Arts Huntsville unveiled the poster artwork and announced the headlining acts for the 34th Panoply Arts Festival, to be held April 29 – May 1, 2016 in downtown Huntsville’s Big Spring Park. Mayor Tommy Battle and Madison County Commission Chairman Dale Strong joined Arts Huntsville board, volunteers and staff at the Huntsville/Madison County Convention and Visitors Bureau to announce details about the upcoming three-day festival.

Panoply kicks off at 5:00 p.m. on Friday, April 29th, welcoming back favorite local and regional musical acts as well as nationally-recognized and critically-acclaimed bands and musicians, the Art Marketplace presented by Toyota Motor Manufacturing of Alabama, STEAM Interactive activities, craft beer, local food trucks and more.

Hannah Thomas

Hannah Thomas

Featured Music: This year more than 50 performances will span three stages. Classical to contemporary, rock and bluegrass is featured, including the Beasley Brothers, Alan Little, Reginald Jackson and Friends, Huntsville’s In the Mood Swing Band and the Army Materiel Command Band. On Friday night the Showcase Stage will welcome Panoply newcomer Hannah Thomas. Amy Ray of the Indigo Girls (a 2015 Panoply headliner) describes Hannah’s music as “the soul of old country…but she’s also a die-hard rocker with some punk thrown in the mix.”

Unknown Lyric

Unknown Lyric

Afterward, one of Huntsville’s favorites Unknown Lyric returns to the Showcase Stage with their urban rhythms and grooves paired with strains of Beethoven and other classics.

The Pollies

The Pollies

To close out the night, North Alabama’s own The Pollies come off their tour of the Southeast to headline the Friday night lineup with music from their genre-defying LP Not Here, their first release with Single Lock Records, founded by John Paul White of The Civil Wars.

Saturday highlights Huntsville’s own throughout the day as the festival features the best in area dance and musical performances. Local favorites Winslow Davis, Judy and Josh Allison, Wolves of Chernobyl and more will play for Panoply attendees. Big Daddy Kingfish and Whiskey River kings will take the Showcase Stage ahead of Saturday night’s headliner, Drew Holcomb and the Neighbors.

Drew Holcomb & the Neighbors

Drew Holcomb & the Neighbors

Drew Holcomb and the Neighbors have been featured on Jimmy Kimmel Live! and heard on popular TV shows like How I Met Your Mother, Parenthood, Criminal Minds, Nashville and more. The band has sold out Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium, played Bonnaroo and Hang-Out Fest, and toured with The Avett Brothers. The band’s most recent album Medicine, their ninth release, debuted in January 2015 as a Billboard Top Ten Folk and Indie Album.

On Sunday festivalgoers can enjoy back-to-back performances by Kush, Mambo Gris Gris and Microwave Dave on the Showcase Stage.

See a full performance lineup here.

Art Marketplace & Art Investors – Presented by TOYOTA Motor Manufacturing of Alabama, the juried Art Marketplace at Panoply is one of the most popular features of the festival. Showcasing 85 fine artists from 10 states, the Marketplace provides prime shopping in a beautiful setting over the Monroe Street bridge. Of the 85 exhibitors, 37 are new to the festival and more than 15 local artists will showcase their work.

This year also marks the return of Art Investors. Local art enthusiasts can take advantage of the festival’s Art Investors program, giving ticket buyers the opportunity to enjoy exclusive shopping in the Marketplace before the festival opens to the general public on Saturday morning. Your $75 ticket treats you to a Panoply experience that include a weekend pass to the festival, the Saturday morning shopping and breakfast as well as $25 in tokens to spend with the artist or artists of your choice. Twenty-five dollars of your ticket is a tax-deductible donation to Arts Huntsville. Art Investors Tickets can be purchased here.

Arts in Action – Attendees can celebrate the Year of Alabama Makers at Panoply Arts in Action tents where regional artists will offer demonstrations of their craft and festivalgoers can get a first-hand look at the process of screen printing, pottery, silversmithing and more.


 “Panoply Reflections” by Starr Weems

Panoply Poster Artist – A popular annual Panoply tradition is the commissioning of an original artwork to serve as the poster for the event. Arts Huntsville member and local watercolor artist Starr Weems was selected to create the Panoply 2016 poster art. Ms. Weems specializes in watercolor pouring and her work has been displayed at Kentuck Museum, Lowe Mill and Birmingham Public Library (among others) and has been featured in various publications throughout the Southeast. When she isn’t painting, Ms. Weems works with teens at Ardmore High School, where she has served as an art educator for 15 years.

“Star Weems’ watercolor work embodies the nature of Panoply. It fills Big Spring Park with art and music for one wonderful weekend each year and leaves us inspired and refreshed,” said Cathy Callaway, Arts Huntsville board president. “This year we are also thrilled to showcase an area art educator as our Panoply poster artist as we want to salute the important work art teachers do in our schools each day.”

Hands-On Interactives – STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art and math) interactives and hands-on art activities return to the festival, giving festivalgoers of all ages the chance to discover scientific lessons through art and get in touch with their creative side.

STEAM Interactives include:

  • HAL5’s Lava Layers – Make a mini lava lamp and learn about density
  • Huntsville Ballet Company’s Mobiles in Motion – Make a mobile and learn about equilibrium and simple machines
  • Defense Acquisition University’s Wonder Waves – Learn about how music frequencies and patterns can make art
  • Binary Bands – Write your name in binary code using colorful beads
  • Huntsville Botanical Garden’s Flower Power – Use recycled plastic bottles to create flowers to “plant” in the ground at the festival

Other hands-on activities include:

  • Toyota Motor and Manufacturing of Alabama’s Creative Capes – Make a superhero cape
  • Huntsville Art League’s Easel Art – Paint a picture on an easel set alongside the spring
  • Huntsville Symphony Guild’s Discover Music – Experiment with new instruments
  • Valley Conservatory’s Drum Circle – Group drumming for all ages
  • Panoply Letters – Paint 6’ letters displayed in the park
  • Face Painting – festivalgoers can get their faces painted at one of the largest and most popular tents in the park

Military Salute Night – Another Panoply tradition continues on Friday, April 29th. Military Salute Night, presented by Boeing, will welcome active duty military, Armed Forces reserves and their dependents to the park for a free evening of entertainment. The evening will feature a performance by the U.S. Army Materiel Command Band.

Craft Beer and Festival Food – Festivalgoers can enjoy local tastes along with Panoply’s diverse array of art and music. For the first time, in addition to festival-fare favorites, Panoply will welcome local food trucks Rollin’ Lobstah, Dale’s Stuft and The Food Truck to the festival. The popular Craft Beer Tent returns featuring local beer from popular Huntsville and North Alabama breweries.

Festival Seating – Enjoy music and performances at three outdoor stages with open-air seating. Festival patrons are encouraged to bring chairs and blankets to sit on as they enjoy the lineup of Panoply performers.

Fireworks – Friday and Saturday night end the night with a stunning fireworks display sponsored by Delta Research.

Online Ticketing and Weekend Pass – As a new feature for festivalgoers in 2016, Arts Huntsville is offering a special weekend Panoply pass available online in advance for just $18. The pass offers an affordable way to enjoy Panoply’s diverse entertainment all weekend. Weekend passes are only available until 4:00 p.m. on April 29, 2016. Day passes are $10 and can be purchased in advance online or at the event. Tickets are on sale now at artshuntsville.org. Children 12 and under are free of charge.

“Every day at Arts Huntsville we celebrate the creative side of our community. Once again this year we are honored to work with area artists, musicians, sponsors, volunteers our community partners to stage the Southeast’s premiere arts weekend,” said Allison Dillon-Jauken, Arts Huntsville executive director. “We invite you to celebrate Panoply with us in 2016 and we promise you’ll discover something new at this year’s festival.”

Panoply Arts Festival will be held April 29 – May 1, 2016.

Panoply’s hours are:

Friday, April 29 from 5:00 – 9:00 p.m.
Saturday, April 30 from 10 a.m. – 9 p.m.
Sunday, May 1 from 12:00 – 7:00 p.m.

Sign up to volunteer here or click here to purchase tickets.

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