Chilton County Arts Festival to include jazz concert, ballet

The Chilton County Arts Council announces its annual event, the 2014 Chilton County Arts Festival, coming to the Clanton Conference and Performing Arts Center Nov. 1 and 2.

“The annual event has drawn sizeable crowds for the past three years, and we are offering even more reasons to attend this year than ever before,” Arts Council President Mary Schiermann said. “Just as in years past, we will have a large variety of local artists with their booths on the Exhibition Hall floor. You can come look at their work, see what they have for sale, and even pick their brain a little.

“There will be paintings, sculpture, pottery, jewelry, glass, woodwork and a lot more. There’s always a wonderful variety. Booths are still available for vendors, but they are going fast.”

Anyone interested in reserving one of the limited number of booths still available should contact festival chairman Art Hoyt at art.hoyt@nmfn.com.

In addition, this year’s Chilton County Arts Festival will also include live music and dance events in the Performing Arts Center. Mike Schiermann is coordinating those events for the Arts Council.

“First of all, we have a wonderful ballet performance from Anna Curtis and her students at Festival Ballet Arts,” Schiermann said. “They will be performing Act II from The Nutcracker, and if you have never seen them, you’re in for a real treat. You will be very surprised at the proficiency of her students. It’s just pure magic.”

Ballet performances will begin at 2 p.m. on Nov. 1 and 2. and last 30-40 minutes.

The festival will also include a jazz concert.

Local students nominated by their band directors will participate in a Jazz Improvisation Clinic from noon to 4 p.m. on Nov. 1, then perform later that day, at 5 p.m.

Helping with the clinic will be Chuck King, a professional working jazz musician, and Bryan Morgan, the assistant band director at Chilton County High School.

The students will learn “Basin Street Blues,” “St. Louis Blues” and “Take the ‘A’ Train.”

Then, part of the concert will be Schiermann’s band, CC Jazz, playing alongside the students for the three songs.

“We’ll let the kids show off their improv skills, while playing along with our band of local jazz musicians,” Schiermann said. “You are not going to want to miss this show. To see a young person get excited about playing that style of music, that’s the most tremendously exciting thing that I can experience.”

The rest of the concert, which Schiermann estimated would last about 45 minutes and include 10-15 songs, will be CC Jazz and a 10-member jazz choir, The Custom Blend, performing for the audience.

The Chilton County Arts Festival takes place Saturday, Nov. 1 and Sunday Nov. 2 from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. both days, at the Clanton Conference and Performing Arts Center, located on the Jefferson State Community College campus on Highway 145 in Clanton.

Admission to all events is free, as is parking.

For more information, contact the Arts Council at (205) 217-3027 or chiltoncountyartscouncil@hotmail.com.

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