Bluegrass Singer Shannon Whitworth to Perform at DeSoto Theatre in Rome, Ga.

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The Historic DeSoto Theatre Foundation’s Concert Series and Downtown Rome’s Living & Giving will present Shannon Whitworth in Concert on Friday, March 2, at 8 p.m. A bluegrass/Americana singer, she comes to Rome, Ga., to perform in the town that her parents call home.

The Historic DeSoto Theatre Foundation’s Concert Series and Downtown Rome’s Living & Giving will present Shannon Whitworth in Concert on Friday, March 2, at 8 p.m. A bluegrass/Americana singer, she comes to Rome to perform in the town that her parents call home.

The daughter of Darlington School Headmaster Tom Whitworth and his wife, Margo, Shannon credits her parents with filling their home with music that inspired her, including Paul Simon, James Taylor, John Prine, and Crosby Stills, Nash & Young.

“We are very excited that our daughter and her group are supporting the efforts to help the DeSoto be all that it can be,” said Tom. “We are very, very proud of Shannon, and proud that she’ll be here. We look forward to everyone getting to know her.”

Shannon was a founding member of the Biscuit Burners, the bluegrass band that brought her to the attention of the music world and performed during Darlington's Centennial Alumni Weekend in 2005. After appearances on the BBC and PBS, she left the band to pursue a broader musical vision.

In 2007, she released her first solo album, "No Expectations," followed by "Waterbound" in 2010. She was also featured last year in the popular Southern magazine Garden & Gun. Under the cover headline "Bluegrass Nation, 25 Bands Giving Old-Time Music a Whole New Sound," Shannon is said to have eclectic musical tastes ranging from Beck to Patsy Cline. “Her sound may be hard to define, but her voice is unmistakable,” said the magazine about her distinctive, husky voice.

Shannon is married to musician Woody Platt, whose band, Steep Canyon Rangers, performs with comedian and banjo player Steve Martin.

Opening for her will be Rome’s own Thunderbolt Patterson. A VIP Patron’s Party will be held jointly at the Swift and Finch café and the Great Room at the Seven Hills Building, two new spaces just opening to the community at the former Clyde Collier and White Rabbit buildings. The VIP reception will continue after the concert at the Swift and Finch café, which will also be open to the general public.

Downtown Rome’s retail business Living & Giving is the concert’s marquee sponsor and was instrumental in bringing Shannon Whitworth to Rome. Her mother, Margo, has been on the Living & Giving staff for the past five years.

“You can imagine my excitement at being able to introduce our community to Shannon’s sultry bluegrass sound, Swift & Finch, and Seven Hills all in one evening,” said Lisa Landry, event co-chairperson in charge of the VIP Reception.

“We’re excited that so many elements of the Rome community have come together in support of the DeSoto Theatre,“ said Historic DeSoto Theatre Foundation President Paul Griffin. “Seven Hills Fellowship has been holding Sunday morning church services at the DeSoto Theatre for over five years and is an instrumental partner in the theatre’s restoration efforts.”

The Historic DeSoto Theatre, built in 1929 by O.C. Lam, was the first theatre in the south built exclusively for “talkies.” The Historic DeSoto Theatre Foundation was established in 2008 to lead a community effort to restore, maintain and operate the DeSoto Theatre as a historical, cultural and economic asset. All proceeds from the concert will go toward the Foundation’s restoration efforts.

Tickets for the concert are $18 in advance, $20 at the door. Tickets for the VIP Patron’s Party are $50 per person and include the meet-and-greet reception with live music, reserved seating at the theatre, and coffee and desserts after the concert. Tickets are available at http://www.desototickets.com, Living & Giving, Schroeder’s New Deli, Blue Sky Outfitters, DeSoto Box Office, or by calling 706 295-7171.

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