Show Number:

Tape Date: November 15, 2011

E-Chievement Award: Micki LeSueur


Don’t Miss This Live Holiday eTown Taping!


Presented by: KBCO

WHEN: NOVEMBER  15, 2011 / 7:00PM SHOW (6:00 PM Doors)
WHERE: The Boulder Theater
2032 14th Street
Boulder, CO 80302
Box Office: (303) 786-7030

COST: $16.00 (plus tax and theater fee)


TICKETS: Available at Boulder Theater box office or online at



Join eTown, as we celebrate our 20th holiday season on the airwaves with a special live radio show taping featuring seasonal music, conversation and family-friendly entertainment with Grammy Award-winning composer and violin virtuoso Mark O’Connor and Nashville-based singer/songwriter Matt Wertz.

Both artists will converge on the eTown stage to share music from their recent holiday releases, as well as conversation and insights with the show’s hosts, Nick and Helen Forster, on their origins, influences and interests outside of performing. The event will also feature a holiday-themed E-Chievement Award winner story, a popular segment of the show dedicated to recognizing special listener-nominated individuals who have made a remarkable difference in their community. The evening’s combination of music, conversation and community spirit make for a one-of-a-kind live entertainment experience, perfect for kicking off the holiday season.

Considered by the LA Times to be “one of the most talented and imaginative artists working in music -any music – today,” Mark O’Connor makes his stop in eTown with his band, Hot Swing!, to share music from his first holiday release, An Appalachian Christmas. The album, released on OMAC records last month, features collaborations with Alison Krauss, James Taylor, Renee Fleming and Yo-Yo Ma, among others. O’Connor was considered a child prodigy from a very early age, and later went on to win national titles on the fiddle, guitar and mandolin as a teenager. Today, O’Connor’s revered style of mixing classical and rich folk traditions has inspired and influenced a new generation of string players, thousands of whom currently practice the O’Connor Method in studios and schools nationwide and attend his annual String Camps. No stranger to the eTown stage, Mark has made several appearances on the show as a guest musician over the years. On occasion, he has also masqueraded as an honorary “Trailblazer” in Red Knuckles & The Trailblazers, the alter ego of eTown host Nick Forster’s bluegrass group – Hot Rize.

Singer/songwriter Matt Wertz will also make his first stop in eTown on the heels of his latest release, a collection of holiday-inspired material entitled Snow Globe. Originally from Liberty, Missouri, Matt later moved to Nashville to pursue a music career full time. Matt has enjoyed a well-deserved rise in attention with songs that have been featured on numerous television shows and movies, including Brothers and Sisters, One Tree Hill, Employee of the Month, My Super Ex-Girlfriend and ABC Family’s Nine Lives of Chloe King. Matt’s do-it-yourself approach to recording and producing his albums is a quality shared with eTown and many of the show’s guests before him. eTown, also a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, has been producing shows independently, without a host station or ownership by any media conglomerate since its inception 20 years ago.

Mark O’Connor

(photo by Christopher McLallen)

Mark O’Connor is an American violinist/fiddler, composer, music teacher and author. His music ranging from classical to jazz to folk music, is wide-ranging and critically acclaimed. Mark’s accomplishments include Grammy awards, CMA awards, national competition wins, two millions solo albums sold, performances in the greatest concert halls around the world, and collaborations with Yo-Yo Ma, Wynton Marsalis and other leading musicians. Mr. O’Connor is a record label owner and producer, owner of his publishing company, ensemble and band leader and music camp director.

Mr. O’Connor is a native of Seattle, Washington and is widely regarded as the preeminent exponent of American music. As a teenager he won many national string instrument championships for his virtuoso playing of the guitar and mandolin, as well as the fiddle. His teachers include the legendary fiddler Benny Thomasson and French jazz violinist Stéphane Grappelli.

In June 2001, Mr. O’Connor released ‘Hot Swing!’, a tribute to his great friend and mentor, Grappelli. Released on his own OMAC label, the CD was recorded live with Frank Vignola on guitar and Jon Burr on bass. The Chicago Tribune called it “one of the finest discs of his career and one of the greatest jazz violin albums ever.” He later released another Hot Swing CD entitled ‘Live In New York‘, and ushered in a new lineup of Hot Swing members who have joined tours along with original guitarist Frank Vignola on guitar, such as vocalist Heather Masse, guitarists Julian Lage, Matt Munisteri and Hans Holzen, and bassists Gary Mazzaroppi and Kyle Kegerreis.

Mr. O’Connor is the founder and president of the internationally recognized Mark O’Connor String Camp and Fiddle Camp attracting over 5,000 students from around the world. New music education programs have been launched in his name including The Mark O’Connor/Berklee College of Music Summer String Program in Boston and the O’Connor Method String Camp in Charleston. Mark has taught master classes at Juilliard, the Curtis Institute, Harvard, Rice and the Cleveland Institute of Music, and served as Artist in Residence at UCLA and the University of Miami.

The O’Connor Method – A New American School of String Playing, for string teachers and students of the violin, is designed to “guide students gradually through the development of pedagogical and musical techniques necessary to become a proficient, well-rounded musician through a carefully planned succession of pieces.” The O’Connor Method which features American music has overtaken the Suzuki method at many teaching studios and schools across the country, as students respond to the cultural proximity of the material. The influential Strad Magazine reviewed the method and wrote: “If O’Connor is the new Suzuki, then Boil ‘em Cabbage Down is the new Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.” Mark recently released his first holiday CD, ‘An Appalachian Christmas’ which American Songwriter proclaims “an absolute delight.”

Matt Wertz

Nashville-based singer/songwriter Matt Wertz’ interest in music started when he was young, but it was his interest in visual art that led him to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign where he graduated with a degree in Industrial Design. It was while he was living in the dorms that his musical talents and ambitions grew. Upon graduation, Wertz gained a considerable fan base by performing at Young Life camps, after releasing Somedays, his first album, produced by Steve Wilson. Aside from touring with such acts as Jon McLaughlin, Jason Mraz, Jamie Cullum, Gavin Degraw, Matt Nathanson and Jars of Clay, he has headlined several tours nationally in the early to mid-2000s.

Show #
November 15, 2011

There is no audio for this show.