Arts Offering of 2011 Piccolo Spoleto

Spoleto Festival USA was established in Charleston in the springtime of 1977. Two years later, Piccolo began as a “little sibling” to Spoleto Festival USA, presenting local and regional artists in a series of admission-free concerts against the stunning backdrop of Spoleto’s international arts extravaganza.

Yesterday I met with my client to select some of the Piccolo Spoleto art events that we were going to feature on our blog. Here are the ones that caught our attention. Some require tickets and some are free!

PICCOLO SPOLETO Literary Festival Finale featuring Pat Conroy:  Beloved Southern writer Pat Conroy is the author of The Lords of Discipline, The Prince of Tides, and many other books, including the recently-published My Reading Life. His lecture and the following reception will be the festival finale.  Reception immediately following lecture and book signing.  Charleston Library Society, 164 King St.  Tickets:  $51.  June 4 at 3pm.

Snow White: The classic tale of the beautiful but vain Queen and the lovely step-daughter of whom she’s jealous… Not JUST for children. Produced by SPROUTS Professional Musical Theatre. Creative Spark Center for the Arts 757 Long Point Rd., Mt. Pleasant.  Tickets: $11 in advance; $13 at the door. For tickets call (866) 811-4111. June 3, 10 at 7pm; June 4, 11, 12 at 1pm; June 5, 12 at 3pm.

For visual arts lovers: The City of Charleston Office of Cultural Affairs, Charleston magazine and the Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art at the College of Charleston School of the Arts present Contemporary Charleston 2011: Under the Radar, an art exhibit at the City Gallery at Waterfront Park. Eight emerging artists are featured, works include drawing, collage, painting, photography and installation by artists who deserve a closer look.  34 Prioleau St. May 26 (Opening reception, May 26 from 6-8pm) -July 31;  Festival hours:  Mon.-Sun., 10am-6pm.

Sunset Serenadeat the U.S. Custom House featuring Charleston Ballet Theatre with the Charleston Symphony Orchestra and the Piccolo Spoleto Festival Orchestra. U.S. Custom House, Concord St. at N. Market St.  May 27 from 8-9:30pm. This event is free!

Music for the pipe organ in the French manner and two very appealing programs at the beautiful Mepkin Abbey Church in Moncks Corner — one by The Orchestra of St. Clare at Mepkin Abbey and the other by the Taylor Festival Choir. Second Presbyterian Church, 342 Meeting St. May 28 from 2:30pm-3:15pm. This event is free!

And for the lovers of the Charleston Pirate History: A one-of-a-kind interactive theatrical event that brings to life the notorious Stede Bonnet titled The Gentleman Pirate. Written and performed by Rodney Lee Rogers. Pure Theatre, Powder Magazine, 79 Cumberland Street. Tickets: $16. May 27, 31, June 1, 2, 10, 11 at 4pm; May 28, 30 at 2pm; May 29 at 1pm; June 8, 9 at 3pm.

If you love Mexico, don’t miss the Jack Alterman Invitation Exhibition featuring the colonial City of San Miguel de Allende in central Mexico. Alterman focuses on the cultural lure and energy of this magic city built on a mountain of quartz. Along with vibrant photographs, Alterman will debut his documentary film featuring two Charleston artists and a longtime expatriate educator who have made San Miguel their home. Opening reception on May 25, 6-9pm. 36 George St. It’s free!

There is much much more. So pick up a program!

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