Appalachian Chamber Music Festival returns with 2022 series |  News, sports, jobs

Appalachian Chamber Music Festival returns with 2022 series | News, sports, jobs

The finale of the Appalachian Chamber Music Festival, “Celtic Heritage in the Appalachian Region,” will be held Aug. 28 from 3 to 6 p.m. at Happy Retreat in Charles Town. Courtesy photo

HARPERS FERRY — Katie Tertel founded the 2021 Appalachian Chamber Music Festival because she loves music and loves these spaces.

“This whole thing is my idea,” Tertell said in an interview earlier this week. “For a festival like this, I had two big things to answer. One asked who it was for, and the other where.

Inspired by the beauty of Harpers Ferry and the surrounding area, Tertell has once again secured multiple venues to offer a well-rounded performance schedule for the second year of the annual festival.

A cellist, Tertel grew up in Northern Virginia and currently lives abroad most of the year, serving as an instructor for cello students. Her love of folk and traditional music helped form the foundation of the festival. Drawing inspiration from her friends, who are also musical artists, she developed a plan for the festival, which she launched last year.

Organizing the event despite the COVID-19 pandemic was a bit of a challenge, Tertell said. However, her efforts have been successful in launching a program that reaches out to all live music fans, regardless of their age, taste or background.

Artistic Director Katie Tertel performs on the cello with violinist Audrey Pride at ACMF’s May 21 fundraising gala at Harewood House in Charles Town. Courtesy photo

“The musicians I invited are passionate about their music,” Tertel said, adding that the festival aims not only to bring the highest quality music in the genre, but also to highlight local talent.

Harpers Ferry serves as the festival’s headquarters, heavily intertwined with other nearby communities, with numerous events in Shepherdstown, Charles Town, Purcellville, Virginia, Hillsboro, Virginia, and Middlesburg, Virginia.

“Our tagline is ‘History, Nature, Culture,'” Tertel said. “We celebrate and elevate all the cultural things that are already in place here.”

The festival’s mission is to bring together world-class chamber music performances, collaborations and outreach with the rich and inspiring history, nature and culture of the Shenandoah Valley area. The musicians involved strive to enrich the region by sharing their love of music with their audiences.

To help revive the 2022 festival, Tertell said her organization received a grant from the Detlev and Mary Ellen Preissler Foundation for Art, Music, Design and Nature.

“The grant will be used to offset the costs of the premises and the provision of the artists,” Tertell said, noting that the goal is to make ticketed shows affordable for attendees.

In fact, some of the performances will be offered free of charge, allowing more attendees to experience ACMF’s musical offerings. In fact, the first event on the festival lineup will be free to the public — the Festival Taster Preview at St. James Catholic Church in Charles Town on August 17 at 8:15 p.m.

The 2022 festival runs from August 15-22, with eight concerts in Jefferson County and six concerts in Virginia. In addition to the concerts, two educational camps are also offered as part of the festival scheme. A chamber music camp for strings will be held Aug. 15-19 at Old Stone School in Hillsboro, Va., for ages 12-18. A chamber music intensive for adults will be held at Shepherd University’s Frank Center from August 20-24.

This second season of the Appalachian Chamber Music Festival will focus on the influences of folk music in classical music, the roots of Appalachian music, and the influence of Celtic and Scots-Irish traditions.

“Some of the concerts are more traditional, and some are more intended for families. Tertell said. “There’s nothing like live music.”

A complete festival schedule, as well as ticket information, can be found at

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