← View All Articles

Hub E-vents: McKissick Museum ‘Quarantunes’ adds performances

You want art. You crave art.

#SCartists and arts organizations want to fill that void. They live for that. It’s a calling. Yet in times of social distancing, that’s hard to do. Through the wonders of modern technology, many are trying and succeeding. So while we’re all staying home to protect vulnerable family, friends, and neighbors,  The Hub is stepping up to fill the void between artists and arts lovers. (Learn more about Hub E-vents here.)

TONIGHT: Ron & Natalie Daise

Quarantunes, the popular virtual music series from the University of South Carolina’s McKissick Museum is adding several new performances in the last two weeks of June. Fans of the Facebook Live series will be thrilled to see additional performances by Queen Quet, Sol Sabor and the J’s Family, The Edisto River Singers, and Charlton Singleton. The entire list of performances include:
  • Friday, June 19thRon & Natalie Daise
  • Saturday, June 20thQueen Quet
  • Thursday, June 25thSol Sabor and the J’s Family
  • Friday, June 26thSeitu Solomon
  • Saturday, June 27thThe Edisto River Singers
  • Sunday, June 28thCharlton Singleton
Tune into Facebook Live to hear these sounds of the south from the comfort of your own home. All performances will begin at 7 p.m. EDT and will be posted on McKissick Museum’s Facebook Page and in the discussion tab of each individual Facebook event. For those unable to attend the event, a recorded version of the performance will be uploaded to the McKissick Museum YouTube page. This celebration of the south’s traditional artists will mark the end of the Quarantunes series, which has been going strong since April. Quarantunes is made possible with generous support from the South Carolina Arts Commission.
The University of South Carolina’s McKissick Museum tells the story of southern life: community, culture, and the environment. The Museum, located on the University of South Carolina’s historic Horseshoe, has more than 140,000 objects in its collection, including one of the most extensive natural science collections in the Southeast. For visitation information, online exhibits, and more, please visit sc.edu/mckissickmuseum.

Jason Rapp

Ron and Natalie Daise to perform God’s Trombones

The South Carolina African American Heritage Foundation received a South Carolina Arts Commission Performing and Presenting grant to help support this performance. Ron-and-Natalie-DaiseFrom the Darlington News and Press

Black Creek Arts Council and the South Carolina African American Heritage Foundation will present husband and wife duo Ron and Natalie in God’s Trombones at the Center Theater in Hartsville on Sunday, February 21, 2016 at 3:00 p.m. “‘God’s Trombones’ was a major part of black culture at one time,” said Ron Daise. “Children and adults learned and presented the poetry of James Weldon Johnson at church, school, and civic events. “I saw presentations of ‘God’s Trombones’ by the Henderson Davis Players of S.C. State College throughout my childhood. The performances were magical, filling the stage with color and energy and life. Then afterward, the stage would be as bare as it had been before the production started, and the actors would not be the larger-than-life characters they had portrayed. That inspired me early in life to be transformative in onstage presentations.” The theatrical performance of James Weldon Johnson’s “God’s Trombones: Seven Negro Poems in Verse”includes a cappella selections of Gullah spirituals and appeals to lovers of inspirational writing, scholars of African American culture, and persons who appreciate great poetry. Ron Daise, Brookgreen Garden’s Vice President for Creative Education, is an author, performing artist, and cultural preservationist. Natalie Daise is a visual artist, storyteller, and creative catalyst. The husband and wife team is a recipient of the 1996 SC Order of the Palmetto and the 1997 State of South Carolina Folk Heritage Award and served as star and cultural consultants of Nick Jr. Many families remember their show “Gullah Gullah Island” from the 1990’s. “The cultural and artistic components of this project or program are funded in part by the Black Creek Arts Council of Darlington County, which receives funds from the South Carolina Arts Commission, the John and Susan Bennett Memorial Arts Fund of the Coastal Community Foundation of SC, and the National Endowment for the Arts.” The South Carolina African American Heritage Foundation supports the efforts of the South Carolina African American Heritage Foundation identify and promote the history and culture of African Americans in South Carolina. This event is also supported by the City of Hartsville Accommodations Tax. Tickets for the event are $10 for adults and $5 for students. Tickets can be purchased at www.scaaheritagefound.org or by calling 843-917-3350.

Artist’s song stresses “YoungStroke” awareness and prevention

Ron DaisePerforming artist Ron Daise received a $500 quarterly project grant from the South Carolina Arts Commission to produce and record a song, "People Gotta Know," for YoungStroke, Inc., which works to create awareness about strokes in young people. Daise is vice president for creative education at Brookgreen Gardens and the former chairman of the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor Commission. (Related: Brookgreen official wins grant for young stroke awareness) From The Sun News Article by Steve Palisin

A song not only can tell a story, but send a moving message to the masses. As Ron Daise will sing at the inaugural YoungStroke conference, which opens for three days Saturday (June 27-29) in Jacksonville, Fla., “People Gotta Know.” The multi-award-winning singer, songwriter and performer made this recording about stroke awareness and prevention an extracurricular project outside of his day job as vice president for creative education at Brookgreen Gardens, and to make a difference for the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor, which runs along the Atlantic coast from Wilmington, N.C., south to Jacksonville (www.gullahgeecheecorridor.org). Amy Edmunds of Conway, also a health sciences lecturer at Coastal Carolina University and the founder and chief executive of YoungStroke Inc., reiterates that this condition, when blood flow to a part of the brain stops, can affect anyone ages 18 to 65. She also shared the alarming statistic that 58.5 percent of doctor-diagnosed strokes in 2013 in South Carolina were for people younger than 65 – up from 50 percent in 2009, when the national average was 34 percent. Daise reflected on his contribution to getting the word out. Question | In the 2 minutes and 51 seconds of this song, with its upbeat piano introduction and the ivories’ ending signature framing the work of this piece, how easily did the lyrics pour from your heart, meshed with the composition and production by Travis Winbush? Was is a star that fell on your lap? Answer | I hear a rhythm, and from the rhythm come the lyrics. … I didn’t write the music, but I have a melody line. … It happened one day, and then it continued. … I had been having a conversation with Amy Edmunds. … She had met with me about my participating in this upcoming YoungStroke conference, and part of the conversation was, “Some people do not know what young stroke looks like. Well, it could look like you. Uh-huh, it could look like me. … ” That shows up in the chorus. … It was germinating for a while. I think our conversation was in November …, but it was on New Year’s Day that it fell from the sky. Q. | With your career built from talent and innovation in creativity, education and articulation, what extra effort goes into crafting a song, a lasting legacy that will be played over and over, and possibly for generations to come? A. | Developing a hook that someone will be interested in developing for the content of the songs, the telling of a story: That’s how the verses fell into place. This shows scenarios, and for the people who are experiencing strokes, or people witnessing family and close friends with stroke, how this might be something they should be aware of. Q. | How did having your wife of almost 30 years, Natalie, speak her part later in the song add another layer of depth in the devotion to this cause for health awareness? A. | It needed two voices, because I cannot be singing this spoken piece in addition to my singing the chorus, because it might be confusing. So I thought, I would like my wife to do this. Q. | How did you first encounter the reality of young stroke affecting folks as young as 18, right here along the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor and any points beyond where this message needs to resonate? A. | The awareness of stroke in young adults came from Amy Edmunds, at the time when I was chairman of the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor Commission. … At one of our meetings, she spoke about stroke affecting so many youth, how it was an international health concern, and how it’s particularly relevant for younger adults within the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor. … For a long time, it was thought that … if you’re older than 65 that those are the persons who would be affected by a stroke. … There’s a gentleman from my church who had a stroke earlier this year, and he is not over 65.

Firsthand experience

Edmunds voiced her enthusiasm for the conference next weekend, especially with the endorsement by the World Stroke Organization and the Mayo Clinic as a sponsor, and guest speakers traveling from Sweden, Canada and the United Kingdom. She also said Daise plays a vital role with “People Gotta Know” in this “creative health messaging” about awareness in steps to prevent a stroke. Q. | How did this cause become a passion for you? A. | I was exposed to this reality Jan. 11, 2002, when I experienced a stroke at the age of 45. … For me, I had a healthy lifestyle, was running 5K races, and no family history of stroke. My stroke was a little unusual in that I cared about my health. … After a weeklong hospital stay, I left and I was able to walk away. … I did not have diabetes, hypertension or any issue of obesity, and my prognosis was very good. That was the exception. That’s part of my message, that we need to take care of ourselves, so that when medical crises occur, like me, you will be able to walk into the hospital, and walk out. Q. | How does this debut conference reflect the outreach for worldwide participation? A. | This issue of stroke among young adults is not just a South Carolina or American problem; it’s really an issue of global prevalence, and that’s why we were able to attract these international people. We are discussing this in a much broader context than what you generally think about with strokes. It’s much more than a medical diagnosis, and it affects the community, with a large percentage of adults who are disabled, and young adults who cannot live independently. You look at how that imposes on the community and think about the absence of resources for helping them. Q. | What other directions will this awareness effort take? A. | Someone 33 to 43 with a stroke is quite a different generation and lifestyle from someone 74 to 83, because younger adults are raising children, or they’re still in school and at the start of their career. How they pay for their rehabilitation becomes a real issue; they don’t qualify for Medicare. It’s a whole change of worlds when you have to pay for rehab out of pocket. These are issues that are very unique to young adults. Q. | So, your firsthand experience and these pressing subjects led to your establishing YoungStroke? A. | It was organized in 2005. We have to have this conversation. I am in – and there are so very much of – a first generation of young stroke survivors, and I’m motivated to go forward because I know the generation of children behind me might be diagnosed with Type 2 (adult onset) diabetes, obesity and high blood pressure. They are the second generation of young stroke waiting to happen. HEAR IT, BUY IT What | “People Gotta Know” by Ron Daise About | Awareness of strokes affecting people ages 18 to 65, especially in the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor (www.gullahgeecheecorridor.org) Where | cdbaby.com/cd/ronalddaise5 How much | Downloadable for 99 cents More information | From YoungStroke Inc.: ▪ 843-655-2835 ▪ P.O. Box 692, Conway, S.C. 29528 ▪ youngstroke.org ▪ info@youngstroke.org
HOOK OF THE SONG “Some people do not know what young stroke looks like. Well, it could look like you. Uh-huh, it could look like me. People gotta know what young stroke looks like. No life should become, A catastrophe.”

Brookgreen Gardens offers Gullah Geechee exhibit and programs

Brookgreen Gardens in Murrells Inlet, S.C. is presenting the traveling exhibit "Sojun tu Gullah Geechee" and related programs to help visitors and students understand the influence of Gullah Geechee culture. From SC.Now.com:

The Brookgreen Gardens Creative Education Department has scheduled programs that will educate visitors and students about the influence of Gullah Geechee culture to the rice heritage of the Lowcountry community and America. “Sojun tu Gullah Geechee,” or Sojourn to Gullah Geechee, a traveling exhibit from the Geechee Kunda Center, Riceboro, Ga., will be housed in Learning Lab One of the Lowcountry Center Complex from Jan. 13 through March 16, 2014. The exhibit showcases the Gullah Geechee Rice Culture with storyboards, photographs, artifacts, tools, relics, and implements and is free with Garden admission from noon to 4:30 p.m. daily. The exhibit and lecture series are free with Garden admission. “Rice production in Georgetown County and throughout the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor greatly shaped and influenced American culture through the technological skills, lifestyles, and culture of Gullah Geechee people and their enslaved West African ancestors,” said Ronald Daise, Vice President for Creative Education. “This exhibit artfully will allow visitors to engage in a historical journey. Hopefully, it will leave viewers informed and inspired.” Daise also is former chairman of the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor Commission. The exhibit will be seen by third graders of Georgetown and Horry Counties who visit during Brookgreen’s annual Gullah Gullah Days field trip event on Feb. 3-7 and 10-14. Exhibit components include information about the language, spiritual life, enslavement, and resilience of Gullah Geechee people. “Viewers will leave with an understanding of the African presence in America and the growth and perpetuation of Africanisms in our country,” said Jim Bacote of the Geechee Kunda Center. His family hails from Riceboro. “To me, the enslavement tools are the most meaningful artifacts. They’re a sobering reminder of Gullah Geechee people as a ‘stolen people.’ Our ancestors had community life, culture, arts, and religion before and after captivity for the enrichment of America. The exhibit documents our technological skills, ingenuity, and endurance.” Complementing the exhibit is “The Reign of Rice Lecture Series” on one Saturday per month from January to May. “The lecture series is designed to educate about the complexity of Gullah Geechee heritage through the production of rice,” Daise said. Guests will learn about freshwater tidal rice production in West Africa, rice-related food ways, as well the artistic, sociological and archeological ramifications of rice culture. Featured presenters and topics are:
  • Jan. 18, Edda Fields-Black, Ph.D., author, researcher, “The Work of Our Hands: Mangrove Rice Production in Coastal Guinea.”
  • February 15, Jessica Harris, Ph.D., Queens College/ CUNY, cookbook author and culinary historian, "Carolina's Gold: The Rice AND The People.” March 15, Louis Nelson, Ph.D., University of Virginia, “Carolina Gold.”
Brookgreen’s Gullah Geechee Program Series will feature “Priscilla’s Posse: A (Simulated) Press Conference about Gullah Heritage” on January 22, 29; February 19, 26, and March 5. Through songs, lectures and photographs, Ronald Daise, Brookgreen’s Vice President for Creative Education recounts the historical visit of Thomalind Martin Polite of North Charleston to Sierra Leone, West Africa in May 2005. Polite is the seventh-generation descendant of “Priscilla,” a 10-year-old Sierra Leonean who was captured as a slave in 1756 and brought to a rice plantation in South Carolina. Cultural links with Gullah and Sierra Leone are explored: language, dietary practices, crafts, rice production, and the Bunce Island Slave Castle. The performance will cite exhibits along the Brookgreen Gardens Lowcountry Trail. Brookgreen Gardens, a National Historic Landmark and non-profit organization, is located on U.S. 17 between Myrtle Beach and Pawleys Island, South Carolina, and is open to the public daily. For more information, consult our web site at www.brookgreen.org or call 843-235-6000.

Gullah Geechee residents invited to meetings celebrating culture

The South Carolina Arts Commission is pleased to partner with the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor Commission to help connect Gullah Geechee artists, residents and organizations to resources and promote the state’s Gullah Geechee culture.

“Our goal is to identify Gullah Geechee residents who practice or represent one or more of the expressions outlined in the Corridor’s management plan,” said Ken May, S.C. Arts Commission executive director. “Those areas include music, arts, handicrafts, foodways, spirituality, language, education and economic development. We want to build relationships with Gullah Geechee artists and those who advocate for the preservation of Gullah Geechee culture and traditions. Our ultimate goal is to make new relationships that bring new resources to people and create interest in the Corridor – both in the state and beyond.” Gullah Geechee artists, residents and organization representatives are invited to learn more during a series of networking meetings that will be hosted by both the S.C. Arts Commission and the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor Commission:
  • Oct. 29, Mt. Pleasant Waterworks Community Room, 1619 Rifle Range Road, Mt. Pleasant
  • Nov. 19,  The Frissell House at Penn Center, St. Helena Island, Beaufort County
  • Nov. 21, Georgetown County Library Auditorium, 405 Cleland St., Georgetown
Each meeting begins at 5:30 p.m. and runs through 8 p.m. “The Gullah Geechee Corridor’s partnership with the South Carolina Arts Commission hopefully will develop a template for use with other arts commissions throughout the Corridor,” said Ronald Daise, Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor Commission Chairman. “We’re excited that the initial meeting is being held during Gullah Geechee Awareness Month, and we encourage Gullah Geechee artists in each community to participate. All ideas that are expressed will help to develop awareness of authentic representation of Gullah Geechee culture.” Those attending the meetings are encourage to share a "chatta" -- a seven-word essay describing a Gullah Geechee sentiment. Examples include: "Just the way we live. Embrace it!" and "Gullah Geechee wisdom. Listen to our ancestors." View the Oct. 29 mtg invitation. To RSVP for this meeting, email deona@dejogroup.com or call (843) 793-8684. For additional information about the partnership and future meetings, contact Arts Participation Program Director Susan DuPlessis, sduplessis@arts.sc.gov or (803) 734-8693. About the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor The Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor was designated a national heritage area by Congress on Oct. 12, 2006. The Corridor was created to recognize contributions made to American culture and history by African Americans known as Gullah Geechee, who settled in the coastal counties of South Carolina, Georgia, North Carolina, and Florida; to assist organizations in the four states in interpreting and preserving Gullah Geechee folklore, arts, crafts, and music; and to assist in identifying and preserving Gullah Geechee sites, historical data and artifacts for the benefit and education of the public. South Carolina counties in the Gullah Geechee Corridor are Beaufort, Berkeley, Charleston, Colleton, Dorchester, Georgetown, Horry, Jasper, Marion and Williamsburg. For more information, visit www.gullahgeecheecorridor.org.

Gullah Geechee Heritage Corridor plan approved

The Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor was designated by an act of Congress on October 12, 2006 and authorized as part of the National Heritage Areas Act of 2006. As a national heritage area, the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor is not part of the national park system; however, the act authorizes the Secretary of the Interior to provide technical and financial assistance for the development and implementation of the management plan.  

Now that a plan to preserve the culture of slave descendants along the Southeast coast has been approved, the Gullah Geechee Heritage Corridor Commission will be looking for an executive director and seeking partners for its work, commission Chairman Ron Daise said Friday. The 272-page management plan for the corridor that includes parts of the Carolinas, Georgia and Florida was more than a dozen years in the making and received final approval from the federal Department of the Interior last week. The corridor reaches along the coast from Jacksonville, N.C., to just south of Jacksonville, Fla. "Our plan reflects the voices and the consciousness of the Gullah Geechee community," said Daise during a meeting of the corridor commission in which the invocation was The Lord's Prayer read in Gullah. The culture is known as Gullah in the Carolinas and Geechee in Georgia and Florida "I'm so very pleased there is a growing awareness and appreciation of the culture," said Daise, perhaps best known as host, with his wife Natalie, of the children's television show "Gullah Gullah Island" in the 1990s. And it's not just a regional appreciation. The nation's newest "American Idol" winner, Candice Glover of St. Helena Island, S.C., who was crowned Thursday night, is of Gullah descent and the popular television show showed a clip of the island during the recent competition. The culture survived for decades because of the relative isolation of the area's sea islands but now is threated by rapid coastal development. The management plan focuses on educating people about the culture, documenting sites important to it and developing economic opportunities for those in the corridor. In developing the plan, public meetings were held in all four states and more than 1,000 sites significant to the culture were identified. Already some road signs designating the corridor have been put up along the South Carolina coast. The effort to preserve the corridor began in 2000 when U.S. Rep. Jim Clyburn, the first black congressman from South Carolina since Reconstruction, asked for a study of Gullah resources. The corridor was approved by Congress in 2006 and then the work on developing the management plan began in earnest. The commission has opened its own office in Charleston and will be hiring an executive director in the coming months, Daise said. Daise said most of the work will be done in partnerships with businesses and nonprofit groups. The commission is accepting applications for partnerships for projects that must involve at least one of the main objectives of the corridor - education, preservation or creating economic opportunities. Michael Allen, a community partnership specialist with the National Park Service in Charleston, has been involved in the commission work from the start and credited many of the people at the meeting with helping get the plan finished. "You shared. You argued. You fussed. You might have been upset. But by the end of the day, we were able to produce a document that I believe is the most comprehensive look at Gullah culture ever undertaken," he said. The commission agreed to approach the governors of all four states to see about them designating the month of October as Gullah Geechee Cultural Awareness Month. One suggestion was to encourage people to, on a designated day, put something on their Facebook page or send a tweet to a friend about the culture.
Via: Island Packet  

Gullah cultural preservation plan could boost heritage sites

A new plan meant to help coastal residents sustain their African roots could bring more attention and federal money to Beaufort County preservation groups. The Gullah-Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor Commission released a 272-page document this month, setting the groundwork for preservation and public recognition of Gullah Geechee heritage. The commission was formed to recognize contributions made to U.S. culture and history by African slaves who worked on the plantations that made South Carolina one of the wealthiest American colonies. For nearly two decades, Hilton Head native islander and commission member Emory Campbell and others have labored to pass along traditions handed down for generations -- such as basket making, boat building, storytelling and net weaving. "During that time span, a renaissance of widespread interest and acceptance of Gullah-Geechee culture, art forms, and economic ventures emerged," said Campbell, author of "Gullah Cultural Legacies." But for those ventures to thrive -- and for Gullah folklore, arts, crafts and music to survive -- better coordination is needed among state and local governments and public and private interests along the corridor, he said. Commission chairman and St. Helena resident Ron Daise said the report can be used to help weave together Gullah heritage groups. Read the rest of the story in the Island Packet.   via: The Island Packet