Concerts, exhibits round out arts center’s summer
A plethora of concerts and exhibits are coming up at the Aiken Center for the Arts this summer.
Aiken Center for the Arts is located at 122 Laurens St. S.W.
For more information, call 803-641-9094 or visit www.aikencenterforthearts.org.
Now until Aug. 2, the art of Center’s students and faculty, as well as the art from the Center’s summer campers, will be hung in the galleries.
Hung in the Aiken Artist Guild Gallery is the work of Bill Updegraff.
Updegraff is a member of the Kentucky Watercolor Society, Indiana Watercolor Society and the Watercolor Society of Alabama, according the Aiken Artist Guild website.
He is a member with excellence of the South Carolina Watermedia Society.
Updegraff began painting more than 30 years ago.
His works are in private collections, corporate collections, and the permanent collection of the Sheldon Swope Gallery in Terre Haute, Indiana.
The artist has held solo shows in the Lander University Gallery, the McCormick Arts at Keturah Gallery, and the Greenwood Arts Council Gallery in South Carolina.
Updegraff has “held several watercolor classes and taught workshops over the past 20 years,” according to the Aiken Artist Guild website.
He currently is teaching watercolor classes in Greenwood, Anderson and McCormick.
For more information on the Guild, visit www.aikenartistguild.us.
For more information on Updegraff, visit www.upstudio23.com.
On July 31 at 7:30 p.m., classical guitarist Jeff Bianchi will give his one-hour concert.
The concert is part of his summer concert schedule in which he will also perform in Wyoming, Minnesota, Alabama and Georgia.
“I am very excited to have the opportunity to perform in Aiken and bring the classical guitar to a new audience,” Bianchi said. “I have always enjoyed playing in South Carolina. The audiences have always been fantastic and receptive to the guitar. Having the opportunity to come to Aiken will be a great addition to this year’s concert schedule.”
Tickets are $10 for members and $15 for non-members.
Bianchi has performed at the Rantucci International Guitar Festival, as well as the nationally-recognized Ithaca Guitar Festival.
A native of Williamson, New York, this guitarist began performing at weddings and cafes in his teens.
His concerts continued with his move to Atlanta in the summer of 2002.
From 2005 to 2007, Bianchi took a personal hiatus to tour nationally with country acts Young Guns and Chace Roberts.
On his return home, the musician resumed his solo performances. By 2009, he was touring throughout Georgia, playing in places such as Savannah, Tybee Island, Toccoa, Richmond, Duluth and Hartwell.
The positive reactions he received gave him a goal to take his music to a much wider audience, according to a release.
In February of 2010, Bianchi undertook his first cross-country solo tour.
Bianchi’s current repertoire includes a variety of works by Ferdinand Ignace Hinterleithner, Leo Brower, Fernando Sor and William Lovelady.
For more information on Bianchi, visit www.velvetguitar.com.
On Aug. 4., the Center’s summer camp exhibit will continue. The August Aiken Artist Guild exhibitor will be Colleen Morgan.
A free gallery opening reception will be on Aug. 7 from 6 to 8 p.m.
The exhibits will be on display until Aug. 30.
Last month, Morgan placed at the Aiken Artist Guild membership show.
A Lexington native, this photographer is the daughter of famed artists Danny and Mundina O’Driscoll.
“Spending the weekends going with them to art shows, I grew up surrounded by all different aspects of art, and with our Irish heritage came my love of nature. I dabbled in pen and ink, colored pencil, photography, poetry, writing, music and dance, finally settling on photography when my father gave me a Canon Rebel digital camera for my 16th birthday,” Morgan said via her website.
Her photographs have been displayed at Juniper Restaurant in Ridge Spring, The Neighbor’s Cafe in Batesburg and the Batesburg-Leesville Public Library, according to a release.
Morgan is also featured in the book “Signs of Life.”
For more information on Morgan, visit www.colleenmorganphotography.weebly.com.
On Aug. 8 at 7:30 p.m., award-winning pianists Susan Zhang and Zachary Hughes will perform.
Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 the day of the show.
“With their musical dynamism and powerful chemistry on stage, Hughes and Zhang bring to life a captivating program of Barber, Beethoven, Ravel, Stravinsky, Kapustin, Gershwin and Art Tatum,” as stated in a release.
Both are Southeastern Piano Festival alumni and played at the festival last month, according to the event’s website.
Zhang has been featured as a soloist with the South Carolina Philharmonic and the Atlanta Symphony Youth Orchestra, according to a release.
When she was 12, this female pianist made her orchestral debut with the Augusta Symphony.
She has performed nationwide and beyond in locations like Canada, China, Venezuela and Spain.
Among his other accolades, Hughes placed first in the 2011 Arthur Fraser International Concerto Competition, according to the Southeastern Piano Festival website.
Hughes is currently working on his bachelor’s degree in music, specializing in piano performance, at The Juilliard School. There, he has studied with Ann Holler, Fabio Parrini, Chih-Long Hu and Jerome Lowenthal.
He has performed with several orchestras, such as the South Carolina Philharmonic, and has performed solo in cities such as New York, Kyoto and Paris.
For more information on either artist, visit sepf.music.sc.edu/guest_artists/2014.
Stephanie Turner graduated from Valdosta State University in 2012.