By Karl Richter
TEXARKANA, Ark. – Jazz and cocktails will be in the spotlight this year for ragtime composer Scott Joplin’s annual birthday celebration.
The event takes place Saturday at the recently opened downtown Banana Club 1923, and admission donations will benefit a downtown decorating project dubbed “Music in the Air”.
Musical artists scheduled include local jazz trio Three of a Kind, pianist and singer Haley Patillo, Deric Kennedy and Carol Miles singing songs from his recent album “Givenchy and Me”, including his original song “Texarkana Cutie”. Pianist Richard Ware, a former student of the late Three of a Kind pianist Allen Batts, will also perform.
A cash bar will feature a new cocktail, the peacherine, named after one of Joplin’s songs, and Restaurant Verona will feature appetizers and a signature wine called Texarkana Notes. Whoever attends in the best clandestine bar costume of the 1920s will win a door prize.
Participants can participate in a silent auction for bottles of wine, two round-trip Amtrak tickets to San Antonio, and this year’s Joplin birthday painting by Henry Fort, “Scott Joplin at the Beasley Music Store – Texarkana 1907 “.
Fort’s painting from last year, “Scott Joplin at Orr School,” was acquired by the Thomas and Leah Orr family and is on loan to the Regional History Museum for their Scott Joplin exhibit. Fort’s 2018 birthday painting, “Happy Birthday Scott Joplin,” was acquired by the Marc-André and Candace Taylor Bougie family and is on display at Texarkana College Music Hall. The 2019 painting, “Young Scott Joplin at the Piano”, was acquired by David Peavy and is now hung in 1923 at the Banana Club.
“Music in the Air” is a planned “sky landscape” of lighted, music-themed sculptures that will adorn the roofs of downtown buildings. The project is sponsored by the Scott Joplin Support Group and Main Street Texarkana.
Joplin, originally from Texarkana, was born around November 24, 1868 and died in 1917. Known as “the king of ragtime,” Joplin pioneered popular musical form at the turn of the 20th century.
(Scott Joplin’s jazzy birthday cocktails start at 6:30 p.m. on Saturdays at the Banana Club 1923, 223 Front Street, in the basement of the 1894 Gallery and Market. All donations at the door are eligible for admission. and a free drink ticket. Donations of $ 50 or more are tax deductible. For more information or to reserve a table, contact 903-490-5471 or [email protected])
Pianist and singer Haley Patillo, pictured in this undated publicity photo, will perform at the Scott Joplin & # x27; s Jazzy Birthday Cocktails, an event celebrating Joplin, at the 1923 downtown Banana Club on Saturday. (Photo submitted)