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Weekend briefs

SPENCER óThursday, Jan. 24, marks the inaugural Spencer Gallery Crawl and Wine Tasting, hosted by The Art Station, Green Goat Gallery, and Pinocchio’s Italian Restaurant, all located in the 500 block of South Salisbury Avenue.
From 5 to 7 p.m., The Art Station and the Green Goat Gallery will be open for browsing as a prelude to Pinocchio’s reservation-only wine tasting and dinner at 7:15 p.m.
Additionally, the Art Station will feature a trio of local painters demonstrating their craft in three different mediums:
n Patt Legg, who draws her inspiration from old world masters, will be working in oils.
n Janet Isenhour will illustrate the ethereal quality of watercolor.
n Carol Dunkley rounds out the group using acrylics to produce her vibrant works.
The Green Goat Gallery will feature the bluesy guitar music of artist Jimmy Alston, one of the founding members of Railwalk Gallery in Salisbury.
New artwork and jewelry by local artists Sue Davis, Guy Raymond and Leslie Hamlin will also be on display.
Seating for Pinocchio’s Gourmet Wine Tasting and Dinner is limited and reservations are required.
For more information, call 704-636-8891. Museum celebration
RALEIGH ó The N.C. Museum of History in Raleigh presents the seventh annual African American Cultural Celebration Jan. 26, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Blues guitarist Boo Hanks, the jazz group R-EFFECT, and African wire artist Jonathan Daniel will join more than 70 presenters and exhibitors for this popular family event. Admission and parking are free.
For more information, call 919-807-7900 or access ncmuseumofhistory.org.
Handel’s ‘Saul’
Center for Faith & the Arts will offer two events relating to G. F. Handel’s oratorio, “Saul.”
On Jan. 31, the Center will host two speakers from Charlotte to talk about King Saul and the oratorio. And on Feb. 28 the Center will sponsor a bus trip to hear the performance by the Oratorio Singers of Charlotte and the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra.
The talk will be given at 7 p.m. in the FORUM at Center for Faith & the Arts, 207 W. Harrison Street. Dr. Robert Whalen and his wife, Meg Freeman Whalen, will speak on “The Madness of King Saul: Handel’s Biblical Tragedy, ‘Saul’.” Dr. Whalen is visiting professor of church history at Union-PSCE in Charlotte and chair of the Department of History at Queens University. Mrs. Whalen is the public relations manager for the Charlotte Symphony and a music history instructor at Queens University.
This event is free and open to the public. You do not need to make reservations for the talk.
The bus trip to Charlotte for the performance will cost $38 per person which includes the cost of a ticket to the oratorio. Handel’s “Saul” will be performed at 7:30 p.m. in the Halton Theater of Central Piedmont Community College in Charlotte with Scott Allen Jarrett conducting.
The bus will leave the parking lot of Center for Faith & the Arts promptly at 5:45 p.m. on Feb. 28, returning about 10:30 p.m.
Reservations and payment of $38 must be received in the office of Center for Faith & the Arts no later than Feb. 14.
Reservations may be mailed to Center for Faith & the Arts, P.O. Box 4098, Salisbury, NC 28145-4098.
For more information, call 704-647-0999.
Piedmont Opera grant
WINSTON-SALEM ó The Winston-Salem Foundation has awarded Piedmont Opera a grant of $25,000 to help fund its production of “The Light in the Piazza,” which will run Oct. 10-14 2008 at the Stevens Center. The grant is made from funds provided by the Community Arts Fund and the Charles Babcock, Jr. Field of Interest Fund.
Piedmont Opera is the first regional opera company to secure a license for the show, which won six Tony Awards, including Best Score and Best Book. The grant will help to defray the cost of building the set for the production. 
Tickets for Piedmont Opera’s 2008-2009 season will go on sale in April.
For more information, visit www.piedmontopera.org.
Cole to manage opera
CLEVELAND ó As Opera Cleveland prepares for its second season, Rowan County native William Cole has been appointed company manager, charged with the overall management of the company.
Beginning as development director of Cleveland Opera in July 2004, Cole was integral in securing $1.1 million in funding for the unprecedented merger of Cleveland Opera and Lyric Opera Cleveland in 2006.
Prior to his work in Cleveland, Cole was director of marketing and development for Winston-Salem Symphony from 1999 to 2004. Notably, during his five-year tenure there, he increased the symphony’s annual fund by 56 percent.
His additional experience in arts administration includes working as finance and administration analyst for Washington Performing Arts Society and as personnel manager for the Rowan-Salisbury Symphony.
In 1998, Cole received his master’s degree in arts administration from American University. He taught general music and chorus at Sacred Heart Catholic School in Salisbury from 1989 to 1996.

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