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April Issue 2004

Francis Marion University in Florence, SC, to host 27th-Annual Art's Alive Festival, April 24, 2004

Francis Marion University in Florence, SC, will play host to the 27th-Annual Art's Alive Festival on Sat., Apr. 24, 2004.

The festival will take place from 10am-5pm, rain or shine, and is free and open to the public. The event is a celebration of the visual and performing arts for the whole family, with simultaneous performances at six different venues on campus.

This year's featured attraction is The Embers, who will perform beach music on the main outdoor stage from noon until 1:30pm.

A variety of other musical groups will be performing throughout the day, including the Florence District One All-City Elementary Chorus, the After Six menšs quartet, the Pee Dee Gospel Workshop Choir, the Florence Darlington Strings, the Masterworks Choir Menís Chorus with soprano Peggy Baroody, and the South Florence High School Jazz Band, the Bruin Blues. Other musical performances will feature bluegrass by the Borrowed Time Band, classic rock, R&B and soul by The Woodys, and African and Caribbean drum and dance by EGBE Killimanjaro. Harpist Rebecca Nissen and pianist Benjamin Woods will also perform.

Theatre productions will include The Ransom of Red Chief by the Florence Little Theatre Schoolhouse Players, and A Land Beyond the River by Creative Arts Development. Storyteller, naturalist, and harmonica champ Doug Elliott will also entertain.

A number of dance groups will perform, including Dancing on Main, Kelley's Fine Arts, Midnight Riders, Patsy Hathcock Dance Studio, Performing Arts Academy, School of Dance Arts, South Carolina Dance Theatre, Coker Repertory Dance Company, Phat Pheet from Williams Middle School, and the Latta Dancers.

Performances for children will include music, juggling and comedy by acts such as the Fettucini Brothers, Buffalo Barfield and P. Doodle Possum, and Seaside Clown Cavalcade.

A multitude of hands-on activities for children will be available, including clay creations, colorful caterpillars, magnificent magnets and fingerprint fun. Sidewalk chalk art, face painting and balloon sculptures will also be featured.

Strolling the grounds will be Mr. Mime and Master Mini-Mime, as well as Miss Teen Florence 2004, Morgan Helms.

Visual art of every description will be demonstrated and on display at the Hyman Fine Arts Center, including chair caning, sweetgrass basket-making, weaving, woodcarving, portrait sculpture, raku pottery, origami, and caricature art.

Visitors to the festival may bring a picnic lunch, or purchase food from a variety of food vendors sure to suit all tastes.

This project is funded in part by the Florence Regional Arts Alliance and the South Carolina Arts Commission, which receives support from the National Endowment for the Arts. Major sponsors include Adams Outdoor Advertising, WBTW News 13, and Cumulus Broadcasting.

For more information, contact the FMU Office of Community Relations at 843/661-1225.

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