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Concerns are mounting about the future of the UNC arts community as the national economy continues its downward spiral.""If you talk to anyone who manages a budget they'll tell you that they're worried"" said Emil Kang, UNC's Executive Director for the Arts. I'm included; we're worried.""According to the U.S. Department of Labor" the national unemployment rate has risen by 1.7 percent as 2.8 million jobs were lost in the past year. And in North Carolina the unemployment rate increased from 4.7 percent to 7 percent.With the decrease in jobs comes a decrease in disposable income" from which the arts community thrives.""The arts sector" like most sectors that are not financial markets were always lagging behind" Kang said. We are at the mercy of people's disposable income.""Because of the economy"" ticket sales and University endowment earnings are both expected to decrease though Carolina Performing Arts has yet to see any effects of the failing economy.Kang said the organization has generated $1.45 million this year compared to $1.1 million last year.""Unfortunately the arts are about six months behind"" he said. I think we are going to see a lot of worse news over the next couple of years.""Kang said the current economic state will be a factor in the planning of the organization's budget.""We're not immune to the economic impacts" but fortunately we've generated all or most of our revenue for this year" Kang said.Despite increased revenue for Kang's program, the economy has hurt the national arts community.Once-economically viable Broadway powerhouses like Hairspray"" and ""Legally Blonde"" announced October closing dates.But CPA and other local arts organizations could soon be impacted as UNC is expecting budget cuts as high as 5 percent" resulting in $25 million less than the University is currently receiving.CPA receives two-thirds of its funding from the Office of the Provost and one-third from tickets.Aaron Greenwald director of Duke Performances" said the economic crisis will prove to be a challenge for CPA because of its large size compared to the smaller Duke Performances.""You've got to feed it"" he said. Duke Performances is just an organization that requires less feeding.""Since Duke Performances receives all funding from the university" Greenwald said" they aren't currently worried about economic impacts.""We're playing with house money right now"" he said, adding that when funding runs out in four to five years, concerns for Duke Performances will arise.Greenwald said CPA is taking a risk by hosting more costly acts than Duke Performances, noting Duke's effort to keep tickets affordable.I have no doubt that the university and Emil" who's a phenomenal programmer and administrator will be able to surmount that" he said. But I can imagine that it keeps him up at night.""But Kang said decreasing the number of performances CPA hosts will not necessarily alleviate financial pressures.He said fewer acts brought to Memorial Hall limit earning power.""We can't really just turn off the spigot because it won't just shut off"" Kang said. I don't have a crystal ball. That doesn't mean that we're not going to be prudent and careful in our planning in the future.""Contact the Arts Editor at email@example.com.
Tom Allin knew since this summer that The Avett Brothers were going to be this year's first Homecoming act.But the trio told the Carolina Union Activities Board president they would only come on one condition: The show had to be students only.Well they got their wish.Now Seth and Scott Avett along with their stand-up bassist Bob Crawford are set to take the Memorial Hall stage Sunday in front of 1432 UNC students. The Homecoming performance is a joint effort between CUAB" the Carolina Athletic Association and Student Congress.""This weekend feels like such a homecoming for us as well"" said Seth Avett, the band's guitarist. We're excited about doing a show for the students.""Allin said The Avett Brothers were chosen as the Homecoming act because of their ability to use their heartfelt"" meaningful songs to connect with audiences.""I've never seen a band give so much in every single concert that they play" Allin said.And Seth Avett said he doesn't expect the energy in this show to be any different from others.He said the band brings the same intensity to an intimate show as they do to a show at the largest venue they've ever played.Each night is different. Every single night has its own personality its own memories its own spontaneity" Seth Avett said. I'm sure this one will be no different.""The Avett Brothers are North Carolina natives" currently residing in Concord.Avett said living in a small town in North Carolina has created a stability that is reflected in the band's music.Their newest album" ""The Second Gleam"" was ranked 10th on the Billboard Top Independent Albums chart in August.Though they've gained national attention, the band has been playing at local venues like Cat's Cradle, The Cave and Local 506 for about eight years.The energy is just so on the forefront and so everywhere" Seth Avett said. As soon as you pull into town" you can just feel the energy.""Adele Ricciardi" CUAB music committee chairwoman" said the band helps contribute to the type of diversity CUAB wants to bring this year.""We at CUAB do music nonstop and we kind of look for artists that are upcoming"" she said.Allin said The Avett Brothers also have a better name recognition than last year's Homecoming act, Augustana.It's kind of a name that you can just say and people can list off a number of their songs" he said. They're a style of music that doesn't come to UNC often" so I was excited when they did.""Seth Avett said the excitement" energy and electricity that a group of college students brings is priceless.And because of this he said" the group is just as excited to come to Chapel Hill as UNC students are to see The Avett Brothers perform.""It's always a pleasure to be there"" Seth Avett said.There's anticipation on both sides.""
Jim Ketch lectures students" plays jazz with them directs them and performs for them.Today he's just going to have lunch with them.Ketch along with his colleague Stephen Anderson from the UNC Department of Music and several students" will host ""Lunch with One: One Work of Art" One Expert" One Hour"" today at the Ackland Art Museum.It will be free for students after registering for a free membership to the museum.The program"" ""Jazz Takes a Leap: The Breakthrough Year of 1958"" is presented in conjunction with the museum's Circa 1958 exhibition, which explores art that emerged around the time of the museum's opening.Ketch said it was a period where jazz artists were looking for new avenues of expression.It's an interesting time in which there's sort of a culmination of two decades of really technical and virtuous advance of the music"" he said. It's kind of the advent of a whole new age of musical exploration.""Artists" who had previously played music based on set forms were looking for a more relaxed method of making music in the early 1960s" allowing them to improvise with greater flexibility.""If you think about the turbulent time of the 1960s" there was just a need to create different approaches to musical expression" Ketch said.Ketch and an ensemble will perform pieces that display this monumental shift from set form to free expression, using John Coltrane's fast-moving chords and Miles Davis' slow, cool music as examples.The lecture also will delve into the avant-garde movement, discussing the introduction of jazz without any rules or scales, and listening to the music of Ornette Coleman.The mobile jazz and the free jazz allowed us to realize that we could also draw from emotional expressive pallets rather than just harmonic" melodic and rhythmic palettes that had been previously used" Ketch said.Nic Brown, director of communications at the Ackland, said he was unsure about how many students would attend the lunch, as Fall Break officially starts a few hours later.Hopefully not everybody will have left for Fall Break yet"" Brown said.Despite the uncertainty of student attendance, the museum plans on hosting the lunch, using it to fulfil its duty of relating visual art to the entire campus.‘Lunch with One' is a way for us to bring people into the museum to have a connection in the museum other than just looking at art by yourself"" Brown said. It's important for us to incorporate the visual arts into the life of the whole University.""By getting the music department involved in the Circa 1958 series"" Brown said students are given a chance to explore more than just visual art at the Ackland.""It's a great chance to eat lunch in an art museum and hear from some of the best experts anywhere"" Brown said.
In high school Paarth Mehta had few opportunities to perform the traditional Indian dance he loves so much.But things have changed.Today Mehta is leading UNC's Tar Heel Raas Indian dance team to a nationwide Indian dance competition in Atlanta.Before Mehta came to UNC he said he rarely attended Navratri an Indian festival that celebrates the coming of the fall season.But once at UNC" he instantly came into a group of the same culture where he could dance and celebrate his heritage.""I felt like I knew I was doing something right"" he said.Mehta said he knows his team will be ready for competition this weekend, taking the values his traditional family has instilled to strive for success.It's become someone" do something make some money and that's your life" he said, adding that these values will fuel his energy on stage.The competition has three categories: Fusion, Bhangra and Raas Garba.Four teams will compete in each category and Tar Heel Raas will compete in the Raas Garba category against teams from Austin, Texas and Richmond, Va. and Atlanta.Raas Garba is the traditional dance of the Gujrat region of Western India.The dance differs from Bhangra, which comes from the nearby region of Punjab.There's a regional difference of course and then just the style is different as well"" Mehta said, noting how Raas Garba also uses music from Gujrat rather than Punjab.Most footwork performed by Bhangra dancers involves dancing by kicking their legs in front of their body, while Raas Garba steps are mostly done below the waist.But this weekend when Tar Heel Raas competes, there will be a small link between Raas Garba and Bhangra.Anish Thakkar, normally the UNC Bhangra Elite dohli, the person who provides a bongo-like drum beat, will be playing for Tar Heel Raas. He said playing is an abnormal display of friendship extended from the 12-year veteran group.This campus has so much talent" so much diversity that if we just shared everything it would be so much more enjoyable" he said.Many dancers said Tar Heel Raas gives them a chance to reconnect with their culture.Nirav Lackhani, a member of the group, said dancing allows him to connect with his roots as his parents are from Gujrat.It's actually a traditional dance where my parents are from in India"" he said.But the team isn't just limited to Indian dancers.Britton Baxley, the team's only white member, said being on the team is a great cultural experience.Even in the face of competition, this dance team has become more than just steps and performances for all involved.My core group of friends are these Raas Garba people"" Mehta said. It's become like my family in a sense.""Contact the Arts Editor at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Learning piano when he was six years old UNC Jazz Band pianist Jake Higgins shared a Kawai grand piano with his mother. Now he's sharing a Steinway with professional jazz pianist Andy Laverne. Along with Higgins students and professionals will unite in performance at 7:30 p.m. today and 4 p.m. Friday in Hill Hall when the UNC Jazz Band performs with the visiting professional jazz pianist. Laverne who is famous for re-harmonizing old compositions will lead the group through four of his own works" including a rendition of Herbie Hancock's ""Watermelon Man.""Students also will play four pieces by other composers such as Thad Jones and George Gershwin.""It's really priceless having great artists come"" said UNC Jazz Band bassist Alex Van Gils. The whole program just kind of kicks up a notch every time one of these artists comes."" UNC jazz professor Jim Ketch" who directs the student ensemble said it's great to be able to bring an external influence into UNC's jazz program" and he hopes that students will be able to craft relationships with these artists. ""You get a little networking in"" he said.Because the music department is so small, and the jazz department is even smaller, Gils said these visits allow students to have a profound experience with artists. Members of the jazz band have even been able to have lunch with artists like Laverne, creating priceless interaction with professionals. Every musician has their different take on what music should be"" Higgins said. The way they look at things affects the way that we begin to look at things."" The UNC Jazz Band brings about two artists per semester to campus" but this is the first time Higgins said he can remember it being a pianist. Because of this" he said he hopes to gain influence from watching Laverne play and interacting with the band. ""I get to watch him play in the band that I play in" and I get to watch how he plays with people that I get to play with" Higgins said. I can try and emulate that."" Ketch said as a director"" he always learns as much as students do when artists visit. ""As soon as you feel like you know it all" you're in real trouble and I just don't have that feeling he said. Gils also said he is excited to absorb the personal playing experience offered by Laverne. A chance to play with people a level above you always pulls you up" Gils said. In some ways you never forget that even after they leave.""Contact the Arts Editor at email@example.com.
Durham resident Trish Christie used to visit Morehead Planetarium when she was a child.And Saturday afternoon she was able to give a similar experience to her daughter listening to evolution campfire stories and digging through fossils with 16-month-old Lila.The pair attended Morehead Planetarium's free family science day" ""It's Only Human!""" co-presented by the UNC Society of Anthropology Students and the Department of Biology. More than 100 parents and children who attended the event were able to look through the planetarium's exhibits and create their own cave paintings" among other activities.""It's really fun. They've enjoyed all the hands-on things"" Christie said. It gives us something to do that's not too expensive."" Senior Brent Chen" a Planetarium employee who made origami butterflies with attending families" said the best part of the experience was seeing the expression on the children's faces.""They're doing things that they wouldn't ordinarily have access to in their schools"" he said.Agreeing, Christie said schools have limited resources compared to UNC.All the artifacts and stuff — they can't get that at school really"" she said.And though Chen said sometimes young children had a difficult time understanding the topics discussed, such as evolution and the fossil record, he also said they still enjoy the activities.I think they take something away from it and it's a lot of fun doing it"" he said.Families also were able to attend 30-minute shows in Morehead Planetarium's NASA Digital Theater.Adam Miller, a UNC graduate who writes curricula for Morehead Planetarium's camps and events, put on several of Saturday's shows.Miller said it was great to teach children without having to worry about standardized tests, discipline problems or state-based curriculum. It's a real fun job" he said. As an educator" I can focus on what I want the kids to learn."" Saturday" his presentations showed how the eye's cone receptors become tired when looking at purple light and shut down which creates the appearance of green light.He also dimmed the lights and lit a Gummi Bear on fire to show how much energy it contained.Giving presentations to children is exciting and the best part of his day" Miller said.""It's always fun to see that sort of ‘wow' expression on their face.""Contact the University Editor at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Even after a $22-million renovation Morrison Residence Hall remains one of six dormitories on campus containing potentially cancerous materials.Hinton James Avery Parker Morrison Ehringhaus and Craige residence halls all have asbestos-containing materials in their cinder block walls" which were used during their construction. Most were built in the 1960s.Officials said the asbestos present no immediate health risk.""It isn't a problem"" said Mary Beth Koza, director of environment, health and safety, adding that it just needs to be monitored and maintained.Koza said officials always attempt to remove asbestos during renovations. But at Morrison, where renovations were finished in 2007, officials decided against removing the asbestos-containing materials.Both Koza and Rick Bradley, assistant director for housing, said material was not removed during the renovations because it was beneath many layers of paint.Bradley said it would take extreme action to cause the asbestos to become airborne, such as puncturing or cracking the wall paint.Still, students were warned not to scrape the walls or tape posters to them using anything but 3M Scotch Removable Adhesive Putty.Residents of the six dormitories were warned in an e-mail Thursday from Janet Phillips, asbestos coordinator for the Department of Environment, Health and Safety, that there is asbestos in the wall coatings beneath several layers of paint.Asbestos is a small fiber once used to insulate and fire-proof buildings.Breathing in high levels of asbestos fibers can lead to lung cancer or other ailments, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. The EPA also states that small amounts of asbestos exposure does not usually lead to health problems. But airborne fibers can be inhaled and are more likely to be hazardous.Low levels of asbestos were also found in the floor tiles of Lewis and Stacy residence halls just before students moved in. Morrison resident Cole Anderson said he doesn't think much about the asbestos.I knew it was cancerous" but I figured if it was bad enough they wouldn't have us stay here" he said.Anderson also said he feels the asbestos is not dangerous enough to be removed.Bradley said Thursday's e-mail was intended to be mostly informational, not a warning about immediate health concerns.As long as the paint is in good condition there's no potential health hazard"" Bradley said. The intent of this (e-mail) is to really calm people's fears.""In the event of asbestos release"" Koza said her department is always available to take action.""We can come over" we can do some training we can give you an asbestos 101 awareness class" Koza said.Minor incidents, such as scrapes, would only require vacuuming the room and patching where the chip was created, Koza said.But in a more serious case, she said a certified contractor professionally trained to remove the asbestos would have to be employed.This is not a health risk to anyone that lives in these facilities"" Bradley said. The EHS folks would be quite active if it was the opposite of that. We would be required to do other things than notify people.""
One of UNC's largest dormitories has been vandalized to the point that all of its residents could be fined.
The School of Information and Library Science can now boast the $10 million research portfolio of a world-renowned digital information group.
The Data Intensive Cyber Environments group, recently recruited from University of California-San Diego, collects and organizes large amounts of data and keeps it in the most recent and usable format for use.
DICE's past projects have included earthquake simulation and biomedical brain imaging, but their UNC undertakings will be more academically minded.
Ten years ago, Tim Stambaugh sat down in the Weaver Street Market cafe to have a glass of wine and play guitar.
He had no idea he was starting what would become one of Carrboro's most treasured weekly musical events.
After adding guests and an amplification system, the gathering was dubbed "After Hours," and has been going on for more than 10 summers each Thursday night.
"Now there's hundreds of people that come to it," Stambaugh said.
But while the season started in May, this Thursday's performance was one of the last this year.
Students seeking love advice got their answer Wednesday night, even if it hurt.
"Dating Doctor" David Coleman, the real-life inspiration for the 2005 movie "Hitch," gave dating wisdom to more than 150 students in the Student Union's Great Hall.
"I realize I look a lot more like Kevin James than I do Will Smith," Coleman said. James plays the fumbling love-struck client, while Smith is the suave dating doctor.
He started the two-hour show by telling the audience that he would be honest, even if it sounded harsh.
CORRECTION: Due to a reporting error, "Singing along" incorrectly states that Cheylaine Murchison, a junior who opened for musical act, Musiq Soulchild, sang "Fallin'" by Alicia Keys. Murchison actually performed "Killing Me Softly" by The Fugees. The Daily Tar Heel apologizes for the errors.
Freshman Jessamyn Weis had never heard of Musiq Soulchild until her friend Nicole Powell told her to listen to the artist's 2003 album, Soulstar.
She said she instantly became a fan.
Now Weis, along with other attendees, will have a chance to see the three-time Grammy nominated R&B vocalist perform at 8 p.m. today in Memorial Hall. The event is presented by the Carolina Union Activities Board.
"I really like his style. I can listen to it over and over again," Weis said. "A lot of popular songs get old, and I think that he has a longevity."
More allegations of sexual abuse are surfacing from former patients of retired UNC pediatrician Melvin Levine.
Carmen Durso, the Boston lawyer handling Levine's five pending lawsuits, said he is working with N.C. lawyer Elizabeth Kuniholm to investigate sexual abuse that might have occurred while Levine was employed at UNC from 1985 to 2006.
Levine has been accused of sexually assaulting young patients starting in the late 1960s and into the 1980s while he was in Boston.
"Calls are still coming in," Kuniholm said. "I investigate everyone who calls as soon as I can."
Slideshow: Dance-off at Memorial Hall
It was a night filled with crowd interaction and intense competition, as host Kel Mitchell's antics helped bring down the house Wednesday in a packed Memorial Hall.
When Kel Mitchell arrives at UNC and takes the Memorial Hall stage today, he won't be selling "good burgers" with his special sauce. Instead he will be serving up some of the hottest hip-hop dance teams in the state.
The second annual "Show Us What You Got" dance competition, presented by Carolina Union Activities Board, will take place at 7 p.m. tonight in Memorial Hall.
Mitchell, best known for his role in the 1997 movie "Good Burger" and on the Nickelodeon show "Kenan and Kel," said he is excited to be hosting the event for the first time.
When Will Ferrell first appeared on stage Friday night in the Smith Center, he was wearing a Duke sweatshirt.
Boos and hisses erupted from the audience, until Ferrell pulled the sweatshirt over his head to reveal a Carolina blue UNC sweatshirt. Ferrell then began to fight performers dressed as ninjas to the "Mortal Kombat" theme song.
Ferrell was at UNC as part of the "Funny or Die Comedy Tour," presented by "Semi-Pro," a basketball-themed movie starring Ferrell, which opens in theaters Friday.
As the lights dimmed and the audience settled down Saturday night in Memorial Hall, there was nothing but a microphone and a stool on stage.
And for the next three hours, there was nothing but laughter filling the sold-out auditorium.
"Lewis Black and Friends," part of Carolina Union Activities Board's fifth annual Carolina Comedy Festival, featured Black and other well-known comedians performing in front of the all-student crowd.
As the lights dimmed and the audience settled down Saturday night in Memorial Hall, there was nothing but a microphone and a stool on stage.
This year UNC audiences will see a new theatrical interpretation to Eve Ensler's play about women and their vaginas.
"The Vagina Monologues," a two-night event held at 8 p.m. today and 9:40 p.m. Saturday in the Hanes Art Center auditorium, aims to fuel discussion about menstruation, sex, rape and other women's issues.
The play is held annually as part of V-Week, an event that focuses on female sexuality and seeks to raise awareness about violence against women.
But this year the performance's style will change.