Spoleto Festival USA’s 2019 lineup announced

It's happening.

South Carolina's largest and most famous celebration of the arts is May 24-June 9, and today they announced this year's lineup. String bands, jazz, opera, dance, theatre, and classical music all feature varying degrees of star power, and the event will culminate at Riverfront Park in North Charleston. General public ticket sales begin Wednesday, Jan. 16. Donor pre-sales begin Monday, Jan. 7, if you want to support beyond ticket purchases. We'll see you there. (Full schedule)
Spoleto Festival USA receives operating support funding from the S.C. Arts Commission.
Main page image: Shakespeare's Globe, courtesy of Spoleto Festival USA.

‘Communal Pen’ writing workshop series heads to Newberry

The S.C. Arts Commission and S.C. Humanities are excited to continue Communal Pen, a creative writing workshop, in Newberry on Saturday, Jan. 19 to help you write to celebrate and explore connections to place and community. They have two questions:

  1. What are the memories, stories and traditions that make our community home?
  2. What landmarks, customs, sights and sounds connect us with family, friends and neighbors, while highlighting our unique experience and identity?
Sometimes, you’ve just got to write it down! Co-facilitators EBONI RAMM and MICHELLE ROSS will lead the workshop as you write to celebrate and explore connections to place and community. Often, it is in our written words that memory lives. The writing process can itself help us to awaken and preserve thoughts and traditions, offering insight, understanding and respect to present and future generations. This three-and-a-half-hour writing workshop runs from 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Newberry Arts Center (1200 Main St., Newberry). It draws inspiration from the Smithsonian exhibit Crossroads: Change in Rural America as a springboard for igniting our own stories, giving voice to our shared and individual experience of place. Space is limited; registration is on a first-come, first-served basis. Walk-in registration is welcome as long as space permits. Share it with your friends on Facebook! NOTE: marking yourself as "Going" on Facebook DOES NOT register you for Communal Pen. No previous experience necessary! We invite participants to view the exhibit before the workshop, and to pay special attention to those images and ideas that are most relatable you. On the day of the workshop, please bring a photo and/or object that has special meaning for you. This item will be used during a writing exercise.
The Communal Pen writing workshop is offered in conjunction with the traveling Smithsonian exhibition, Crossroads: Change in Rural America. Crossroads is presented through the Museum on Main Street (MoMS) program as part of the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service. MoMS provides access to the Smithsonian for small-town America through museum exhibitions, research, educational resources, and programming. Communal Pen is developed through the S.C. Arts Commission’s place-based initiative, Art of Community: Rural SC, a new framework for engagement, learning, and action in rural communities. The writing workshops are coordinated through the SCAC’s Folklife & Traditional Arts and Community Arts Development programs, with generous support from the S.C. Humanities Council. Enjoy Crossroads at the Newberry Opera House through Feb. 3, 2019. The image at the top of this page is Old Sheldon by Varnville, S.C. artist Ment Nelson, who's no stranger to The Hub. Nelson celebrates his family, culture, and home community through his artwork. He is a Young Voice of the Art of Community-Rural SC initiative, and coordinator of the Creative Connectors, for the Create Rural SC project. On being an artist he says, “You never know who might be intrigued by your story.”
Deeply rooted in South Carolina, Communal Pen co-facilitator Eboni Ramm fell in love with the arts at a young age and was encouraged throughout her youth to express herself. Today, she is a gifted vocalist known for her special blend of timeless jazz classics with a pinch of poetry. Ramm resides in Columbia, where she conducts jazz poetry workshops in schools, libraries, and various learning centers. She serves her community as Richland Library's literary resident and as a teaching artist with ARTS ACCESS South Carolina and Youth Corps. She is a featured musician on SCETV’s education web portal, knowitall.org. Her publication Within His Star: The Story of Levi Pearson celebrates the ancestor who added strength to the unprecedented Brown vs. The Board of Education case. Learn more at www.EboniRamm.com. Communal Pen co-facilitator Michelle Ross is a folklorist and adjunct faculty in anthropology at the University of South Carolina Sumter. She holds a master's from the Folk Studies and Anthropology Department at Western Kentucky University. Ross embraces stories of all kinds. She helped establish the S.C. Center for Oral Narrative, through which she has co-created several writing workshops. Ross also works with the Mothers of Angels in telling and writing about grief from the death of a child, and has worked with veterans in telling and writing their stories. Her work has been published in The North Carolina Folklore Journal and an anthology of mother-in-law essays titled His Mother!; her poetry has appeared in Sandhill and The Petigru Review. For the past five years, she has been working on telling her Pontian Greek family’s refugee story, her most important project to date. Communal Pen coordinator Laura Marcus Green is Folklife & Traditional Arts Program Director at the South Carolina Arts Commission, where she manages several grant and award programs, and at the University of South Carolina’s McKissick Museum, where she develops programming in conjunction with folklife exhibitions. She holds a Ph.D. in Folklore from Indiana University and an M.A. in Folklore/Anthropology from the University of Texas at Austin. Selected prior positions include Community Engagement Coordinator for the Museum of International Folk Art’s Gallery of Conscience, and work as a folklife fieldworker and researcher, writer, curator and consultant for the Louisiana Division of the Arts Folklife Program, the South Carolina Arts Commission, the Iowa Arts Council, New Mexico Arts, and the Idaho Commission on the Arts, among others.

Submitted material

Outdoor sculptures sought for 2019 North Charleston Arts Fest

Submission deadline: Monday, Feb. 25, 2019


North Charleston Arts Fest 2018, by Zan Maddox/Social Design House Sculpture artists from across the nation are invited to participate in the 14th annual National Outdoor Sculpture Competition & Exhibition, which opens in conjunction with the 2019 North Charleston Arts Fest. Up to 14 sculptures will be juried into the exhibit and compete for cash prizes totaling up to $19,750. A $1250 honorarium is given to all artists accepted into the show to assist with transportation, installation, de-installation, and incidental expenses. Once all pieces are installed, the juror will award:
  • Best in Show ($1000),
  • Outstanding Merit ($500),
  • and up to three Honorable Mentions ($250 each).
The application is only available online and may be accessed here. An application fee of $35 allows artists to submit up to four entries. Deadline for submissions is Monday, Feb. 25, 2019. Artists in need of assistance with any part of the application process may contact the Cultural Arts Department to schedule a one-on-one meeting, which can be conducted over the phone or in person. Organized and presented by the City of North Charleston Cultural Arts Department, this 11 month exhibition offers established and emerging artists the opportunity to display their thought provoking, extraordinary sculptures throughout the picturesque North Charleston Riverfront Park. Set on the banks of the Cooper River, Riverfront Park features ten acres of walking paths, a boardwalk and fountain, an expansive lawn with performance pavilion, children's play areas, and picnic sites. An estimated 50,000 people visit this public park annually to enjoy the amenities located in the heart of the city’s arts community.

Juror

The juror for this year’s exhibition is Katelyn Kirnie. Kirnie has served as the Director of Public Art Chattanooga since 2016. She moved back to her hometown of Chattanooga, Tenn., after living and working in Portland, Ore., and Boston – where she managed the public art program for the Rose Kennedy Greenway. Katelyn was introduced to the public art world early in her career as exhibition manager for renowned sculptor, John Henry. She went on to establish an award winning and highly anticipated rotating mural program, dubbed The Greenway Wall, in Boston. She holds a master’s degree in arts administration from Boston University and has an extensive background in fabrication project management and exhibition production for the public realm. Katelyn is inspired by the way art and artists enhance the urban environment - adding meaning, building community, and creating connection.

About

The 14th Annual National Outdoor Sculpture Competition & Exhibition will be on display May 1, 2019, through March 22, 2020, at North Charleston Riverfront Park, located at 1001 Everglades Ave. in North Charleston. A free public reception and announcement of awards will be held at the Charleston Area Convention Center on Wednesday, May 1, 2019, from 6-8 p.m. For more information about the North Charleston Arts Fest, the National Outdoor Sculpture Competition & Exhibition, or other exhibition opportunities, contact the City of North Charleston Cultural Arts Department at 843.740.5854, email culturalarts@northcharleston.org, or visit NorthCharlestonArtsFest.com.

Forum on fixing S.C. schools to tour state

The Post and Courier recently published a groundbreaking investigative series, Minimally Adequate, spotlighting the disparities among South Carolina’s schools and persistent failures to improve students’ readiness for college and the workforce.

"Minimally Adequate: Fix South Carolina Schools" is set to take the conversation statewide with community events in Charleston, Florence, Columbia and Greenville.

Each event will explore South Carolina’s educational challenges in depth, bringing together lawmakers, educators, interest groups and business leaders to discuss the repercussions of minimally adequate education, especially the impact on the Palmetto State’s workforce. One in three South Carolina students graduating high school is unprepared for most jobs.

Award-winning reporters from The Post and Courier will moderate a panel of education advocates in each community including South Carolina Chamber of Commerce President Ted Pitts, Francis Marion University President Fred Carter, Public Education Partners President and CEO Ansel Sanders and many others. Panelists will provide insight from their individual sectors including business, education and advocacy.


Dates and locations

January 3 | 4:30 p.m. Trident Technical College in Charleston

January 14 | 4:30 p.m. Francis Marion University in Florence

January 16 | 6 p.m. Columbia Chamber of Commerce in Columbia

February 11 | 4:30 p.m. Riley Institute at Furman in Greenville

Go here for reservation information.

S.C. Arts Alliance announces 2019 Arts Advocacy Week

The S.C. Arts Alliances invites you to join them for their 40th anniversary and Arts Advocacy Day. Registration for each of the featured Advocacy Week events is now open. Changes for 2019: The first Advocacy Days started with breakfast followed by meetings with legislators and then a rally? The SCAA is going back to those roots in 2019. Arrive in Columbia on Tuesday, Feb. 12 for an evening reception celebrating the 40th anniversary of the S.C. Arts Alliance, and join us Wednesday morning (February 13) for a Legislative Breakfast followed by scheduled meetings with your legislator in their office! End the day with our usual Rally at the Statehouse featuring student performances and lots of excitement! Register today!


40TH ANNIVERSARY RECEPTION Tuesday, February 12  |  5:30-7:30 p.m. Lula Drake Wine Parlour (Upstairs) 1635 Main St., Columbia Tickets: $40/person Beer/Wine + Light Apps Provided
LEGISLATIVE BREAKFAST + STATEHOUSE RALLY Wednesday, February 13 | 7:45 a.m. to 1 p.m. South Carolina Statehouse 1100 Gervais St., Columbia 7:45-9 a.m.: Annual Meeting Breakfast & Legislative Briefing 9-11 a.m.: Meetings with Legislators (Organized by Regional Captains**) 11 a.m.: Student Performances 11:30 a.m.: Rally in Statehouse Lobby Registration is required. Registration Fee: $30/person* *Contact SCAA for student discounts. **Regional Captains recevie free registration. Click to learn more.

Submitted material

African-American fiber artists sought for North Charleston Arts Fest

The City of North Charleston Cultural Arts Department is seeking entries from African-American textile artists from across the nation for a special exhibition presented as a component of the 2019 North Charleston Arts Fest, taking place May 1-5 in North Charleston. The world-famous Hub Calls for Art Megaphone. African-American artists, ages 18 and up, living in the United States and working in the medium of fiber are invited to participate in the 13th Annual African-American Fiber Art Exhibition, titled "BLACK GOLD." The exhibition will be on display at North Charleston City Hall from May 1-June 21, 2019. A $30 entry fee applies and allows artists to submit a maximum of four entries for consideration. Up to two entries per artist may be selected by the curator for the exhibition. The application is available online. Deadline for entries is Friday, March 1, 2019. Curated by award winning master art quilter and curator, Torreah “Cookie” Washington, this unique exhibition offers African-American fiber artists a showcase to display their original and innovative designs. This year's theme is directly inspired by the song "Black Gold" by Esperanza Spalding from her 2012 album "Radio Music Society." Washington was particularly moved by the lyrics, "Think of all the strength you have in you / From the blood you carry within you / Ancient ones, powerful ones / Built us a civilization..." The challenge for this year's exhibit is for artists to review the full lyrics of Spalding's song, as well as the official music video, then create a fiber art piece that will inspire the next generation. Following the close of the show, up to twenty works will be selected to tour the state through the South Carolina State Museum’s 2019/2020 Traveling Exhibitions Program. Sites across South Carolina may request the exhibit to tour in their facilities, thus providing additional exposure for the selected artists. The 13th Annual African American Fiber Art Exhibition: "BLACK GOLD" will be on display 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily from May 1-June 21, 2019, on the 1st and 2nd floors of North Charleston City Hall (2500 City Hall Lane, North Charleston). Admission is free. A free public reception in honor of the participating artists will be held at City Hall on Thursday, May 2, 2019, from 6-8 p.m. For more information about the North Charleston Arts Fest, the exhibition, or other exhibition opportunities, contact the City of North Charleston Cultural Arts Department at 843.740.5854, email culturalarts@northcharleston.org, or visit NorthCharlestonArtsFest.com.

Denmark, Voorhees to be next ‘Communal Pen’ workshop hosts

The S.C. Arts Commission and S.C. Humanities are excited to continue Communal Pen, a creative writing workshop, in Denmark on Saturday, Dec. 1 to help you write to celebrate and explore connections to place and community. They have two questions:

  1. What are the memories, stories and traditions that make our community home?
  2. What landmarks, customs, sights and sounds connect us with family, friends and neighbors, while highlighting our unique experience and identity?
Sometimes, you’ve just got to write it down! Co-facilitators EBONI RAMM and MICHELLE ROSS will lead the workshop as you write to celebrate and explore connections to place and community. Often, it is in our written words that memory lives. The writing process can itself help us to awaken and preserve thoughts and traditions, offering insight, understanding and respect to present and future generations. This three-hour writing workshop runs from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Wright-Potts Library at Voorhees College in Denmark (look for it in the first floor student lounge, see map here). It draws inspiration from the Smithsonian exhibit Crossroads: Change in Rural America as a springboard for igniting our own stories, giving voice to our shared and individual experience of place. Space is limited; registration is on a first-come, first-served basis. Walk-in registration is welcome as long as space permits. Share it with your friends on Facebook! NOTE: marking yourself as "Going" on Facebook DOES NOT register you for Communal Pen. No previous experience necessary! We invite participants to view the exhibit before the workshop, and to pay special attention to those images and ideas that are most relatable you. On the day of the workshop, please bring a photo and/or object that has special meaning for you. This item will be used during a writing exercise.
The Communal Pen writing workshop is offered in conjunction with the traveling Smithsonian exhibition, Crossroads: Change in Rural America. Crossroads is presented through the Museum on Main Street (MoMS) program as part of the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service. MoMS provides access to the Smithsonian for small-town America through museum exhibitions, research, educational resources, and programming. Communal Pen is developed through the S.C. Arts Commission’s place-based initiative, Art of Community: Rural SC, a new framework for engagement, learning, and action in rural communities. The writing workshops are coordinated through the SCAC’s Folklife & Traditional Arts and Community Arts Development programs, with generous support from the S.C. Humanities Council. Enjoy Crossroads at Voorhees College through Dec. 9, 2018. The image at the top of this page is Old Sheldon by Varnville, S.C. artist Ment Nelson, who's no stranger to The Hub. Nelson celebrates his family, culture, and home community through his artwork. He is a Young Voice of the Art of Community-Rural SC initiative, and coordinator of the Creative Connectors, for the Create Rural SC project. On being an artist he says, “You never know who might be intrigued by your story.”
Deeply rooted in South Carolina, Communal Pen co-facilitator Eboni Ramm fell in love with the arts at a young age and was encouraged throughout her youth to express herself. Today, she is a gifted vocalist known for her special blend of timeless jazz classics with a pinch of poetry. Ramm resides in Columbia, where she conducts jazz poetry workshops in schools, libraries, and various learning centers. She serves her community as Richland Library's literary resident and as a teaching artist with ARTS ACCESS South Carolina and Youth Corps. She is a featured musician on SCETV’s education web portal, knowitall.org. Her publication Within His Star: The Story of Levi Pearson celebrates the ancestor who added strength to the unprecedented Brown vs. The Board of Education case. Learn more at www.EboniRamm.com. Communal Pen co-facilitator Michelle Ross is a folklorist and adjunct faculty in anthropology at the University of South Carolina Sumter. She holds a master's from the Folk Studies and Anthropology Department at Western Kentucky University. Ross embraces stories of all kinds. She helped establish the S.C. Center for Oral Narrative, through which she has co-created several writing workshops. Ross also works with the Mothers of Angels in telling and writing about grief from the death of a child, and has worked with veterans in telling and writing their stories. Her work has been published in The North Carolina Folklore Journal and an anthology of mother-in-law essays titled His Mother!; her poetry has appeared in Sandhill and The Petigru Review. For the past five years, she has been working on telling her Pontian Greek family’s refugee story, her most important project to date. Communal Pen coordinator Laura Marcus Green is Folklife & Traditional Arts Program Director at the South Carolina Arts Commission, where she manages several grant and award programs, and at the University of South Carolina’s McKissick Museum, where she develops programming in conjunction with folklife exhibitions. She holds a Ph.D. in Folklore from Indiana University and an M.A. in Folklore/Anthropology from the University of Texas at Austin. Selected prior positions include Community Engagement Coordinator for the Museum of International Folk Art’s Gallery of Conscience, and work as a folklife fieldworker and researcher, writer, curator and consultant for the Louisiana Division of the Arts Folklife Program, the South Carolina Arts Commission, the Iowa Arts Council, New Mexico Arts, and the Idaho Commission on the Arts, among others.  

Choreographer Alonzo King visits Governor’s School this week

World-renowned contemporary ballet choreographer Alonzo King will lead master classes and a free public presentation during a two-day artist residency this week at the S.C. Governor’s School for the Arts and Humanities. During his residency, King (bio) will lead master classes in dance, drama, and music with Governor’s School students and 30 strings students from Wade Hampton High School. King will also give a free public multi-media presentation about his work this Thursday at 7:30 p.m. in the Sakas Theatre at SCGSAH (15 University St., Greenville, register here). King’s ground-breaking work has been featured in prominent ballets worldwide and has earned him inclusion on the list of America’s “Irreplaceable Dance Treasures” by the Dance Heritage Coalition in 2015. Founder of the internationally acclaimed LINES Ballet, he has been described as a choreographer with “astonishing originality” by the New York Times, and “a visionary choreographer, who is altering the way we look and think about movement." King has works in the repertories of the Royal Swedish Ballet, Frankfurt Ballet, Ballet Bejart, Les Ballets de Monte-Carlo, Joffrey Ballet, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Hong Kong Ballet, San Francisco Ballet, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, and many others. The San Francisco-based choreographer is one of two guests in SCGSAH's 2018-2019 Presidential Guest Artist Series—Connecting Lines: Dance Across the Arts.

Theatre thriving in South Carolina

Theatre seems to be jumping across The Hub's radar this week, and for good reason: it's thriving in South Carolina. We thought it was due for a spotlight piece, so take your seats as we begin.


Act I: PURE Theatre

Co-founder and Artistic Director Sharon Graci (right) is featured here in a brief video from LowcountryBizSC this morning. PURE, a professional contemporary theatre group, set records for new and returning audiences during its 15th anniversary last season, and this year gets a new venue: the Cannon Street Arts Center, where they will be anchor tenant. Graci was the S.C. Arts Commission's acting fellow in 2010/2011 and Rodney Lee Rogers, PURE's other co-founder, was the playwriting fellow the same year. (Coincidentally, the two are married. - Ed.) PURE receives an operating support grant from SCAC, and Rogers helps the commission administer Artists U in South Carolina – a training resource that facilitates artist development.

Act II: Screenwriting fellow bringing play to Columbia

Leasharn Hopkins, who received the SCAC screenwriting fellowship for 2017/2018, will bring a play she wrote and directs to Columbia. Love Me or Leave Me focuses on the effects of drug addiction, mental abuse, and domestic violence in three couples' romantic relationships. Look for it Saturday, Oct. 27 at the Tapp's Arts Center. Go here for ticket information.

Act III: Drama Lady Theatre Group

Based in the rural Pee Dee region of South Carolina (Marion County, to be exact), the Drama Lady Theatre Group premieres Ntozake Shange’s award winning play: For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide/When The Rainbow is Enuf at the FMU Performing Arts Center in Downtown Florence on Saturday, Nov. 17. The Drama Lady Theatre Group is the brainchild of a collective of artists striving to use live theatrical performances to educate and promote wellness across diverse communities. The group received an FY19 Arts Education Project grant from SCAC.

Tuning Up: Music, money, and more

Good morning!  "Tuning Up" is a morning post series where The Hub delivers curated, quick-hit arts stories of interest to readers. Sometimes there will be one story, sometimes there will be several. Get in tune now, and have a masterpiece of a day. And now, in no particular order...


An exhibition for the birds. "If you're gonna do it, do it right," notable bird sculptor and South Carolina artist Grainger McKoy told the Wilmington Star News ahead of his new solo retrospective at the city's Cameron Art Museum. (You won't believe to what he was referring. - Ed.) Recovery in Flight runs through Feb. 17, 2019. Hours and admission vary. Florence Symphony goes platinum. The orchestra's 70th season begins tonight at the FMU Performing Arts Center. Barber, Beethoven, Brahms, Schubert, and (Johann) Strauss (II) are on the program. 7:30 p.m. $25-$42. Get jazzed for the weekend. Staying with the music in the Pee Dee theme, more than 20 regional musical artists from the Carolinas will perform in an eclectic collection of venues during the South Carolina Jazz Festival in Cheraw this coming weekend. (Yes, we are gazing ahead longingly.) Dizzy Gillespie's hometown invites you to enjoy a multitude of things, including a parade, 5K, golf tournament, and lots and lots of jazz. Oct. 19-21. Weekend passes for $50. A NASAA nod to the SCAC. And staying with the blowing of horns theme (RIP, Dizzy), the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies, gave a shoutout to a new partnership program from the Gaylord & Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, S.C. Arts Alliance, and the S.C. Arts Commission you might remember us mentioning this summer: A Stronger Bottom Line. If you don't remember, the first cohort of nonprofit arts organizations from around the state is receiving financial management training as a result of the partnership.