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Kyle Dillingham: Musical Connections

A fiddler fueled by enthusiasm and interaction



 



The farm truck radio of Kyle Dillingham’s grandfather was always set to a station that played songs from country greats like Bob Wills. It was an everyday thing as little Kyle rode around his family’s farm near Enid.
 

“Man, that music just got in my soul,” Dillingham says. “I started playing violin when I was in the 4th grade. And I just couldn’t wait. I knew the songs, so it was just a matter of learning to play the violin.” And while learning to play classical violin in school, he was also using that technical training to help him become a better fiddler.

It was both of those influences – and his performance-centered talent – that made it possible to launch a career in music. But his interests have spread far beyond just classical violin or country fiddle, and an extra ingredient beyond skill and expertise has helped fuel his success – performing locally, playing in Nashville on the Grand Ole Opry stage twice and collaborating with various performers abroad in Thailand, Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Burma and Russia.

He is a popular performer in constant demand, bringing a uniquely energetic and interactive style to the stage.

As Bob Wills once did, Dillingham often dances and sings as he plays fiddle. Those animated performances have an enthusiasm that causes crowds to stand, clap, dance and sing along.

And that connection to his audience is the key element of Dillingham’s creativity. Yes, he composes in solitude quite often; the piece may be intended for large audiences, or just for his wife and two small children. But no matter the imagined audience, “I can’t wait to perform it for someone as soon as I’m finished.”

That interaction is critical to his creativity. It’s why his performances are never quite the same even if done with the same song titles and the same group of musicians on stage with him. He often performs with his band Horseshoe Road, a 20-year collaboration with Peter Markes, an award-winning music teacher at Edmond North High School.


“I can tell you it is pure joy to have such a fruitful music relationship,” Dillingham says. “It is also just so much fun. Honestly, with a lot of the same songs. Just play ‘em every time.”

So how does that happen? How does he stay creative and fresh while playing many of the same songs with the same band?

“It’s the crowd. It’s the crowd that keeps this fresh.”

He explained that even though it may be many of the same songs, he and the band do something different with them each time because the crowd is different each time. “Peter and I will be playing something so familiar as ‘Orange Blossom Special,’ and there will be new things happen, still.”

He says that it has to do with a deeper philosophy about whether music is primarily for the performer or for the people who are present at the performance. If it were for the performer only, “then you could just do that alone in your living room.”

Instead, Dillingham believes that a performance is something that happens between the performer and the audience, not something the audience simply listens to in a passive way.

“When you are out performing, there’s something really magical and special about the connection that music creates between people,” he says. “And it’s a spiritual thing. And it’s a human thing. It’s an encouraging thing.” Even though “it may be the fifth time that the performer has played the tune,” the people who are hearing it are unique, and may have never heard the tune before.

What’s next? He and Markes are completing a new Horseshoe Road album that should be released in late summer. And he can’t wait to play it for you.

 

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Calendar

December 2018

Visitors to Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary will be able to let their imaginations run wild as they travel back in time with life-size animatronic dinosaurs along a half-mile...

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Cost: $20 presale; $25 at the door

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OCCC
7777 S May
Oklahoma City, OK  73159
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Sponsor: RACE Dance Company
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Cost: $20 presale; $25 at the door

Where:
OCCC
7777 S May
Oklahoma City, OK  73159
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Sponsor: RACE Dance Company
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Contact Name: Hui Poos
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Cost: $35

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Cost: Free

Where:
Crossings Community Church - OKC Campus
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Sponsor: Crossings Community Church
Telephone: 405.302.1258
Contact Name: Lori Bunyar
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The American Spirit Dance Company Presents Home for the Holidays Thursday, December 6, 8:00 PM, Kirkpatrick Theatre Friday, December 7, 8:00 PM, Kirkpatrick Theatre Saturday, December 8,...

Cost: $18.85 - $29.85

Where:
Oklahoma City University
2501 N. Blackwelder
Oklahoma City, OK  73106
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Sponsor: The American Spirit Dance Company
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Cost: Free

Where:
Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art
600 Museum Way
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Telephone: 479.418.5700
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The National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum is proud to host an exhibition by members of the Traditional Cowboy Arts Association (TCAA).   The Traditional Cowboy Arts Association...

Cost: 12.50

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 Northeast 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
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Contact Name: Jenni Shrum
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Provided via email
Provided via email
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Visitors to Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary will be able to let their imaginations run wild as they travel back in time with life-size animatronic dinosaurs along a half-mile...

Where:
Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary
1 Nature Place
McKinney, TX  75069
View map »


Sponsor: Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary
Telephone: 972.562.5566
Contact Name: Stephanie Jennings
Website »

More information

The National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum is proud to host an exhibition by members of the Traditional Cowboy Arts Association (TCAA).   The Traditional Cowboy Arts Association...

Cost: 12.50

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 Northeast 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »


Telephone: 405.478.2250
Contact Name: Jenni Shrum
Website »

More information

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Cost: Free

Where:
Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art
600 Museum Way
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Telephone: 479.418.5700
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Visitors to Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary will be able to let their imaginations run wild as they travel back in time with life-size animatronic dinosaurs along a half-mile...

Where:
Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary
1 Nature Place
McKinney, TX  75069
View map »


Sponsor: Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary
Telephone: 972.562.5566
Contact Name: Stephanie Jennings
Website »

More information

The National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum is proud to host an exhibition by members of the Traditional Cowboy Arts Association (TCAA).   The Traditional Cowboy Arts Association...

Cost: 12.50

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 Northeast 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »


Telephone: 405.478.2250
Contact Name: Jenni Shrum
Website »

More information

Don’t miss this timely exhibition charting the development of contemporary Indigenous art from the US and Canada. Presenting over 80 artworks including paintings, photography, video,...

Cost: Free

Where:
Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art
600 Museum Way
Bentonville, AR  72712
View map »


Telephone: 479.418.5700
Website »

More information

Show More...
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Visitors to Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary will be able to let their imaginations run wild as they travel back in time with life-size animatronic dinosaurs along a half-mile...

Where:
Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary
1 Nature Place
McKinney, TX  75069
View map »


Sponsor: Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary
Telephone: 972.562.5566
Contact Name: Stephanie Jennings
Website »

More information

Don’t miss this timely exhibition charting the development of contemporary Indigenous art from the US and Canada. Presenting over 80 artworks including paintings, photography, video,...

Cost: Free

Where:
Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art
600 Museum Way
Bentonville, AR  72712
View map »


Telephone: 479.418.5700
Website »

More information

A pop-up shop village & Christmas tree lot in Midtown, OKC for the Holiday season. Shops rotate weekly!

Cost: Free

Where:
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399 NW 10th St
Oklahoma City, OK  73102
View map »


Telephone: 405.514.5205
Contact Name: Cleo Rajon
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More information

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Cost: 12.50

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 Northeast 63rd Street
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View map »


Telephone: 405.478.2250
Contact Name: Jenni Shrum
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Cost: $5 to $25

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Visitors to Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary will be able to let their imaginations run wild as they travel back in time with life-size animatronic dinosaurs along a half-mile...

Where:
Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary
1 Nature Place
McKinney, TX  75069
View map »


Sponsor: Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary
Telephone: 972.562.5566
Contact Name: Stephanie Jennings
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More information

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Cost: 12.50

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 Northeast 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »


Telephone: 405.478.2250
Contact Name: Jenni Shrum
Website »

More information

A pop-up shop village & Christmas tree lot in Midtown, OKC for the Holiday season. Shops rotate weekly!

Cost: Free

Where:
Holiday Pop-Up Shops
399 NW 10th St
Oklahoma City, OK  73102
View map »


Telephone: 405.514.5205
Contact Name: Cleo Rajon
Website »

More information

Don’t miss this timely exhibition charting the development of contemporary Indigenous art from the US and Canada. Presenting over 80 artworks including paintings, photography, video,...

Cost: Free

Where:
Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art
600 Museum Way
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View map »


Telephone: 479.418.5700
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More information

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Cost: $19.95

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Andy Alligator's Fun Park
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Cost: $5 to $25

Where:
Carpenter Square Theatre
800 W. Main
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View map »


Sponsor: Carpenter Square Theatre
Telephone: 405.232.6500
Contact Name: Rhonda M. Clark
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201 N Walker
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Visitors to Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary will be able to let their imaginations run wild as they travel back in time with life-size animatronic dinosaurs along a half-mile...

Where:
Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary
1 Nature Place
McKinney, TX  75069
View map »


Sponsor: Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary
Telephone: 972.562.5566
Contact Name: Stephanie Jennings
Website »

More information

Don’t miss this timely exhibition charting the development of contemporary Indigenous art from the US and Canada. Presenting over 80 artworks including paintings, photography, video,...

Cost: Free

Where:
Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art
600 Museum Way
Bentonville, AR  72712
View map »


Telephone: 479.418.5700
Website »

More information

A pop-up shop village & Christmas tree lot in Midtown, OKC for the Holiday season. Shops rotate weekly!

Cost: Free

Where:
Holiday Pop-Up Shops
399 NW 10th St
Oklahoma City, OK  73102
View map »


Telephone: 405.514.5205
Contact Name: Cleo Rajon
Website »

More information

The National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum is proud to host an exhibition by members of the Traditional Cowboy Arts Association (TCAA).   The Traditional Cowboy Arts Association...

Cost: 12.50

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 Northeast 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »


Telephone: 405.478.2250
Contact Name: Jenni Shrum
Website »

More information

Come enjoy live, local comedy in Oklahoma City's Plaza District. Shows are Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 and 9:30 p.m., and the 2nd Saturday of every month also has a family -friendly show...

Cost: $5 - $15

Where:
OKC Improv
1757 N.W. 16th St.
Oklahoma City, OK  73106
View map »


Sponsor: OKC Improv
Telephone: 405.456.9858
Contact Name: Kate McLain-Snipes
Website »

More information

With the original Die Hard quickly becoming one of the most popular Christmas films around, we knew that everybody around town would be showing it. So we figured you know what's better than Die...

Cost: $7.50 - $9.50

Where:
Rodeo Cinema
2221 Exchange Ave
Oklahoma City, OK  73108
View map »


Sponsor: VHSANDCHILL
Telephone: 405.503.0050
Contact Name: Sean Peel
Website »

More information

Presented By OKC Ballet, with the OKC Philharmonic Tchaikovsky’s familiar score and Artistic Director Robert Mills’ delightful staging of The Nutcracker will fill your heart...

Where:
Civic Center Music Hall-Thelma Gaylord Theater
201 N Walker
Oklahoma City, OK  73102
View map »


Sponsor: OKC Ballet
Website »

More information

A Comedy by Michael Hollinger No menu necessary at the world's greatest restaurant, the Café du Grand Boeuf in Paris. Why? "Because we have everything," headwaiter...

Cost: $5 to $25

Where:
Carpenter Square Theatre
800 W. Main
Oklahoma City, OK  73106
View map »


Sponsor: Carpenter Square Theatre
Telephone: 405.232.6500
Contact Name: Rhonda M. Clark
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...
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