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Legendary Ragtime Pianist, Richard Zimmerman, to Perform at Blue Ridge Community College October 19.

Ragtime changed Richard Zimmerman's life. He discovered it as a high school student when he heard the jangling sounds of a honky-tonk record. He immediately abandoned his classical piano studies in pursuit of this intoxicating sound that he later discovered was ragtime.

Eubie Blake, himself a ragtime legend, says, "Dick Zimmerman is a real ragtime pianist, and he knows more about its history than I do!"

Western North Carolina is in for a real treat when this highly respected and accomplished ragtime pianist performs at Blue Ridge Community College's Thomas Auditorium on Saturday, October 19, 2002, at 7:30 PM.

Many years after first being captivated by the joyous sounds of ragtime, Zimmerman is still pursuing ragtime's past and bringing new life to America's first original music through his recordings and worldwide concerts. He is one of just a few modern-day performers who can play the difficult and elusive art form that is real ragtime.

Zimmerman presents ragtime in all of its many styles and moods, ranging from lilting, classical rags and wistful ragtime blues to lively ragtime tunes and foot-tapping dances. Zimmerman was one of the first to compose new rags, which incorporated ideas seldom found in original ragtime, and he always receives requests to include some of his own works at his concerts.

Zimmerman celebrates over a century of ragtime music in his concerts. He includes amusing, informative tidbits about the music, composers and various performers throughout his program.

Zimmerman holds the title of "Champion Ragtime Performer of the World," and is the only pianist to have recorded the complete works of Scott Joplin.

Tickets for the Blue Ridge Community College concert are currently on sale. Ticket prices for adults are $15 ($9 of the admission price is tax deductible), and children 12 and under are $10 ($4 of the admission price is tax deductible). There is a pre-concert program, "History of Ragtime," to which all ticket holders are admitted at no charge (from 6:30-7 PM). Tickets may be purchased in advance by mail (BRCC Educational Foundation, College Drive, Flat Rock, NC, 28731) or in person at the Foundation office (Blue Ridge Community College, Patton Building, West Campus Drive, Flat Rock, M-F, 8:30AM-3PM); cash, check, or money order only. All seating is general admission.

Proceeds will support future events at the Thomas Auditorium.

For more information, please call the Blue Ridge Community College Foundation at 828-694-1710.

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