WORLD MUSIC INNOVATORS FREE PLANET RADIO BRING UNIQUE JAZZ-CLASSICAL-WORLD BLEND IN BENEFIT PERFORMANCE FOR AREA CHILDREN THROUGH DIANA WORTHAM THEATRE’S YOUTH EDUCATION SCHOLARSHIP (Y.E.S.) FUND, FRIDAY, MAY 5 AT 8PM
For more than a decade, Free Planet Radio has been bringing its innovative world-jazz-classical music blend to festivals, concert stages, and classrooms — and now to Diana Wortham Theatre’s stage in a special benefit performance for the theatre’s Y.E.S. (Youth Education Scholarship) Fund, Friday May 5 at 8:00 p.m.
Diana Wortham Theatre’s Emerging Artists program, now in its second year, is a part of the Y.E.S. Fund and supports young performers by providing scholarships for graduating high school seniors pursuing a career in the performing arts. Due to overwhelming public support of the Y.E.S Fund, there are four Emerging Artist Fund scholarship winners in 2017. The winners will be showcased during the Free Planet Radio performance on May 5th.
Expertly weaving jazz-style improv with the subtleties of Western classical music and Middle Eastern, Indian, and North African rhythms and melodies, Free Planet Radio features two-time Grammy winner Eliot Wadopian on electric and string basses, leaping effortlessly between rhythm and melody; River Guerguerian on an extensive array of global percussion instruments including Middle Eastern frame drums and doumbek, Latin American cajon, and Western drum set; and Chris Rosser on a variety of Indian and Turkish stringed instruments including the 17-stringed Indian dotar, Turkish cumbus oud, guitar, piano, and melodica.
Performing mostly original compositions, the trio always maintains a sense of accessibility, spontaneity, and easy engagement as it mines the depths of world music. These artists emerged from three of the country’s finest conservatories, and each has established himself in concert halls and studios, appearing on over 200 recordings and in 30 countries. Their immense individual talents have garnered worldwide recognition in performances from Carnegie Hall to the Hong Kong World Music Festival; from the Kennedy Center to the Madrid International Jazz Festival. These versatile musicians now unite their expansive talents, instruments, harmonies and rhythms to create a shared world vision; a phenomenal blending and harmony of global traditions in music.
About the Youth Education Scholarship (Y.E.S.) Fund: The Y.E.S. Fund supports underserved children by providing tickets to Diana Wortham Theatre’s Matinee Series for Students and Families, the theatre’s school programming series. The Y.E.S. program expanded in 2015 to cover artist workshops in local schools and the Emerging Artists Fund scholarship. Donations to the Y.E.S. Fund and its programs are accepted any time; more information at www.dwtheatre.com/Y-E-S-Fund.
Free Planet Radio’s Asheville performance is made possible by Performance Sponsors George & Diana Bilbrey; and by Mainstage Music Series Sponsors Joel & Deborah Bohan Berkowitz, Henry LaBrun, Dianne & David Worley, Omni Grove Park Inn, and Signarama; with additional support by Media Sponsors The Laurel of Asheville, WCQS 88.1 FM and WNCW 88.7 FM.
The entrance for the Diana Wortham Theatre is marked by the location of the theatre’s marquee between 12 and 14 Biltmore Avenue. Patrons enter the theatre through the breezeway between Marble Slab Creamery and White Duck Taco, and into a large interior courtyard with multiple glass doors leading to the theatre’s lower lobby and box office. The intimate theatre seats just over 500 and boasts exceptional acoustics and sightlines, making it the premier performance space in Western North Carolina. The Mainstage Series is supported by a grant from the North Carolina Arts Council, a state agency. The Mainstage Series 2016/2017 Season Sponsors are the Asheville Citizen-Times, Blue Moon Water, Creative Energy, 67 Biltmore Downtown Eatery & Catering, the North Carolina Arts Council, and the Renaissance Asheville Hotel. To obtain more information on the Mainstage Series or to purchase tickets for the May 5, 2017 performance by Free Planet Radio at the Diana Wortham Theatre (Regular $35; Student $30; Child $20; Student Rush, day-of-the-show with valid I.D. $10), call the theatre’s box office at (828) 257-4530 or visit www.dwtheatre.com.