the National Park, here at Cumberland Gap," Darnell Arnoult said. "What we're really trying to do is offer something to our local community that enriches the community and allows them to engage in the arts but also to bring other people into this community and see all the treasures that we have here."

Dale Ann Bradley said, "I think it will enhance the love of music, the performing of music, and it's just a wonderful thing for any area and especially here in our tri-state area."

It's certainly been a wonderful week for Tiffany Williams, who is not singing soprano.

"They have been big confidence builders for everybody here and I think that is so important and also the community you get from being in a place like this is huge," she said.

Arts in the Gap offers programs through the end of July.

































































































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