Atlanta Boy Choir
For half a century these Grammy winners have traveled the globe, enchanting audiences wherever they stop to sing. Under the guidance of artistic director and conductor David White, the Atlanta Boy Choir is in great demand, performing choral masterworks for audiences throughout Georgia and around the world with their special blend of young voices.
Founded in 1957 by Fletcher Wolfe, the Atlanta Boy Choir strives to "achieve the highest possible standard of musical excellence while instilling in its members a life-long appreciation of music." Since its inception, more than 5,000 boys have undergone the rigorous training necessary to become members of the choir. For many alumni of the Atlanta Boy Choir, this training provided a foundation of discipline which served them well in their future life endeavors and successes.
Today, artistic director David White runs the Atlanta Boy Choir out of a grand old manse on Ponce de Leon Avenue in Atlanta, where auditions are held twice a year. With a wide ranging musical repertoire that includes classical music, spirituals and beloved holiday standards, the Atlanta Boy Choir is regarded as one of the most elite in the world.
Join State of the Arts as it explores a Georgia treasure, the world-renowned Atlanta Boy Choir.
Visit the Atlanta Boy Choir website.
At 23, Sunny Taylor is a veteran in the painting community, holding her first exhibit at the age of 13. Taylor's large-scale portraits capture the essence of real-life people with real-life struggles.
Born with the disease arthrogryposis, which was determined to be caused by military pollution, Taylor describes her art as "portraits of people or ideas I love… an expression of what I call a love or appreciation of seeing." In her painting Depleted Uranium, Taylor shows the effect of military pollution and war in the Middle East. But not all of her paintings depict such serious topics. One such work is a painting of her brother-in-law, Christopher, which she says captures a moment in time, the essence of a laugh.
In 2004, Sunny Taylor won the top national VSA Arts award for her extraordinary paintings.
Visit her website.
Most artists aspire to the goals of permanence and recognition, but sculptor Brian Rust takes a very different view. His temporary site installations, created from clay and cement, celebrate the natural processes of decay and erosion. Raised in a nature-loving, artistic family in Washington state, Rust has a reverence for natural materials and a curiosity about history and the world around him that is reflected across the media in which he works. In addition to installations, Rust is also known for his working drawings – a term he applies to collages, which are in fact finished pieces created as he plays with ideas for sculptures and installations.
Rust has been an art professor at Augusta State University since the early 1990s, teaching a variety of classes. He thrives on the blend of teaching and creating and finds inspiration for his work everywhere he looks in his adopted Southern home.
Rust's installations can be found at the Henry Lay Sculpture Park in Louisiana, Missouri; the South Carolina Botanical Garden in Clemson, South Carolina; Stone Quarry Hill Art Park in Cazenovia, New York; Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo, Michigan; the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, Tennessee; and the Mid-Columbia Arts Center in Kennewick, Washington. Working drawings are in private collections, at the Morris Museum of Art in Augusta, MOCA in Atlanta, and at the Mary Pauline Gallery in Augusta.
Eugenia Price's inspirational books, novels and autobiographies captured the nation and then the world, but what captured Price was her second home, Georgia. Born in 1916 in Charleston, West Virginia, Price spent most of her early days leaping from college to college, yet never earning a bachelor's degree. At 23 she joined the NBC family to write daytime soap serials. Over the next few years she opened her own production company and continued to write serials and broadcast radio shows in Chicago. After earning acclaim as an inspirational speaker and writer through her radio broadcasts, Price took a trip that would affect the rest of her life.
On her way from West Virginia to Florida to give a speech about her latest novel, Price stopped over at St. Simon's Island. She immediately fell in love with the island and stayed there to begin her first works of historical fiction. After writing the St. Simon's Trilogy, Price continued to set most of her novels in the landscapes of Georgia and Florida.
Her love affair with the island led to a commitment to the care and upkeep of its unique and beautiful landscape. Price fought to keep the island's marshes, beaches, and wildlife from harm from industrial pollution and over-population. She also fought to maintain the historical sites.
Eugenia Price passed away in 1996, but her legacy lives on in her 39 books and in the imaginations she has touched with her words.
You can read more about Eugenia Price here.
Vientos del Pueblo
Vientos del Pueblo means "winds of the people," a name taken from a popular tune in South America. Created by musicians who came to Atlanta from Central and South America in the early 1990s, the group performs music from the great cultural and historical traditions of the Andes. Because of the group's diversity, it also performs with a fusion of styles, flavored by rhythms from Africa, South America and Europe.
Vientos del Pueblo is led by charango player Mauricio Amaya. He is accompanied by Christian Zamora, who plays a variety of instruments, including the pan flute and rain stick. Christian's brother Ramiro Zamora serves as lead vocalist and bass guitarist. Siobhan Brennan, the only North American and the only woman in the group, performs on acoustic guitar. Francisco Luque is the multi-faceted percussionist, and the newest member of the band, John Zorrilla, plays a variety of instruments, including many indigenous flutes.
The musicians of Vientos del Pueblo have performed before enthusiastic audiences throughout Georgia and recently stopped by our GPB studios to play some of their favorite songs.
Visit their website.
Benny Andrews: A Remembrance (1930-2006)
Recognized as one of Georgia's greatest artists, Benny Andrews drew acclaim for the deeply moving folk art he created in a career spanning six decades. Born into a family of sharecroppers in the small community of Plainview, Georgia, Andrews experienced firsthand the plight of the poor farmer, which he often depicted in his work. One of Andrews' greatest artistic influences was his father George, who was a renowned folk artist known as the "Dot Man." While working on the family farm, Benny Andrews walked daily to nearby Madison to attend school and was the first member of his family to graduate from high school.
Andrews went on to attend the Art Institute of Chicago, receiving a bachelor's degree in fine arts. During his college years he developed a unique style, which includes elements from abstract expressionism and surrealism. After graduating from college in 1958 Andrews moved to New York and taught at Queens College for 29 years. Always the activist, Andrews fought for the rights of minority and women artists, prisoners, children and the disabled. His concern was to create not only an awareness of injustice but to help individuals realize their true potential through first developing a belief in themselves.
Benny Andrews passed away in November 2006. Through his art and activism, he has left an enduring legacy for future generations.
Read more about Benny Andrews here.