Winners of Virginia Governor's Awards for the Arts Announced
August 26, 2008A legendary bluegrass musician and a regional arts center are among 10 recipients of the Virginia Governor's Awards for the Arts.
Clintwood native Dr. Ralph Stanley and the William King Regional Arts Center (WKRAC) in Abingdon were selected from 345 nominations, including individual artists, arts organizations and supporters of the arts. They will be honored by Gov. Tim Kaine at a Sept. 17 reception in Richmond.
"These awards recognize outstanding achievement and excellence in the arts," Kaine said in a press release. "They call attention to the creative spirit that contributes to the quality of life throughout the commonwealth."
Living legends are few and far between. First with brother Carter and later with his famed Clinch Mountain Boys, Ralph Stanley helped bring the hallowed sounds of Appalachian music into the forefront of the American musical consciousness. A Grammy Award winner, Stanley is recognized for his unique style of banjo playing and tenor vocals. He has
performed around the globe and on more than 170 albums and CDs. He is a member of the Grand Ole Opry and was inducted into the International Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame.
WKRAC is the only accredited art museum in far Southwest Virginia. The arts center is recognized as the area's only institution of its type and for its arts education programs that travel to schools in 14 counties.