Arts International is Saturday, downtown
Arts International will be held on Saturday, April 9, noon until 6 p.m. on the 100 and 200 blocks of South Dargan Street (FMU Performing Arts Center, grounds, and S. Dargan Street) Admission is free. This annual outdoor festival is hosted and sponsored by Francis Marion University and the City of Florence. Additional sponsors include Honda of South Carolina, NanYa, the Florence Convention & Visitor’s Bureau, and Pepsi.
There will be three stages with performing artists: The Concert Stage at 100 South Dargan St: • The Malpass Brothers at 1 p.m. and again at 3 p.m. The Malpass Brothers, Taylor and Christopher, perform traditional country music which they say is the real deal. Their goal is to see this music revived because every song portrays life’s joys, heartaches, problems and happiness.
It comes from the heart and has depth and soul, says Christopher. • The Pachanga Latin Band will perform at 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. The International Stage, at the BB&T Amphitheater, FMU Performing Arts Center will feature: • Bichini Bia Congo Congolese Dance and Drum at noon and 3 p.m. An authentic Congolese dance company, its members are trained in the technical and aesthetic elements of Congolese dancing, singing, instrumentation, and drumming, resulting in high-energy performances that provide complete musical entertainment experiences.
Last year marked 36 years of artistic excellence for Bichini Bia Congo which has been recognized as a powerful dance theater company and a major cultural influence in the mid-west and beyond. • The Drake Irish Dance will perform at 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. One of the most prestigious Irish Dance Schools in the United States, Drake Irish Dance was founded in 1990 in Atlanta, GA by Dublin, Ireland, native, Karl Drake. Since then, it has branched out establishing itself in five southern states and expanded into Mexico and China.
Drake Irish Dancers have a record of competitive achievements to include regional and national champions as well as world medal holders. • The Cirque-Tacular performs at 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. Cirque-Tacular is the fastest growing boutique circus troupe in the country, offering a thrilling, mind-boggling display of artistry and athleticism. Audiences are astounded over the star power delivering never-ending feats of thrilling acrobatic, aerial artistry and more, tinged with danger, comedy and heart-stopping, never-seen before artistry.
PAC Black Box Theatre will feature: • The Palmetto Bronze Handells at 1 p.m. Palmetto Bronze is an auditioned community handbell ensemble serving the Lowcountry of South Carolina. They ring a wide variety of music including transcriptions, hymn arrangements, patriotic music, folk songs, Broadway show tunes and original compositions written and/or arranged by many of the most prolific Handbell artists of our day.
• The Brazil Flavor Music performs at 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. Linda and Luiz Lins combines jazz fusion with the other rhythms, such as bossa nova, samba reggae, samba, soul and bolero. Their interpretations are passionate, heartfelt, and exciting. • Xin Jie & Sumire Worman, soprano and piano duo performs at 3 p.m. Xin Jie was born in Shenyang and graduated from the prestigious Shanghai Conservatory with a BA degree in voice performance and from the Hartt School of Music of the University of Hartford with a master’s level graduate diploma in voice performance.
Xin Jie was a finalist in the Metropolitan Opera Competition and has performed for audiences from New York to Atlanta and from China to Europe in many styles and in seven languages. Born in Tokyo, Japan, Sumire Worman started playing piano at the age of 3 and continued her studies in Switzerland and Canada from age 14.
She later obtained her bachelor of music degree in piano from The University of British Columbia, and her master of music degree in piano performance and literature from The University of Western Ontario, Canada. After graduating, she has performed solo and collaborative recitals in Japan. In addition, she taught piano lessons privately and translated master classes given by foreign pianists. Sumire is currently living in the U.S. and enjoys being on the music faculty at Francis Marion University.