HICKORY — Full Circle Arts (FCA) announced the opening of their new exhibition “Abstractions” on Thursday, July 25 from 6-8 p.m. 

Artists from around the area have presented a variety of abstract and non-objective artwork, which will excite the mind and appreciation of all public viewers. Abstract art can express emotions, make alterations in the perception of the natural world and create expressions of reality in different forms.

The exhibition judge is Mark Poteat, Coordinator for Visual Arts at Western Piedmont Community College. FCA also provides the opportunity for visitors to choose their own favorite by voting for the People’s Choice Award presented at the end of the show for the artwork which personally speaks to them.

While attending the exhibition of abstract art, visitors may also visit a special exhibition of the work of three new exhibiting members: Rose Mary Cheek, Hannah Grace and Ernest Sills showing in the brick gallery.

Refreshments will be served at the reception. FCA is a non-profit artists’ cooperative located in downtown Hickory, 42-B Third Street NW.  More information about FCA, classes, membership or other upcoming events is available at 828-322-7545. You may also write to Full Circle Arts, PO Box 3905, Hickory NC 28603, email gallery@fullcirclearts.org or visit www.fullcirclearts.org.

Benefit concert to be held in Newton

HICKORY — On Saturday, July 27 at 7:30 p.m., the Old Post Office Playhouse will present “Strength in Song,” a benefit concert featuring music from Chelsea West and Vincent Agrusa. 

All proceeds from this concert will go to Headstrong, an organization that aims to provide free mental health services to post 9/11 combat veterans. 

West is a native of Newton. She graduated from Mars Hill University (MHU) with an English degree, and is currently pursuing a double Masters of Divinity and English with a writing focus. She started singing in elementary school and she has been involved in numerous school, church, and community choirs over the years.

Agrusa is from Franklin, and started playing piano at age 10. He performs with school, community, and church groups regularly. He also graduated from MHU with a degree in piano performance. He will be attending the University of South Carolina in the fall to pursue a Masters of Arts in Piano Performance.

West and Agrusa have been friends since 2011 when they were both freshmen at MHU. They were in choir together through college and have performed together in the Southern Appalachian Chamber Singers. 

“Strength in Song” explores various ways that people can find strength. Incorporating both vocal and piano music, the program will include music dealing with three major things people draw strength from. The music will include spirituals, classical piano and classical vocal repertoire focusing on faith, love and nature.

This cause is especially close to West's heart. In 2014, she lost her older brother, a Marine, to suicide. Since then she has been working to draw attention to the issue of mental health support for soldiers and veterans. 

This show will be in our Black Box Theatre with general seating. Tickets are now on sale, and are $20 per person. Purchase your seats today by calling 828-464-6583 or online at www.thegreenroomtheatre.org. The Old Post Office Playhouse is located at 10 S Main Avenue in downtown Newton.

Valdese summer concerts continue

VALDESE — Valdese Family Friday Nights Summer Concert series will feature the Tony Bailey Band this Friday, July 26 beginning at 7 p.m., located in the Town Parking area.

Tony Bailey’s country style is universal, and he evokes the emotions and memories of days gone by and inspires his audience to see life in all of its glories — little or great. Bailey’s music can be found at www.reverbnation.com/tonybailey and on his official website at www.tonybaileymusic.com or visit his Facebook page for links.

Concessions will be available and provided by Habitat for Humanity Volunteers. Downtown shops will remain open later for visitors to shop. For further information about events in Valdese and the full Family Friday Night’s Concert Schedule, go online to www.visitvaldese.com.

Trade Alley Art plans art reception

HICKORY — The public is invited to the Waterfall Reception at Trade Alley Art featuring music artist Thomas Aaron Garlow on Friday, August 9. 

The free event runs from 6:30-8:30 p.m., and celebrates his soon to be released CD, Waterfall, as well as the announcement of the winning artwork entry for its cover.

Garlow is an award winning, national recording artist whose work is described as smooth and powerful with a heavy Appalachian and rural eastern North Carolina influence. The album is due for release in early 2020.

Garlow will perform original music from his CD and will award prizes to the winner and the two runners-up. Local artists were invited to enter the competition. The winning artwork, along with other entries, will be displayed and will be available for sale along with the work of other gallery artists and artisans.

Wine and light hors d’oeuvres will be served.  For more information, visit www.facebook.com/tradealleyart/ or www.tradealleyart.com.

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