Spooks and spokes: Wear a bike-friendly costume and join Asheville on Bikes' annual Pumpkin Pedaller this Halloween season. Photo courtesy of Asheville on Bikes

Scary good: Halloween happenings in and around Asheville

Tricks, treats, haunted high schools, macabre masquerades, terrifying bike tours, frightening feasts, daring dance parties and maudlin makeout sessions: Xpress has hunted down the thrills and chills in and around Asheville. For more Halloween events, visit Clubland, Calendar and mountainx.com. • The Asheville Affiliates hosts a costume party at The Odditorium on Wednesday, Oct. 29, 6-9 […]

Garden Party-Megan-5615

Smart bets: UWABE — Art in the Park

Theater devotees and outdoor enthusiasts unite for two evenings of free alfresco performance. UWABE — Art in the Park meanders throughout Grove Park (338 Charlotte St.) to present three dances, each derived from the natural landscape. During “Biosphere,” a giant puppet among open fields probes into our changing planet’s effects on the human condition. “Radiant […]

resonantroguesfullbandcrowandquill

Smart bets: Resonant Rogues’ variety show

You’ve got to admire the forethought of Resonant Rogues, an Asheville band holding a variety show to kick off its Kickstarter campaign. The event, called Revue Nouveau, promises an “unparalleled collection of local talent” to visually supplement the old-time and gypsy jazzers’ vocal harmonies and string-heavy instrumentation. Puppeteer Madison Cripps, burlesque afficionado Memphis Moonshine and […]

Jabali 001

Smart bets: Jabali Acrobats

Visiting from Mombasa, Kenya, for their LEAF performance, the agile Jabali Acrobats aptly demonstrate the “link between athletics and arts,” transitioning from dance to human pyramids, chair balancing, complex footwork and other contortions — all to the beat of a stimulating musical backdrop. “These phenomenal acrobats combine the artistry of fast-paced movement, music, dance and […]

BETTER LATE: Canadian fusion band Delhi 2 Dublin performs both a daytime set and a late night show as part of LEAF's eclectic post-midnight offerings. Photo by Josli Rockafella

After midnight: LEAF’s late-night lineup is worth staying up for

The LEAF, now in its 39th season, is a well-honed mix of eclectic arts, the great outdoors, family-friendly activities and fun in the sun (and occasionally the rain). But with three days packed full of entertainment, it might be easy to overlook LEAF’s nighttime offerings. Don’t: Fall LEAF’s after-midnight lineup includes Bhangra-Celtic fusion, jazz-tronic dance […]

THE MUSIC MAN: Bascom Lamar Lunsford, third from left, appears in this photo from the Bascom Lamar Lunsford Scrapbook, Southern Appalachian Archives, Mars Hill University. The caption reads, “The Lovingood sisters and the Greer sisters with Bascom about 1933, ‘still feeding my soul!’”

Mars Hill’s Bascom Lamar Lunsford Festival celebrates a folk hero

While many people wear multiple proverbial hats and dabble in more than one career, Madison County-born Bascom Lamar Lunsford epitomized that concept. A lawyer and a folklorist, the Mars Hill native campaigned against hillbilly stereotypes while preserving Appalachian mountain music traditions. A performer himself — his recordings are included in the Archive of American Folk […]

Cornelia4

Smart bets: Die Fledermaus

“Die Fledermaus,” a libretto often rewritten and performed with local flair, will soon transform into its Asheville incarnation with the help of Asheville Lyric Opera. Set in Western North Carolina’s famous Giltmore home and based around the Southern mountain charm of the Vanerburgh family, ALO’s adaptation is intended to “create a deeper sense of appreciation […]

Bailey Mountain Cloggers

Smart bets: Mountain Heritage Day

Break out the candles! Western Carolina University celebrates its 125th year during the 40th annual Mountain Heritage Day festival, a free event to recollect WCU’s rich history. Two stages and a dedicated dance floor will host clogging team performances and concerts (including Grammy Award-winner David Holt), and more than 100 vendor booths will sprawl into […]

SONY DSC

Smart bets: Heritage Weekend

This September marks the 34th year for Heritage Weekend, a free festival that explores traditional Appalachian customs like beekeeping, coopering, heritage toy making, broom and furniture making, spinning and natural dyeing, all sponsored by the Southern Highland Craft Guild. Both Saturday and Sunday offer a full lineup of crafts, dance and mountain-inspired music with fare […]

WILD CHILD APPROVED: Celebrate local music, food, drink, arts and eccentricities on Lexington Avenue. Photo by Frank Merenda

LAAFF returns with an eye toward the future

“Never say die,” reads the poster for the Lexington Avenue Art and Fun Festival, which returns Sunday, Aug. 31, after a one-year hiatus. When the beloved (and, in recent years, beleaguered) event’s return was announced earlier this summer, it was as a last hurrah. Organizers Kitty Love (LAAFF’s co-founder, who’s now executive director of the […]

Photo by LAAFF staff

LAAFF announces schedule for Aug. 31 festival

Lexington Avenue Arts and Fun Festival  returns on Sunday, Aug. 31 with a full day’s worth of music, art street theater, local vendors, food and drink and more. Festival planners just released the lineup, which includes more than a dozen bands on two stages, with an additional stage programmed by Lex 18 moonshine bar. The […]

Husband and wife duo, Jonathan and Jennifer Adams, got the band name Montana Skies from the first song they ever wrote together. Photo courtesy of the band

Smart bets web extra: The Asheville Ballet with Montana Skies

“This ain’t your granny’s chamber music,” claim husband and wife, Jonathan and Jennifer Adams, on their band’s website. The couple’s sound is constructed of guitar and cello pairings, delivered with more spunk than you’d expect from any instrumental family band and packaged under the name Montana Skies. The duo’s knack for extracting spiced-up grooves from […]

Costume is strongly encouraged at the Seelie Court Masquerade. Clothing by Royal Peasantry, photo by Duncan Chaboudy

Smart bets web extra: Seelie Court Masquerade

It’s time to break out the old leather-studded collar and golden tiara. New Mountain Asheville will host Seelie Court Masquerade, a two-night “multi-sensory fantasy event featuring two rooms of music, fashion, theater and dance,” according to a press release, and all attendees are strongly encouraged to dress their faerie best. Masqueraders will enjoy various live […]

MOUNTAIN MOVES: The J Creek Cloggers perform regionally at Shindig on the Green and Folkmoot. Photo by Sheila James

Fancy footwork: Folkmoot brings together world and regional folk dance

With folk dancers from Taiwan, Trinidad, Romania, Russia and other far-flung places performing at Folkmoot, it might be easy to overlook the fact that southern Appalachia has its own dance custom to share. Dressed in their full crinoline skirts and tap shoes, four Appalachian clogging teams represent the mountain tradition at the international folk dance […]

MASTER CLASS: "Dance can be a contemporary art form," says MOTION Dance Theatre founder Nick Kepley. "Just as you’d go to a museum and contemplate art, you can do the same with dance.” Photo by Parker J Pfister

Everybody’s doing a brand-new dance now: From MOTION’s choreographic laboratory comes cutting-edge performance

“At 21 years old, it had been decided for me the roles I was capable of dancing for the rest of my life,” says choreographer Nick Kepley. “That was kind of silly.” It’s also, at least in part, the reason he created MOTION Dance Theatre, a choreographic laboratory and three-week residency. From that comes a […]