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Joye in Aiken will be ‘biggest festival ever’ in 2019; donor ticket sales begin in January

December 30, 2018

Joye in Aiken doesn’t kick off for another three months, but preparations are already being made for what event organizers are saying will be the biggest Joye in Aiken yet.

The music and performing arts festival, formerly known as Juilliard in Aiken, will take place in March 2019. The festival contains a nine-day performance schedule that will begin March 7.

To celebrate moving into its second decade of bringing the arts to Aiken (the festival celebrated its 10-year anniversary last March) the 2019 festival will contain new activities and performances.

“We have 80 artists and staff coming, including a very large contingent of Juilliard students,” said Joye in Aiken President Sandra Field in a press release. “That’s more than twice as many artists as we’ve had in recent years, and represents many different genres – jazz, dance, piano, cabaret, and even opera.”

Fields said the upcoming Joye in Aiken festival will be the “most diverse program” presented yet.

The festival will begin with two new events. The first will be a New Orleans-Style Mardi Gras Funeral Parade on March 7 that will take place downtown Aiken, which will include performances from the USC Aiken Jazz Band.

The following evening, March 8, there will be a community fish fry at Second Baptist Church called In the Spirit of Jazz: A Community Fish Fry.

Other new additions to Joye in Aiken include the Juilliard Opera and an expanded venue of jazz concerts and performances.

This year’s performance lineup will feature artists of both local and national acclaim. Many of the performers are Juilliard alumni.

“The artists are selected not only on the basis of their extraordinary gifts for performing for audiences of all ages, but also their amazing talents for working with kids,” Joye in Aiken Chairman Emeritus Steve Naifeh said in the press release.

The Educational Outreach Program is the “real heart” of the festival, according to Naifeh.

“We are very grateful to everyone who contributes to the festival, from the artists to the volunteers, who make it possible to bring the arts to almost 4,000 area school children every year,” Naifeh said. “It has an enormous and important impact on children in Aiken and throughout the area.”

On Feb. 1, ticket sales for Joye in Aiken will become available to the public.

Donors who contribute $500 or more to the festival will be able to purchase tickets in advance on Jan. 16.

Donors who contribute $100 or more will receive special benefits for the festival.

Tickets, donations, and general information can be found at joyeinaiken.com.

What to go?

Here is the nine-day festival events and performance schedule for Joye in Aiken 2019.

Tickets are available online. For additional info, contact the Etherredge Center Box Office at 803-641-3305.

New Orleans-Style Jazz Funeral Parade — 5:30 p.m. Thursday, March 7, in downtown Aiken. Open and free to the public.

In the Spirit of Jazz: A Community Fish Fry — 5 p.m. Friday, March 8, at Second Baptist Church, 425 Hampton Ave. N.W. All proceeds will benefit the Second Baptist Christian Preparatory School. Tickets are $10 each, students with a student ID are free.

Riley Mulherkar and the Festival All-Stars — 8 p.m. Friday, March 8, at Second Baptist Church. Concert tickets are $15 each, students with a student ID are free. Purchasing concert ticket and a fish fry ticket results in a $5 discount on total purchase.

The Joye of Jazz — 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, March 9, at The Willcox. The Molly Miller Trio will play at brunch, tickets are $75 each. Sam Reider and the Human Hands will play in the afternoon, tickets are $50 each. Bryan Carter and the Young Swangers will play the headline performance in the evening, tickets are $50 each. Purchasing tickets for all three events results in a $25 discount on total purchase.

Drew Petersen, Piano — 7:30 p.m. Sunday, March 10, at USC Aiken Etherredge Center, 471 University Parkway. Prodigious pianist Drew Petersen will perform. Tickets are $25 each, students with student ID are free.

Dido and Aeneas by Henry Purcell: Juilliard Opera and Juilliard415 — 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 12, at St. John’s United Methodist Church, 104 Newberry St. N.W. Tickets are $25 each, students with student ID are free.

Swing Dance Party featuring Sammy Miller and the Congregation — 8 p.m. Wednesday, March 13, at Aiken Center for the Arts, 122 Laurens St. S.W. Tickets are $25 each, students with student ID are free.

Midday Music Concert Series: Singers from The Juilliard School’s Marcus Institute of Vocal Arts — noon Thursday, March 14, at First Presbyterian Church, 224 Barnwell Ave. Free and open to the public. Doors open at 11:30 a.m., general admission on first come, first serve basis.

Jessica Lang Dance — 8 p.m. Thursday, March 14, at AECOM Center for the Performing Arts, 126 Newberry St. S.W. Tickets are $50 each, students with student ID are free. Box Office will accept cash or check only.

Festival Finale “Stardust: A Night in the Cosmos,” featuring Jennifer Sheehan — 8 p.m. Friday, March 16, at USC Aiken Etherredge Center, 471 University Parkway. Tickets are $50 each, students are free with student ID.

Are you a donor?

Here are some of the benefits given to donors at the festival.

Donations $100 or more — Invitations for two for “Paint the Town Red” Kickoff Party in The Alley and the New Orleans-Style Funeral Parade downtown.

Donations $500 or more — Invitations for two to the events above and also to the “Joye in January” Preview Party at Ridgeley Hall.

Donations $1,000 or more — All of the above, plus an invitation for two to “Juilliard at Joye!” reception and concert featuring Juilliard415 at the Joye Cottage ballroom.

Donations $2,500 or more — All of the above, plus an invitation for two to “Stardust and Champagne” reception at the Etherredge Center prior to the Finale Concert. Two free tickets to two performances of donor’s choice will also be provided.

Donations $5,000 or more — All of the above, plus an invitation for two to the Festival Celebration with the Artists that close out the week. Two free tickets to three performances of donor’s choice will also be provided.

Donations $10,000 or more — All of the above, in addition to two free tickets to all performances at Joye in Aiken.

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