Author Archives: mccauleyn

Cellist/Alumnus Wade Davis ’08 to Perform

The 2nd Monday Series at the College of Charleston School of the Arts will present a concert by cellist Wade Davis, a 2008 alumnus. An active solo and chamber performer, he has prepared for this concert a virtuosic collection of music by Francois Couperin, Gabriel Faure, Johann Sebastian Bach, plus others. Pianist Robin Zemp will join Davis on stage.

The concert will take place on Monday, April 10, at 7:30 p.m., at the Recital Hall of the Simons Center of the Arts, 54 Saint Philip St. General admission is $15 and $10 for all students with school I.D. Tickets can be purchased at the door, or reserved by emailing

Hear a clip of Davis performing.

Davis was born in New York in 1982. At the age of seven, he began studying the cello in the String Project at the University of South Carolina, in Columbia, S.C. After two years of studying privately with Ashley Gobbel, he began studying with Dr. Robert Jesselson, Professor of Cello at the University of South Carolina. Davis was the winner of the South Carolina Philharmonic Jr. Young Artist’s Prize in 1998 and the South Carolina All-State Orchestra Concerto Competition winner for 2001. His studies continued with Dr. Jesselson for eight years until his graduation in the inaugural class of 2001 at the Governor’s School for the Arts and Humanities. He then attended the North Carolina School for the Arts in Winston-Salem. After two years of tutelage with Marcy Rosen, Davis transferred to the College of Charleston where he completed his undergraduate studies with Professor Natalia Khoma. He was named the ExCel Student of the Year for the School of the Arts at the College of Charleston in 2007. He then obtained both a Master’s Degree in Baroque Cello Performance and a Graduate Performance Degree in Historical Cello from Peabody Conservatory of Johns Hopkins University, as a student of John Moran.

Davis is an active solo and chamber performer in Baltimore, Md., and his newest project is an Early Music group called S’amusant in which he plays baroque cello. Recent performances include a fundraiser concert for the Westchester Oratorio Society’s Annual Gala in Westchester, N.Y., a concert engagement at Baltimore’s Walters Art Gallery featuring the world-premiere of “A Valediction of Weeping,” a new work written for the ensemble by Baltimore-based composer John Belkot, and pre-Evensong recital at St. David’s Episcopal Church in Roland Park.

When Davis is not performing he spends his time teaching for the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra OrchKids program. He was published in Early Music America for the article “Seeing Ourselves in Early Music: Working for Diversity in the Field.” Davis writes “It is so meaningful to me as I think on upcoming events to not only to be teaching these children but to also have the opportunity to experience of being black in the world of classical music onstage, side-by-side with them. It is an incredible privilege to be showing classical audiences that myself and the next generation of young black musicians are thriving and will continue to strive for increased diversity in the field.”

Collaborative Music Series to Present Concert of 21st Century Composers

Magnetic South, a collaborative project between the Charleston Symphony Orchestra (CSO) and the College of Charleston Department of Music, will present its second contemporary classical music concert to Charleston audiences during the 2016-2017 season.

The spring concert, “Ambiguous Symmetries,” is an evening of music from 21st century composers and includes Festino Notturno by Mario Davidovsky, As We Do, an Etude for Mixed Ensemble by Kurt Rohde, and Deep Water by John Allemeier, as well as a performance of the winning composition from a Call for Scores administered by the College of Charleston’s Music Department; the winning piece, is Sift by Connor Elias Way, a new work that masterfully treats musical texture and instrumental color to create a slowly unfolding narrative inspired by Renaissance vocal music. 

College of Charleston faculty member Yiorgos Vassilandonakis and CSO Music Director Ken Lam will conduct the Charleston Symphony Orchestra. Yuriy Bekker is concertmaster.

The “Ambiguous Symmetries” concert will take place on Friday, April 7, 2017, at 7:30pm at the Cathedral of St. Luke and St. Paul, 126 Coming Street, Charleston, SC 29403. Tickets are $25.00 for adults and $10.00 for students and can be purchased at the door, by calling (843) 723-7528, ext. 110, or at

About Magnetic South:

Magnetic South is an innovative partnership between the Charleston Symphony Orchestra (CSO) and the College of Charleston Department of Music. It combines the resources of the two institutions to present contemporary classical music in Charleston in an informative context. The goal of the Magnetic South partnership is to bring to the audiences of the Lowcountry, including students at the College, masterworks of the 20th and 21st centuries along with important new works by living composers. The concerts, performed by CSO musicians and conducted by College of Charleston faculty member Yiorgos Vassilandonakis, feature carefully selected works from a variety of aesthetic directions and styles to represent the panorama of the music of our time. Magnetic South was co-founded in 2012 by Vassilandonakis, fellow faculty member Edward Hart and CSO concertmaster and Principal Pops conductor, Yuriy Bekker.

CofC Theatre to Stage Tony Award/Pulitzer Prize-winning musical ‘Rent’

Presented by the College of Charleston’s department of theatre and dance, Rent is a multiple award-winning musical based loosely on Giacomo Puccini’s opera La Boheme. With music, lyrics and book by Jonathan Larson, this rock musical shares the story of eight impoverished artistic friends struggling to survive bohemian life in Manhattan’s East Village in the late 1980s/early 1990s. The group’s dreams, losses and love stories weave through the musical’s narration to paint a stunningly raw and emotional portrait of life at the end of the millennium in a gritty world being torn apart by drugs, HIV/AIDS, social tension and political unrest. Yet, through all of that darkness, it offers a positive outlook on life and living that resonates with everyone.

The production will run Thursday, April 6 through Tuesday, April 11, 2017. Curtain times will be 7:30 p.m., except the Sunday show at 2:00 p.m. only. Performances will take place at the Emmett Robinson Theatre in the Simons Center for the Arts, 54 Saint Philip St. Admission is $20 for general public; $15 for senior citizens College of Charleston employees and non-College of Charleston students; $12 for College of Charleston students. Tickets can be purchased at or by calling (843) 953-6306. This production contains mature thematic material including drugs, sexuality, and some adult language. Discretion is advised.

Following its off-Broadway run and a Pulitzer Prize win, the Rent premiered on Broadway at the Nederlander Theatre in April 1996 and ran for 12 years, having presented over 5,000 performances. Winner of four Tony Awards, including Best Musical, Best Score, Best Book and Best Featured Actor, “Rent” is the eleventh longest-running Broadway show. During its 20th Broadway-opening anniversary last year, a national tour was launched in celebration.

The College’s production is directed by theatre faculty member Todd McNerney with musical direction by guest artist Justin Wham and choreography by adjunct dance faculty member Jessica Cerovic.

The score features a number of famous songs, including “Seasons of Love,” “No Day But Today,” “Rent,” and “La Vie Boheme.” A five-piece rock band will perform with the show. 

Armenian-American Sergei Babayan to Perform Season Finale of Piano Series

Sergei Babayan
Photo: Marco Borggreve

World renowned pianist and winner of the Cleveland, Hamamatsu, and Scottish international competitions, Armenian-American pianist Sergei Babayan will perform the final concert in the 2016-2017 season of the International Piano Series at the College of Charleston School of the Arts. Hailed for his emotional intensity, bold energy and remarkable levels of color, Babayan brings a deep understanding and insight to a stylistically diverse repertoire, which includes a performance history of 54 concertos. Le Figaro has praised his “unequaled touch, perfectly harmonious phrasing and breathtaking virtuosity.” Babayan’s program will include an impressive body of repertoire featuring works by J.S. Bach, Franz Liszt, Claude Debussy, Frederic Chopin, Sergei Rachmaninov, Vladimir Ryabov, and Arvo Pärt.

The concert will take place on Tuesday, March 21, 2017 at 7:30 p.m., in the Sottile Theatre, 44 George St. General admission is $20 and free for students and faculty/staff. Tickets may be purchased online at, at the door, by emailing, or by calling (843) 953-6315. 

Babayan will also offer a master class, free and open to the public on Wednesday, March 22, from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., on the Sottile Theatre stage. Students from the Music Department at the College of Charleston will perform.

Sergei Babayan has collaborated with such conductors as Yuri Temirkanov, Neeme Järvi, Hans Graf, David Robertson, Tugan Sokhiev and Kazimierz Kord among others. Over the years he has performed with Valery Gergiev numerous times to great critical acclaim, including appearances at the international festival “Stars of the White Nights,” the Moscow Easter Festival, the Barbican with Gergiev conducting the London Symphony Orchestra, St Petersburg’s Mariinsky Theatre, the Great Hall of the Moscow Conservatoire, the Théâtre des Champs Élysées in Paris, the Salzburg Festival and the Rotterdam Philharmonic-Gergiev Festival where Babayan was Artist-in-Residence.

Babayan performs with the world’s most prominent orchestras, including the London Symphony, the Cleveland Orchestra, the Mariinsky Orchestra, the Warsaw Philharmonic, the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, the Orchestre National de Lille, the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and the New World Symphony.

Learn more about Babayan and watch a video.

Simons Medal of Excellence to Be Awarded to Peter Pennoyer

The Historic Preservation and Community Planning Program in the College of Charleston School of the Arts will present the Albert Simons Medal of Excellence to Peter Pennoyer for outstanding work in design, historic preservation, and education.

A lecture by Pennoyer about his career and experiences will take place on Thursday, March 16, 2017, at 6:00 p.m., at the Recital Hall in the Simons Center for the Arts, 54 Saint Philip St. Admission is free and open to the public. A reception will follow.

Peter Pennoyer is a passionate and dedicated advocate for the relevance of traditional and classical architecture in contemporary practice. He established his firm in 1990 and it has since grown to include four partners, fifty associates, and four interior designers. Pennoyer has followed an unusual path in his career as an architect and historian. From his education at Columbia University in the early days of Post Modernism, to his first independent and modern commissions for the Warhol Factory and Keith Haring’s Pop Shop on Lafayette Street, Pennoyer emerged with a conviction that his firm could serve as a laboratory for the practice of architecture inspired by history.  He has made the study of history the generating force of his firm and believes that by mastering the interpretation of architectural history, he and his colleagues design projects that are both modern and classical.

Through scholarship, education, and advocacy, Pennoyer seeks to further enrich the discourse of architecture today. With his co-author, Anne Walker, he has written four award-winning monographs on architects of the first half of the 20st century: The Architecture of Delano & Aldrich, The Architecture of Warren & Wetmore, The Architecture of Grosvenor Atterbury, and New York Transformed: The Architecture of Cross & Cross. Their lectures on their monographs, architectural history, and urban design have reached audiences across the country and abroad. In addition, Pennoyer and Walker are adjunct professors in the Department of Urban Design and Architecture Studies at New York University where they teach a seminar that emphasizes the civic potential and understanding of architectural history in New York City.

Pennoyer uses his scholarship and knowledge of New York City as a springboard to advocate for positions and designs he feels reflect the values of his firm. He actively participates in the civic dialogue among neighborhood groups, professionals, and government agencies, and takes positions for architecture that is contextual and respectful to the fabric of the city.

The Albert Simons Medal of Excellence was established in honor of the twentieth anniversary of the College’s School of the Arts. Albert Simons pioneered the teaching of art at the College in 1924, with a longstanding course in art history. Years later, a general department of fine arts was established and grew to become the School of the Arts, which is on the cusp of its twenty-fifth anniversary and currently offers studies in seven major areas. The Simons Medal honors individuals who have excelled in one or more of the areas in which Simons excelled, including civic design, architectural design, historic preservation and urban planning. Learn more at

Faculty Vocal Virtuosos in Concert, March 13

The 2nd Monday Series at the College of Charleston School of the Arts will present a concert featuring virtuoso singers. Professors from the College’s music department will perform a variety of works including arias by J.S. Bach, Erich Korngold, Robert Schumann and Victor Herbert, in addition to selections from Franz Schubert’s Schwanegesang.

The performers will include sopranos Judith Acres, Amanda Castellone, Deanna McBroom, Kim Powell and Kayleen Sánchez; tenor Robert Taylor; with Robin Zemp on piano, Julia Harlow on harpsichord, Dan Urbanowicz on viola d’amore and viola, and Tim O’Malley on viola da gamba. Each artist-scholar carries an impressive range of performance and teaching experience; the concert offers a unique opportunity for students and the public to see them perform on stage together. 

The 2nd Monday Series presents monthly concerts featuring College of Charleston faculty and friends. The Monday, March 13, 2017 performance will take place at 7:30 p.m. at the Recital Hall in the Simons Center for the Arts, 54 Saint Philip St. General admission is $15 and $10 for all students. Tickets can be purchased by emailing, by calling (843) 953-6315, or at the door.  

CofC Alumni Founders of Redux Studios Return for Exhibit + Panel Discussion

Recognizing a mutual need, a group of fresh graduates from the College of Charleston in 2002 formed the nonprofit organization Redux Contemporary Art Center, to create a venue where local artists could produce and exhibit their work. Now in its 15th year these founding artists, along with alumni who were pivotal to the early development of the space, will create a collaborative group exhibition embracing the future of the organization – on the verge of its relocation and continuing growth. Founders Farewell will be the final exhibition at the original location, which has been home to Redux since the beginning.

Accompanying the exhibition is a Redux Founders Panel Discussion sponsored by the College of Charleston School of the Arts and its Departments of Studio Art, and Art & Architectural History. Panelists will include members of the College’s alumni founders: Bob Snead, Seth Gadsden, Julie Henson, Luke Vehorn, Bill Bolton, Seth Curcio, Dorothy Netherland and Darby Long. The discussion will focus on their collective efforts in founding the art center and their post-graduate careers.

The panel discussion will take place on Tuesday, March 14, 2017, from 5:00 to 6:00pm at the Simons Center for the Arts, room 309. The opening reception of the Founders Farewell exhibition will follow, from 7:00 to 9:00pm at Redux Studios, 136 Saint Philip St. Both events are FREE and open to the public.

More information about the Founders events and artists

History of Redux


Chapel Moves! Dance Concert Choreographed by Students

Presented by the Department of Theatre and Dance, “Chapel Moves!” is an annual recital of original dances by choreographed and performed by students. These future professional choreographers and aspiring dance artists will showcase pieces selected for inclusion in the American College Dance Association’s southeastern regional conference.

Exploring how the body, mind, and spirit can be challenged and influenced by the world around us, the choreographers have created an evening of dance showcasing the diversity and strength of the dance students. Many of the choreographers have challenged their casts with technical movement phrases and complex music, pushing the performance of the dance pieces both physically and emotionally. 

DETAILS: The performance will run March 23-26, 2017 and will take place at the Chapel Theatre, 172 Calhoun St. Showtimes are at 7:30 p.m., except the show on Saturday, March 25 at 2:00 p.m. only. Two performances will take place on Sunday, March 26 at 2:00 p.m and 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $15 for the general public; $10 for senior citizens and College of Charleston students and employees. Tickets can be purchased at online, by emailing, by calling (843) 953-6306 or at the door. 

Marina Lomazov to Perform for International Piano Series

Marina Lomazov has established herself as one of the most passionate and charismatic performers on the concert scene today. Following prizes in the Cleveland International Piano Competition, William Kapell International Piano Competition, Gina Bachauer International Piano Competition, and Hilton Head International Piano Competition, she has given performances throughout North America, South America, China, England, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Austria, Bulgaria, Ukraine, Russia, Japan and in nearly all of the fifty states in the United States. 

On February 28, Lomazov will bring her talent to the College of Charleston International Piano Series to perform “Kreisleriana” by Robert Schumann, Piano Sonata in F Major by W.A. Mozart and Piano Sonata by Rodion Shchedrin. Listen to a sample of Lomazov in performance.

Before moving to the United States in 1990, Lomazov studied at the Kiev Conservatory where she became the youngest First Prize Winner at the all-Kiev Piano Competition. She holds degrees from the Juilliard School and the Eastman School of Music, the latter bestowing upon her the highly coveted Artist’s Certificate – an honor the institution had not given a pianist for nearly two decades. Learn more about Lomazov.

DETAILS:  The concert will take place on Tuesday, Feb. 28 at 7:30 p.m. at the Sottile Theatre, 44 George St. General admission is $20, and admission is free for all students and College of Charleston employees. Purchase tickets online, by emailing, by calling (843) 953-6315, or at the door. 

Master classes with professional artists give piano students at the College opportunities for one-on-one instruction. Lomazov will offer a master class, free and open to the public, on Wednesday, March 1 at 10:00 a.m., at the Sottile Theatre. Students from the College’s Department of Music will perform.

CofC Children’s Opera Generously Supported by Arts, etc. Organization

The 3 Little Pigs sing happily together before the Big Bad Wolf arrives in the College of Charleston Opera production of Mozart’s music arranged for children.

The College of Charleston Opera Program, directed by Professor David Templeton, features voice majors who stage operas and musical revues for the public. In addition, the Opera Program infuses the arts and an appreciation of opera into local schools. Over the past seven years, they have performed over 100 performances of children’s stories such as Billy Goats Gruff, which addresses bullying, and Little Red Riding Hood, which addresses lying and not talking to strangers. By the end of spring 2016, the Opera Program had reached more than 40,000 students, many of whom attend underserved schools in local communities.

The Opera Program’s children’s opera initiative receives funding from Arts, etc., an organization of Kiawah and Cassique women committed to supporting the arts. The group’s main fundraiser is the acclaimed Kiawah Art & House Tour, which raised over $80,000 last year. The 2017 Tour will take place on Friday, April 7. Tickets are currently for sale and proceeds will benefit the College’s Opera Program and other arts opportunities for children. 

A public performance of this year’s children’s opera, “The Three Little Pigs,” will be presented as part of the Piccolo Spoleto Festival on Tuesday, May 30, 2017, at the Charleston Public Library (Downtown). To learn more about events by the Opera Program and other College of Charleston School of the Arts events, view the 2017 spring calendar of concerts, theatre and dance performances, exhibits, scholarly lectures, and much more. Also, follow the School on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter.