State Theatre Gala Sunday Includes VIP & After Party Events
Falls Church’s venerable State Theatre will once again this year be the host venue for the annual Washington Area Music Association’s awards fete known as the “Wammies.” It will take place this Sunday night at the historic State, originally a 1930s luxury movie theatre converted into one of the region’s most popular mid-sized live music venues.
As always, sandwiched between the national “Grammy” and “Academy Award” galas held on the Sunday nights prior and after, the “Wammies” event honors a long list of regional musicians and groups who are selected from an exhaustive ballot of nominees by WAMA members.
The City of Falls Church stands to benefit from a lot of dollars that musicians and their admirers from all over the greater metropolitan region will bring to spend in the City, and hopefully from the good will and memories of good times those folk will take back to their home areas as incentives to spread the word and to come back often.
That’s why the City’s Economic Development Authority has chipped in financial support to help promote the Wammies, and, indeed, the City is listed as an official sponsor of the event.
The official VIP Reception prior to the ceremonies and the after party are being held at City restaurants near the State. The pre-reception will be held at the newly-renovated Argia’s Restaurant, just three doors from the State, and the after party will be held at the Ireland’s Four Provinces Restaurant a half-block away.
Two notable Falls Church institutions are on the “Wammie” ballot and could win special recognition. The City’s Cue Recording Studio, also a half-block from the State, has been nominated for Best Recording Studio and long-time City resident Mary Cliff has once again been nominated for Most Supportive of D.C. Music.
Performers at the VIP reception will be Bumper Jacksons, and at the after party, Little Red and the Renegades. The pit band at the State ceremonies will be the Daryl Davis Band, and on the list of performers at the big event includes Be’la Dona (performing with the late Chuck Brown’s daughter and son, K.K Brown and Wiley Brown), G.U.G.G., Ruthie and the Wranglers, Ted Garber, Trio Caliente, Veronneau and We Were Kings.
The categories on the ballot of nominees for “Wammie” honors are exhaustive. There are different arrangements of performers for each of the following categories of music: bluegrass, swing/big band, a Capella, blues/rhythm and blues, children’s music, choral groups, classical, country, electronica, contemporary folk, traditional folk, go go, gospel/inspirational, jazz, latin, rap/hip hop, reggae, modern rock, pop rock, roots rock, urban contemporary and world music.
Other awards will be presented to the Musician of the Year, Artist of the Year, New Artist of the Year, Album of the Year, Debut Recording of the Year, Song of the Year, Song Writer of the Year, Video of the Year, Record Design of the Year, Manager of the Year, Area Record Company of the Year, Producer of the Year, Live Sound Engineer of the Year, Studio Engineer of the Year, Recording Studio of the Year and Most Supportive of D.C. Music.
While tickets to the pre- and post-receptions are by invitation only, tickets to the main event (the State has a capacity of about 700) are on a first come, first served basis, and can be ordered off the WAMA website with prices starting at $35 and with some ticket options including invitations to the pre- and post-receptions.
The City of Falls Church’s recognition as a sponsor of the event is shared with WAMA and Broadcast Management, Inc. (BMI), a music rights management group that represents over 550,000 songwriters, composers and publishers.