Dec. 5 History Dinner Theater to Feature Paula Purnell

by Public Relations | Nov 19, 2019

By Zakiya Moses, sophomore communication major from Washington, D.C.

LATROBE, PA – Talented musician, Pennsylvania roots music researcher and award-winning performer Paula Purnell will be featured in the next edition of History Dinner Theater, presented by Saint Vincent College’s Foster and Muriel McCarl Coverlet Gallery at 6 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 5, in the Fred M. Rogers Center on the Saint Vincent campus. Paula Purnell

Dr. Paula Purnell is notoriously known for performing songs about and written by the people of Pennsylvania. She has done research on the indigenous people of the Eastern Woodlands and many more cultures, learning and understanding the history of music in Pennsylvania. By implementing her research into her own work, she intends to share her knowledge of the thousands of years of music production across Pennsylvania. With her experience in performing on authentic instruments, such as the Appalachian Lap Dulcimer and the Native American Love Flute, Dr. Purnell wants to share her experiences with people to teach the culture and local history of Pennsylvania from centuries ago.

Purnell is not only a musician but also an educator. She is the founder of the educational company Sense of Place Learning (SPL), a company that celebrates unique and new learning experiences by teaching the history, ecology and arts of cultures across Pennsylvania. She graduated from Indiana University of Pennsylvania with a doctorate in curriculum and instruction and also taught there for several years before establishing SPL.

She also has her own band called The NewLanders, which has released two albums and performed both regionally and internationally. The band does extensive research on regional roots music before anything is recorded or performed. Dr. Purnell carries her knowledge of regional roots music by presenting at roots music workshops and programs across Pennsylvania. She invites everyone to experience and explore regional roots music and understand its history. Before her band, Dr. Purnell has released six albums of her own music and has won three Parent’s Choice awards.

Attendees of the Dec. 5 performance will have the dinner selection choice of herb-crusted bistro filet with mushroom-shallot bordelaise or roasted pork tenderloin with an apricot-mustard glaze with dried fruit compote. Each entrée will be served with a salad, side dishes, soup and dessert.

Ticket sales will close on Thursday, Nov. 28. Tickets are $65 per adult, $10 for children under 12 and $35 for students with valid IDs. Discount group rates for parties of 10 or more are also available.

For more information or to order tickets, call 724-805-2177 or visit



Twitter: @MySaintVincent
Saint Vincent College 




Upcoming Events More