Kaleidoscope sponsor the Independent Tribune to start a series of artist/musician profiles

Cabarrus County artists and musicians please e-mail me at mknox@modernfilmzine.com about the Independent Tribune letting me start up a series of “mini” profiles. Get in touch with me so I can send you a list of questions for you to fill out with some images of your work. We plan to start running these with our Entertainment Calendar which will be launching soon. This is focused on Cabarrus County artists and musicians for right now, just to give a heads up. It’s also open to anyone living in the Rowan County portion of Kannapolis. Take care and thanks! Mike

Arsena Schroeder to perform at April 26 Kaleidoscope Cultural Arts Festival

Arsena Schroeder, a Breedlove Guitars endorsed artist, will be performing at the April 26 Kaleidoscope Cultural Arts Festival taking place from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. in Downtown Kannapolis, N.C.

Schroeder began her journey as a singer-songwriter and instrumentalist in the Fall of 2009 and has since then performed locally, nationally, and internationally at venues such as The Evening Muse in Charlotte, NC, Ebenezer’s Coffeehouse in Washington, DC, Fleisher Art Memorial in Philadelphia, PA, WDVX The Blue Plate Special in Knoxville, TN, and Ponticifia Madre Y Maestra in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.

After graduating Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelor’s Degree in Communication Studies and Sociology, Arsena turned down a full-ride to graduate school to pursue her passion in music. She now serves as the Musician’s Overseer at Charlotte’s 24-7, a local expression of a global prayer movement, and tours as a solo-acoustic performer. Her artistic twist of cover song iarsenahttp://nterpretations, impromptu/free-styled songs, and original music has sent a ripple in the independent music industry and deemed her as a force to be reckoned with.

She’s also competed and advanced in a round as an American Idol contestant. Her artistic twist on cover songs, impromptu/free-styled melodies, and original music has been reviewed as an “Arsenal, on fire!”. Breedlove Guitars says, “She has a spark that can’t be ignored”. Her self-produced EP, Abundantly, is available on iTunes today.

FREE movie screenings celebrating North Carolina music and movie history

Modern Film Fest will host two FREE short film screenings at 9 p.m. Friday at the Davis Theater, 65 Union St., Concord, after the art walk. The Cabarrus Arts Council will screen The Projection Room directed by John Sevier Austin and features scenes of the classic Gem Theatre and downtown Kannapolis back in the days of Cannon Mills, Kannapolis, NC 1887-2003. “The Projection Room” looks at the dying art of projection, as digital machinery replaces human expertise in virtually all theaters
After watching The Projection Room at 9 p.m. Friday at the Davis Theater, 65 Union St., Concord, check out the second FREE screening with the short film Firewall of Sound which explores how the digital age has impacted the music industry. Filmed in North Carolina by Devin DiMattia the movie shows how musicians have evolved since the digital age.“Firewall of Sound” trailerhttp://“The Projection Room” trailerhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RVx32W6cH0Ahttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RVx32W6cH0A

Kannapolis artist finds his muse

Eric Wattinne will be set up at the April 26 Kaleidoscope Cultural Arts Festival from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. in downtown KannapolisEric Wattinne

By Michael Knox mknox@independenttribune.com

KANNAPOLIS, N.C. —Attend a live music venue in the area, and you just might spot an artist in the crowd, busily painting away as he’s inspired by the music.

In fact, it’s hard to miss Eric Wattinne. The Kannapolis artist can be seen wearing a suit and tie — with sandals and a captain’s sailor hat.

“I like comfortable, and I like to be very flamboyant,” Wattinne said. “I love to have people walk in, look over the crowd and stop when they see me. And it’s not just because I’m working on my painting, it’s because they’re like, ‘Who’s that guy with the yellow dress corduroys with gigantic boots on? And is he wearing a shirt? No. That’s a vest. He’s wearing a vest and no shirt and he’s got a captain’s hat on.’”

Wattinne strives to be flamboyant.

“I like to be a walking advertisement for the psychological community, the people that like to explore their consciousness,” he said. “Exploring consciousness obviously leads to your outer appearance changing. So, you’re exploring your inner self, and it’s going to change [how] you want yourself to look.”

That exploration of consciousness is something Wattinne dives into every time he paints at a music event. He attends concerts and festivals as a guest, performing a “live painting” session in which he creates art while musicians play.

One piece that shows how Wattinne’s art style works is his painting “Cosmic Rave.”

“I wanted it be the image of an astronaut who has his face mask break in space and he’s having a death trip,” Wattinne said.

After developing the initial idea for the painting, he was able to work with a band to help the concept flourish.

“Right when I started it I was talking to my friend’s band, The Wormholes, and they wanted me to give them an idea of what I was painting so that they could kind of play along with it and give me inspiration while they played,” he said. “And they already do cosmic sort of sounds.”

Wattinne not only paints to the sounds of live music, but he has also lent his artistic talents to bands, providing their album artwork. He’s worked with Andrew Stamper, as well as the Asian Teacher Factory and The Collectives.

The piece he recently did for Andrew Stamper is a burst of purple and yellow, with strange faces erupting from the explosion of color.

“Some people have been saying it looks like the Big Bang to them,” he said. “You’ve got some sort of demigod deities, looking on to the Big Bang.”

His work often has strange faces in the background, which are also influenced by Wattinne’s emotions.

“When I draw faces, you see inside the work — extreme happiness, extreme interest, this person is very astonished, aghast. And the expressions show what I feel sometimes,” he said. “If I’m working on a piece and something confuses me, the next face I draw might look confused.”

With music, Wattinne has also been influenced by the work of Ralph Steadman, cartoons, the band the Gorillaz as well as images he’s pulled from his dreams.

The different media have influenced a style that he’s spent years developing, dating back to when he was a student at Winecoff Elementary School.

“I was always doodling,” he said with a laugh. “I’d get in trouble in class because I’d draw instead of listening. I would no pay attention to my work. Eventually, I was like, ‘You know what? I’m getting into trouble for it, but later on this is going to be what I do for a living.’”

Wattinne studied art at UNC Charlotte, and he now works at Dragonfly Studios, where he does carpentry work and fabrication designs.

It was at UNC Charlotte, though, that Wattinne first started painting to music. At first he’d just listen to CDs, but by December 2011 he was invited to “perform” with the band The Mantras at the Visulite Theatre in Charlotte. “The energy and the go-for-broke kind of act that they do and just the amount of love they emanate made me just love painting to them,” he said.

Now, Wattinne paints to live music on a regular basis.

“If there’s no music playing, I actually find it hard to work,” he said. “I like to dance while painting, too. Sometimes it’s just as enjoyable for me to be up on stage dancing out and just grooving as it is to paint.”

Contact Michael Knox at 704-789-9133.

Toys from Cannon Mills on display at Kaleidoscope

Brent Offenberger is a wood carver who will have his collection of toys made from Cannon Mills wood on display at the April 26 Kaleidoscope Cultural Arts Festival in downtown Kannapolis. The festival is free for artists and performers to set up at and to register e-mail info@kannapolisarts.com

By Michael Knox | mknox@independenttribune.comBrent Offenberger

KANNAPOLIS, N.C. — Brent Offenberger was driving along Loop Road in 2006 when he stopped by the Hardee’s and watched the implosion of the old Pillowtex/Cannon Mills towel distribution center and bleachery building.

When the dust began to settle, Offenberger asked himself, “I wonder what they did with all the wood out of that?”

Offenberger has been a woodworker since his father got him interested in the hobby when he was 11. So w hen Cannon Mills came down, he wanted to nab some of the old wood before it got hauled away.

Offenberger pulled into the demolition site, talked to a worker and was soon left the site with three huge beams and eight planks.

Since then, Offenberger has taken pieces from Cannon Mills —

Some as old as 100 years — and transformed them into wooden toys that are nothing short of artwork. He also collected scraps from the construction of the North Carolina Research Campus, where he works as a maintenance technician.

The toys that Offenberger makes can take as little as three hours for a simple piece, but more complex pieces take a bit longer.

Just one piece took him about 100 hours to make. It was a truck and trailer with a track hoe with working treads and scoop, all made of wood from Cannon Mills and the North Carolina Research Campus.

Offenberger made the toy for Ryan Dayvault, whose family sold the Cannons the property where Cannon Mills was originally built. Dayvault is also employed at the North Carolina Research Campus, which was built on the old Cannon Mills property.

Dayvault often shows off the toy truck and track hoe to visitors to the Research Campus.

“It was really special, especially because of having the Cannon Mills and the current Kannapolis, the past and the present, all together,” Dayvault said.

For Dayvault and others who appreciate Offenberger’s work with the Cannon Mills wood, it’s a way to remember the past.

“The main thing is just the preservation of it,” Dayvault said. “It’s so much better to be made into something other than to be lying in a building.”

Offenberger said he often gets a similar response when people see his toys and realize they are made out of Cannon Mills wood.

“It’s a true appreciation for people to actually be able to see that’s Cannon Mills wood,” Offenberger said. “Especially the folks that worked there, knowing that’s a part of where they made their living all those years.”

Offenberger himself has no ties to Cannon Mills, but he remembers his sister living in Kannapolis and how busy the plant would be when he drove by. Originally from Ohio, he moved to North Carolina in 1984 to find more work since jobs were scarce in Ohio at the time, and remembers seeing the traffic at Cannon Mills.

“I said, ‘They’ve got more people employed in that one building than my whole hometown in Ohio did,’” Offenberger said.

Since collecting the wood from Cannon Mills, Offenberger has heard more and more stories about the old plant. He now wishes he had gotten more details about exactly where the wood came from when it was taken out of the mill.

“I just wish those boards could talk,” Offenberger said. “I would have loved to hear the history they could tell.”

Contact Michael Knox at 704-789-9133.

David Domingo to perform at April 26 Kaleidoscope

Check out a recent interview with Kaleidoscope Cultural Arts Festival music director David Domingo. He was interviewed in the Dec. 16 edition of the Independent Tribune. He will be one of the musicians performing at the April 26 festival in downtown Kannapolis. Here is the interview for a recent show he organized:david domingo

By Michael Knox | mknox@independenttribune.com

CONCORD, N.C. — David Domingo is a big fan of Garrison Keillor’s “A Prairie Home Companion,” and he hopes to bring that vibe to the Davis Theatre with his production of the Fuzzbucket Music Company.

Keeping in the flavor of “A Prairie Home Companion,” Domingo’s group of musicians even features Ethan Uslan, who has played on the NPR favorite.

The first place winner of the 2007 World Championship Old-Time Piano Playing Contest, Uslan has performed on NPR’s “A Prairie Home Companion” as well as various concerts and festivals nationwide.

Uslan studied classical piano as a child in South Orange, N.J. and later majored in classical piano performance at Indiana University. All the while, Uslan secretly harbored a ragtime addiction and complimented his classical piano studies by learning to play like Fats Waller, Jelly Roll Morton and George Gershwin. He also developed formidable improvising skills while accompanying “Full Frontal Comedy” – a comedy troupe that staged live improvised musicals based on audience suggestions.

He will be among the crowd of performers that joins Domingo on the stage Thursday at the Davis Theatre, 65 Union St. S., Concord. This contemporary version of the old-fashioned variety show is at 7:30 p.m. Thursday. Tickets are $12 each and can be purchased at the box office or by calling 704-920-2753.

The Fuzzbucket Music Company will feature ragtime piano, country, gospel, folk, acoustic, R&B, alternative and a barbershop quartet among other acts.

Organized by Domingo, a professional musician who has been playing in bands since he was 10, said most of the musician who will be playing at the Davis Theatre he met through other gigs and shows he’s performed at.

“I grew up around professional artists and musicians,” Domingo said. “I stayed involved because it’s the only thing I know how to do. I am terrible with a hammer or a wrench.”

It was while he was playing a gig at the Old Stone Vino restaurant in Kannapolis that he got a chance to perform at the Davis Theatre. Noelle Rhodes Scott, president and CEO of the Cabarrus Arts Council, saw Domingo perform at Old Stone and invited him to develop a show.

“I jumped at the opportunity,” he said. “I am hoping to generate interest in a local Grand Ole Opry style show. It would be great if it became a regular fixture in the local music scene.”

Also in the lineup with Domingo and Uslan will be Jordan C. Minor, who has performed in the group Old Rusty Mandolin and will be playing bluegrass banjo and guitar in the Fuzzbucket performance. Shane Manier will perform as a poet, and Jim Cooper will play 12-string guitar.

“I am very inspired by the classic Americana sound of the ‘Prairie Home Companion’ production brought to the stage,” Domingo said. “It is something that I would like to pay tribute to on stage.”

For Domingo, this is a project that showcases the team he has created over the years.

“The Fuzzbucket Music Company was an idea that started when I was performing with musicians in Florida about 10 years ago. It’s been a growing roster of musicians that record and perform together,” Domingo said. “Each show can have a different number of performers and a variety of musical styles. We perform anything from gospel, funk, blues, alternative, rock, folk, reggae, calypso, Italian opera.”

Domingo himself plays a variety of styles, having been influenced by the Beatles, Elvis and Prince. As a full-time musician he works six days a week playing at places like Old Stone Vino as well as playing music for senior citizens in nursing homes, assisted living facilities and rehabilitation centers.

“My experience is that life as a working musician has not been hard for me at all, and I have always been fortunate to have steady work,” Domingo said. “I bring to my work day the same philosophy that I practice in life. Each day is a blessing that is full of endless possibilities.”

For more information on the Fuzzbucket Music Company visit http://www.fuzzbucketmusic.com/

Tripp the Clown to perform at Kaleidoscope






Make sure you come out and say hey to Tripp Burnett who portrays the juggling Tripp the Clown. Tripp was at all four of our inaugural Kaleidoscope Cultural Arts Festival events and is a regular performer at Papa Robb’s Paradise Ice at 3700 Poplar Tent Rd, Concord, N.C.

Tripp will be one of the performers during the April 26 Kaleidoscope Cultural Arts Festival from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. ton Downtown Kannapolis, N.C., near Charlotte.

Rakasa D’Nile belly dancers to perform at April festival

Kannapolis Arts is excited to announce that belly dancers from Rakasa D’Nile, the student troupe of Queens of D’Nile Studio in Concord, will be performing at the April 26 Kaleidoscope Cultural Arts Festival. Keep watching out for posts to see more updates for this year’s upcoming festivals.

Queens of D’Nile participated in our inaugural culture arts festivals in 2013 and look to partner up with us more in 2013.

Located at 38 Union St. S., Ste. 202, in Concord, Queens of D’Nile is the only studio in Cabarrus County dedicated solely to the art of belly dance.
It is their belief that belly dance is for everyone – all shapes, sizes, colors, genders and walks of life.

Their goal is to maintain a positive, encouraging environment in which students can learn, grow, and, most importantly, have fun expressing themselves through dance.

They are also currently coordinating their annual belly dancing festival set for March 22 with We Will Raq You IV. The belly dancing showcase will be at the Old Courthouse Theatre, 49 Spring St NW, Concord. This showcase features more than 50 performers belly dancing to heavy metal music and has had a crowd of more than 200 people each year.

To RSVP as a guest for the April 26 Kaleidoscope Cultural Arts Festival visit:


2014 Kaleidoscope Cultural Arts Festival dates

This year’s round of Kaleidoscope Cultural Arts Festival events kicks off on Saturday, April 26. This year’s festivals will run from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. on April 26; May 31; September 27; and October 25th.

We are currently taking vendor registrations for these events. Remember it is FREE to set up at the festival, but this is a family friendly event.

We are looking for painters, jugglers, sculptors, clowns, writers, woodworkers, magicians, metal artists, fire spinners, gas blowers, farmers market participants, pottery makers, dancers, musicians, culture groups and other artists and performers.

To register e-mail mknox@modernfilmzine.com with your name, art form or performance style as well as your contact information.