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Brand shakeup announced by Columbia City Ballet

Penchant for 'bigger, brighter, and better' drives change

For 62 years it was known as Columbia City Ballet, an anchor of the eponymous capital city's arts scene.

Going forward, you can call it South Carolina Ballet. In a statement, the ballet says the change "underlines its ongoing dedication to making ballet accessible to all while showcasing the state’s cultural vibrancy throughout South Carolina and the national stage through its extensive touring calendar." Columbia residents need not fear, according to the ballet, which promises Columbia will remain as the company's heart as they promote its hometown's role as a thriving center for the arts. A similar change occurred decades ago when the Columbia Philharmonic rebranded as the South Carolina Philharmonic, now recognized as an orchestral leader in the state. "As South Carolina Ballet, our commitment to accessibility remains unwavering," CEO and Artistic Director William Starrett said. "Many of you know my penchant for things that are bigger, brighter, and better. After 62 years and tremendous popularity throughout South Carolina and the nation, our name has to evolve with the increasing demand for our services. Our expansion has been in no small part due to the enthusiasm of our Columbia audiences, who have actively participated in our growth." "Although our name has changed, our core values endure, and we will continue our mission of enriching lives through the art of dance. Our non-profit status underscores our dedication to providing diverse audiences with opportunities to experience the beauty and joy of dance through our performances and educational outreach programs." Starrett was a recipient of the South Carolina Governor's Award for the Arts in 2002 and was featured earlier this year in the SCAC's retrospective celebrating 50 years of the award on South Carolina ETV. South Carolina Ballet is a long-time recipient of SCAC grants, including its signature General Operating Support grant. Updates to the ballet company's website and social media channels to reflect the new brand are forthcoming. The 2023/2024 season begins in October and runs through April.

Jason Rapp

‘Fall Lines’ literary journal calls for submissions

SUBMISSION DEADLINE: Monday, July 31, 2023

Fall Lines – a literary convergence is a literary journal presented by The Jasper Project in partnership with Richland Library and One Columbia for Arts and History.

Fall Lines will accept submissions of previously unpublished poetry, essays, short fiction, and flash fiction through July 31, 2023. While the editors of Fall Lines hope to attract the work of writers and poets from the Carolinas and the Southeastern U.S., acceptance of work is not dependent upon residence. Publication in Fall Lines will be determined by a panel of judges and accepted authors will be notified by Dec. 31, 2023 with a publication date in early 2024. This year we are offering three cash prizes of $250 each. The Saluda River Prize for Poetry and the Broad River Prize for Prose sponsored by the Richland Library Friends and Foundation as well as the Combahee River Prize which will be awarded to an S.C. writer of color in either poetry or prose.

Fine Print

POETRY: Up to five (5) poems may be submitted, each as an individual MS Word file (.doc/.docx). Include one (1) cover sheet for up to five (5) poems with the titles of all poems appearing on the single cover sheet. No poem should exceed four (4) 6 x 9-inch pages.

New this year: To ensure the integrity of the poet’s spacing, it is best that poems be formatted to appear on a 6 x 9-inch page with I-inch margins. If submitted in a larger format, we cannot guarantee your poem will be printed with the spacing you desire.

PROSE: Up to five (5) prose entries, each of 2,500 words or less, may be submitted with each submitted as an individual MS Word file (.doc/.docx). Include one (1) cover sheet for up to five (5) prose submissions with the titles of all five (5) submissions appearing on the single cover sheet. COVER SHEET should include:
  • your name
  • the titles of ALL your submissions
  • your email address
  • mailing address.
Authors’ names should not appear on the submission. Do not send bios. All entries should be titled. No simultaneous submissions. There is no fee to enter, but submissions that fail to follow the above instructions will be disqualified without review.

Please submit your entries at https://jasperproject.org/fall-lines

Submitted material

Established arts leader chosen to lead city arts agency

One Columbia stays local with executive director hire

One Columbia for Arts and Culture wrapped up a 10-month search for a new leader with today's announcement of Xavier Blake as its incoming executive director.

The Bamberg native spent more than two decades at South Carolina Educational Television working in the nonprofit public media, arts and cultural sector as a videographer, producer, and director. He served South Carolina artists as a creative mentor for an SCAC Artist Development initiative. His most recent media position was with WMHT Public Media in Troy, New York, but Blake and his family returned to Columbia in January 2023 when he began serving as the community programming & engagement coordinator at Nickelodeon Theater. Blake is to begin his new role Aug. 7. In a news release, he said, "It is an honor to continue the rich legacy established by Lee Snelgrove and the board's dedication to strengthening the arts in Columbia. I welcome the opportunity to collaborate with all key stakeholders in this capacity to enhance the city's growth and progress as we continue to implement the Amplify Cultural Plan." “One Columbia is delighted to welcome Mr. Blake as our new executive director,” said One Columbia Board Chairman Tyler Bailey. "[He] brings a wonderful mix of community building, leadership skills and inspired vision to the role. I look forward to working with him and as we continue to expand the organization’s advocacy for artists in our community." The One Columbia board led an active, "intentional" search, interviewing local and regional candidates for about 10 months, according to Interim Executive Director Margie Reese. "I believe that Xavier possesses an ideal combination of first-hand knowledge of the arts ecosystem in Columbia, ground-level experience in nonprofit leadership and community engagement, and a deep commitment to public service," Reese said. Blake earned a bachelor's degree in communication from Newberry College in Newberry. He has a Certificate in Diversity and Inclusion from the University of South Florida and was a member of the inaugural class of Central Carolina Community Foundation’s BIPOC Leadership Training and Coaching Program. He is an annual presenter at the International Public TV Conference and served as a conference moderator at their 2022 convening in Taipei.

Jason Rapp

Tyrone Geter to give artist talk at Columbia’s 701 CCA

Conversation with Tyrone Geter: The Materials and Techniques Behind Brave New World

  • Saturday, Aug. 5
  • 1-3 p.m.
  • 701 Center for Contemporary Art

Join 701 CCA and Tyrone Geter for an active, members-only discussion about his creative process for his new series, Brave New World. Ask questions directly to the artist and follow along with the group conversation to learn about the materials and techniques that shape the unmistakable signature of a Tyrone Geter artwork. From found objects to power tools, chalk, sand, water and air, Geter will take you on a journey through his world of creation, giving you an intimate look at his craft and vision. This event is exclusively for members of 701 CCA. Please give your name and membership number at the door, if you don’t know your membership number, please email director@701cca.org. If you aren't a member, now’s a great time to register>> https://www.701cca.org/join/.
701 Center for Contemporary Art is located at 701 Whaley Street, Columbia. Please take the elevator to the second floor of the Main Exhibition Gallery. Ed. note: Tyrone Geter is a recipient of the Governor's Award for the Arts and has work included in the State Art Collection.

Submitted material

Stormwater Studios to exhibit BIPOC residency finalists

Stormwater Studios is looking forward to a group exhibition titled "Cultural Heritage | Creative Expression” to showcase the finalists of its inaugural, one-year residency program designed to support and celebrate diverse voices within the artistic community.

The program was made possible by the generous contribution of an anonymous donor with matching funds from One Columbia, to help foster an inclusive culture at Stormwater. The exhibition will be on display July 19-30, with an opening reception on July 20, from 5-8 p.m., and an artist talk and closing reception on July 30, from 1-3 p.m. The Stormwater Residency aims to provide a professional working environment that welcomes all forms of visual creative expression. As part of this year-long residency, the selected artist will have the opportunity to step outside their usual creative settings, allowing for reflection, research, experimentation with various materials, and the creation of a comprehensive body of work, which will culminate in a solo exhibition. To identify the resident artist, Stormwater engaged prominent leaders in the art community to form a dedicated committee. Drawing upon their extensive expertise, the committee thoughtfully nominated and meticulously narrowed down the selection, culminating in the final selection process at Stormwater. In recognition of the exceptional talent among all the residency finalists, Stormwater will proudly host a two-week art exhibition to showcase their extraordinary work. The participating artists include Nakisa Beigi, Malik Greene, Raishad Glover, Lori Starnes Isom, Quincy Pugh, Maya Smith, and Cedric Umoja. Through a diverse range of artistic expressions, the artists comment on their respective cultures, the immigrant experience, and convey emotions through poignant and nostalgic narratives. The themes explored will revolve around identity, culture, and politics, facilitating a deeper connection between the viewers and the artwork. To kick off the exhibition, an opening reception will be held on July 20 from 5-8 p.m., allowing attendees to engage with the artists and gain deeper insights into their creative processes. Furthermore, a closing reception and artist talk will take place on July 30 from 1-3 p.m. Art historian and critic Frank C. Martin II, Ph.D., a member of l’Association Internationale des Critiques d’Art (AICA - an international art critics’ association) will act as moderator. Dr. Martin will provide an opportunity for attendees to engage in meaningful conversations with the individuals whose works will be on display, intending to enhance their understanding of the artists' visions. This program is sponsored by South Carolina Humanities, a state program of the National Endowment for the Humanities; inspiring, engaging and enriching South Carolinians with programs on literature, history, culture, and heritage. For more information, please visit https://www.stormwaterstudios.org/event/group-show-bipoc-residency-program-finalists.
Stormwater is a nonprofit created to keep a place of permanence for the visual arts and keep a thriving working artist community in Columbia’s Vista district. Stormwater’s mission is to establish a consistent and supportive environment to foster the growth of artists and demonstrate the value and importance of visual art to the community at large. The organization envisions a creative vibrant hub of diverse visual artists fostering creative expression and forming the nucleus of Columbia’s thriving arts district. Visit stormwaterstudios.org to learn more. [caption id="attachment_53587" align="aligncenter" width="500"]Graphic that reads "Stormwater Studios Artist Residency Cultural Heritage Creative Expression Finalist Group Exhibition July 19-30 with artists Nakisa Beigi, Raishad Glover, Malik Green, Quincy Pugh, Maya Smith, Cedric Umoja, and Lori Starnes-Isom. Opening reception July 20, 5-8 PM. Art Talk and Closing Reception July 30, 1-3 PM. All events free and open to the public." Click image to enlarge.[/caption]

Submitted material

Call for 2D design installation in Columbia

APPLICATION DEADLINE: Thursday, July 13, 2023

One Columbia for Arts and Culture and Benton Crossing Limited Partnership are placing an open regional call for a permanent 2D installation.

The project consists of seven total side by side permanent installations on the exterior of a parking garage located on the lower level of a residential apartment building. The size of each of the areas to be covered are - five 7’8”H x 7’4”W - and - two 7’8”H x 5’4”. The artwork must cover the entire area set aside for the installation. Artists who have experience with polytab (parachute cloth, aluminum composite panels, glass panels, and mosaic on board are encouraged to apply. Creative installations and materials are encouraged. Artwork cannot be painted directly on the building surface. The artwork must be permanently attached by the artist or the artist’s agent to the MDO (medium-density overlay) substrate. Learn more and apply here: https://artist.callforentry.org/festivals_unique_info.php?ID=12005

Submitted material

Tuning Up: Hip-hop festival returns, Benedict bands news, 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...

A suite of musical updates for you today

  • Benedict College announced that Marching Tiger Band of Distinction Director H. Wade Johnson and Assistant Director Ronald Green were invited to participate in the 21st Annual Jazz at Lincoln Center's 2023 Band Director's Academy. The academy next week in New York City at Frederick P. Rose Hall. Johnson and Green received full tuition and travel scholarships for the four-day professional development session.
  • Back with a new home. World Famous Hip-Hop Family Day is returning Aug. 19 after a three-year hiatus. It will celebrate major milestones for hip-hop and for itself from the outdoor stage at the Koger Center for the Arts. "This is the 10th year of the festival. It meant a lot to us to get back to things on the 10th year, but the thing that kind of pushed it over the top for me was this also being the 50th anniversary of hip-hop ... originating in the South Bronx in 1973," said FatRat da Czar, founder of Hip-Hop Family Day and executive director of its parent nonprofit, Love, Peace & Hip-Hop. Look for headliner announcements July 1, and  read more of Allen Wallace's coverage at ColaDaily.com.
  • "Above the third-floor courtyard of the Meeting Street Lofts apartment building, residents peer out from their balconies as music begins. In the space below, people seep in from all sides of the enclosed space with picnic blankets, six-packs and their closest friends, ready to spread out on the turf for the night and hear some live music.Unlike most concerts, however, these audience members had no idea what to expect upon arrival. No one had been told who was performing. And the location was only revealed to ticketholders 36 hours before the show. That’s part of the draw of a Sofar Sounds event: the mystique."How is that for a teaser? Read the rest from Charleston in Eric Fenno's Post & Courier coverage here (subscription may be required).

Got arts news? Remember to submit it to The Hub! Got arts events? Listings are free on the only statewide arts calendar—Arts Daily!

Jason Rapp

Fall CMA exhibition to put focus on fashion, design arts

Garments and photographs document a shared artistic journey and friendship

[caption id="attachment_53426" align="aligncenter" width="949"] Click image to enlarge. Image description below.[/caption]

The Columbia Museum of Art announced that it will present Lee Alexander McQueen & Ann Ray: Rendez-Vous, a major fashion and photography exhibition on view beginning Saturday, Oct. 7 and running through Sunday, Jan. 21, 2024.

Curated and organized by Barrett Barrera Projects, Rendez-Vous débuted at the Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento, California, and will make its second stop at the CMA this fall before continuing its multi-city tour. “McQueen continues to endure, inspire, and fascinate, and this exhibition gives rare access to be up close to a designer who transcended the world of fashion,” says CMA Director of Art and Learning Jackie Adams. “The intimate portraits Ann Ray captured of her friend reveal genuine moments of the designer’s creativity, strength, vulnerability, and individualism, giving viewers authentic moments of the person versus the persona.” Rendez-Vous explores the 13-year friendship and intimate creative collaboration between the late British contemporary fashion designer Lee Alexander McQueen and French photographer Ann Ray, personally selected by McQueen  to document his design process and the behind-the-scenes experience of his runway shows. The exhibition features more than 60 photographs taken by Ray, reflecting her unique relationship with McQueen between the years of 1997 and 2010, alongside garments McQueen gifted to her over the course of their work together. McQueen and Ray’s friendship began with a simple agreement in which money, business considerations and fashion had no place. "You know, it was simple. He was part of my life, we loved each other, I had rendez-vous," Ray said. "I like your images but I’m broke. Give me your photos, I’ll give you clothes," she recalls McQueen expressing to her early in their relationship. Rendez-Vous also features more than 50 spectacular McQueen pieces from Barrett Barrera Projects’ collection, the largest private collection of McQueen’s work and owner of Ray’s full McQueen photographic archive. These garments, photographs, and corresponding ephemera tell the story of the iconic duo’s intertwined artistic journey and friendship. “With Columbia being central to fashion-loving cities such as Charleston, Atlanta, Savannah, and Charlotte, Rendez-Vous has great potential to attract visitors regionally, and we're excited to be a hub for folks from our community and beyond to experience the work of a revered and respected icon of fashion,” says Adams.

About the artists

  • Lee Alexander McQueen was born in 1969 to a working-class East London family. At the age of 16, he dropped out of high school to pursue his love of fashion — first as a tailor’s apprentice on Savile Row and later in the prestigious MA Fashion program at Central Saint Martins. In 1993, he founded his eponymous label, which he oversaw until his death in 2010. Between 1996 and 2001, McQueen served as the creative director of the storied Parisian couturier Givenchy, a subsidiary of the luxury conglomerate L.V.M.H. He was awarded British Designer of the Year multiple times, and in 2003 he was awarded the C.B.E. (Commander of the Order of the British Empire) by Queen Elizabeth II. Over the course of his brief 18-year career, McQueen singlehandedly altered the course of modern fashion with his decade-defining silhouettes and expressive runway presentations that combined the conceptual depth of avant-garde performance art with the high glamor of luxury fashion.
  • Ann Ray is a multidisciplinary French artist, filmmaker, and author. Her professional career began while working for Givenchy in Japan in the 1990s. While living there, she became immersed in Japanese culture and craftsmanship, learning philosophies of creation from senseis in various trades such as ceramics, painting, and kimono design. These relationships had a fundamental impact on her own art and professional life at Givenchy. When she met Lee Alexander McQueen at Givenchy in Paris in 1997, marking the start of their 13-year creative partnership and friendship, the artistic point of view she acquired during her time studying under Japanese masters formed the basis of their early conversations. In the performing arts sphere, Ray works for Opéra Garnier in Paris and New York’s Metropolitan Opera. Her work has been exhibited at venues worldwide, including Palais du Tau in Reims, Palais Garnier in Paris, Ca’Pesaro Museum in Venice, the Museum at FIT in New York, and Rencontres d’Arles. Ray's artworks appear in art collections internationally, including the Victoria & Albert Museum, Museum of Fine Arts Boston, and Fondation Carmignac (Paris). She has published seven books, including Nicolas Le Riche (2008), Love Looks Not with the Eyes (2012), Les Inachevés (2018), and Eyes Shut (2022). Ray works and lives in France between Paris and Brittany.

Lee Alexander McQueen and Ann Ray: Rendes-Vous is organized and produced by Barrett Barrera Projects.
  • Haute Couture Sponsor: Generous anonymous support to celebrate the extraordinary life of Joe Blanchard
  • Platinum Sponsor: Melissa Blanchard
  • Gold Sponsors: Joyce and George Hill
  • Silver Sponsor: Cool Care Heating, Air, Plumbing & Refrigeration
  • Bronze Sponsors: Governor and Mrs. James H. Hodges; Truist; Barbara B. Boyd
  • Benefactor Sponsors: Joseph Bruce; Toni Elkins; Sandy and Sam McGuckin.
  • Media Sponsors: Grace Outdoor; WXRY 99.3 FM.
  • Grantors: City of Columbia; Experience Columbia SC; Richland County Government; South Carolina Arts Commission; Discover South Carolina.

Image info: Alexander McQueen (British, 1969-2010). Four-panel minidress, crystal kaleidoscopic print blazer, and multicolor silk moth print kaleidoscope dress. Natural Dis-tinction, Un-natural Selection, Spring/Summer 2009 and Plato’s Atlantis, Spring/Summer 2010. Photo Barrett Barrera Projects. Courtesy of Barrett Barrera Projects & RKL Consulting.

Jason Rapp

Statewide music festival “Muzika” starts next week

Classical, theatre, opera, brass all featured

Music lovers in Columbia, Greenville, Georgetown and up into the Grand Strand, and even across the state line in Augusta should take note: the "muzika" is starting next week thanks to Varna International.

Muzika features Metropolitan Opera conductor Maestro Gregory Buchalter and Long Bay Symphony Conductor Charles Evans barnstorming South Carolina to lead players and vocalists in 25 productions of long-time favorites and some premieres. Not every city or venue will get every performance, but that's the beauty of living in a small state—you can probably get to what you want to see without too much trouble. You can visit the Varna International website for schedules and ticket sales. For a limited time, a BOGO discount code is being offered via promo code BOGOVIMA23. Varna International is a General Operating Support grantee of the SCAC.

Jason Rapp

S.C. Philharmonic seeks experienced fundraiser

  • APPLICATION DEADLINE: June 30, 2023*
  • COMPENSATION INFORMATION: salary negotiable / FT / benefits
The South Carolina Philharmonic seeks an experienced development associate to guide the organization’s annual fund campaign and work with the development/deputy director and executive director in all aspects of fundraising, including grant writing, donor prospecting and stewardship, special events and fundraisers. This position requires a self-starter with a high level of professionalism, the ability to multitask, strong organizational and people skills and database proficiency. The person who holds this post will work collaboratively with the professional staff and leadership to advance the artistic vision of the organization and gain financial support through the telling of its story. Learn more about this position here.

Application process

Please send cover letter, resume, and salary requirements by June 30, 2023* to info@scphilharmonic.com. *The SCPhil website advises that the position could be filled before the deadline and encourages early applications.

Jason Rapp