Amythyst Kiah will perform Friday at the Weis Center Plaza in Lewisburg.

LEWISBURG – An opportunity to hear a rising star in the music world is reason enough to make room on your calendar. But with a free artist talk thrown in, it creates a hard-to-miss event.

Amythyst Kiah will perform Friday at 6 p.m., outdoors at the Weis Center Plaza, at Bucknell University. In the event of rain, the performance will take place inside the Weis Center.

The Exchange’s Art Cart will also be on site from 5:30 to 7 p.m. with special all-ages activities.

Additionally, there will be a free artist talk with Amythyst Kiah and Professor Benae Beaman, visiting assistant professor of Women & Gender Studies, at 12:30 p.m. in the white, side patio tent on the day of the performance.

“The Weis Center is continuing its 10-year tradition of inviting the community to enjoy a free outdoor performance on our plaza to open our presenting season,” said Kathryn Maguet, executive director of the Weis Center for the Performing Arts. “I’m delighted to share the artistry of Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter Amythyst Kiah, who is widely regarded as THE Breakout Artist of Summer 2021.”

Kiah has been described by Rolling Stone magazine as “Americana’s best up-and-coming secret” for her powerful blend of lonesome folk and blues.

“This concert is a rare opportunity to catch this rising star who has performed at every major music festival and venue this summer, including Red Rocks, the Newport Folk Festival, the Grand Ole Opry, as well as The Jimmy Kimmel Show, CBS Saturday Sessions and NPR,” Maguet said. “Her song, ‘Black Myself,’ won the 2019 Folk Alliance Best Song Award.”

Kiah’s Rounder Records debut, “Wary + Strange,” “marks the glorious collision of two vastly different worlds: the iconoclastic alt-rock that first sparked her musical passion, and the roots/old-time-music scene where she’s found breakout success in recent years,” according to her website.

Her “unforgettable voice” is described as “both unfettered and exquisitely controlled,” while her politically laced lyrics offer “a raw yet nuanced examination of grief, alienation, and the hard-won triumph of total self-acceptance.”

With the disappointing, but necessary, cancellations of last year’s events due to pandemic mitigation restrictions, the Weis Center staff is happy to be back in business.

“We’re very much looking forward to seeing audiences return to experience the power and magic of the performing arts,” Maguet said. “We are firmly committed to remaining vigilant in providing safe and inspiring performances this season. While we are being very cautious with our policies and procedures for attending live performances, we do believe that people are eager to gather together for artistic and cultural events.”

— cindy o. herman

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