Contact: Pattye Archer
STARKVILLE, Miss.—The stage is set for a premier showcase of musical talent during the 2024 Charles H. Templeton Sr. Ragtime and Jazz Festival, taking place Feb. 22-24 at Mississippi State. MSU Libraries and the Charles H. Templeton Sr. Music Museum are hosts for this 18th annual event, promising an unforgettable experience with a stellar line-up of both returning favorites and exciting new performers.
The three-day event will include two major concerts, mini concerts, talks at the piano and more. Attendees will have the chance to learn about this year’s performers, and what inspires their music. The always-popular silent movies performance will again be included, according to Festival Co-Chair Stephen Cunetto.
“This year all daytime events on both Friday and Saturday are free to the public,” Cunetto said. “We are excited that grant funding has made this possible. These daytime sessions really provide insight into the music and musicians.”
Cunetto said events on Friday and Saturday will be held in the Templeton Music Museum in Mitchell Memorial Library from 10 a.m. to around 4:30 p.m. The evening concerts kick off at 7 p.m. in McComas Hall.
Headlining the festival is the versatile and virtuosic Sweet and Hot Quartet, featuring Anne Barnhart on flute and vocals; T.J. Müller on strings, brass and vocals; percussionist Josh Duffee; and Jeff Barnhart on piano and vocals. Known for their captivating renditions of rollicking ragtime, brassy blues, nifty novelties, and sassy swing from the first half of the 20th century, the quartet is set to deliver a festival’s worth of entertainment.
Adding his special twist to ragtime classics, Dave Majchrzak is sure to captivate the audience with his exceptional talent. The festival also welcomes New Orleans clarinetist, vocalist and educator Louis Ford, who hails from a long line of musicians. Ford’s brand of jazz will bring both magnificent and moving performances, along with keen insights into the heart of it all—New Orleans.
In addition to the outstanding musical performances, the festival once again features the Gatsby Gala, a fashion show highlighting designs created and modeled by MSU students. This year’s fashion show will focus on styles of the 1950s.
The Charles H. Templeton Sr. Ragtime and Jazz Festival is financially assisted by the National Endowment for the Humanities, through the Mississippi Humanities Council, and a grant from South Arts in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and Mississippi Arts Commission. Other sponsors include the Greater Starkville Development Partnership, Rick’s Café American, MSU offices of Public Affairs and Student Affairs, La Quinta Inn and Suites, 4-County Electric, MaxxSouth Broadband, and numerous individuals.
Tickets are now on sale and available through the festival website. To purchase tickets or learn more, visit http://library.msstate.edu/ragtime-festival.