On Tour: Lewisburg, WV

11 Feb

February 8, 2016 | Winding Stream | Lewisburg, WV

Lewisburg, West Virginia, tucked into the Allegheny Mountains, is a lovely town and, according to at least one travel magazine, “the coolest small town in America.” It’s certainly pleasant and picturesque. Right now in the dead of winter, it is clearly the off-season here – kind of quiet – but I imagine when the good weather kicks in it’s a lively place to hear music, look at art, see theater, etc. Nine miles from Greenbrier where the big golf classic happens, it seems geared to tourists.  People I’ve met in shops and restaurants are very friendly.

snow at Carnegie Hall

The old saw about “practice, practice, practice” finally came to life for me because The Winding Stream played at Carnegie Hall! OK, the one in Lewisburg not New York City. But it was funded by the same steel magnate/philanthropist and was built in 1902 in the Greek Revival style. Elegant. Stately.

Folks in town are friendly and many I met told me they’d heard about the film and intended to see it.

Sara Crickenberger and Lynn Creamer of Carnegie Hall_n

But then the snow came!

The roads got treacherous just a half hour before the screening.

But thirty people braved the weather to get to Carnegie Hall…INCLUDING Mr. Bill Clifton, a music legend in his own right, a close personal friend of the Carter Family (especially A.P. Carter) and a star of our film. I hadn’t heard that Bill had moved to West Virginia so this was an amazing surprise and frankly, a huge honor. Bill is so respected by musicians the world over. What a treat. Bill had not seen the film before and said he really enjoyed it.

Bill Clifton

I got to meet a bunch of other great people who either knew the Carters, had visited the Carter Family Fold (the music venue in Virginia) or who played this music themselves. One musician, Jim Costa, came bearing a 1929 vintage 78-player and Carter Family records and provided some pre-film music while people chatted and drank wine.

78 PLAYER_n

When we all emerged from the evening, the snow had let up and the cover was big and fluffy and beautiful.

Post by On Screen/In Person touring filmmaker Beth Harrington.

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