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New film featuring English folksinger to screen at Transylvania

The Ballad of Shirley Collins

A film that’s been called the “music documentary of the year” is making its way to Central Kentucky for a screening at Transylvania University. 

The Ballad of Shirley Collins is a documentary about the English folksinger, Shirley Collins, who came to fame in the 1950s. No stranger to the area, Collins accompanied American ethnomusicologist Alan Lomax for his field recordings in southern Appalachia and the Delta. 

The free screening is 3 p.m., Thursday, Nov. 8 in the Cowgill Center. 

“It’s a wonderful film and would appeal to anyone with interest in Appalachian Studies, music, history, film, folk culture and feminism,” said Maurice Manning, a Transylvania English professor, poet and writer in residence.

Filmmakers Rob Curry and Tim Plester will take questions afterward. The film will also screen at Appalshop in Whitesburg and at Berea College. 

The free screening of The Ballad of Shirley Collins is part of Transylvania’s New Frontiers feature event series, which asks the public to go beyond the familiar and explore ideas, art and music.