[image-1] Piccolo Spoleto is in full swing. Following a leisurely three day weekend, don’t y’all want to get your fill of arts around town — for free?
Here’s a quick guide to Piccolo events for those who love books, those with kids in tow, and those looking to close their eyes, open their ears, and get down with some classical music. Enjoy.
For the literary (and otherwise) inclined:
Sundown Poetry Series
This season’s Sundown Poetry series features an array of talent including Horace Mungin, Ellen Rachlin, Rich Ferguson, and Kate Daniels. Come with open ears and listen as these poets share their work, and honor the late Susan Laughter Meyers (Tues. May 29) with a tribute to her last collection. Each reading takes place at 6:30 p.m. at the Dock Street Theatre Courtyard, followed by a reception at a nearby art gallery, from 7:30-8:30 p.m.
The In-Between with Marcus Amaker
Head to Holy Trinity Windermere in West Ashley on Wed. May 30 for a 6 p.m. performance from jazz artists and Charleston’s poet laureate, Marcus Amaker. Soprano Jill Terhaar Lewis is joined by saxophonist Robert Lewis and pianist Gerald Gregory. The musicians and Amaker will explore both classical and jazz genres in this program.
Stelle di Domani
Staged readings of the 2018 Todd McNerney National Playwriting contest winner and runner-up take place at CofC Theatre 220 on Thurs. May 31 and Fri. June 1 at 3 p.m.
Poetry at McLeod: Marilyn Nelson
On Sun. June 3 at 2 p.m., McLeod Plantation hosts Marilyn Nelson as part of their ongoing series, bringing African-American poets to a Gullah heritage site to illuminate the experience and legacy of enslavement. Nelson is the daughter of a Tuskegee Airman and the finalist for several National Book Awards.
For the whole fam-damily:
Piccolo Spoleto at Nexton
Summerville’s only Piccolo Spoleto event, Piccolo at Nexton features live music from Asheville, N.C.’s Empire Strikes Bass and Grammy-nominated drummer Sammy Miller and The Congregation. Peruse food from local food trucks like Braised in the South, Semilla, Gelato Moto, and Bottleneck Coffee Truck. The event is free but those attending must register in advance.
Children’s Programs at the Library
Starting Tues. May 29, the Main Library at 68 Calhoun St. hosts a variety of kids’ activities, from The Tale of Peter Rabbit to Vivaldi’s Four Seasons Ballet. With three program times each day (9:15 a.m., 10:45 a.m., and 12:15 p.m.), there’s plenty of flexibility for you and the kiddos to take in a show or two.
The Carrion Cheer: A Faunistic Tragedy
The Halsey Institute’s current exhibit, presented in conjunction with Piccolo Spoleto, is an eye-opening look at the effect humans have had on animals. The “makeshift transdimensional stopover camp,” features tents that guests can walk through, highlighting extinct animals. This immersive installation is whimsical enough for kids — but raw enough to remind adults of the sad reality of extinction.
For the music lovers:
L’Organo Recital Series
Head to St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church on Wed. May 30 at 10 a.m. for music from The Lafayette Square Duo featuring Michael Lodico, Jr., organist, and Rebecca Smith, harpist. The series continues at various area churches, daily at 10 a.m., through Fri. June 8. Check the full lineup online.
Festival of Churches and Synagogues
With a variety of programs at locations throughout the area, the Festival of Churches and Synagogues begs the astute listener to pick and choose based on their tastes. We’re personally inclined towards the Charlotte Symphony Chamber Singers, performing at Circular Congregational Church at 12 p.m. on Sat. June 2. They present a program of choral music by modern American composers, inspired by human love.
Remington Concert Series
On Sun. June 3 at 3 p.m., Natalia Khoma, associate professor of cello at CofC and Director of the Charleston of Music Festival, and pianist Volodymr Vynnytsky, who also serves as the director of chamber music at CofC. The two will perform works by Rachmaninoff, Debussy, Chopin, and more.
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