ART | Right-brainstorming for a good cause

In March 2007, local artist Erin Eckman’s daughter Eve was diagnosed with a brain tumor. After several surgeries, the bulk of the potato-sized tumor has been removed, leaving only a few remnants that are too close to the optic nerve to take out. Eve is recovering steadily, but the operations, radiotherapy, and post-surgery treatments have hammered Eckman with medical expenses. Local artists want to help, and two shows are planned to raise money for The Eckman Family Fund. The first Brainstorm exhibition will be held on Thurs. Oct. 4 upstairs at 39 Rue de Jean. Featured artists include Phillip Hyman, Fletcher Crossman, Tom Durham, James Christopher Hill, Lisa Shimko, and Sherry Browne. Proceeds from all work sold will go to the Fund; wine and hors d’oeuvres will be served and Leah Suarez will provide live music. The second show is on the following Thurs. Oct. 11, at the Voodoo Lounge in West Ashley. Eckman, Hyman, Dorothy Netherland, Julio Cotto, and Johnny Pundt will be among the artists contributing works to the event, with DJ D-Rock providing music with other local DJs. Voodoo will also donate proceeds from any “Brainstorm” cocktail purchased. A $5 donation is suggested for entry to both exhibitions, which run from 6-9 p.m. —Nick Smith THURSDAY Oct. 4 & 11, 6-9 p.m. $5 suggested donation. (843) 817-3035.

[image-1]ART | Feast your eyes on this

Four times a year Charleston’s historic French Quarter lights up the night as nearly 50 galleries open their doors for the Art Walk. It’s a colorful, social event which gives art lovers (both casual and serious) a chance to see what’s new from a variety of artists and mediums. In addition, numerous galleries are opening new shows that night, giving visitors a chance to meet the artists and talk about their works over a glass of wine. Waterfront Gallery (215 E. Bay St.) hosts an opening reception for Out of the Corner of the Eye, which gives three views of Charleston’s urban and rural landscapes from Amelia Rose Smith, Karen A. Vournakis, and J. Michael Kennedy. Robert Lange Studios (151 E. Bay St.) hosts a collaboration from six local contemporary galleries called The Other Side. The show, on view through Oct. 18, features over 60 works of all mediums from artists from Eye Level Art, Modernisme, Redux, Corrigan Gallery, Robert Lange, and Rebekah Jacob Modern. Charleston Artist Guild Gallery (6 N. Atlantic Wharf) hosts the opening reception for Sarah Allums Kuhnell’s twist on the travel postcard with Escapes, Retreats, and Other Fantasies. On State Street, Nina Liu and Friends present In the Spirit, an exhibition of work by six artists who address the spiritual realm in a variety of ways. At Hamlet Fine Art (7 Broad St.) enjoy a garden exhibition featuring Linda Carole Werthwein’s vibrant plein air paintings. These are just a few of the shows opening and on display Friday night, so go see for yourself what Charleston’s galleries have to offer. The French Quarter is located within the original walled city, between South Market and Tradd streets, and from Meeting Street to the waterfront past East Bay. —Erica Jackson FRIDAY Oct. 5, 5-8 p.m. Free. (843) 724-3424.

[image-2]FESTIVAL | Celebración del espiritu Latino

At 3.3 percent, South Carolina’s Hispanic population might still be low compared to other states, but the numbers have exploded since the early ’90s. Embrace the state’s growing ethnic diversity with a day-long spirited celebration of Latin culture. Now in its 16th year, the music-and-dance-heavy Festival Hispano also offers a crafts market, flamboyant costumes, and educational booths. Traditional cuisine from the Latin world abounds — think tamales, pastels, arroz con grandules, and tostones. The internationlly-known Grupo Fuego headlines this year with their Caribbean sound and an eclectic repertoire of merengue, bachata, and reggaton. Fuera de Control, a 13-piece Latin dance factory fronted by Julio Valdez, supply their own tropical rhythms, and DJ Luigi spins the latest Hispanic hits between sets. On the smaller stage, get folksy with dance demos, including Peruvian, Argentine, Mexican, Spanish, and Columbian styles. If you’re feeling inspired by the local dance groups and pulsating beats, show off your own ritmo at the salsa dance contest. As for the niños, they have their own play area, and the Global Education Shelter has hands-on learning activies for both kids and grown ups. Viva la vida latina. —Rachel Ward SUNDAY Oct. 7, 12-6 p.m. $8, Free/children 12 and under. North Charleston Wannamaker Park. (843) 795-4386.

MOJA | Winding down with a bang

The MOJA Festival (Charleston’s celebration of African American and Carribean Art, in case you hadn’t heard) wraps up this weekend with a few events you should be sure not to miss. On Saturday, check out one of the biggest musical events of the festival, a performance by Frankie Beverly and Maze. For nearly 30 years this R&B act has created a unique sound, working to become an international success. They’ll be performing at the Family Circle Tennis Center in Daniel Island. Tickets range from $20-$35. If you’re looking for a more budget-friendly (a.k.a. free) event this weekend, head over to Hampton Park on Sunday for the MOJA finale. It kicks off with a performance by violin sensation Daniel Davis (featured in our Sept. 26 MOJA special), followed by mellow “rhythm & praise” from the ITISSO Music Group. You’ll also hear dance-friendly Latin beats from Grupo Caribe of Tampa, Fla., as well as Atlanta’s Caribbean-flavored Tropical Steel Vibes. There’ll be a crafts and ethnic food vendors, and fireworks to wrap it all up. Check out as well as our website for more info on the final week’s events. —EJ SATURDAY & SUNDAY Concert: Oct. 6, 8-10:30 p.m. Finale: Oct. 7, 4-9:30 p.m.

[image-3]MUSIC | Tango at the Sottile

Get your weekend off to a lively start with an evening of firsts at Sottile Theatre. The evening features the Charleston’s Symphony Orchestra’s first Backstage Pass production — the first of the season, and the first since it’s been revamped from the former Casual Classics series. It’s also the CSO’s first night back at the Sottile after spending the past year at the Music Hall. The Backstage Pass Series promises a more laid-back approach to concert music, with the orchestra performing groundbreaking music interspersed with discussion from conductor Scott Terrell. First features music from three 20th century Argentinian composers: Piazzolla, with “Tango”; Goligov, with an intense, strings-only “Last Round”; and Ginastera, with challenging “Variaciones Concertantes.” It’s a casual event that lasts a little over an hour and it’s a great chance to get a feel for concert music, without feeling overwhelmed or out of place. You’ll also appreciate the fresh dynamic given to the musicians as they take on the often new and challenging material. Keep an eye out for four more Backstage Pass events through April 2008. —EJ FRIDAY Oct. 5, 7 p.m. $15-$27 Sottile Theatre, 44 George St. (843) 953-5623.