[click "Play" to hear Susan's conversation with Tony Trischka]
Not all of the action at the 38th annual Telluride Bluegrass Festival takes place on the Fred Shellman Main Stage. Legendary banjo innovator Tony Trischka is in town for the launch of the new ArtistWorks Academy of Bluegrass via a workshop in Elks Park, Friday, June 18, 1:30 p.m. and an appearance at around 4:30 p.m. on the Main Stage.
For more than 35 years, Tony Trishchka’s stylings have inspired a whole generation of bluegrass and acoustic musicians. He is widely regarded as one of the most influential banjo players of the latter part of the 20th century (and counting), largely in terms of his influence on succeeding generations of players such as virtuosic Bela Fleck, back in town for the Festival for the 30th year in a row, this time reunited with the original Flecktones – and his teacher. When he was just a senior in high school, Bela made trips to Bronx, New York to study with Tony, who he once described to me as his “hero.”
“… the godfather of what’s sometimes called new acoustic music,” said The New York Times.
The ArtistWorks Academy of Bluegrass consists of The School of Banjo with Tony Trischka, School of Guitar with Bryan Sutton, School of Fiddle with Darol Anger, School of Mandolin with Mike Marshall, and The School of Bass with Missy Raines. ArtistWorks and Planet Bluegrass partnered to launch the online bluegrass school internationally through Festival workshops at the 38th annual event.
Each of the schools contains hundreds of high-quality video lessons starting at the Beginner level and progressing to Advanced. All schools connect to the AAOB Hub where players of all instruments can come together to share ideas and the love of bluegrass.Through the ArtistWorks Academy of Bluegrass, each student has the opportunity to send their teacher a recorded video of themselves practicing and receive personal feedback and individualized instruction from the teacher in a video response. These videos are then posted for the entire school to view and learn from.
“Tony will undoubtedly be making several guest appearances on the main stage throughout the festival,” said Planet Bluegrass marketing director Brian Eyster. “He has been a very innovative teacher throughout his career and the ArtistWorks Academy of Bluegrass is the next step.”
To learn more, click the “play” button and listen to Tony Trischka’s interview.