Boch Center Re-Introduces Folk Americana Roots Hall of Fame
A Celebration of the History of Folk, Americana and Roots Music Through Newly Announced Exhibits, Lectures, Concerts and More
(Boston) Today, the Boch Center re-introduced the Folk Americana Roots Hall of Fame (FARHOF), an education initiative located inside the iconic Wang Theatre in Boston. Led by industry experts and Folk, Americana and Roots musicians including Joan Baez, Bob Crawford, Keb’ Mo’, Noel Paul Stookey, and others, the Folk Americana Roots Hall of Fame celebrates the lifeblood of America’s musical and cultural heritage. Boch Center President and CEO Josiah Spaulding announced expanded programming that includes a series of upcoming exhibits and live shows coming to the Wang and Shubert Theatres.
Boston is recognized for being the Folk capital of the United States. The Folk Americana Roots Hall of Fame will become the epicenter, honoring the past, celebrating the present, and nurturing the next generation of Folk, Americana and Roots music.
“Music connects all of us and keeps us a civilized society,” said Josiah Spaulding, President and CEO of the Boch Center. “These genres of music, in particular, have historically provided an outlet for individuals of all races, classes and locations to express their highest joys and their deepest sorrows, and I am thrilled to provide a new cultural destination that will educate people of all ages about the important influence of these genres on all music today.”
Among the new and expanded programming are five new exhibits curated by Deana McCloud and Bob Santelli of the Museum Collective. Opening today in the Wang Theatre are Boston: A Music Town (3rd Floor) and The Wang Theatre: A Century of Great Music (4th Floor). In addition, Ernie Boch Jr.’s Guitars Exhibit opens October 27, 2022, Daniel Kramer’s Photographs of Bob Dylan (1964-65) opens January 18, 2023, and Arlo Guthrie opens March 29, 2023. These exhibits complement the Folk Americana Roots Hall of Fame's current exhibits, David Bieber Archives in the Wang Theatre’s Music Hall and Cultural Heroes on loan from Alan LeQuire Galleries in Nashville. The exhibits will be open on show days and on off days during tours of the magnificent building.
“While the Folk Americana Roots Hall of Fame is a celebration of the music that made America and which continues to influence contemporary artists, it is also a celebration of one of America’s greatest music towns, Boston,” said Deana McCloud, curator of the Folk Americana Roots Hall of Fame. “With 100-years of performances, and a beauty unparalleled by buildings today, the Wang Theatre is a fitting backdrop for telling these important stories. As we gather those stories to create an experiential, educational exhibit space, we know guests will leave with an appreciation for the influences the Wang Theatre and Boston have played in the American music scene.”
Folk, Americana and Roots music has inspired music today in profound ways and the Folk Americana Roots Hall of Fame will showcase its impact through live performances – large and small - at the Wang and Shubert Theatres. The Center partnered with Paste Magazine recently to bring the Dropkick Murphys into the Cultural Heroes exhibit to perform songs from their new acoustic album inspired by Woody Guthrie’s lyrics. The group performed among a collection of seven larger-than-life clay sculptures of artists who shaped the soundtrack of the Civil Rights movement: Bessie Smith, Billie Holiday, Lead Belly, Paul Robeson, Woody Guthrie, Marian Anderson, and Josh White.
Upcoming shows include Marcus Mumford at the Wang Theatre on November 8, 2022 and the Allman Family Revival at the Shubert Theatre on December 3, 2022. Additional performances include Lyle Lovett’s Big Band and A Conversation with Arlo Guthrie in the spring of 2023.
For over 30 years, access to the arts for all has been core to the Boch Center’s non-profit mission. The Folk Americana Roots Hall of Fame's rich offerings are an extension of the Center’s award-winning community and education programs. Recently, the Folk Americana Roots Hall of Fame partnered with New York Times bestselling author Peter H. Reynolds and Grammy-nominated Yusuf/Cat Stevens to inspire 100 first graders from inner-city Boston Public Schools. Reynolds read two of his books, The Dot and Peace Train, to the children visiting the Wang Theatre, and Yusuf joined by video to share a message of hope and peace. Yusuf/Cat Steven’s Peace Train song, which is a cry for peace and understanding, was released on the Teaser and the Firecat album in 1971. Together, Reynolds and Yusuf/Cat Stevens encouraged the kids to “create bravely” and “join the Peace Train.” The Folk Americana Roots Hall of Fame welcomed Chelsea, MA public schools on October 24, 2022, and the event was recorded to share broadly with schools, teachers and community groups.
The Folk Americana Roots Hall of Fame is located inside the Boch Center’s Wang Theatre at 270 Tremont St. Boston, Massachusetts. Starting September 30, 2022 tours will be available at the Wang Theatre. Guests can find the most up-to-date schedule and book tours at www.bochcenter.org/tours. Tickets are $20 for adults and $12 for children. (Discounted rates are available for youth/student groups.) For updates and to join the mailing list for news, announcements and more visit www.FARHOF.org. Be sure to follow FARHOF on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
About the Folk Americana Roots Hall of Fame
In 2019, the Boch Center expanded its educational programming and launched the Folk Americana Roots Hall of Fame (FARHOF) which celebrates the lifeblood of America’s musical and cultural heritage. Folk music provides an outlet for individuals of all races and backgrounds to express their highest joys and deepest sorrows.
The Folk Americana Roots Hall of Fame is dedicated to honoring history, while also nurturing the next generation of Folk, Americana, and Roots musicians. By learning from the past, the Boch Center and the Folk Americana Roots Hall of Fame hope to influence meaningful conversations today.
Housed in the Wang Theatre, the Folk Americana Roots Hall of Fame celebrates Folk, Americana and Roots music through displays, memorabilia, artifacts, events, lectures, exhibits and concerts.
About the Boch Center
The Boch Center is one of the nation’s leading nonprofit performing arts institutions and a guardian of the historic Wang and Shubert Theatres. As New England’s largest cultural venue, the Boch Center is home to theater, classical and popular music, dance, comedy, opera, Broadway musicals, family entertainment, and more.
Located in Boston’s historic Theater District, the Boch Center also offers a diverse mix of educational, cultural and community outreach initiatives, including the City Spotlights Leadership Program and the Folk Americana Roots Hall of Fame; collaborates with artists and local nonprofit arts organizations; preserves historic venues; and acts as a champion for Greater Boston’s arts and cultural community. Learn more at bochcenter.org.