UNC Asheville’s Fall 2018 Cultural Events Series will feature lectures, classes and concerts by the Tibetan monks of the Drepung Loseling Monastery, and by the McIntosh County Shouters.
In addition to a 7 p.m. performance on Oct. 25, the monks will offer lectures and lead the creation of sand mandalas as part of their weeklong Mystical Arts of Tibet residency on campus Oct. 22-26. The McIntosh County Shouters will lead a master class about the “ring shout” – one of the oldest surviving African-American performance traditions in North America – and perform in concert on Nov. 15.
“UNC Asheville’s long-running Cultural Events Series is developed by faculty and staff working together to add new elements to Asheville’s rich performance arts scene and to our liberal arts experience for students,” says Cori Anderson, who coordinates the series as part of her work for the university’s Events & Conferences Office. “Our goals are to connect people through arts and cultural programming, to inspire people through performances and lectures, and to potentially ignite the spark that might help start up difficult but needed conversations. We believe the arts and cultural programming can help us understand each other better and fear each other less.”
Mystical Arts of Tibet Residency
The Mystical Arts of Tibet is a world tour endorsed by His Holiness the Dalai Lama to promote world peace and healing by sharing Tibet’s sacred performing and visual arts with modern audiences. The residency offers an opportunity to witness one of the world’s most ancient sacred traditions presented by a group of monk artists for whom these traditions are a way of life. The artists are monks from Drepung Loseling Monastery, which has been re-established in exile in South India.
All events are free and open to everyone except where indicated.
Monday, Oct. 22 – Opening ceremony for start of sand mandala. 1 p.m., Highsmith Student Union.
Tuesday, Oct. 23 – Ancient Art of Healing, lecture, 11:50 a.m., Lipinsky Auditorium.
Wednesday, Oct. 24 –
- Death and Dying, lecture, 11 a.m., Lipinsky Auditorium.
- Symbolism of the Sand Mandala, lecture, 7 p.m. Sherrill Center, Ingles Mountain View Room.
Thursday, Oct. 25 – Ticketed concert: Sacred Music, Sacred Dance. 7 p.m., Lipinsky Auditorium. Tickets, available online or at the door, are $15 general admission; free for UNC Asheville students with OneCard; $5 for all other students and for UNC Asheville employees; $10 for OLLI members and UNC Asheville alumni. CLICK FOR TICKETS
Friday, Oct. 26 – Closing ceremony for sand mandala, 1 p.m., Highsmith Student Union.
Hours to observe the monks creating a sand mandala – Monday after opening ceremony until 6 p.m., Tuesday & Wednesday, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m., Thursday 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Hours for community sand mandala – Participation in creating a smaller mandala, designed by UNC Asheville students, will be open to all. Hours will be the same as the large sand mandala, and volunteers will be on hand to help you learn how to use the same tools as the monks. The sand mandalas will be located in Highsmith Student Union.
McIntosh County Shouters
The ring shout – a fusion of dance, call-and-response-singing, and percussion with hand-clapping and sticks, is African in origin and was first described in detail by outside observers during the Civil War in the coastal regions of South Carolina and Georgia. The ring shout tradition was thought to have died out in second half of the 20th century, but in fact lived on in the small low country community of Bolden in McIntosh County, Georgia.
When the tradition became known to outsiders in 1980, the people of Bolden organized the performance group, the McIntosh County Shouters – to present authentic recreations of their community tradition that had been passed down from their enslaved forbears.
The McIntosh County Shouters performed in Washington, D.C. at the opening festival for the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, and at the John F. Kennedy Center and the Library of Congress. They also have received the prestigious National Heritage Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts, and a Governor’s Award in the Humanities in Georgia.
The concert takes place at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 15, in UNC Asheville’s Lipinsky Auditorium. Tickets, available online or at the door, are $15 general admission; free for UNC Asheville students with OneCard; $5 for all other students and for UNC Asheville employees; $10 for OLLI members and UNC Asheville alumni. CLICK FOR TICKETS
The master class is free and open to everyone, and will take place from 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 15 in Lipinsky Auditorium.
UNC Asheville’s Cultural Events Series receives support from Biltmore Farms Hotels, Blue Ridge Public Radio and Our State magazine. The Mystical Arts of Tibet residency is also co-sponsored by the National Endowment for the Humanities. For more information, contact the UNC Asheville Events & Conferences Office at email@example.com or 828.251.6853.