As part of a yearlong celebration of women’s equality, Friday Fireworks & Music, which launches this Friday, will showcase emerging female country artists, in partnership with Change the Conversation, a nonprofit organization advocating for women’s equality in the music industry. The Orioles began the celebration to raise awareness of key women’s rights issues, significant moments in history, and to honor the 2019/2020 centennial of the passage and ratification of the 19th Amendment and women’s constitutional right to vote.
In conjunction with the emerging female country artist series, the Orioles will also host the National Woman’s Party (NWP) exhibit Standing Together: Women’s Ongoing Fight for Equality beginning June 14. Oriole Park at Camden Yards will serve as the official Maryland stop of the installation’s national tour and will remain in place through the 2020 season. The exhibit will be located on the lower concourse directly behind home plate and will serve as the featured location for an in-game meet and greet opportunity with each Friday Fireworks & Music performer.
The yearlong celebration launched during spring training in Sarasota, Fla., when award-winning Nashville songwriters and musicians joined with Orioles athletes to support arts education and girl’s empowerment during the fourth annual “Athletes & Artists Play for Kids” charity weekend. The Orioles wrapped up the weekend with a performance by members of Girls Inc., a nonprofit organization inspiring girls to be strong, smart, and bold. Each year, the club also hosts Girls Inc. for a baseball clinic in Sarasota.
Continuing the celebration this past Mother’s Day, the Orioles paid tribute to women in baseball with festivities surrounding the iconic film, “A League of Their Own.” The movie tells the story of the real-life All-American Girls Professional Baseball League and allowed fans of all ages to learn more about women’s role in baseball history.
“The Orioles are committed to raising awareness of women’s suffrage and promoting women’s equality in a very powerful way for our community,” said Greg Bader, Orioles Vice President, Communications & Marketing. “Through key partnerships with groups like Change the Conversation, whose efforts are already drawing attention to create more opportunities for women in the music industry, and the National Woman’s Party, whose advocacy for women’s rights will be showcased in an on-site display creatively sharing the women’s suffrage story, we can call attention to gender equality.”
Beginning June 14 through August 23, Friday Fireworks & Music offers postgame, on-field performances by emerging female country music artists just following the final out of each of the seven Friday home games, preceding a spectacular fireworks display. Each date, the artists will sign autographs and meet fans at the Standing Together exhibit during the fifth inning, and select artist items and Orioles items will be auctioned off to raise proceeds to benefit the National Woman’s Party, Girls Inc., and Change the Conversation, as well as other groups helping to advance women’s and girls’ empowerment causes. Young female music students from Baltimore will be invited to introduce the emerging country artists from the stage prior to their on-field performances.
“We are thrilled that the Orioles have joined our team to promote women in country music,” said Beverly Keel, who co-founded Change the Conversation with music industry executives Leslie Fram and Tracy Gershon. “We can’t think of a better All-American summer pairing than baseball and country music. Orioles fans will fall in love with these female artists, and after seeing these talented women, we hope they will buy their music, tell their friends, and share the word on social media.”
As an organization advocating for women’s rights for over a century, Susan Carter, National Woman’s Party Board President, highlights the importance of the Orioles partnership by saying, “We are grateful to the Orioles for helping shine a light on the iconic history of the struggle for women’s rights.”
The celebration will continue through next season with a culminating event celebrating the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment in August 2020. Additional events and programs for 2019 will be announced throughout the season.
A complete line-up of the artists and additional information on Friday Fireworks & Music can be found at Orioles.com/Friday.
About the Friday Fireworks & Music Artists
June 14 - Sam Hatmaker
While growing up in East Tennessee, Hatmaker performed in shows at Dollywood and developed her own unique style rooted in country and rock. Her performance will help launch her debut album, which is being released later this year.
June 28 - Lauren Duski
Since being runner-up on season 12 of NBC’s hit show The Voice in 2017, Duski has continued to make a name for herself in the country music industry. Recently named to CMT’s Next Women of Country for the Class of 2019, Duski’s debut EP titled “Midwestern Girl” landed at No. 26 on Billboard’s Country Album Chart.
July 12 - Clare Dunn
Dunn has become an emerging force in country music since writing, arranging, and producing her five-track debut release Clare Dunn in 2015. She has dedicated her career to mastering her craft in the music industry, studying in Belmont University’s music program and touring and learning from many musical heroes including Keith Urban, Miranda Lambert, Luke Bryan, and legend Bob Seger.
July 19 - Kylie Frey
Handpicked by country music icon Shania Twain, Frey competed in USA Network’s Real Country, earning a spot in the show’s finale in 2018. Since then, she’s climbed the Texas Regional Radio charts with two number one singles “Rodeo Man” and “Too Bad.”
August 2 - Natalie Stovall
A Tennessee native, Stovall is a powerhouse vocalist and multi-instrumentalist that has been featured in People Magazine, Rolling Stone Magazine, and Billboard Magazine. A fiddle phenom, she has performed everywhere from the Grand Ole Opry, the White House, and the Oprah Winfrey Show. She competed in season 13 of NBC’s The Voice and is one of CMT’s Next Women of Country.
August 9 - Carter Faith
Carter Faith, an up-and-coming singer/songwriter from Davidson, N.C., is currently attending Belmont University as part of their renowned songwriter program. In March, Carter Faith opened for Cole Swindell at the Orioles’ “Athletes and Artists Play for Kids” charity weekend in Sarasota.
August 23 - Ruthie Collins
Another member of CMT’s Next Women of Country, Collins has gained critical acclaim from Rolling Stone and The Los Angeles Times since releasing her first full-length album Get Drunk and Cry in 2018. As a promising vocalist and multi-instrumentalist looking for more experience, she attended Berklee College of Music in Boston before pursuing a career as a singer/songwriter in Nashville.