press releases


New Year, Old Favorites 

at the Averitt

“Gimme Three Steps,” “What’s Your Name,” “Saturday Night Special,” “Sweet Home Alabama,” “Freebird,” and, of course, “Statesboro Blues.”

            The New Year begins with some old-school rock as Lynyrd Skynyrd tribute band Skynfolks will help you stroll down memory lane in the Emma Kelly Theater on January 8.

Clara Christmas Tree Pic-01.jpg

Metter dancer to star in ‘Nutcracker’

Many young ballerinas have dreams of dancing a leading role in one of the classic ballets. For Metter’s Tessa Salter, that dream is coming true as she has been cast in the role of Clara in Statesboro’s Averitt Center’s

2021 production of The Nutcracker.


Wemberly Ponder to perform at the Emma Kelly

The ONE Series continues Sept. 24 with a performance by Statesboro native Wemberly Ponder.

Born to parents Sanford and Harriett Ponder, Ponder graduated from William James High School, as well as Georgia Southern University. He says that he was raised primarily by his mother, as his father was hospitalized throughout most of his childhood.

The family didn’t have a television, but Ponder and his mom often watched at a neighbor’s home. It was there that he was first exposed to classical music and piano — he watched a television show featuring two pianists when he was 5.


Frozen fun in the Emma Kelly Theater

Over 30 local and area children will bring Elsa, Anna and the magical land of Arendelle to life in the historic Emma Kelly Theater for the Averitt Center’s presentation of Disney’s Frozen Jr. during consecutive weekends in July.

All Fired Up Spring 2021 FB cover-05.jpg

All Fired Up! Holiday Exhibition, Sale spotlights local handmade art

Ceramics, jewelry, paintings and other fine arts make wonderful Mother’s Day presents and the All Fired Up! Holiday Exhibition and Sale has just what you need for that special gift.

The Roxie Remley Center for Fine Arts (31 East Vine St.) will be turned into a shopper’s paradise on April 29-May 1 as the Averitt Center Visual Arts Department and Georgia Southern University’s Betty Foy Sanders Department of Art (BFSDoA) teamed up to provide GSU art students with the opportunity to showcase and sell their artwork.


Local dancers display the art of movement in Modern Dance performance

Ten local and area dancers will display their athletic abilities and artistic talents during “An Evening of Modern Dance” on April 2-3 at the Emma Kelly Theater.

Statesboro Youth Ballet members Ana Grace Evans, Annie O’Neill, Caroline Spivey and Janelle Spivey, SYB alum Laural Boyles and Madelyn Wolfe, and guest dancers Emma Vickers, Anna Coghill, Ella Warren and Jillian Ley as well as Averitt Center Director of Dance Taylor Ellen will perform in the 45-minute program which focuses on artistic expression through full-body movement. Evans, O’Neill, Boyles, Vickers and Ellen choreographed the pieces.


March is full of various Downtown sights and sounds

Whether it’s a Disney favorite, gospel, rhythm and blues, or something that is visually stunning, a variety of sights and musical sounds will emanate from the Averitt Center’s downtown campuses in March.
Performances on the Jan Brown Anderson stage of the Emma Kelly Theater will be the One: Robin Holmes-Lanier (March 5) and Disney’s Newsies (March 25-28). A new Main Gallery exhibition, Beneath The Surface by Cyndy Epps, will premiere March 11, the monthly Paint-n-Party is March 12 at the Roxie Remley Center for Fine Arts and auditions for Dearly Beloved will be held March 13 at the Whitaker Black Box Theater. The fourth session of art education classes begins on March 22.


New Year, Old Favorites at the Averitt

The New Year begins with some down-home country music as talented local singers Brandi Harvey, Christie McLendon and Rachel Elkins, a five-piece band and a few special guests will help you stroll down memory lane in the Emma Kelly Theater on January 7-10.
The talented trio and band will cover popular tunes from some of the most influential female artists of 1930s to the 1990s in the Lady Legends and Guests concert. The 30-song set includes music from The Carter Family, June Carter, Kitty Wells, The Davis Sisters, Patsy Cline, Wanda Jackson, Dolly Parton, Jeannie C. Riley, Tammy Wynette, Loretta Lynn, Bobby Gentry, Lynn Anderson, Tanya Tucker, Barbara Mandrell and Reba McEntire.

unnamed (2).png

ONE: Series performers unite for holiday performance at the Averitt

By Angye Morrison             
Courtesy of The Statesboro Herald


The ONE: Series has become a tradition in the Boro, bringing some of the area’s most talented artists to the stage. During this holiday season, the artists that audiences have gotten to know during their solo performances will come together for a special holiday show.

Shaunta Ellis, Nora Franklin, Vivian Summers, Brandi Harvey, Eddie Frazier, Dr. Michael Braz, Donald Chavers and Robin Holmes-Lanier will perform on the Emma Kelly stage at the Averitt Center this month to ring in some holiday cheer. The show will feature each artist performing, but no interviews to get to know the artists, like during the earlier individual performances.


All gave some, some gave all

On the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, the American Legion Dexter Allen Post 90, along with the Averitt Center for the Arts and Joiner-Anderson Funeral Home, will pay tribute to the men and women, living or deceased, who served in any branch of the United States Armed Forces in the Emma Kelly Theater.


Art Classes, Lessons offered at the Averitt 

The Averitt Center offers an exciting array of classes for children, teenagers and adults in dance, theater and visual arts as well as private-lesson instruction in music, dance and visual arts.
   Our instructors are practicing artists within their fields of expertise. These fun, informative, and creative programs are designed to build upon student achievement and growth. Come join the fun and learn something new. With over 40 classes to choose from, there's something for everyone at the Averitt.

Orchestra Recital Poster.jpg

Jazzing it up with the Statesboro Chamber Orchestra

The Statesboro Chamber Orchestra, under the direction of Dr. Jonathan Aceto, will perform “An Evening in the Jazz Age” for its Spring Concert on May 8 at 7:30 p.m. in the Emma Kelly Theater.

The featured soloist of the evening will be Statesboro High School senior Cameron Halaby, performing Johann Sebastian Bach’s Concerto for Keyboard in D minor on the Averitt’s Petrof Baby Grand.

dearly beloved eblast graphic-small-min.

Dearly Beloved spotlights colorful Southern characters

An over-the-top wedding, three feuding sisters and a church full of small-town eccentrics…what could possibly go wrong?

Follow the misadventures of the Futrelle sisters as a series of unfortunate wedding-day events leads to a hilarious comedy of errors in Dearly Beloved, a laugh-a-minute Southern comedy on the Jan Brown Anderson stage of the Emma Kelly Theater April 29-May 2.


Extra, Extra, Read All About It….Newsies at the                Emma Kelly Theater

It’s a tale as old as time; the rich, strong and powerful exploiting the poor, weak and downtrodden…until they’ve had enough of it.

A singing-and-dancing version of this age-old struggle hits the stage of the Emma Kelly Theater on March 25-28 as over 30 local and area children, teenagers and adults tell the tale of Jack Kelly vs. Joseph Pulitzer in Disney’s Newsies The Musical.

Patsy Cline pix.JPG

Harvey, McLendon reprise roles for Always Patsy Cline

Local favorites Brandi Harvey and Christie McLendon bring the laughter, the music and the tears of Always Patsy Cline back to the Emma Kelly Theater on February 25-28.
The duo first performed the hilarious and heart-warming musical play, which was created and originally directed by Ted Swindley and is based on a true story, to a nearly packed house on March 24, 2018.


Lady Legends of Country

Celebrate some of the legendary ladies of country music with talented local singers Brandi Harvey, Christie McLendon and Rachel Elkins and a five-piece band January 7-10 on the Jan Brown Anderson stage of the Emma Kelly Theater.

This talented trio covers some of the most popular tunes from the 1930s to the 1990s. The 30-song set includes music from The Carter Family, June Carter, Kitty Wells, The Davis Sisters, Patsy Cline, Wanda Jackson, Dolly Parton, Jeannie C. Riley, Tammy Wynette, Loretta Lynn, Bobby Gentry, Lynn Anderson, Tanya Tucker, Barbara Mandrell and Reba McEntire. 

unnamed (1).png

Christmas is in the air at the Averitt

Visual arts and music come together to make the Averitt Center for the Arts one very
busy place in December.
The annual All Fired Up! Holiday Sale kicks off the merry month with one-of-a-kind
ceramics, jewelry, paintings and more at the Roxie Remley Center for Fine Arts on Dec. 2-4.

IMG_0920 (2) copy.jpg

The Sound of Music headlines Averitt’s October

Over 40 community members bring the heartwarming story and the memorable songs of The Sound of Music to the Jan Brown Anderson stage of the Emma Kelly Theater in late October.
   Based on the 1949 memoir, The Story of the Trapp Family Singers, by Maria von Trapp, the enchanting musical tells the story of a young Austrian woman who is trying to decide if she wants to become a nun in Salzburg, Austria in 1938.


Frozen Jr. starts 2021-22 season at the Averitt

Ana and Elsa will be building a snowman in July at the Emma Kelly Theater to kick off the 2021-22 season.
Disney’s Frozen Jr. brings the two princesses and the magical land of Arendelle to life onstage. The show features all of the memorable songs from the animated film, with music and lyrics by Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez, plus five new songs written for the Broadway production.

Summer 2021 Logo-01.png

Looking forward to Summer Camps at the Averitt

Monday, May 31 is the opening date for our annual array of Averitt Center Summer Art Camps. During the nine weeks of summer, there are 45 week-long camps for children ranging from three-year old dancers to 18-year old thespians. There is even a “camp” for adults.

MODERN DANCE 2021 event cover.jpg

All Fired Up about April at the Averitt

Dance, visual arts and theater are all in full bloom in April at the Averitt Center for the Arts.
The month kicks off with the third annual An Evening of Modern Dance on April 2nd and 3rd in the Emma Kelly Theater. Averitt Ballet Director Taylor Ellen has choreographed dances which are filled with a wide variety of music and dance styles. This annual performance, sponsored by Jim and Betsy Nichols, shows off the diversity that is found in the art of dance, from the abstract to traditional techniques and everything in between. Dancing will be Madelyn Wolfe, Laural Boyles, Annie O’Neill, Caroline Spivey, Emma Vickers, Ana Grace Evans, Annie Coghill, Ella Warren, Jillian Ley, Janelle Spivey and Ellen.


Mical Whitaker Named Averitt Center Legend 2021

Local theater legend and former Georgia Southern University professor Mical Whitaker isn’t caught off guard much. But Sunday, following a performance as Al Lewis in “The Sunshine Boys” alongside Eddie Frazier’s Willie Clark, Whitaker was completely taken by surprise.

Whitaker, who also turned 80 on Sunday, was presented the distinction of 2021 Averitt Center Legend of the Arts by Ressie Fuller, who co-directed “The Sunshine Boys” with Carol Thompson. The Legends are local artists who have made a substantial contribution to the arts in the area. Past legends include Emma Kelly, Michael Braz, Roxie Remley, Blind Willie McTell, Delma Presley and Betty Foy Sanders.


Old-school comedy from Averitt favorites Whitaker, Frazier

Legendary local actors Mical Whitaker and Eddie Frazier head a hilarious cast in the Averitt STARS production of The Sunshine Boys on February 11-14.
Co-directed by Ressie Fuller and Carol Thompson, the Neil Simon comedy will be performed on the Jan Brown Anderson stage of the Emma Kelly Theater on February 11-13 at 7:30 p.m. in a 3 p.m. matinee performance on the 14th. The Sunday performance is particularly special because the day is Whitaker’s 80th birthday.