N.C. Arts Council Awards $136,000 in Fellowships
Seventeen North Carolina composers, songwriters, writers, playwrights, and screenwriters will share $136,000 as recipients of the 2003 N.C. Arts Council Fellowship awards. Each artist receives $8,000 to further his or her work. Panels of experienced artists, arts professionals, and teachers chose the winners on the basis of a statewide competition from a field of 365 applicants. Since 1980, more than 390 artists have received awards.
“We are proud to recognize these accomplished artists, whose work is representative of the extraordinary depth and diversity of writers and composers in our state,” said North Carolina Arts Council Executive Director Mary B. Regan. “The Fellowships were created to recognize outstanding artists, because their work is so essential to the North Carolina public values of productive citizens, vibrant communities, and independent expression.”
The Artist Fellowship program operates on a rotating two-year cycle by discipline. The next application deadline, which is for film and video artists, choreographers, and visual artists, is November 3, 2003. Guidelines are available online at www.ncarts.org.
Timmy Abell will use his Songwriters Fellowship to complete a new musical project. Abell received his degree from St. Andrews Presbyterian College, in Laurinburg, N.C. Based in Asheville, he works as a touring solo concert performer.
Sidney Boquiren will use his Composers Fellowship to create three works centered on spirituality, religion, and ethnicity. Boquiren received a bachelor’s degree in Music Theory and Composition from Butler University, and a master’s degree and doctoral degree in Music Composition from Duke University. He lives in Durham. His Composers Fellowship will be deferred until Fiscal Year 2004-2005 upon his return from a year-long teaching post.
Wendy Brenner will use her Writers Fellowship to complete her novel, The Anomalist. Brenner received a bachelor’s degree from Oberlin College and a master of fine arts degree from the University of Florida. A National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship recipient in 2000, she has published two books and numerous works of short fiction. She lives in Wilmington, where she is an assistant professor of writing at the University of North Carolina-Wilmington.
John Browner plans to use his Screenwriters Fellowship to write another original screenplay. He attended Bard College, where he majored in Dance. He also attended State University of New York at Purchase, as well as Tufts University. A Durham resident, he is a computer consultant, and owns Books on Ninth in Durham. His award will be deferred until Fiscal Year 2004-2005 following his return from an eight-month stay in Germany.
Gary Neil Carden will use his Playwrights Fellowship to complete his play, Outlander. Carden received bachelor’s and master’s degrees in English and Theater Arts from Western Carolina University. He was the recipient of an Appalachian Writers Association Award in 2000 for his book, Mason Jars in the Flood. He is a retired teacher and grants writer. He teaches at Elderhostels and writes a weekly newspaper column in Sylva, where he lives.
Judy Simpson Cook will use her Playwrights Fellowship to research and present two plays. She plans to write, produce, and perform a one-woman show as well as to travel to Washington, D.C., and Hunstville, Ala., to conduct research on the “space race” as background for a new play. She received a bachelor’s degree in Arts/English from Presbyterian College in Clinton, S.C. Cook works as a full-time playwright in Charlotte.
Howard Lemuel Craft will use his Playwrights Fellowship to complete his current play as well as to promote his other plays. He received a bachelor’s degree in Arts/History from North Carolina Central University. Craft works full-time as a writer in Durham.
Quinn Dalton will use her Writers Fellowship to complete her novel, Midnight Bowling. Dalton received a bachelor’s degree in English from Kent State University and a master of fine arts degree in Creative Writing from the University of North Carolina-Greensboro. She works as public relations director for an advertising agency in Greensboro, where she lives. Her first novel, High Strung, was published in July 2003.
Marc Faris will use his Composers Fellowship to complete his musical composition, An Alternative Community. Faris received a bachelor’s degree in Music Composition from Eastman School of Music and a doctoral degree in Music Composition from Duke University. He is a private instructor of composition, theory, and beginning electric guitar in Durham, where he lives.
Angela Davis-Gardner will use her Writers Fellowship to complete her book, Butterfly’s Child. She received a bachelor’s degree from English at Duke University and a master’s degree in fine arts from UNC-Greensboro. She is the author of two critically-acclaimed novels, Felice and Forms of Shelter. She has also published short stories and personal essays in literary magazines and anthologies, and has given more than 50 readings and lectures about fiction throughout the U.S. Stories from her forthcoming collection in progress have appeared in Witness, the Cream City Review, the Great River Review, and Shenandoah. An associate professor of creative writing at N.C. State University, she won an award as Alumni Distinguished Undergraduate Professor for 2002-2004. She lives in Raleigh.
Virginia Holman will use her Writers Fellowship to complete work on her next nonfiction book. Holman received a bachelor’s degree in English from Virginia Commonwealth University and a master of fine arts degree in Writing from the University of North Carolina-Greensboro. A full-time writer, she lives in Durham.
Brenda S. Jernigan will use her Writers Fellowship to complete work on a novel set in Seagrove, N.C., around the time of World War I. Jernigan received a bachelor’s degree in religion from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and a master’s degree in education from Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Va. She lives in Raleigh, and is a full-time writer.
Sarah Messer will use her Writers Fellowship to complete her book of poetry, White Horse: 108 Stories of Do Khyense Yeshe Dorje, a poetic version of the recently translated autobiography of the 19th century Tibetan Buddhist. Messer received a bachelor’s degree in English/Creative Writing and Women’s Studies from Middlebury College in Vermont and a master of fine arts degree in Poetry from the University of Michigan. She published her first book of poetry, Bandit Letters, in 2001. She lives in Wilmington, where she is an assistant professor at the University of North Carolina-Wilmington.
Michael Fleming Parker will use his Writers Fellowship to complete a draft of a novel based on the life of Theodosia Burr Alston, daughter of Aaron Burr. Parker received a bachelor’s degree in English with Honors in Creative Writing from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and a master of fine arts degree in Creative Writing from the University of Virginia. He has published four novels and numerous short fiction and nonfiction works. A resident of Greensboro, he is an associate professor at the University of North Carolina-Greensboro.
Tyson Rogers will use his Composers Fellowship to tour and record his music. Rogers received a bachelor’s degree from the University of Tennessee and a master’s degree in Improvisation and Jazz Studies from the New England Conservatory of Music. He lives in Durham, where he is a teacher.
Christopher David Rosser will use his Songwriters Fellowship to write and record a collection of songs and instrumental pieces for a new CD. Rosser received a bachelor’s degree from the School of Music at the University of Miami. A resident of Asheville, he works as a freelance singer-songwriter and producer/engineer.
Lee (Lela Ann) Zacharias will use her Writers Fellowship in her work as an essayist. Zacharias received a bachelor’s degree from Indiana University, a master of fine arts degree in Creative Writing from the University of Arkansas, and another master’s degree in English and Creative Writing from Hollins College. She has published several novels and a short story collection, and her work has appeared in numerous publications. She lives in Greensboro, and is an associate professor of English at the University of North Carolina-Greensboro.
The mission of the N.C. Arts Council, which celebrates those who create and enjoy art in all 100 counties, is to enrich the cultural life of the state. The Arts Council nurtures and supports excellence in the arts, and provides opportunities for every North Carolinian to experience the arts. A division of the N.C. Department of Cultural Resources, the Arts Council further serves as a catalyst for the development of arts organizations throughout the state as it makes grants and offers technical assistance. For more information, go to www.ncarts.org.
About the North Carolina Arts Council
The North Carolina Arts Council works to make North Carolina The Creative State where a robust arts industry produces a creative economy, vibrant communities, children prepared for the 21st century and lives filled with discovery and learning. The Arts Council accomplishes this in partnership with artists and arts organizations, other organizations that use the arts to make their communities stronger and North Carolinians—young and old—who enjoy and participate in the arts. For more information visit www.ncarts.org.
About the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources
The N.C. Arts Council is a division of the N.C. Department of Cultural Resources, which annually serves more than 19 million people through its 27 historic sites, seven history museums, two art museums, the nation’s first state-supported Symphony Orchestra, the State Library, the N.C. Arts Council, and the State Archives.
The N.C. Department of Cultural Resources serves as a champion for North Carolina’s creative industry, which employs nearly 300,000 North Carolinians and contributes more than $41 billion to the state’s economy. To learn more, visit www.ncculture.com.