Presents 'An Evening with Abigail Washburn' Oct. 20 at Luther College

Abigail Washburn, touring clawhammer banjo artist and folk singer/songwriter will collaborate with indie singer/songwriter Kai Welch for "An Evening with Abigail Washburn" at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 20 in the Center for Faith and Life Main Hall as part of Luther College's 2012-13 Center Stage Series of professional performing arts events.

Tickets for the performance go on sale Thursday, Sept. 27 at the Luther Box Office, (563) 387-1357, open Monday, Wednesday and Friday, 9-10:30 a.m. and 11a.m.-3 p.m.; Tuesday, 9 a.m.-3p.m. with extended hours on Thursdays until 7 p.m.

Tickets are $20, $18 for seniors age 65 and over and $15 for youth ages 4-18, and may also be purchased online at

Washburn's path to become a musician is much less traditional than most. While making plans to move to Beijing to study law, she was searching for something distinctly American that she could share with a new culture.  She attended a Doc Watson concert and when she heard him playing the banjo she realized the banjo is something that provides a window into a distinctly American musical culture. She left on a road trip down the East Coast, learning bluegrass banjo music along the way. At a bluegrass conference she sat down in a hallway to play – and someone walked by and offered her a record deal. 

Washburn is now an internationally recognized clawhammer banjo artist.  Clawhammer is a way of playing banjo – all down-picking rather than a mix of up and down-picking. It includes elements of melody, harmony, rhythm and percussion. 

Washburn, a believer in the power of music to connect cultures, toured Tibet in 2006 with her Sparrow Quartet—something no American band had done before.  She has traveled to China several times to play and record her music.

Washburn and Welch are currently on tour for their latest album release, "A City of Refuge," released in 2011.

For more information about Abigail Washburn visit:

Center Stage Series presents Abigail Washburn on Oct. 20