Hoechella: Rock against the patriarchy by Ony Ratsimbaharison

hoechella Next month a festival to raise awareness on body-positivity, called Hoechella, will run August 26-27 at New Brookland Tavern. The festival, organized by local musician and stage actor/director, Kari Lebby, was created to combat “slut shaming, rape culture, and unjust legislation that affects people's bodily autonomy.” This event will be completely free, thanks to Girls Rock Columbia and Girls Rock Charleston, who procured funding for the event, Lebby says.

The decision to throw this event came from a desire to subvert the idea that expressing ones sexuality should be shamed and made to be a bad thing. “It isn’t a bad thing,” Lebby says. “What is a bad thing, however, is the marginalization of women, people of color, and queer people.” By holding this event, they wish to bring artists and leaders from these communities together for visibility and to encourage everyone to be comfortable with who they are, and to be informed about issues that affect us all.

The festival will feature local and regional acts, almost all of them including at least one member who is queer, a woman, or a person of color, according to Lebby. Debbie and the Skanks, Cyberbae, MyBrother MySister, Glittoris, and Can’t Kids will be performing, just to name a few. They cover a wide range of genres, which was another important factor in booking. This is to showcase diverse acts and to hopefully bridge some of the gaps in our ranging music scene.

Hoechella became a fully-realized festival in what seemed like no time at all, but that was not without the help from people and organizations in our community. “I just have crazy ideas, but it takes a ton of people to make it happen!” Lebby says about seeing Hoechella come to fruition. People from the organizations Girls Rock Columbia and Girls Rock Charleston, along with the staff at New Brookland Tavern helped to solidify their plan, while others helped with things like the organizing and designing of the logo.

Lebby hopes this event will encourage people to start speaking out against rape culture, body shaming, slut shaming, and unjust legislation. It will hopefully add a new spin on the typical shows we see here in Columbia, with added awareness and encouragement to be comfortable with one’s self and their personal choices.

For more information, check out Hoechella.org.

Full list of performers

Can't Kids, Say Brother, Debbie & the Skanks, MyBrother MySister, She Returns from War, Glittoris, Sandcastles, Paisley Marie, Del Sur, Cyberbae, BRBN, and Sugar St. Germain.

Girls Rock the Block at First Thursday by Ony Ratsimbaharison

13318762_10104053847049937_1213391295_n On Thursday June 2 at 6 pm, Girls Rock Columbia will host a block party at Boyd Plaza in front of the Columbia Museum of Art. The event, called Girls Rock the Block will be held as part of First Thursday on Main, Columbia’s monthly arts event on Main Street. It’ll be a free event with live music and food by the Wurst Wagen. All proceeds will go to benefit Girls Rock Columbia, so that they can continue to enrich the lives of our community’s youth.

If you haven’t heard, Girls Rock Columbia is our local chapter of the Girls Rock Camp Alliance (GRCA), which is an international coalition of organizations that aims to empower women and girls through music education, to foster confidence and self-esteem. GRCA was founded in 2007 in Portland, OR, and now has over 60 camps worldwide.

This will be Columbia’s 4th annual Girls Rock Camp, and it will be bigger than ever. I spoke with Mollie Williamson, executive director of Girls Rock Columbia, about this event and all of the organization’s exciting developments.

Mollie Williamson working one-on-one with a young rock impresario

Instead of the usual one-week camp they’ve had in the past, this year Girls Rock Columbia will launch its two-week teen leadership program, where teens ages 13-17 will have camp the first week and return as teen leaders for the general camp the following week, which is for campers ages 8-12.

“They’ll be acting as peer mentors—repairing gear, facilitating workshops, and just largely contributing to things running smoothly,” Mollie said. “We’re super excited to give them the opportunity to lead!”

Girls Rock Columbia has also started an internship program this year and implemented their first board of directors in January. The camp itself has also grown; there will be 24 teen campers in the first week, and 84 during the general session, a huge jump from the original 17 campers its first year. In the past, campers were offered 10 workshops, and this year there will be 40.

With all these changes, Girls Rock needs as much help from the community as possible. The block party on Thursday is one way people can get involved, since proceeds will go to Girls Rock to help with programming. Live music will be performed by Jacksonville, FL electronic group Tomboi, and locals Can’t Kids and Paisley Marie, all of whom have been involved with Girls Rock.

“We’ll have a table at Girls Rock the Block, so stop by and shoot the breeze with us!” says Mollie.

13296302_10104053847044947_2007211821_n

For more information on Girls Rock Columbia and this fun event, check out girlsrockcolumbia.org

Preview: Indie Grits 2015, Day 2

IG-Logo There’s really so much going on at Indie Grits each day that picking and choosing what to do comes down, more than ever, to time, taste, and happenstance. But here’s a few picks anyway.

We’ve already highlighted director Amanda Berg’s Every Body Hit Somebody, which screens at 7:30 tonight, here, but it’s worth noting that she also has another film in the festival, Welcome Home, Fayetteville Observer, a short about daily military life on Fort Bragg, that screens ahead of Old South, a fascinating documentary by Danielle Beverly that looks at the interactions between a predominantly (and historically) black neighborhood in Athens with a newly-arrived white fraternity house that just happens to fly the Confederate flag and hold an annual antebellum parade. Jasper got to see an early cut of this film last year and found it to be a fascinating exploration of naiveté and oh-so-tentative understanding between unlikely neighbors. Old South and Welcome Home screen in the 5:30 block today.

https://vimeo.com/122387929

We’d also be remised if we didn’t point out that today is the grand opening of all of the Future Perfect visual art installations that mark the first time Indie Grits has ventured so wholeheartedly into that arena. Over 20 artists are showing in various spaces throughout the 1500 and 1600 blocks of Main Street as they tackle questions about past, present, and possible futures for a 21st century South. Various tours are launching from the Nick at 6:00, 6:45, and 7:30, on which you’ll have the opportunity to ask the artists questions. We’re the tour guides on the 6:45 one, so you should probably cross the other two off your to-do list. We’ll have Oreos. Seriously.

In another bout of shameless self promotion, my podcast with Lee Snelgrove, Art, Pop, & Fizz, had a great conversation with Maureen Conner of the Institute for Wishful Thinking, which will have an installation in the One Columbia office at 1219 Taylor. Check that podcast out here.

A sample of Hollis Hammond's work, who will be showing in the Free Times gallery.

Last but not least, we’d like to strongly endorse checking out the Fork & Spoon and Friends show at Music Farm tonight. Fork & Spoon is celebrating five years in business, and they’ve consistently put out some of our favorite local records while also managing to be supremely talented and awesome individuals.

Below are a few of the bands playing tonight. See ya out there gritting it up.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PUr-7ftDa7U

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jEkXiuYCmI0

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pk2Xj2dNDe0

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FXOucUbg2jA

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O_PpNmfHxk0

Jasper Announces 2014 JAYS

(L - R) Kathleen Robbins, Greg Stuart, Darien Cavanaugh, Cindi Boiter, Katie Smoak, Rhonda Hunsinger accepting on behalf of her daughter Catherine Hunsinger Jasper Magazine is delighted to announce the winners of the 2014 Jasper Artists of the Year awards. Winners were announced on Friday, November 21st at a fundraiser gala for the magazine at Columbia’s historic Big Apple at Park and Hampton Streets, amongst a crowd of 150 guests.

Winners include Katie Smoak for dance, Darien Cavanaugh for literary arts, Greg Stuart for music, Kathleen Robbins for visual art, and Catherine Hunsinger for theatre.

The evening’s entertainment was provided by swing dance masters Richard Durlach and Breedlove, who are featured in the November/December issue of Jasper Magazine, and who demonstrated and taught attendees how to dance the Big Apple dance, made famous in 1937 at the historic Columbia location. Vicky Saye Henderson and the Apple Jacks, a new period musical ensemble comprised of Greg Apple, Christopher Cockrell, Chase Nelson, and Henderson, entertained with songs from the era, and Terrence Henderson emceed the event. Catering was provided by Scott Hall Catering. Rob Sprankle was the photographer.

Sponsors for the evening included Bourbon Columbia, City Art Gallery, HoFP Gallery, Peter Korper Realty, Coal Powered Filmworks, Burt Pardue, Billy Guess, Jody and Jeff Salter, Pura Wellness Spa, and an anonymous donor. The gala committee was comprised of Lauren Michalski, Bohumila Augustinova, Rosalind Graverson, Margey Bolen, Annie Boiter-Jolley, and Jasper editor Cindi Boiter.

Nominees for Jasper Artist of the Year (JAY) were solicited from the public early this fall based on individual artistic achievement from September 15, 2013 until September 15 2014. Committees of experts in each of the disciplines reviewed the nominations and narrowed the candidates down to three finalists in each field. The public was then invited once again to vote on their choices in each of the five categories. Finalists in dance were Smoak, Thaddeus Davis, and Caroline Lewis Jones; in literary arts, Cavanaugh, Julia Elliott, and Alexis Stratton; in music, Stuart, the Can’t Kids, and the Mobros; in visual arts, Robbins, James Busby, and Eileen Blyth; and, in theatre, Hunsinger, Robert Richmond, and Frank Thompson.

Outgoing JAYS for 2013 include Terrance Henderson for dance, Vicky Saye Henderson for theatre, the Restoration for music, Philip Mullen for visual art, and Janna McMahan for literary art.

For more information on Jasper and the 2014 JAYS visit www.Jaspercolumbia.net.

CMA brings a Ceramics Workshop - Ladies Night Out (can dudes come, too?) - Arts & Draughts - Rahul Pophali concert at Baker & Baker

Columbia Museum of Art Adult Art School: Ceramics Workshop

Explore the expressive possibilities of hand-building and decorating functional earthenware pottery. Learn hand-building techniques using underglazes and slips to create a variety of surface textures and designs and how to successfully fire work. This two-day class is designed for all levels of experience with clay, and allows you to both create three-dimensional objects and address the issues inherent to decorating these forms. The objects you create from clay will become three-dimensional canvases on which you can explore your own personal style and artistic voice.

Instructor Kristina Stafford is currently working as education coordinator at the Columbia Museum of Art. Since earning her MFA from the School for American Crafts at the Rochester Institute of Technology, she has also worked as a Professor of Art at Bridgewater State University in Bridgewater, MA, and Artist-in-Residence at the Clay Art Center in Port Chester, NY. Stafford has work in galleries from South Carolina to New York and continues to enjoy an active studio process.

Saturday and Sunday, November 1 and 2, 2014

Noon - 4:00 p.m.

$100 / $80 for members.

And ...

cma ladies"Ladies' Night Out" is a celebration of women, fashion, and art, featuring fabulous food, local artisans selling their work, and the mind-blowing sounds of DJ Alejandro. (But we hope the dudes can come, too!)Guests can peruse wares and shop with vendors, whose offerings include scarves by Alicia Leeke, purses by Mary Catherine Kunze, and jewelry by Cindy Saad, among others. The CMA's deluxe gift-wrapping station will be available to beautifully package parcels. Attendees also have the opportunity to view the Norman Rockwell: Behind the Camera exhibition. Hors d'oeuvres are provided by Earth Fare and a cash bar will be available for wine, beer, and a specialty drink prepared just for the occasion.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

6:00 to 8:00 p.m.

$10 / join or renew your membership that night and get in for free.

And ...

Another Great Arts & Draughts

cma a & d

 

The Columbia Museum of Art hosts the next Arts & Draughts on Friday, November 7, 2014. Art, drink, and be happy! Special thanks to our sponsors The Whig, WXRY, Jam Room, and Free Times.

 

 

The BANDS: •Stephanie Santana •Can't Kids •ET Anderson

The FOOD: •The Wurst Wagen •Bone-In Artisan Barbecue •Fair Food Truck

The BEER:

Enjoy a beer tasting of selections from Widmer Brewery of Portland, Oregon and Cash Bar provided by The Whig. •Widmer Brrr seasonal ale - a hoppy Northwest-style red ale •Widmer Hefeweizen •Widmer Alchemy Pale Ale

And MORE...

•Unique perspective tour: "A Queer Tour of the Gallery" led by USC Director of Women and Gender Studies and Jasper Literary Arts Editor, Dr. Ed Madden. •Exhibition Tours of Norman Rockwell: Behind the Camera led by Bauer Westeren. •Dance: Rockwell-inspired dance demo by the Richard Durlach and Breedlove dance team - (catch Durlach & Breedlove at the Nov, 21st JAY Awards ~ Big Apple Swing!) •Film screenings of The Norman Rockwell Code, a short film parody of The Da Vinci Code. •Dr. Sketchy's Live figure drawing sessions at 8:15 p.m. and 9:35 p.m. •Rockwell-Inspired Photo Booth •D.I.Y. Art projects •Interactive art •Scavenger hunts

Friday, November 7, 2014

7:00 - 11:00 p.m.

$8 / $5 for members / join or renew your membership that night and get in for free.

And ...

Baker & Baker Presents the Art of Music

cma

The Columbia Museum of Art Hosts an Evening with Tabla Master Rahul Pophali

 

 

The Columbia Museum of Art hosts the next Baker & Baker Art of Music concert with tabla master Rahul Pophali on Sunday, November 9, at 6:00 p.m. Pophali is one of the most versatile tabla players in today's younger generation. A dazzling performer and an incessant innovator, he has carved a niche for himself in the world of percussion music.

"Tabla is the principal rhythm instrument in North Indian Classical Music," says Pophali. "It is widely used in different styles of Indian music and in fusion with world music today. The art of tabla-playing features spontaneous improvisations alongside renditions of traditional repertoire.

I believe my music is a journey, an adventure into the realm of sounds and rhythms. I draw inspiration from the audience and surroundings to fuel my creativity. I am looking forward to performing at the Columbia Museum of Art; a place replete with works of art will surely inspire the best out of me!"

Pophali began concert performances at an early age and, since then, has toured extensively in several countries in Europe and Asia. His desire to explore various possibilities with the tabla and an urge to experiment led him to perform with several reputed world, rock, flamenco, and jazz musicians across the globe. Passionate about spreading his art form, Pophali has conducted workshops and lecture/demonstration sessions for several institutions and music schools in India and Europe.

Sunday, November 9, 2014. Doors at 5:30 p.m. Galleries open. Concert at 6:00 p.m. $12 /

$10 for members / $5 for students

For more information on all these exciting CMA events and offerings, visit

columbiamuseum.org

Jasper Announces Finalists for 2014 Artists of the Year - Time to VOTE!

Jay graphic

Jasper and Muddy Ford Press and delighted to announce the finalists for

Jasper 2014 Artists of the Year

in Dance, Theatre, Music, Visual, and Literary Arts

Theatre

 

Catherine

Catherine Hunsinger, actress

  • Eponine, Les Miserables (Town Theater)
  • Seven roles and cello, A Christmas Carol adapted by Patrick Barlow (Trustus Theater)
  • Willowedane Poole, Constance [by the Restoration] (Trustus Theater)
  • Fest 24 actor, Group 5 – Prom Night (Trustus Theater)
  • Actress/Soloist in “The Orchestra Moves”, a South Carolina Philharmonic childrens’ concert series
  • Actress/Soloist in the Americana concert of South Carolina Philharmonic’s pops series (St. Andrews Sisters)
  • “Nasty” in Larry Hembree Bring Your Own Dinner Theater Fundraiser (Trustus Theater)
  • Actress in First Citizens Commerical with Mad Monkey
  • Actress in Pillar Awards short film with Larry Hembree
  • Ensemble in Young Frankenstein (Workshop Theater)
  • Veronica, Carnage (Living Room Theatre)
  • Katherine, Blue Moon (Short film by Jeff Driggers)

2014aoty_robert_richmond

Robert Richmond, director

  • TEMPEST at the Warehouse in Greenville, SC
  • FINDING RICHARD – USC  – Undergraduate female production of Richard III that exposed 26 students  and gender bended a Shakespearean history play, while exploring acting in a close up and personal arena.
  • DREADFUL SORRY  – The winner of the South Carolina 2010 Film Commission grant was screened in the Orlando Film Festival. This movie gave on screen and behind the camera experience to over 45 students at USC.
  • RICHARD III at the Folger Theatre, Washington, DC
  • HAMLET USC – Set in an asylum the production focused on Hamlet’s madness and was inspired by America Horror Stories.
  • Audio Book of RICHARD III – Folger Shakespeare Library – Continuing my passion to bring Shakespeare into the 21st Century this recording is the 6th fully dramatized production published by Simon & Schuster.
  • WINTERS TALE at the Academy for Classical Acting, Shakespeare Theatre Company, Washington, DC
  • A TALE TOLD BY AN IDIOT at Clark Studio, Lincoln Center, New York
  • Audio Book JULUIS CAESAR Folger Shakespeare Library

2014aoty_frank_thompson

Frank Thompson, actor and director

  • September 2013: Thenardier in Les Miserables at Town.
  • November/December 2013: Charlie Baker in The Foreigner at Town.
  • November/December 2013: Directed Ho! Ho! Ho! at Columbia Children’s Theatre.
  • March 2014: Directed Stand By Your Man at Town.
  • May 2014: Igor in Young Frankenstein at Workshop.
  • July 2014: Dialect Coach/Captain Hook in Peter Pan at Town.
  • August 2014: Wrote/Directed A Night At The Previews fundraiser for Town.


Music


2014aoty_cant_kids

Can’t Kids

 

  • This year we released Ennui Go which was a lot of hard work for us and many people who aren’t in Can’t Kids.
  • We were the house band for the Indie Grits puppet slam where we collaborated with Bele et Bete.
  • We put out ‘The Twist’ music video that was directed by Katherine McCullough.
  • We released a song on the Tidings from the Light Purple Gam comp.
  • We just finished our side of a split “7 record with Schooner out on Sit and Spin Records next year.
  • We had a pet baby squirrel for about 3 weeks.
  • We’ve obtained an early model Prius.

2014aoty_greg_stuart

Greg Stuart

  • 11/18/13 –organizes world premier of Los Angeles-based composer Michael Pisaro’s asleep, forest, melody, path (2013) for large, mixed ensemble and field recordings at the Columbia Museum of Art. Ensemble includes students from the USC Honors College, USC School of Music, and members of the greater Columbia music community. The field recordings used in the concert (i.e., environmental sound recordings) were made by Stuart and Pisaro in late 2012/early 2013 in Congaree National Park.
  • 2/24/14 –Organizes a performance of the legendary Japanese percussionist Tatsuya Nakatani’s acclaimed Nakatani Gong Orchestra with 12 local musicians at the Columbia Museum of Art. The piece is an innovative, community-based ensemble consisting of large gongs suspended on custom hardware and played with handcrafted bows designed by Nakatani.
  • 12/06/13 – Stuart plays a set at the Conundrum Music Hall concert of Mind Over Matter Music Over Mind’s (the brainchild of ethnomusicologist and eminent Sun Ra scholar Thomas Stanley). The piece is a collaboration with Columbia-based visual artist Nathan Halverson, Asleep in the watchtower (2013).
  • 2/20/14 –Stuart’s USC-based experimental music performance group, the New Music Workshop, performs John Cage’s One7 (1992) at Conundrum Music Hall.
  • 7/20/14 – Composes a new work for bowed bell and electronic sound, slab (2014) as a solo set opening for electronic powerhouse Jason Lescalleet’s July 2014 Columbia appearance at Conundrum Music Hall.
  • Between 9/15/13 and 9/15/14 Stuart released the following recordings: Closed Categories in Cartesian Worlds Michael Pisaro/Matthew Sullivan, “Add Red” With Joe Panzner: Live at the Issue Project Room Joe Panzner/Greg Stuart + Jason Brogan/Sam Sfirri: Harness (Tape)

2014aoty_mobros

The Mobros

  • handpicked to open for B.B. King on a few of his summer dates. July 23rd & 24th 2013
  • on the road since January 17th traveling the east coast up to New York, through the Midwest to Chicago, and down through Texas going as far south as New Orleans. Having played 50 cities, The Mobros will finish their tour December 22nd in Charleston, SC.    January 17th- December 22nd 2014
  • released their first full record February 25th  2014


Visual Arts


2014aoty_eileen_blythe

Eileen Blyth

 

  • Juried in Vista Studios – Sept 2013
  • Vista Lights – Group Show – Vista Studios – November 2013
  • Big Paint Project – Jan-Feb 2014
  • Volumes II – Women Bound by Art – group exhibition at The Curtis R. Harley Art Gallery- Spartanburg, SC, Jan – Feb 2014
  • Artista Vista – Group Show – Vista Studios – April 2014
  • Art Fields – Lake city – April 2014
  • Big Paint Exhibition – Columbia College- August/October 2014
  • One Columbia Public Art Installation – Sept 2014

2014aoty_james_busby

James Busby

  • James Busby, Figure 8, 701 Center for Contemporary Art, Columbia SC
  • James Busby, New Paintings, Randall Scott Projects, Washington DC
  • Slow is Smooth, Smooth is Fast, Kravets|Wehby Gallery, New York, NY
  • Smoke & Mirrors, Randall Scott Projects, Washington D.C.

2014aoty_kathleen_robbins

Kathleen Robbins, photographer

  • Into the Flatland / Gandy Cultural Arts Center / University of Southern Mississippi / Long Beach MS (November 2013 – February 2014), University of Nebraska / Lincoln NE  (March – April 2014), Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art / Charleston SC (August – October 2014), University of Central Arkansas / Conway AR (September – October 2014),  Rebekah Jacob Gallery / Charleston SC (September – October 2014)
  • The Kids are Alright: an exhibition about family and photography / Addison Gallery of American Art / Andover MA / (traveling exhibition) (September 2013 – January 2014)
  • Photographers from the Permanent Collection, Ogden Museum of Southern Art / New Orleans LA /
  • Somewhere in the South, Rebekah Jacob Gallery / Charleston SC  /
  • CRITICAL MASS TOP 50: Color and Light, Southeast Museum of Photography / Daytona Beach FL /
  • Sense of Place: Picturing West Greenville / Clemson University Center for Visual Arts – Greenville
  • oxfordamerican.org, Borne, Eliza. “Interview: Kathleen Robbins on the landscape of the Delta,” oxfordamerican.org, September 19, 2014; Oxford American Magazine, Mar, Alex. “Issue 86: Sky Burial” Oxford American, Fall 2014; Oxford American Magazine, Brenner, Wendy. “Issue 82: Telegram” Oxford American, Fall 2013; Oxford American Magazine, Giraldi, William. Issue 84 / Oxford American, Spring 2014
  • Lenscratch.com, Smithson, Aline. “Your Favorite Photographs of 2013 Exhibition”; Lenscratch.com, January 1, 2014 The Southern Photographer: Blog about Fine Art Photography in the American South
  • Wall, John. “Kathleen Robbins at Rebekah Jacob Gallery” southernphotography.blogspot.com, August 12, 2014
  • Artist Salon Series: Kathleen Robbins (October 2013) / Columbia Museum of Art, Columbia, SC
  • Visiting Artist Lecture / Workshops (April 2014) , University of Nebraska, Lincoln, NE
  • Artist Lecture (August 2014) / Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art, Charleston, SC
  • Gallery Talk (August 2014) / Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art, Charleston, SC
  • Patron Party Artist’s Talk (May 2014) / Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art, Charleston, SC
  • Panel Discussion: “Southern Photography” (March 2014) / Rebekah Jacob Gallery, Charleston, SC


Literary Arts


2014aoty_alexis_strattonA

Alexis Stratton, writer

  • Published prize-winning fiction chapbook “Fratricide” (Dec. 2013) (published by BLOOM)
  • Awarded 2nd Prize in Blue Mesa Review Fiction Contest (and publication) for short story, “The Ambassador’s Wife” (Dec. 2013)
  • Wrote and directed short film, “Crosswalk,” which received the Audience Award at the Second Act Film Festival (Oct. 2013)
  • Short fiction published in A Sense of the Midlands, ellipsis… literature & art, Fall Lines: A Literary Convergence
  • Proposed and led the Imagine If project at Sexual Trauma Services of the Midlands, which was a collaborative, community-driven arts and anti-violence initiative asking community members to imagine a world without violence and show us what that world might look like through various arts media and genres. The project (which consisted of free monthly arts workshops at Tapp’s Arts Center and in community groups, an art exhibition in Tapp’s Arts Center in April 2014, and a kickoff event in April 2014 featuring musicians, spoken-word artists, dancers, and others) brought together local artists, musicians, activists, and others, connecting arts and community groups in the idea of envisioning a better world.

 

2014aoty_julia_elliottJulia Elliott, writer

  • Book: The Wilds (short story collection) out with Tin House Book, Fall, 2014
  • Book: The New and Improved Romie Futch (novel), Tin House Books, forthcoming
  • The Wilds     receiving positive advance buzz,     including a starred review from Publisher’s Weekly, "The     International News Magazine of Book Publishing and Bookselling"
  • Published short story “The Love Machine” on Granta.com,     September, 2014
  • Featured in “18 Short Story Writers on Why They Decided     to Write a Novel,” BuzzFeed Books, August 15, 2014
  • Interviewed by New York Times Bestseller Jeff     Vandermeer in “Julia Elliott and Jeff Vandermeer in Conversation,” Tin House     Blog, September, 2014
  • Published short story “Caveman Diet” in Tin House     61: Tribes, Fall 2014
  • Published short story “Bride” in Conjunctions: 62:     Speaking Volumes, Fall 2014

 

2014aoty_darien_cavanaughDarien Cavanaugh, writer and editor

  • Founding director of The Columbia Broadside Project which pairs artists and poets from Columbia and throughout SC to work together to create an original “broadside” painting/image comprised of an original work of art and an original poem. The 2014 Columbia Broadside Project exhibit featured work from 28 poets and artists and was held at the Tapp’s Arts Center in downtown Columbia from February 6th to February 28th.
  • Named as the recipient of the 2014 Arts and Humanities Award for Inspiration from the Cultural Council of Richland and Lexington Counties for work on work on The Columbia Broadside Project.
  • Founding co-editor of The Frank Martin Review, a print and online literary journal.
  • Poems published or accepted for publication in A Sense of the Midlands (Muddy Ford Press), Blue Earth Review, Burningword, Drunk Monkeys, Found Anew (USC Press), Coe Review, The Gap-Toothed Madness, Grievances, I-70 Review, Juked, Kakalak, Main Street Rag, San Pedro River Review, See Spot Run, and Sou’wester in the past year.


Dance


2014aoty_caroline_lewis-jones

Caroline Lewis-Jones

 

  • Oct. 2013 Vista Unbound Zombie Bar Crawl
  • Nov and Dec 2013 Unbound performed at 3 different Christmas Events downtown
  • Unbound performed at the Charleston Dance Festival
  • Traveled every weekend to a different part of the country to teach on the dance Convention, Adrenaline and to choreograph at various dance studios. Cities visited were Dallas, Los Angeles, Salt Lake City, Detroit, Oklahoma City, Atlanta, Charlotte, Columbia, St. Louis, New York City, Kansas City, Houston, Phoenix, San Francisco, and more
  • Caroline was off from May till the end of August having her first baby

2014aoty_katie_smoakKatie Smoak

  • Over the 2013-2014 season Katie retired from the Columbia City Ballet after 16 Professional seasons, and 26 consecutive years of performing with the company-from childhood through professional career.
  • Katie started off as a Junior apprentice as an 11 year old, climbed the ranks through the Corps de ballet, then Soloist, and spent the last 4 years of her career as a Principal Dancer.  Never missed a Nutcracker in 26 years — Alice in Wonderland was her final performance.
  • the longest standing company member (never out with an injury, never missed part of a season) of any dancer

2014aoty_thaddeus_davisThaddeus Davis – Wideman/Davis Dance Co.

Information to come



After you view our finalists profiles, head over to the Jasper 2014 Artists of the Year Ballot and cast your vote.

The winners of Jasper 2014 Artists of the Year in Dance, Literary Arts, Music, Theatre, and Visual Arts will be announced on November 21, 2014 at the release of the November/December issue of Jasper at the Jasper Artists of the Year Celebration and Fundraiser at The Big Apple in Columbia, SC with a limited supply of tickets. Ticket info coming soon.

 

In Jasper Vol. 3, No. 4: Record Review - Can't Kids' Ennui Go

"On what is likely one of the more anticipated releases in her local scene in 2014, Can’t Kids leader Adam Cullum seems intent on delivering something a bit different than the group’s well-received debut Brushes Touches Tongues. While the group hasn’t exactly abandoned their self-described brand of “Southern Gothic cheerleader metal” that seemed so startlingly refreshing in 2012, there does seem to a deliberate sense of stepping back, leaving the songs a bit more open and making the lyrics a bit more pensive than that raucous effort. On a number of efforts here, including the album’s bookends “Oh Momma” and “Oh Adam” and the album’ centerpiece, the hauntingly bereft “You Don’t Plan,” the songs mostly features a pretty cello line from Amy Cuthbertson and Cullum’s quiet fingerpicking and plaintive vocals at the expense of the two members who bring much of the dynamism to the band, bassist Henry Thomas and drummer/second vocalist Jessica Oliver, who tend to only appear on the back end of these tunes. In keeping with that feel, Oliver, who used to be almost a co-leader in the group, seems to have taken more of a backseat in these sessions, sounding more like a traditional harmony singer than ever before.  Only two songs here—the rollicking pop-punk number “More Soda” and the Modest Mouse-y “Late for Lunch”—see her and the band up to their old tricks. While some fans are likely to be put off by the left turn, Ennui Go actually makes for a better listen than Brushes. The two raucous rockers break-up some of the more singer/songwriter material nicely, and the band is mostly finding a sweet spot between the two extremes, finding a buoyant pop bounce on tunes like “The Calm” and “The Twist” that feels different, but every bit as singular, as their early material. And Cullum has always been a brilliant songwriter, alternatively astutely honest and self-reflective and caustic and cackling. He still occasionally shows his love of Isaac Brock a bit too much on his sleeve, but his misanthropy never reaches his hero’s dire levels—instead, Cullum always seems to write, even when he is engaging in casual wordplay or humor, with a keen desire to figure out, however bleakly, the world around him.

With a short running time and a quieter, humbler approach, it would be too easily to think this is a sophomore slump. I would argue, instead, that not only is it a stronger and more cohesive effort, it is also exactly the kind of record Can’t Kids needed to make to grow and mature as a band." – Kyle Petersen

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Record Review Section p1

Jasper’s Music Picks of the Week (1/21/2013-1/27/2013)

As usual, Columbia is hopping with some great music to see this week. Here our are picks for some of the best: Thursday Night, 1/24 – Can’t Kids & Cusses at New Brookland Tavern

The thrash and crash indie rock of the Can’t Kids is always difficult to pass up (see our review of their debut LP, Brushes Touches Tongues, here), but add to the bargain the Savannah-based Cusses, a muscular post-punk duo whose bass-less lineup recalls the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, and it easily becomes a pick of the week.

Cusses - Don't Give In

Friday Night, 1/25 – Josh Roberts & the Hinges, Danielle Howle & the Firework Show at 5 Points Pub

They don’t come much bigger in the South Carolina roots-rock world than Josh Roberts and Danielle Howle. If you aren’t familiar with Howle’s latest backing band the Firework Show, check out the full-length they did together, New Years’ Revolutions, here. It’s a bit lo-fi, but the jazzy, eclectic vibe and inventive arrangements they bring to the songs on that record matches the wild, vibrant swoops of Howle’s artistic muse to a T. Mr. Roberts and company, if you’ve forgotten, was a Jasper 2012 Artist of the Year nominee, largely on the basis of his quite-excellent latest full-length, Mighty Old Distance and Murky Old Time. Below is a cool little promotional video for that record.

Might Old Distance & Murky Old Time Promo

Saturday Night, 1/26 –  Jon Dee Graham OR The Mazloom Empire (CD Release) OR Burnt Books (CD Release)

This one depends on what kind of mood you are in – we have the roots-rock legend Jon Dee Graham playing a house show at The Little Yellow Music House (call 309-0214 or email littleyellowmusichouse@yahoo.com for reservations), alt. pop powerhouse Mazloom Empire dropping their debut EP at the Art Bar, and experimental hardcore band Burnt Books are celebrating their January 29th release of their first full-length on At A Loss Records at New Brookland Tavern. For a vast catalog of top-notch tunes and the venerable growl of one of America’s great troubadours, Graham is your best bet. If you want an eclectic collection of catchy, diverse takes on rock and roll, the Mazloom Empire show also has blues rockers Mason Jar Menagerie (Fountain Inn), Gritty singer/songwriter Rachel Kate (Charleston), and the atmospheric indie pop of The Lovely Few (Columbia).  Or, if you want to the kind of heavy, earsplitting punk and metal that Columbia does so well, Burnt Books is joined by Whores (Atlanta), Carolyn (Columbia), and Darkentries. Three very different but thoroughly excellent shows.

Jon Dee Graham - Faithless

The Mazloom Empire EP Teaser

Burnt Books Demo

Album Review: Can't Kids - Brushes Touches Tongues

Full disclosure: I’ve always sort of been a fan boy of Can’t Kids co-founder Adam Cullum. From his heart-on-sleeve solo recordings in Falling off a Building to his multi-instrumental prowess and role as the energetic center of the literary-folk/pop group Magnetic Flowers, I’ve always considered him one of the scene’s finest assets. Whether you love or hate what he is doing on stage, it’s hard to deny the passion and instrumental power of his performances. And now, we have Can’t Kids.

The band was born as a duo, with Cullum and Jessica Oliver bashing out poppy tunes at deafening levels in the house they shared. The two frequently shared vocals and seem to (at least initially) take turns playing drums or guitar. White Stripes comparisons quickly followed, which is something the two found puzzling when I talked to Cullum back in July. At first I shared their confusion, but the more I’ve listened to this debut, though, I think there might be some logic behind the linkage, and it gets to the heart of what makes both groups tick.

We tend to think of The White Stripes as this primal blues-based monster, with the high octane riffs of songs like “Seven Nation Army” or “Fell in Love with a Girl” being exemplars of their muscular ferociousness. But this is also a group who made the largely marimba-based Get Behind Me Satan and featured such twee pop ballads as “We’re Going to be Friends” and “I Want to be the Boy to Warm Your Mother’s Heart.” These odd contradictions—of Son House and Burt Bacharach, The Sex Pistols and Belle & Sebastian—are actually what seem to capture the group the best.

Similarly with Can’t Kids, the initial reaction always seems to come from their loudest, most heavy-edged moments. The group’s sound seems frequently inspired by the pounding and propulsive electric guitars of 90s indie rockers like Modest Mouse or Pavement, with pounding drums and meandering, electric guitar riffs that often seem nearly unhinged. Correspondingly, there are maniacal shouts and misanthropic observations that also mark the best of Modest Mouse: see Oliver’s inflamed howl of “I wanna see this city burn/I wanna be Sheeeer-man!” on “Stab/Grab”  or  Cullum’s snarling, irony-tinged pronouncement that “If I had a nickel for every person that I hate/I could buy a fancy rifle and blow us all away” on “Dimes,” a line that’s a pretty direct rip from MM’s “Cowboy Dan.” They also, albeit less frequently, employ the sardonic non-sequesters of Pavement’s Stephen Malkmus (“Stab/Grab” is probably the best example).

But the group is also pulling from another set of less fearsome indie rock traditions—the literary grandiose-ness of something like “Ghost Killah” seems more Neutral Milk Hotel or Decemberists than anything else, and the frequent borrowing of commercial hooks (“maybe it’s Maybelline,” “line in shambles?/Try Campbell’s!”) or pointedly high-octane pop song structures (“It’s Yrs” or “Happy Hippie Songs”) seem to create similar sorts of contradictions that allowed The White Stripes to thrive.

The two members that Oliver and Cullum chose to add to the group emphasizes this odd dichotomy. (Formerly?) hardcore bassist Henry Thomas was brought into the fold to add a pummeling low end which frequently adds to the menace and mania of the sound, while cellist Amy Cuthbertson brings an obvious beauty and chamber-pop vibe to the proceedings. Of course, in a fitting irony, often times Thomas’ bass line propels a poppy tune like “It’s Yrs” and Cuthbertson provides a strong sense of foreboding with her dark string parts. So, either way, a sense of difference and discontinuity seems to be emphasized.

Still, for all that comparison does in fleshing out the conceptual appeal of the band, what really sells it is the obvious chemistry between Oliver and Cullum. The sense of friendship and community apparent from much of the lyrics, from inside jokes and a shared past to a sense of honesty and love among true partners, is evident from even a cursory experience with these tunes. In addition, their shared vocals, equal parts hooky melodies and shouted glee, have an infectious power that is one of the best illustrations of a band enjoying making music so much that you have no choice but to like it too.

If you can’t tell, this record gets two pretty damn big thumbs up from Jasper!

Can't Kids - Brushes Touches Tongues is available at Fork & Spoon records, here.

Jasper 005 -- Join us in the Garden!

There's nothing like the feeling of proofing a magazine, pronouncing it true, and then saying goodbye to it for a week or so as it goes to the printer, knowing the next time you see your progeny it will have been cloned into thousands of identical magazines, nestled in boxes, and waiting to be distributed to the most important people in the process -- the readers. This is what Jasper design editor Heyward Sims and I did today. I learned a long time ago not to cut corners on time. Give the printer more time than they need to put your magazine together -- there's nothing like the stomach churning angst of just barely getting your magazine to the printer on time -- or getting it there late -- and worrying whether it'll be ready when you promised it would be. I'm proud to say that, since our crew started Jasper almost a year ago (we're working on our 6th book now), we have never had to sweat the release of an issue. We don't work that way.

So, we're happy to announce that our newest issue will be coming your way on May 15th. We're celebrating the release, as we do all our releases, with a few hundred of our closest friends -- that means you guys, if you'll be so kind as to join us, at Hay Hill Garden Market.. Hay Hill is located on Bluff Road about a mile past the stadium and on the right, as you're going out of town. We're especially excited that music for the evening will be provided by our friends Buck Stanley and the Can't Kids.  Avery Bateman, who you may remember from Passing Strange at Trustus Theatre, will be stopping by to share a couple of tunes. And Kendal Turner and her gang of seriously talented spoken word poets may be so kind as to share a few words with us if we're lucky.

The Jasper EconoBar will be on hand with wine, and in the interest of sustainability, we'll be offering special edition Jasper cups for sale -- Buy a cup and fill it up with all the beer you please throughout the evening.

And hey, we're having our first ever book signing, too.

So please join us on the 15th -- it's a Tuesday night and the weather should be lovely -- stroll around the garden, visit with your friends, listen to some fine local music -- and check out Jasper #005. We worked hard on it and, hey, we'll admit it, we fell a little in love with it in the process. We hope you'll feel the same.

Book signing at 6 -- music at 7 -- big fun all night long.

 

The Making and Celebrating of Jasper #3 - What to Expect

When we started planning Jasper #3 we looked at the date the magazine was due and thought -- really? Would anyone really be interested in a new issue of an arts magazine so early in the year -- so close to Christmas? Having increased the size of Jasper #2 by 8 pages we thought that maybe we should ease back for #3 and go back to our original 48 pages. We also thought it would be a good idea to make the issue somewhat literary heavy, given that so many folks would still be in that holiday state of mind in the middle of January, and not much would be going on in the performing or visual arts. So we thought.

It didn't take long for us to realize that there was way too much going on to reduce the pages of the magazine -- in fact, we increased them even more. Jasper #3 will be 16 pages longer than Jasper #1. But the fascinating thing about putting together a magazine that is reflective of the arts community it represents is how organic the whole process is. For example, our choices of cover artist and centerfold artist easily gave way to our choice of venue for the celebration of the release. Our Jasper Reads story led us to our choice for Guest Editorial. An essay written by an esteemed visual artist on how social service can act as a muse for creation directed us to another story on a local theatre troupe that we quickly made room for and wrote. Our story on Columbia's choral arts scene suggested an obvious choice for entertainment at our release event. Things like that.

The other thing that surprised us was just how much would be going on in the performing and visual arts community this early in the calendar year.

This week has been packed already with an abundance of diverse and stimulating art. Tuesday night we had the opportunity to visit Tom Law's Conundrum concert hall and sit in on Jack Beasley's The Weekly Monitor, which hosted Elonzo, Magnetic Flowers, and Henry Thomas's Can't Kids.

Magnetic Flowers blew us away, by the way, and we've listened to their new CD 4 times in the last 24 hours. For more on Magnetic Flowers, read Kyle Petersen's story in Jasper #3. We were also pretty charmed by the raw almost 80s sounding tunes of the Can't Kids. I look forward to hearing what Kyle has to say once he gets a chance to listen to their new CD.

Wednesday night saw us attending the opening reception for Thomas Crouch's new show in the Hallway Gallery at 701 Whaley. We're pretty big Crouch fans already, and it was great to see some of his new work and to meet his mom, duly proud of her boy. Kudos to Lee Ann Kornegay and Tom Chinn for making blank wall space meaningful. We  hope to see more and more businesses do the same. There is no shortage of art to hang on Columbia's walls.

Which brings us to Thursday night -- the celebration of the release of Jasper #3 as well as Night #1 in Columbia Alternacirque's 3-Night Festival of Doom. We hate missing this first night of the only kind of circus we're ever interested in seeing, but we're reassured that there are two more nights of awesomeness we can avail ourselves of AND Ms. Natalie Brown -- the mother of the tribe -- will be visiting us down at the Arcade as soon as she's off the boards at CMFA Thursday night. For more on Natalie Brown, read Cindi's article on her in Jasper #3.

Much like this issue of the magazine our release event scheduled for Thursday night has grown far beyond our initial intentions. Rather than being a quiet evening of acoustic music and intellectual conversation, as we thought it might be, it has turned into a multi-disciplinary arts event.

Here's what to expect:

  • 7 - 7:15 -- a performance from the balcony of the Arcade Building by the Sandlapper Singers (Read Evelyn Morales's piece on them and the rest of the choral arts scene in Jasper #3)
  • 7:15 - 7:30 -- Kershaw County Fine Arts Center will perform three of your favorite songs from the musical Chicago
  • 7:30 - 7:45 -- the NiA Theatre Troupe will perform
  • 7:45 - 8 and throughout the evening, a young acoustic guitarist named David Finney will play classical guitar
  • then, starting about 8 pm rock 'n' roll time, Tom Hall has arranged for the nationally known and esteemed Blue Mountain band featuring Cary Hudson to perform
  • Chris Powell's The Fishing Journal will follow them up (See Jasper #2 for a little ditty on the Fishing Journal)
  • and then, the Mercy Shot, with Thomas Crouch from Jasper #2, will play.
  • In the meantime, Michaela Pilar Brown will be displaying her most recent work in the Arcade lobby, and
  • street artist Cedric Umoja will be demonstrating his work (Read more about Michaela in Jasper #3 as well as Alex Smith's article on Cedric), and
  • all the galleries of the Arcade Mall will be open -- including those of our Cover artist and Centerfold!
  • Throughout the evening we'll have the return of our famous EconoBar with cheap beer, decent wine, and big spender craft brew at $2, $2, and $4 respectively, and
  • a nice little cheese spread courtesy of our friend Kristian Niemi and Rosso, as well as
  • a sampling of delicious roasted coffees from SC's own Cashua Coffee, and
  • the Krewe de Columbia-ya-ya will be on hand to school us all on the importance of parades, beads, beer, and dogs.
  • And, of course, there will be the release of Jasper #3.

Not a bad night for free, huh?

Please join us in the historic Arcade building on Main and Washington Streets, Thursday night, January 12th from 7 until 11 pm as we celebrate the art that makes us all get up in the mornings. The afterparty is at the Whig. We hope to see you both places.

Thank you for your support, Columbia.

-- Your Friends at Jasper