Opera House Folk-in-Fredonia Music Series starts with Free-For-All

The Folk-in-Fredonia Music Series at the 1891 Fredonia Opera House will kick off its 2013-14 season with the annual “Free-for-All” on Sept. 22. The concert will begin at 3 p.m. and admission is free.

The Free-For-All was started 18 years ago by local folk group, the Newton Street Irregulars, as a way to help promote the Folk-in-Fredonia Music Series at the Opera House. Although half of the Newton Street Irregulars have since left the area, founding members Dick and Carmen Gilman still invite their musician friends from across the state to join them for this Opera House tradition. From fiddles, banjos and guitars to step dancing, sing-alongs and tall tales, the Free-For-All is an afternoon filled with music, stories, laughter and fun.

In addition to the Gilmans, the list of performers for this year’s event includes: guitarists/fiddlers/singers Cheryl Ritch and Jim Cunningham; Scottish fiddler Sue Tillotson; singers/songwriters Dr. Rich Milazzo & Joanne Harper; humorist Elmer Cotten; tenor Joe Dan Harper; pianist Shinobu Takagi; and Irish storyteller Doug Manly. Also performing will be fiddler/singer Kathy Petersen and bassist Tim Cudney; guitarist/singer Elliott Hall; guitarist Bill Moran; multi-instrumentalist Todd Crowley; and singer/songwriter Judy Outlaw, among others.

During the concert there will be raffles and giveaways of Folk-in-Fredonia T-shirts, CDs and tickets to 2013-14 Opera House Folk Series events.

Admission is free, but tickets are required and should be reserved in advance to ensure a seat. Visit the Opera House Box Office or call 679-1891, Tuesday-Friday, 1-5 p.m.

Chautauqua County’s only performing arts center presenting its own programming year-round, the 1891 Fredonia Opera House is a member-supported not-for-profit organization located in Village Hall in downtown Fredonia. For a complete schedule of events, visit www.fredopera.org.