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What is "Bluemont Concert Series"?
Where did the name come from?
How many programs does Bluemont offer?
How is Bluemont funded?
Where does the money go?
What are the performances like?
Who are the performers?
Who runs the organization?
What are Artist-In-Education programs about?
What are Healthcare Outreach events like?
What about those Summer Concerts?
Other Community Events?
How does Bluemont do it?
Why does Bluemont do it?

What is "Bluemont Concert Series"?

Bluemont is a non-profit 501(c)(3) regional arts organization that since 1976 has presented over 5,000 high-quality events to more than 2 million of our friends, families and neighbors across northwestern and central Virginia.  With year-round programs, Bluemont helps build a sense of community – in our schools, healthcare facilities, summer concert communities, hometown festivals and community celebrations.

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Where did the name come from?

In the late 1970s, Bluemont, Virginia became the first community in which these events grew to be a mainstay of the local culture.  Today, Bluemont programs enliven the cultural spirit in dozens of communities.  But one thing remains the same…Bluemont’s central purpose of presenting quality arts programs that are integral to and enliven each Bluemont community’s cultural spirit.

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How many programs does Bluemont offer?

Since 1976, Bluemont has presented:

  • 4,785 programs at 135 schools in 20 Virginia school systems
  • Over 1,100 top-quality summer concerts in dozens of communities
  • 900 Healthcare Outreach programs at 65 nursing home and assisted living facilities
  • to audiences of over 2 million friends, family, neighbors and visitors.

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How is Bluemont funded?


Over 40% of Bluemont’s financial support comes from tax-deductible donations from friends, family and business partners.  Close to 30% of Bluemont’s support comes from partnerships with state and local government grants.  Earned income, in other words, monies from admission fees and special event contract services, account for about 30% of Bluemont’s revenues.  

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Where does the money go?

Over 75% of Bluemont’s budget goes directly to costs associated with its programs – artists fees, production costs, support for events.  Less than 25% is used for administrative overhead.

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What are the performances like?

Programs showcase a wide array of different genres and styles. They feature music, song, poetry and storytelling. All performances are suitable for the entire family. In 2007, Bluemont programs ranged from bluegrass to Hawaiian swing, from folk to jazz to rock and roll, and from classical flute to Caribbean steel band.   Bluemont maintains a wonderful mix of audience favorites who return every year and newcomers on the rise.

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Who are the performers?

Bluemont artists are first-rate professionals. Many have national and international tour experience; others enjoy regional renown. All are selected by audition and are reviewed each year.

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Who runs the organization?

Volunteer committees drive the programs in their own communities. They raise funds, recommend artists, and handle logistics. A regional board of directors, comprised of representatives from each area, oversees the total program. The committees and their board are supported by a small professional staff, with offices located in Berryville, Virginia.

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What are Artist-In-Education programs about?

These school programs use music, storytelling, poetry, puppetry, dance and theatre to offer cultural and environmental lessons in history, science, language arts, and mathematics. Programs are linked to Virginia's Standards of Learning and are curriculum-relevant and grade-appropriate. Bluemont screens the programs for content and artistic quality. AIE programs take the form of school assemblies, classroom sessions or teacher workshops. Schools pay only the artists; Bluemont absorbs all other costs. A fee assistance program is available.

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What are Healthcare Outreach events like?

For these benefit performances, Bluemont identifies healthcare facilities on the basis of need and selects programs for their suitability in these environments. Subsets of large groups perform for the residents and staff; their music is mostly acoustic. There is no charge to the facilities or their clients for these programs. Bluemont underwrites all costs.

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What about those Summer Concerts?

The Summer Concert Series is Bluemont's most recognizable program. Concerts take place each weekend from June to September in Ashland, Culpeper, Fredericksburg, Leesburg, Middleburg, Warrenton, and Winchester. Audiences can experience stellar performances by a host of world-class artists in their own neighborhoods.

Venues tend to be central to the identity of a community -- "at the courthouse" or "in the park" or "on the green."  Families and friends bring picnics to spend an evening together enjoying live entertainment. Bluemont requests a modest admission fee.

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Other Community Events?

These programs range in size and scope from smaller one-time events to larger on-going series. Often, Bluemont partners with a local entity to sponsor an event.

In 2003, Bluemont presented over 50 Community Events. They included First Night Leesburg; hometown festivals in Round Hill and Purcellville, Riverfest in Colonial Beach, Stafford Days Festival, Haymarket SpringFest, Fredericksburg's Hispanic Festival, KidsFest in Lansdowne, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. celebrations in Leesburg, King George Fall Festival and much more.

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How does Bluemont do it?

The Bluemont region is large. Artists enjoy the ease of contracting simply and reliably for multiple engagements through a single source. A critical audience mass allows Bluemont to negotiate with artists for a weekend of performances at several different locations. By leveraging all the jurisdictions it serves, Bluemont can bring premier artists to communities that on their own could not afford such talent. As a non-profit, Bluemont serves only the community. Bluemont aggressively controls costs and utilizes volunteers extensively. It seeks financial partnerships with foundations and corporations that share its values.

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Why does Bluemont do it?

Bluemont's mission is to present a wide variety of high quality cultural events that are accessible, affordable, and family-oriented. Bluemont is charged with bringing to life the cultural spirit in the communities it serves. Bluemont exists to build a sense of community through shared experiences of the arts.

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Last updated on: October 20, 2016