News Column

Rebirth Brass, Haggard, Merritt kick off Carolina Performing Arts series

May 15, 2014

The Herald-Sun, Durham, N.C.

May 15--CHAPEL HILL -- Two double billings will kick off the 2014-15 season of Carolina Performing Arts at UNC. The 10th season of the series begins Aug. 22 with a concert by New Orleans-based groups Rebirth Brass Band and Dumpstaphunk. Country music songwriter and Kennedy Center honoree Merle Haggard and North Carolina native Tift Merritt will perform Aug. 23.

Both performances are presented as part of the Southern Folklife Festival to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Southern Folklife Collection at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

During the season, Carolina Performing Arts also will partner with the Institute of Arts and Humanities' campus-wide World War I Centenary Project, and will present a three-performance program in its inaugural Curatorial Fellowship through the Arts@TheCore program. The season also will include a number of free and public events.

The World War I Centenary Project will present a slate of performances marking the anniversary, among them "The 1910s," a program from performance artist Taylor Mac; and a program of music commemorating the war by the Kronos Quartet, joined by university faculty artists.

The inaugural Curatorial Fellowship will present a mini-series curated by UNC-Chapel Hill Department of Asian Studies Professor Afroz Taj under the theme "Streams of Spirit: Water Music from South Asia." Programs include "Tales from the Cosmic Ocean -- An Evening of Yakshagana" featuring Vidya Kolyur; "Perilous Crossings," a lecture and discussion by Bollywood actress Shabana Azmi; and "Songs from the Land of Five Rivers" by Pakistani Sufi folk singer Sanam Marvi.

Artists returning to the season include Youssou N'Dour; Mitsuko Uchida; Jazz at Lincoln Center with Wynton Marsalis; Ian Bostridge; Dianne Reeves and others.

Additional season highlights include "The Blues Project" by Chapel Hill native Michelle Dorrance and Dorrance Dance, featuring original music from Toshi Reagon and her band BIGLovely. UNC-Chapel Hill alums Mipso and Steep Canyon Rangers will perform, along with Batsheva Dance Company, Brazilian songwriter and guitarist Milton Nascimento, vocalist Audra McDonald and more.

Carolina Performing Arts will also present several free events including "Veils and Vesper," a soundscape installation by 2014 Pulitzer Prize-winning composer John Luther Adams; a conversation with cellist Yo-Yo Ma and members of the Silk Road Ensemble; and a public forum featuring a trio of Congolese artists -- filmmaker Petna Ndaliko Katondolo, composer and pianist Ray Lema, and dancer and choreographer Faustin Linyekula.

Single tickets go on sale to the public June 5. Subscriptions are available June 3. For more details on the 2014-15 season, including ticket information and an interactive, digital brochure, visit

Here is the complete 2014-15 season program.

August 22: Rebirth Brass Band and Dumpstaphunk

August 23: Merle Haggard with Tift Merritt

September 9: "Tales from the Cosmic Ocean," an Evening of Yakshagana featuring Vidya Kolyur

September 13 and 14: Liz Magic Laser and Wendy Osserman, "From North Carolina to South Korea"

September 16: Youssou N'Dour

September 25 and 26: Dorrance Dance, "The Blues Project" featuring Michelle Dorrance and Toshi Reagon

September 28: Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, Manfred Honeck, conductor and director, with Valentina Lisitsa, piano

October 1 and 2: "The 1910s," Taylor Mac

October 8: Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis

October 10: The Robert Cray Band

October 11: Shabana Azmi, "Perilous Crossings"

October 22: Gabriel Kahane, "The Ambassador"

November 6 and 7: "Curlew River," Benjamin Britten's Homage to the Japanese Noh Play

November 14: Mipso and Steep Canyon Rangers

November 16: Dianne Reeves

November 21: Batsheva Dance Company

November 22: Milton Nascimento

December 6 and 7: "The Nutcracker," Carolina Ballet

December 8: Jazz for the Holidays, N.C. Jazz Repertory Orchestra with RenÉ Marie

January 29 and 30, 2015: National Theatre of Scotland and Royal Shakespeare Company present Dunsinane

January 31 and February 1: The Mariinsky Orchestra with Valery Gergiev, conductor and artistic director, Behzod Abduraimov, piano, Denis Matsuev, piano

February 6: Audra McDonald

February 12: Kronos Quartet, "Prelude to a Black Hole and Beyond Zero: 1914-1918"

February 15: Irvin Mayfield and The New Orleans Jazz Orchestra

February 18: Shantala Shivalingappa, "Akasha"

February 20: Brian Blade and The Fellowship Band

February 24 and 25: Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater

February 26: A Conversation with Yo-Yo Ma and members of the Silk Road Ensemble. Free event

February 27: The Silk Road Ensemble with Yo-Yo Ma

March 5: "Britten's War Requiem" with Christine Goerke, soprano; Anthony Dean Griffey, tenor; Nathan Gunn, baritone; UNC Symphony Orchestra with Tonu Kalam; and Carolina Choir with Susan Klebanow

March 18: Pierre-Laurent Aimard and Tamara Stefanovich, pianos

March 20: Sanam Marvi, "Songs from the Land of Five Rivers"

March 25 and 26: John Luther Adams, "Veils and Vesper," installation with Brooklyn Rider. Free event

March 28: Brooklyn Rider

April 1: "Celebrating Congo," a public forum featuring Petna Ndaliko Katondolo, Ray Lema, and Faustin Linyekula. Free event

April 11 and 12: Hotel Modern and Arthur Sauer, "The Great War"

April 14 and 15: Martha Graham Dance Company

April 17: Dorothea RÖschmann, soprano, and Mitsuko Uchida, piano

April 19: Monteverdi -- Vespers of 1610, The Monteverdi Choir and English Baroque Soloists with Sir John Eliot Gardiner, conductor

April 21: Wendy Whelan, "Restless Creature"


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