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Arts & Entertainment

The winter season of the Smoky Mountain Center for the Performing Arts (SMCPA) has begun with holiday shows planned through the end of the year. To add a little sparkle to the mix, Scotty Corbin will be returning as general manager and artistic director of the performing arts center.

Corbin, who is thrilled to be returning to his role with the center, is set to officially take over on Dec. 1, but has already hit the ground running promising a spectacular 2015 entertainment season.

“We are really anticipating the excitement and potential that 2015 will bring to the theatre,” said Corbin. “This coming year, we want to focus on a lot of variety of events so there will be something for everyone of every age throughout the year.”

Corbin isn't the only familiar face re-joining the SMCPA team, but along with the Overlook Players who are responsible for the spectacular musicals that the center has had in the past, Samuel Crabtree will also be joining the theatre as technical director.

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The Western Carolina Community Chorus will present a varied program of seasonal music at 4 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 14, in the Recital Hall of the Coulter Building on the WCU campus. The theme is "Shepherds, Angels, and Kings," as these figures are represented in many ways in the texts of the selections.

Several favorite carols will be part of the program, such as "O Come, All Ye Faithful," and "Angels We Have Heard on High," both arranged by the conductor, Robert Holquist, Professor Emeritus of the WCU School of Music. WCU composer, Bruce Frazier, will be featured as the chorus, pianist, and two flutists perform his "Tidings of the Season."

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The Western Carolina Civic Orchestra will hold the fourth annual Community Christmas Concert, sponsored by the Jackson County Library and the Jackson County Arts Council, at the Jackson County Public Library on Thursday, Dec. 18.

An open house will begin at 5 p.m. hosted by the Jackson County Genealogical Society, the Jackson County Historical Association and the Jackson County Arts Council.

The musical celebration will begin at 6:30 p.m. with caroling on the library steps, led by Gayle Woody. The group "Brassoon," will play Christmas music from the balcony. These members of the orchestra are Jonathan Bentley, trumpet, Jai Kumar, flugelhorn, and Sabrina Kumar, bassoon. The Civic Orchestra concert, conducted by Dr. Bradley Martin and accompanied by Dr. Andrew Adams, will begin at 7 p.m. with a baroque Christmas Concerto by G. M. Schiassi, Ode to Joy by Beethoven, and seasonal favorites.

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Alma RussThe Jackson County Library is hosting a concert featuring Alma Russ on Tuesday, Dec. 16, at 6:30 p.m. in the Community Room. This program is free of charge.

The concert will feature Russ on fiddle, guitar and banjo, with vocals while playing the guitar and banjo. Russ is a singer and musician whose style is a melting pot of Americana, folk, old-time, and hints of blues and jazz. Her main instrument in fiddle, but she can also play around with the claw-hammer banjo.

Russ is 14 years old and has been singing for most of her short life. Only in the last few years has she begun to incorporate instrumentation along with her singing. She has played with Owner of the Sun, Heritage Alive, Dusk Weaver, and the Lifeway Community Church worship band.

This program is free and open to the public. For more information, call the library at (828)586-2016.

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