NASHVILLE, TN – (August 7, 2020) – The Parthenon, in partnership with Centennial Park Conservancy, will present a new exhibition, Music in the Park: Songs and Stories from Centennial Park 1896 – 2020. The exhibit, which will take place in the Parthenon’s East Gallery from August 7, 2020 through December 6, 2020, will celebrate Centennial Park’s historic association with song.
“Centennial Park has been an outdoor music venue for over 130 years and has hosted everything from brass bands and classical symphonies to country singers and rock bands. Patsy Cline, Margo Price, and Bruce Springsteen performed some of their earliest shows in the park,” said Mark Medley, Parthenon Curator. “Music in the Park: Songs and Stories from Centennial Park 1896 - 2020 will feature artifacts and a visual timeline, as well as galleries of Musicians Corner photographs going back to their first season. The exhibit also presents examples of record covers, films, television, and music videos shot in the park over the course of the last sixty years. It is a story that begins long before Nashville’s designation as ‘Music City’ and it is not over. We’re pleased to present it for the very first time.”
This celebratory exhibit will present stories of the music, musicians, and audiences in Centennial Park from the 1897 Tennessee Centennial Exposition through modern-day Musicians Corner. The exhibit will present artifacts from Blind Boys of Alabama, Brenda Lee, Bruce Springsteen, Carrie Underwood, Fisk Jubilee Singers, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, and many more.
In regards to her June 5, 1958 performance in Centennial Park, Country Music and Rock & Roll Hall of Famer, Brenda Lee said in 2019, “Up to that point, it was probably the biggest crowd I had ever performed for in my life.”
The Parthenon is open Tuesday through Saturday from 9 AM to 4:30 PM and Sunday from 12:30 PM to 4:30 PM. Museum visitors must wear a face covering, per the Mayor's Executive Order No. 7.
Thank you to Tennessee Arts Commission, Sandra Schatten Foundation, and Centennial Park Conservancy for helping underwrite this exhibit. Funding for this project has also generously been provided by Humanities Tennessee and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act economic stabilization plan of 2020.
ABOUT THE PARTHENON
The Parthenon, owned and operated by the Metropolitan Government of Nashville and Davidson County’s Parks and Recreation Department, is the city of Nashville’s longest-lived art museum. Opened as a museum in 1931, its galleries are the home of the distinguished Cowan Collection of American art and feature several temporary exhibitions per year. The galleries are housed on the lower level of the Parthenon, the world’s only full-scale replica of the fifth-century BCE temple in Athens, Greece. Beloved symbol of civic pride to Nashvillians since its original manifestation as the art building for the Tennessee Centennial Exposition in 1897, it welcomes hundreds of thousands of Nashvillians and visitors to the city per year. The Parthenon is open Tuesday through Saturday from 9 AM to 4:30 PM and Sundays 12:30 PM to 4:30 PM. Admission to the Parthenon is $10 for adults; $8 for seniors 62 and over; and $8 for children 4-17. Children under 4 are admitted free. Admission includes access to all exhibitions and the Parthenon’s upper level, graced by a colossal statue of the goddess Athena.
ABOUT CENTENNIAL PARK CONSERVANCY
Centennial Park Conservancy is 501(c)(3) not-for-profit profit organization that works in partnership with Metro Parks to fund and present a variety of enriching programs in the Parthenon and Centennial Park that make a widespread imprint on the Nashville community and our visitors. The organization’s mission is to preserve, enhance and share the Parthenon and Centennial Park so that all future generations may benefit from these enriching cultural and educational landmarks.
ABOUT METRO PARKS AND RECREATION
The Parks and Recreation Department offers a variety of facilities and programs throughout Davidson County. Currently, Metro Parks oversees 15,114 acres of open space, including 184 parks and 85 miles of greenways. It is the department’s mission to sustainably and equitably provide everyone in Nashville with an inviting network of parks and greenways that offer health, wellness and quality of life through recreation, conservation and community.
Note to Editors:
Music in the Park Webpage:
Nashville Parthenon Website:
Centennial Park Conservancy Website:
Metro Park and Recreation Website:
Parthenon Social Distancing Guidelines:
Centennial Park Conservancy Marketing Coordinator