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BOONE — The Appalachian State University’s Office of Arts and Cultural Programs announced the 2021 season of The Schaefer Center Presents performing arts series — with a virtual lineup for the spring — to be presented Feb. 4 — March 25.

The spring series is free, but advance registration is required at Patrons who wish to make a donation in any amount to support the series and its mission have the option to do so on the website.

A companion series of free virtual events for K-12 schools and families across our region is also being offered throughout the spring by the APPlause! K-12 Performing Arts Series.

The APPlause! K-12 Performing Arts Series — offering affordable music, dance, film and theater events to students and their teachers throughout the school year — will offer free virtual arts programming for K-12 audiences in both school and home classrooms. This educational component features international music and dance, with extended access dates that provide flexibility for students, teachers and families juggling current remote learning schedules.

Advance registration for APPlause! is required at A private link will be sent to all registrants in order to access the events, all of which are available to view at any time during the scheduled event dates.

For more information on the SCP and APPlause! 2021 season, visit or call (828) 262-4046.

Thursday, Feb. 4, 2021

The first event of the series is “An Evening with Anna Deavere Smith: Reclaiming Grace in the Face of Adversity” at 8 p.m. via livestream.

While doing research for her play “Let Me Down Easy,” award-winning playwright/actor/educator Anna Deavere Smith interviewed people in the U.S. and abroad who demonstrated grace in the face of dramatic challenges. This storytelling speech celebrates the resilience of the human spirit, the power of empathy, the strength of imagination and hope.

Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021

The next featured event is BalletX at 8 p.m via a specially pre-recorded program.

The special Schaefer Center Presents production will include a recorded introduction by BalletX co-founder Christine Cox with the BalletX 15th Anniversary Season video and mixed rep selections “Increasing” and “Fancy Me.” In honor of BalletX’s 15th Anniversary Season, the company commissioned a documentary film by Daniel Madoff that highlights its growth, trajectory and continued commitment to redefining ballet in the 21st century. Led by Cox, BalletX has produced nearly 100 world premiere ballets by more than 50 choreographers and performed for over 100,000 audience members at home and on tour, including appearances at such prestigious venues as the Kennedy Center, Vail Dance Festival, Joyce Theater and Jacob’s Pillow.

Thursday, March 11, 2021

The series will also feature an 8 p.m. livestream on March 11 of the Steep Canyon Rangers.

The Grammy winners from Asheville come to Boone for a live concert streamed from the stage of the Schaefer Center into your homes. Frequent collaborators with banjoist and comedian Steve Martin, Steep Canyon Rangers are major players in the bluegrass, country and Americana scene, with comparisons to The Band, Nitty Gritty Dirt Band and Zac Brown Band.

Thursday, March 25, 2021

The series will also feature an 8 p.m. compilation of past performances on March 25 called the “Best of the Appalachian Dance Ensemble.”

This virtual best-of showcase from Appalachian State University’s Department of Theatre and Dance features works from at least seven faculty choreographers, including Laurie Atkins, Emily Daughtridge, Regina Gulick, Cara Hagan, Ray Miller, Brad Parquette and Sherone Price. All curated works were produced between 2006-2019 and highlight genres of modern, ballet, tap and African-themed dance. The selected works feature not only beautiful dancing and well-crafted choreography, but also lighting design by Mike Helms and John Marty and costume design by Sue Williams.

Jan. 25-May 14

Recommended for grades 3-12, the series is offering a performance by Nobuntu.

The name Nobuntu is an African concept that values humbleness, love, purpose, unity, and family from a woman’s perspective. Nobuntu is a five-part a cappella vocal ensemble made up of young women from Bulawayo, Zimbabwe. The repertoire is a fusion of traditional Zimbabwean-rooted music, Afro Jazz, Gospel, and Crossover in pure voices with minimalistic percussion, traditional instruments such as Mbira, and some dance movements.

Feb. 8-19

The series also recommends Flamenco Vivo Carlota Santana — Virtual Lecture Demonstration for grades 3-12.

Join Flamenco Vivo Carlota Santana for a 40-minute story-based presentation where we follow our main character, Sol, on a journey of discovering Flamenco. The audience will hear the story, see a series of colorful video clips of live flamenco dance and music, and engage in experiential segments for students to try out flamenco techniques from home. Flamenco from Southern Spain is a mixture of many cultures and is an expression of rhythms and feelings.

Feb. 22-March 5

The Schaefer Center Presents is also including “Donna Washington Storyteller: Fun, Foolery and Folktales,” which is recommended for grades K-2 and family audiences.

Get ready to laugh out loud, play with language and enjoy some great stories about foolish choices, bravery, a tiny ghost and a boy who might not have the sense he was born with. These iconic stories from American folklore will stay with you. Donna Washington is an internationally known, multiple award-winning storyteller, spoken-word recording artist, and author. A highly animated performer, she has been entertaining, educating, and inspiring audiences with her vocal pyrotechnics, elastic face and deep characterizations that bring folklore, literary tales and personal narratives to life for over 30 years.

March 29-April 9

Audiences will also be able to enjoy a virtual showcase of The Best of Appalachian Dance Ensemble — recommended for all Grades and family audiences.

This event is an abridged version of the full-length event that is part of the main Schaefer Center Presents Series on Thursday, March 25 at 8 p.m.

This virtual best-of showcase from Appalachian State University’s Department of Theatre and Dance features curated works from faculty choreographers that highlight genres of modern, ballet, tap and African-themed dance.

April 12-23

The series will also feature the production of “Hobey Ford’s Golden Rod Puppets: The Rainbow Bridge and Other Tales.” This production is recommended for grades K-6 and family audiences.

This shadow puppetry production brings to life three folktales through Ford’s unique presentational style combining stunning puppetry, storytelling and topical educational themes. The stories include “The Rainbow Bridge,” “El Coqui” and “The Three Billy Goats Gruff,” with a finale of his Peepers Puppet, which turns the bare hand into a myriad of creatures. Registration for this event also includes access to a pre-recorded student workshop called Shadow Puppets DIY.

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