Live music in ‘Brundidge City Limits’

Published 11:00 pm Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Shades of “Austin City Limits!”

For those not “in the know,” Austin City Limits is an American Public Television music program recorded live in Austin, Texas. The show helped Austin to become widely known as the “Live Music Capital of the World.”

Those would be mighty big shoes for a usually sunset town like Brundidge to step into but on Saturday night, downtown Brundidge was alive with the sound of music – music and more.

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Studio 116’s Open Mic event featured music of different genres – folk, folk rock, new country, gospel and classic country and poetry and spoke word presentations.

“What a night. What a great event,” said Brundidge native and Georgia transplant, Tori Lee Averett. “Can you believe, Brundidge, Alabama? This could be ‘Austin City Limits.’ You don’t expect to find a music event like this in a small town. I’m so impressed, so proud that it’s in my hometown.”

Averett and her husband, Ed, were among the performers who took the mic Saturday night and “thoroughly” entertained the crowd that came to studio 116 to celebrate the arts in Brundidge.

“Studio 116 provides artists with an opportunity to step into the spotlight. Tonight lit a fuse that will fire up this community in a unique and special way, if you’ll let it,” Averett said. “Art in Brundidge is now a reality.”

Amanda Trawick, also a Brundidge native, said she was aware of the wealth of talent in the area but she was nonetheless “impressed.”

Brundidge native Tori Lee Averett and her husband, Ed Averett, were in the spotlight Saturday night at studio 116’s Open Mic event. Nine performers took the stage and entertained the crowd with a variety of music styles and poetry and spoken work presentations.



“We just needed a stage and somebody to put the spotlight on the talent that we have,” she said. “Studio 116 did that tonight.”’

In the spotlight were Brandon McClure, T.J. Winters, Kim McClure, Larry McLeod, Joe Cotton, Taylor Manning, Rachel Hartzog and Tori Lee Averett and Ed Averett.

Chris Rich and his wife, Sara Dismukes, own and operate studio 116 on Main Street in downtown Brundidge. The studio features an art gallery, a working studio and a stage area for live performances.

Adena Moree, director of theater and dance at Troy University, said studio 116 is an exciting venture that brings the fine arts into focus in small town Alabama.

“Brundidge has folk art and now fine art. What an exciting combination and right here in Brundidge, Alabama,” she said.

Dr. Mary Jo Cochran, dean of communication and fine arts at Troy University, said that she is delighted that Brundidge is offering a community space for the performing arts.

“Studio 116 is going to be a tremendous asset for the community,” she said. “Hopefully, it can work in tandem with The Studio in Troy to offer events at either venue.

“To have a place where local musicians can share their original music is absolutely delightful. It was so much fun to pack a picnic and enjoy a variety of music styles … and for five dollars. That’s cheaper than a movie.”

Cochran said she is also excited that studio 116 is offering art camps for kids.

“There is a great need for creative child care and studio 116 is offering programs – camps and workshops — that are much needed,” she said.

Cochran expressed pride that two Troy University faculty members with entrepreneurial spirits are providing opportunities for the expansion of the arts in the community.