Blowing Rock, nestled amidst the picturesque Appalachian Mountains, recently witnessed an enchanting musical spectacle that resonated with the community's soul. The 35th annual Symphony by the Lake, organized by the Blowing Rock Chamber of Commerce, brought together thousands of eager community members and visitors who embarked on a melodic journey from the Alps to the Appalachians. The event unfolded as a harmonious celebration of unity and artistry on the evening of July 21.
The event kicked off on a high note with the spirited performances of pop/folk artist Beth Snapp. Her soulful voice and original songs filled the air with heartwarming melodies. Notably, she delighted the audience with a delightful cover of the timeless Whitney Houston classic, "I Wanna Dance with Somebody," setting the tone for an unforgettable night of music and camaraderie.
Amidst the welcoming atmosphere, Mayor Charlie Sellers took the stage to express heartfelt gratitude to the gathered crowd and the dedicated event volunteers. His words resonated with the community spirit that made events like Symphony by the Lake truly special for Blowing Rock residents.
Guiding the symphony orchestra through the evening's symphonic journey was the esteemed conductor Cornelia Orth, who had graced the Symphony of the Mountains with her musical direction for an impressive 17 years. Adding a touch of diversity to the conductor lineup, Karen Rice joined as the guest conductor, enhancing the evening's repertoire with her own unique flair.
The symphony treated the audience to an eclectic blend of musical pieces, each evoking different emotions. The grandeur of the Armed Forces Salute paid homage to the valiant military, while the soul-stirring rendition of "Amazing Grace" touched the hearts of everyone present. Capturing the spirit of adventure, the symphony also delighted attendees with music from the beloved movie series, Pirates of the Caribbean, igniting a sense of excitement and wonder.
In the second half of the show, the Kruger Brothers took the stage, seamlessly joining forces with the symphony orchestra. Their dynamic bluegrass and folk performance, accompanied by the symphony, created a harmonious fusion of sounds that left the audience in awe. Notable highlights included their rendition of "Carolina in the Fall," a favorite of the legendary Doc Watson, and a soulful cover of the Cranberries' hit, "Linger."
Adding to the festivities, Symphony by the Lake featured a tent decoration competition, igniting the community's creativity. Residential groups and businesses poured their hearts into their tent designs, showcasing their artistic talents and fostering a sense of friendly competition.
The event culminated in a grand finale, with the symphony's enthralling performance of "Stars and Stripes Forever" accompanied by a magnificent fireworks display. As the night sky sparkled, the hearts of the audience swelled with pride and joy, celebrating both music and the shared spirit of Blowing Rock.
The Symphony by the Lake event proved to be a memorable and uplifting celebration, uniting the community through the magic of music. From the soaring symphonic pieces to the soulful folk and bluegrass performances, the event showcased the diverse musical talents that enrich the region. Blowing Rock's Symphony by the Lake continues to be a cherished tradition, a testament to the unifying power of art in the heart of the Appalachians.