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The Wittliff Collections Announces Limited Tables-for-Two For Inaugural Festival

The Wittliff Collections Announces Limited Tables-for-Two For Inaugural Festival

The Wittliff Collections, an internationally acclaimed collection of Southwest writing, photography, film and music, announces a limited availability of "Date-Night" tables-for-two for their inaugural Festival, taking place April 18, 2020. Just in time for Valentine's Day, these intimate Date-Night Tables are priced at $1,000 and include gala seating for two at ACL Live at the Moody Theater, access to two full bars and a buffet dinner on the mezzanine level, a chance to bid on silent and live auction items, and a great view of the program, which will include an acoustic performance by Robert Earl Keen and Ray Benson. The Wittliff Collections will host this debut festival in Austin, Texas, with a one-day event celebrating the unbridled imagination of Texas, Mexico and the Southwest. For information on attending the Festival and sponsorship opportunities, email here.

"We're close to a sell-out, but we've just announced the availability of the festival's Date-Night Tables," said Ramona Kelly, Wittliff Collections' senior director of development. "Anyone wanting to snag one of these tables as a Valentine's Day surprise should get in touch right away. You'll have a great time while supporting the continued growth of The Wittliff."

"Storm From Dugout Wells," 1992, James H. Evans

The Wittliff Collections are a cultural treasure comprising a world-class research archive, exhibition gallery, and special collections library established at Texas State University in 1986 by acclaimed screenwriter and filmmaker Bill Wittliff and his wife Sally. The Wittliff Collections Festival will feature a full day of panels at the W Austin Hotel with writers, photographers, filmmakers and singer/songwriters, followed by a star-studded gala at ACL Live at the Moody Theater (310 W. Willie Nelson Blvd, Austin, Texas 78701) showcasing intimate performances by musical legends Robert Earl Keen and Ray Benson. All proceeds from the festival will be used to acquire important collections that preserve the culture of the Southwest. For more information on The Wittliff Collections Festival, see here, as well as this video.

The festival will honor legendary screenwriter, filmmaker, photographer and writer Bill Wittliff, who passed away on June 9, 2019, by celebrating his vision and creative spirit.

"The Wittliff Collections Festival this April will be a time for us to celebrate Bill and Sally Wittliff's incredible vision and their guardianship of the creative heartbeat of Texas, Mexico, and the Southwest," said Wittliff Collections Director Dr. David L. Coleman. "The festival will also honor the writers, photographers, filmmakers, and singer/songwriters whose voices breathe life into what we call the Southwest's 'Spirit of Place.' Plus - it'll be one heck of a good time."

Panels for The Wittliff Collections Festival include "The Writer's Voice" with moderator John Spong, featuring renowned novelists Lawrence Wright, Stephen Harrigan, Sarah Bird and Elizabeth Crook; "The Photographer's Voice" with moderator David L. Coleman, featuring Kathy Vargas, an internationally praised photographer known for her composite hand-colored photographs; Michael O'Brien, a premier portrait photographer known for his candid, unapologetic style; Kate Breakey, a visual artist known for her large-scale, hand-colored photographs; Keith Carter, an internationally respected photographer, author, and educator; "The Filmmaker's Voice: Behind the Scenes with Lonesome Dove," featuring Emmy®-winning costume designer Van Broughton Ramsey, Emmy®-nominated set designer Cary White and property master Eric A. Williams, all of whom played a central role in the authenticity of the Lonesome Dove miniseries, as well as actor Barry Tubb, who portrayed Jasper Fant in Lonesome Dove; and "The Singer/Songwriter's Voice" with moderator Joe Nick Patoski, featuring artists Terri Hendrix, Flaco Jimenez, Barbara Lynn and Max Baca.

"Vaquero El Rancho Tule Mexico" by Bill Wittliff © 1972

The Wittliff Collections Festival gala will treat attendees to an intimate acoustic performance by two musical legends, Robert Earl Keen and Ray Benson. The gala will also include a live and silent auction with rare treasures from the Lonesome Dove miniseries.

"No collection or institution can be the window to Texas like The Wittliff Collections are and can be," said music writer and journalist Joe Nick Patoski. "That's why I urge everyone to get involved and attend The Wittliff Collections Festival coming up in April. It really is about - not just this institution or about Bill and Sally Wittliff - but it's about Texas, the Southwest, and Mexico, who we are as a people and our sense of place."

What began with the papers of Texas folklorist J. Frank Dobie has grown into a cultural touchstone with more than 500 prized collections in Southwestern literature, Southwestern and Mexican photography and Texas music. Holdings include the papers of writers Sam Shepard, Cormac McCarthy, Sandra Cisneros, Mary Karr, Stephen Harrigan and Lawrence Wright, as well as the entire Texas Monthly magazine archive and the King of the Hill collection; the largest collection of Mexican photography outside of Mexico; a burgeoning collection of Texas music including Willie Nelson, Jerry Jeff Walker and Ray Benson; and the Lonesome Dove production archive. Plans are underway to add film and television to The Wittliff's vast trove of primary source material.

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