Holiday Sea Island Gullah Celebration
Date: December 4, 2015
Time: 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM EST
Production by Anita Singleton-Prather and The Gullah Kinfolk in historic Beaufort, South Carolina, at the University of South Carolina Beaufort campus Center for the Arts. The evening includes a taste of Gullah soul food buffet, artist showcase and marketplace, full stage musical with Aunt Pearlie Sue and Gullah Kinfolk: Christmas Wish Freedom Coming.
Freedom Coming is a significant performance that shares the Sea Island Gullah tradition with audiences in a new way, performed by Anita Singleton-Prather and her singing ensemble The Gullah Kinfolk from Beaufort, South Carolina.
It is Christmas 1860, the last Christmas before the Civil War begins. The scene is a Sea Island slave cabin where enslaved Africans are anticipating Christmas day and talking about freedom. Gullah songs and storytelling include everything from spirituals, work songs and play songs to rhythmic, foot stomping ring shout songs that are unique to the Gullah praise house traditions.
original art by Diane Britton Dunham
Meet Diane Britton Dunham and many more featured artists exhibiting before the show. Sample local Gullah foods and mingle with local chefs.
Book tickets at this link or call the Beaufort County Black Chamber of Commerce 843-986-1102 to reserve your tickets for the Gullah performance, feast and art show or to arrange a weekend tour including history, culture and entertainment. Tickets are $35 at the door, $30 advance and $10 for children. Special group rates are available.
Sandy Islanders: A People of the Land, a traveling pictorial exhibit from McKissick Museum of the University of South Carolina in Columbia, will be installed in the Brookgreen Gardens Lowcountry Center from January 12 – March 22, 2015. It will be on display daily from 12 noon – 4:30 p.m. and is free with garden admission.
Curated by photo documentarian Vennie Deas Moore, the exhibit takes the viewer on a journey into the lives of individuals and families on Sandy Island, SC, one of three Gullah Geechee communities that remain accessible only by boat. The photographic collection, created in 1997, offers new interpretive text and historical artifacts that present an “insider’s” unromantic view of a place and people seldom seen. It portrays the interconnectedness of culture, the value of work, a sense of stewardship of the land, and the symbiotic relation between the long time black and white cultures.
“The exhibit documents an important story of our region,” said Bob Jewell, president and CEO. “It provides a captivating snapshot of an aspect of the living culture of Gullah Geechee people.”
Vennie Deas Moore will present a lecture about the exhibit on Saturday, January 24, at 1 p.m. The presentation, “Returning to Sandy Island: 20 years Later”, is free with garden admission and includes a guided tour of the exhibit.
Brookgreen Gardens is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization whose mission is to preserve and display American sculpture and regional plants, animals, and history. It is located on U.S. 17 between Murrells Inlet and Pawleys Island, South Carolina.
photo credit Vennie Deas Moore