San Antonio Ragtime Festival

Critic's Pick Release Date: 2011-05-11

Since 2001, the San Antonio Ragtime Society (the only organization of its kind in Texas) has been slowly-but-steadily building the River City’s ragtime scene, anchored by a yearly Ragtime Festival that pulls in guest pianists from as far away as Argentina to celebrate the genre. With roots that dance all the way back to the late 1800s-era red-light districts of St. Louis and New Orleans, ragtime took a back seat to jazz at the turn of the century, but found itself again in fashion in the 1970s ? when Scott Joplin’s quintessential compositions “The Entertainer” (1902), “Maple Leaf Rag” (1899), and others soundtracked George Roy Hill’s Oscar-winning film The Sting. At this year’s festival, musical guests Mimi Blais, Brian Holland, Stephanie Trick, and Larisa Migachyov interpret the “ragged” (playfully syncopated) rhythms of Joplin, James Scott, and Joseph Lamb at two all-day concerts in Market Square and two evening performances at Radius. $10 suggested donation; 7:30pm Fri, May 13; 7:30pm Sat, May 14; Radius, 106 Auditorium Circle, (210) 896-1985. Free; 10am-5pm Sat, May 14; 10am-5pm Sun, May 15; Market Square – Farmer’s Market, 612 W Commerce. For details, visit or call (210) 541-0760.

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