This list of Charlotte’s best winter arts events was inspired by a previous article, “Best Upcoming Spring Art Festivals Or Events In Charlotte.” Winter may be cold, but it brings all of the holiday events that we love to lighten the spirit during the darkest days of the year. “The Nutcracker,” “The Singing Christmas Tree,” “Jazzy Holiday,” six days of Kwanzaa activities and New Year’s Eve’s “First Night” are some of the well-known winter fare in Charlotte. The list below includes some events not associated with the holidays that you should know about, including a Broadway production, a Broadway star, visual arts, music and folk arts events to take you through the last days of winter.
Connecting The World: The Panama Canal at 100
Mint Museum Uptown
500 S. Tryon St.
Charlotte, NC 28202
Date: Through Feb. 1, 2015
Called “the eighth wonder of the world” in 1914, the Panama Canal, spearheaded by President Teddy Roosevelt, facilitated aquatic transport between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. Celebrating the centennial anniversary, the Mint Museum marks the occasion with “Connecting the World.” This bilingual exhibit will include new artistic commissions as well as historic works and collected items chronicling this monumental effort. Several events are planned to include spotlight gallery tours on December 10, 2014 and January 28, 2015. When the Panama Canal was created, trains were a predominant form of transportation and the Mint follows this theme with “All Aboard the Giving Train.” Passengers are invited to ride for free on December 10 if they make a donation to a non-profit. Another facet of the exhibit is a special concert, “Travels Through Latin America With Music,” on January 18, 2015 at 3 p.m.
Knight Theater at Levine Center for the Arts
430 S. Tryon St.
Charlotte, NC 28202
Date: Feb. 8, 2015
If you have seen her host “Live From Lincoln Center” on PBS, seen her act in “A Raisin in the Sun” on Broadway or heard her sing opera, then you are already familiar with the artistry and multifaceted talents of Audra McDonald. This beautiful, gifted vocalist and actress has an unprecedented six Tony Awards and two Grammys to her credit. Her appearance in Charlotte will include music from her latest recording, “Go Back Home,” as well as pop standards and Broadway hits. Those who invest in VIP admission will be pleased to know that a share of the ticket price will support The Choir School at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Charlotte, developing young voices for 22 years.
Charlotte Woodcarvers Competition And Showcase
Marion Diehl Recreation Center
2219 Tyvola Road
Charlotte, NC 28210
Date: Feb. 21-22, 2014
With two locations in Charlotte and one in Matthews, this group is willing to show anyone how to carve. One of its annual highlights is the competition and showcase which features entries by carvers of all ages, co-sponsored by the Mecklenburg County Department of Parks and Recreation. The artistry is amazing, and the 2015 theme is the circus. Within the novice, intermediate and open divisions, there are subdivisions such as walking canes, Santa Clauses, birds, reptiles, humans, miniatures, large carvings and found wood, to name just a few. The prize purse is $2,000.
“Discover Local” And “Shop Seagrove” Exhibitions
65 Union St.S.
Concord, NC 28025
Date: Through Dec. 18, 2014
This exhibit will allow for holiday shopping as well as visual enjoyment. The Cabarrus Arts Council combines art with commerce to benefit those who create and those who appreciate their creations. One aspect of this dual exhibit is the work of local artists and artisans. Equally popular is the Seagrove pottery exhibit featuring famed North Carolina potters. If you plan to buy gifts, shop early as the exhibit closes a week before Christmas.
130 N. Tryon St.
Charlotte, NC 28202
Date: Jan. 6-11, 2015
There was a newsboy strike in New York in 1899 which inspired this popular Disney production. The story is about 17-year-old Jack “Cowboy” Kelly and other disadvantaged newspaper boys who face exploitation and try to fight big business in the form of Joseph Pulitzer and his publication, The New York World. Having won two Tony Awards in 2012 for best choreography and best musical score, this high-energy show guarantees enjoyment. There will be two shows on January 10-11, the last two days. This show is recommended for audiences ages six and older.
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Jacquelin Celeste Peters has produced award winning radio programs at WPFW Pacifica-Washington. She is a Culture and Events Examiner in Charlotte, North Carolina, which she calls home. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.