Ellis season lineup released
Vince Gill, Old Crow Medicine Show, Ricky Skaggs and Bill Gaither are set to highlight a star-studded season for the Ellis Theater in downtown Philadelphia celebrating its grand reopening starting in December after a year-long renovation.
“This is the beginning of a major change for downtown Philadelphia,” said Dr. Dan Barnard, executive director of Marty Stuart’s Congress of Country Music. “A vibrant cultural season at the Ellis will be an economic driver with ripple effects across the community. And this is just phase one of a $40 million project, which will eventually house Marty Stuart’s immense collection of country music artifacts and draw visitors from across the region.”
The Ellis will celebrate its grand reopening in style with four consecutive nights of major artists, beginning with two performances by Marty Stuart and Connie Smith on Dec. 8, at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m., followed by Ricky Skaggs and Kentucky Thunder on Dec. 9. Vince Gill will present two performances, at 7 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. on Dec. 10. The Gaither Vocal Band wraps up week one with a show on Sunday afternoon, Dec. 11.
On Dec. 18, the Ellis presents a family-oriented Christmas show entitled, “A Very Electric Christmas,” by Lightwire Theater. Lightwire will return to Philadelphia in February as part of the Ellis daytime educational show series with “The Tortoise and Hare – The Next Generation.” That series will include “Junie B. Jones,” and “Dr. Kaboom: Look Out! Science is Coming” in January and March, respectively, and is sponsored in part by a grant from the Phil Hardin Foundation.
On Jan. 6, Old Crow Medicine Show will bring its brand of traditional country to Philadelphia.
On Feb. 4, the Ellis will break out its new, full-stage projection screen to present “Field of Dreams,” with guest host Alicia Malone of Turner Classic Movies. On Feb. 24, just ahead of St. Patrick’s Day, the Ellis will host Dervish, one of the most renowned imaginative interpreters of Irish folk music.
Marty Stuart is not the only hometown hero this season, as another Neshoba County native – rising star and 2022 Songwriter of the Year, HARDY (Michael Hardy) – will perform at the Ellis on March 1.
“It is a rare opportunity to see HARDY in an intimate venue like the Ellis,” said Barnard. “We are so thrilled that he agreed to honor his hometown by accepting our offer.”
On April 15, the Ellis will celebrate Southern Blues with the North Mississippi Allstars. Then, the season concludes on May 6 with a visit from one of the nation’s best gospel choirs. Trey McLaughlin and the sounds of Zamar Gospel Choir are known for rich harmonies and beautiful blends.
Season tickets go on sale Sept. 23; individual tickets will be available beginning Oct. 14 at 10:00 a.m. at 601-653-5358 or go to congressofcountrymusic.org.