Westobou Festival celebrates fine, performing arts

Editor's Note: Because of anticipated thunderstorms in the area on Friday night, the Amos Lee, Allen Stone, Patrick Davis, Priscilla Ahn and The Rambln' Fevers concert has been moved from the Old Academy of Richmond County to James Brown Arena, according to a press release. This story has been changed. 


Welcome to Westobou Weekend.

This year’s celebration of the fine and performing arts kicked off Wednesday with an evening with film master Peter Bogdanovich, but there’s still a lot of world-class shows and exhibitions on tap.

Tickets for events (when required) are available online or at the Westobou Festival office, 965 Broad St.; westoboufestival.com. Here’s a rundown of some of the highlights.


THE CHAMBER MUSIC SERIES: One of Westobou’s secret success stories, the free Chamber Music series has been a festival mainstay since its inception. Check out the noon concerts at St. John United Methodist Church on Thursday, Oct. 2, at Church of the Good Shepherd on Friday, Oct. 3, and at Reid Memorial Presbyterian Church on Saturday, Oct. 4. The Friday concert, which features dueling harpsichords, a chamber orchestra and some fairly fancy baroque should be particularly interesting.


COMPLEXIONS: This innovative company was last seen in Augusta during the inaugural Westobou Festival. Known for performances that blend unlikely dance forms such as classical ballet, hip hop and contemporary, Complexions brings an element of the unexpected to the stage.

When: 8 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 2

Where: Imperial Theatre, 749 Broad St.

Cost: $45-$75 with a limited number of $10 tickets available to students and active-duty military.


AMOS LEE, ALLEN STONE, PATRICK DAVIS, PRISCILLA AHN AND THE RAMBLIN’ FEVERS: Although noted singer-songwriter Amos Lee, who has toured with legendary artists such as Bob Dylan and Paul Simon, is the unquestioned headliner on this five-act bill, it should be noted that each performer brings something special.

Allen Stone is an artist who has garnered significant critical and popular success over that past few years with his soulful take on hippy folk and is widely acknowledged as a star on the rise. Noted Nashville songwriter Patrick Davis has established himself as a real master of modern country rock and enjoys long-standing fan support in the Augusta area.

Priscilla Ahn recently progressed from New York open-mic nights to a contract with the legendary jazz label Blue Note. Westobou is her first Augusta performance.

The Ramblin’ Fevers have a long history in the Augusta area and have garnered a reputation for both stellar songwriting and spirited performances.

When: 4 p.m. Friday, Oct. 2

Where: James Brown Arena, 601 Seventh St.

Cost: $25 in advance, $35 at the door with a limited number of $5 tickets available to students and active-duty military

THE COLOR RUN: Presented in conjunction with the Augusta Sports Council, this popular road race combines athleticism and accidental abstract art.

Those not quite ready to make the 5K commitment can meet the freshly dyed runners at the finish line for a brightly colored dance party.

When: 9 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 3

Where: Start and finish at the Old Academy of Richmond County, 540 Telfair St.

Cost: $45 for early registration at thecolorrun.com/augusta; $60 day of


PETER BOGDANOVICH SCREENINGS: In conjunction with the director’s appearance earlier in the week, screenings of two of his films, the award-winning Paper Moon and the cult classic They All Laughed, will be held Saturday afternoon at the Maxwell Performing Arts Theatre.

When: 1 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 4

Where: Maxwell Performing Arts Theatre, 2500 Walton Way

Cost: Free


ORGAN CONCERT WITH DR. JOHN COBLE: A homecoming of sorts, this concert will feature Dr. John Coble, the director of music and organist at First Presbyterian Church firing up the organ at Grace United Methodist Church in North Augusta.

When: 3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 4

Where: Grace United Methodist Church, 639 Georgia Ave., North Augusta

Cost: Free


CHARLIE TODD: Share an afternoon with the conceptualist responsible for one of the early, and most successful, flash mob-style art events – he inspired hundreds of participants to freeze in place in the middle of Grand Central Station. He’s also behind the annual pants-free subway ride in New York City. Listen to him talk about the nature of improvisation, crowd control and finding a canvas in everyday settings. He’ll follow his talk with a free staging of his MP3 Experiment.

When: 4 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 4; MP3 Experiment 6 p.m.

Where: Old Medical College of Georgia, 598 Telfair St.; MP3 Experiment at the Old Academy of Richmond County, 540 Telfair St.

Cost: $10 advance, $15 day of and $40 VIP (includes event reception), with a limited number of $5 tickets available to students and active-duty military. Admission for the MP3 Experiment is free.


THE GOONIES: A free outdoor screening of the 1985 kids classic takes place at the Parade Grounds of the Old Academy of Richmond County. Chairs, snacks and perhaps some sack of purloined pirate booty are encouraged.

When: 7 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 4

Where: Old Academy of Richmond County, 540 Telfair St.

Cost: Free


QUARTETTO GELATO: This unlikely Canadian quartet combines violin, cello, accordion and oboe – with occasional operatic tenor, in performances that bring an eclectic repertoire of music presented with a certain sense of flair and humor. This performance is presented, in conjunction with Westobou, by the Harry Jacobs Chamber Music Society.

When: 3 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 5

Where: Maxwell Performing Arts Theatre, 2500 Walton Way

Cost: $25, $5 students


PICNIC AT THE PARADE GROUNDS: Westobou wraps its annual occupation at the Old Academy of Richmond County with a community picnic complete with music and games. Performances include Suzuki Strings and other area youth ensembles as well as deejays. The Westobou Food Truck Fleet will be onsite and there will be a variety of activities for all ages, including free rides on the Westobou Wheel.

When: 4 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 5

Where: The Old Academy of Richmond County, 540 Telfair St.

Cost: Free


MINTON SPARKS: A self-proclaimed speaker-songwriter, Minton Sparks combines elements of poetry, storytelling and music into performances designed to provide a snapshot of her version of the American South. Call it spoken word blues or storytelling with a soundtrack. It doesn’t much matter. After a couple of minutes it just feels like someone you’ve always known speaking the truth.

When: 8 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 5

Where: Enterprise Mill, 1450 Greene St.

Cost: $10 advance, $15 day of and $40 VIP (includes event reception), with a limited number of $5 tickets available to college students and active-duty military

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