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Levine Center for the Arts Community Festival

Mint Museum UPTOWN

Saturday, May 21

10:00AM - 6:00PM

Admission: Free

In a first-of-its-kind collaboration, the entire community is invited to the Levine Center for the Arts to enjoy a FREE festival. #LongLiveArts

All three Levine Center for the Arts museums—Mint Museum Uptown, Bechtler Museum of Modern Art; and Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture—will open their galleries for FREE access during regular museum hours.

Docents from all three museums will be offering FREE community tours. Food trucks will be on hand along Tryon Street. And look for FREE interactive activities at all three locations.

The festival is made possible by the THRIVE Fund, administered by Foundation For The Carolinas.

Beginning at 6 p.m., settle down for a picnic to enjoy a free plazacast of the Charlotte Symphony’s Romeo & Juliet (performance begins at 7:30 p.m., and the Friday, May 20th Symphony performance will also be simulcast on the plaza screen for the public). The Symphony teams up with soprano Melinda Whittington, Charlotte Ballet, and UNC-Charlotte’s Department of Theatre to tell Shakespeare’s timeless tale. Tchaikovsky, Prokofiev, and Gounod rule this Shakespeare tribute.


MC Moira Quinn

10AM - 10:10AM: Welcome, Festival Information and Activity Overview

LOCATION: Mainstage

Charlotte Symphony Guild’s Musical Petting Zoo

10AM - 12PM: Guild members will engage children with a hands-on introduction to the instruments of the orchestra.  

LOCATION: Creativity Caravan 

Bechtler Museum Art Activities

10AM - 3PM: Create Your Own Eames Paper Elephant - This activity corresponds to the Bechtler’s 4th floor exhibition, ‘The House That Modernism Built.’ Use paper stencils, colors, tape and scissors to create a 3-D paper elephant based off of designers Ray and Charles Eames’ ‘Eames Molded Plywood Elephant’ produced in the 1940’s. – and - Design a Stamp -Explore the process of printmaking by designing and creating your own stamp using foam, wood, and glue. Ink your unique stamp and create a print using your design! 

LOCATION: Creativity Caravan 

Portrait Painting Demo with Gordon James

10:15AM - 11AM: As part of our pre-event activities meet local oil painter and portrait artist Gordon James. Watch and listen to his process as he works from a live model. 

LOCATION: Live Art Circle 

Drum Circle with Drums4Life

11:15AM - 12PM: A drum circle is a group of people arranged in a circle experiencing the spontaneous creation of music on a variety of drums and percussion instruments. Because a circle has no beginning and no end, the agreement to connect in a circle allows energy to circulate from one person to the next. Kojo Bey, founder of Drums 4 Life has been performing and teaching African drumming as a healing art for 20 years. He has facilitated drum circles at Fortune 500 companies and for students at all levels. He conducts on-going drum circles to support humanitarian efforts around the world.  

LOCATION: Mainstage

Portrait Paint Off

11:30AM - 12:15PM: ROUND ONE

12:15PM - 12:30PM: Judging & Prizes Portrait Paint Off for Round One

1:45PM - 2:30PM: ROUND TWO

2:30PM - 2:45PM: Judging & Prizes Portrait Paint Off for Round Two

Bring YOUR favorite supplies – pencil, pastel, pen or brush and join us for two rounds of an all ages, all levels, all media - Portrait Paint-Off! Working from live volunteer models you have 45-minutes to create your masterpiece. A limited number of easels and stools, paper and pencils will be available so bring a lawn chair or a cushion and sketch or paint to the sounds of live entertainment on our Long Live Arts Festival mainstage.  Judges will choose one Adult and one Youth winner for each Round.  Prizes will be creatively cool swag from the Bechtler, Gantt Center and Mint Museum Gift Shops and will include a Levine Center for the Arts Guest Pass. 

LOCATION: Live Art Circle 

Blue Moon Puppets

11:30AM - 1:30PM: Puppeteers will mingle with the crowd for a hilarious time. Puppetry at its most basic, interactive and fun! 


Introducing – Adam Patwa, The Arts Guy

12PM - 12:15PM

LOCATION: Mainstage

Free Guided Tours

12PM - 12:30PM

1PM - 1:30PM

2PM - 2:30PM

LOCATION: At the Bechtler, Gantt Center and Mint Museum

Africano Campbell

12:30PM - 1PM: Shidaun Campbell, popularly known as "Africano" is a native of Charlotte (NC). He A renowned dancer, spoken word poet, vocal percussionist and visionary, he has opened for artists such as Big Boi, Cornell West, Nikki Giovanni, Rakim, and the Cold Crush Brothers. He also performed with Kenny Leon’s True Colors Theater Company, Deeply Rooted Dance Theater in Chicago, performed at venues such as BAM Cafe, Bergen Theater, La MaMa Theater, the Universal Zulu Nation's 41st Anniversary and the legendary Apollo Theater. He believes in constructively using the arts as a vehicle to bridge the gap between cultures, nations and generations.  

LOCATION: Mainstage

Caroline Calouche & Company

1:15PM - 2:15PM: Charlotte’s only aerial and contemporary dance company and school is dedicated to inspiring people of diverse backgrounds to explore beyond their boundaries through performance and education.  A resident company of the Blumenthal Performing Arts Center they are bringing inspirational and entertaining gravity-defying dance to South Tryon. 

LOCATION: Creativity Caravan 

Mint Museum Art Activity

2PM - 5PM: Sun Prints: Cameraless Photography - The activity corresponds to the “Here and Now: Eighty years of Photography” at the Mint Museum. By placing objects on special paper and exposing the paper to sunlight, early photographers created blue images, called cyanotypes or sun prints. We will arrange feathers, leaves, keys or anything with a well-defined shape directly onto a piece of sun-print paper to make our own. 

LOCATION: Creativity Caravan 

Conscious Co-Creation with Micaila Milburn Thomas

2:30PM - 3PM: Her creations as a singer/songwriter and spoken word artist - are the voiced expression of her spirit’s vision of the world as a better and more beautiful place.  Join her to co-create sounds that cross cultural boundaries and musical genres, are socially conscious,  get to the heart of the matter and are just plain fun. 

LOCATION: Mainstage

Family Painting Event with Artist Cathay Dawkins

3PM - 5PM: The Levine Center for the Arts is a great place to become inspired!  In this class everyone will receive step-by-step instruction from Certified Art Instructor, Artist Cathay Dawkins. He is very patient and encouraging so beginners to experts of all ages are welcome to participate. Materials will be provided and space is limited to 30 participants.  

LOCATION: Live Art Circle 

Dancehall Mashup with Soumayah Consuela Nanji

3:15PM - 4PM: Experience Dancehall, the premier urban dance style of Jamaica!! In this beginner level class for all ages you will learn some basic of dancehall movement and choreography. This is a class that is sure to have you dancing like a yardie in no time. Soumayah began her journey in Caribbean dance at the age of 5 performing in the Atlanta Caribbean Festival parade. Her other credits include teaching and performing at Cumbe, Dance 411, Gifted En Movement Dance Theater, Atlanta Wind down Wednesdays, and Miami Dade College.  

LOCATION: Mainstage

Tenya Colemon, Jazz Vocalist

4:15PM - 4:45PM: A local and regional favorite, Tenya’s vocal stylings are born from a homogenous infusion of Mississippi blues and traditional jazz at its peak. The sultry of mauve and indigo meets the pink of Flamingos flying to places near and far. Close your eyes and experience Tenya! 

LOCATION: Mainstage

Salsa Dancing with Rossano Fore

5PM - 6PM: Come learn the steps and start dancing with Rossano! A student of the arts, Rossano loves acting as well as singing and dancing. He is all about human beings expressing themselves through various art forms and is proficient in teaching Afro-Cuban, Salsa, Cha-Cha, Bachata and Merengue.

LOCATION: Mainstage