Savannah Swings

Even the Spanish moss sways to the beat of these great musical performances.
Annette Thompson

Grab a ticket for a concert in historic venues such as the Lucas Theatre for the Arts, the Telfair Museum of Art, or the First African Baptist Church during the Savannah Music Festival.

Between Sounds
Fuel your concertgoing with quick treats. Slip into line at Leopold's Ice Cream parlor on Broughton Street (next door to the Trustees Theater) for a tasty cone or sundae. Or try The Tea Room, also on Broughton, for a hot cup of oolong or green tea to spice up your afternoon.

With springtime flowers and St. Patrick's Day green, the Savannah Music Festival plays a tuneful accompaniment to the season.

Visitors flock to town March 18-April 5, 2009 to take in almost 100 concerts. The performances - from gospel to country, chorale to Celtic, chamber to zydeco - fill 22 venues.

A Day in the Life
So what's in store? Say you want to come on Wednesday, March 18. At lunch, wander over to River Street for free music. That evening you can catch Bonnie Raitt at the historic Johnny Mercer Theatre.

Thursday offers free midday music and culminates at Charles H. Morris Center with two performances of "The Blues Was Born Here" with Georgian Beverly "Guitar" Watkins, Piedmont blues harmonica ace Phil Wiggins, and Corey Harris, a singer/guitarist at the forefront of a "world blues" genre. Beethoven more your speed? Don't miss Pianist Garrick Ohlsson, fresh off a triumphant performance with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra in last year's festival, playing his debut recital in Savannah.

After Saturday's parades, catch Portuguese singer Mariza, performing Fado, a 200-year-old form of Portuguese blues. For the kids: Zydeco Dance Party. For free: Sacred Harp singers.

More To Hear
You may want to be there March 26-29 for free performances of the High School Jazz Band Competition held on River Street. Don't miss: an intimate performance by Chick Corea, John McLaughlin and the Five Peace Band at the Trustees Theatre on Saturday, March 28.

On the final weekend, banjo-virtuoso Bela Fleck plays an only-in-select-cities collaboration with African artists on Saturday, April 4. The Atlanta Symphony Orchestra closes out the festival with a symphonic bang by debuting a new piece and Gershwin's "Concerto in F".

For More Info

Tickets range $15-$65. To purchase, visit www.savannahmusicfestival.org, call (912) 525-5050, or go the Trustees Theater Box Office at 216 East Broughton Street (10 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday, noon-5 p.m. Saturday).