Classes can help students get creative

Two Charleston Symphony Orchestra groups will honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Well, we're almost two weeks into 2012, and I hope you're all sticking to your resolutions. If anyone's resolved to be more creative this year, you're in luck as there are all kinds of classes available to get you started this month.

Pottery, sculpture

Cone 10 Studios' winter class sessions begin as soon as Monday (different classes start on different dates).

Whether you're a beginner or you've gotten your hands dirty with some clay before, there are a variety of classes for all levels and ages. Some of the classes include: Beginning Wheel Throwing and Introduction to Clay; Advanced Beginning Wheel Throwing; Intermediate Wheel Throwing; Clay Sculpture; and Clay for Kids.

Most of the classes are about four weeks long and cost about $200, with the kids' class costing a bit less. The fee includes glazing and firing.

Cone 10 also offers students open studio time in addition to class time, so you can work on your new masterpieces when it's convenient for you. Class sizes are limited to provide space and individual instruction.

To register, call 853-3345 or visit Cone 10 Studios at 1080-B Morrison Drive.

Youth acting classes

Have a theatrical teenager on your hands? Send him or her to acting school and put all that drama to good use. The Charleston Acting Studio, also home to Midtown/Sheri Grace Productions on James Island, is offering two sessions geared towards youngsters this month.

The Teen Acting Class will begin Monday. Created for 14- to 17-year-olds, this eight-week class seeks to ignite the students' passion for acting.

"Through movement and vocal-based activities, students gain essential performance skills of professional actors," artistic director Sheri Grace Wenger said.

These classes will take place 6:30-8 p.m. each Monday and at the end of eight weeks will culminate with a performance showcasing the students' work.

The Youth Acting Class, geared for 10- to 13-year-olds, will give students the opportunity to explore acting as well as playwriting.

This confidence-building class will help them develop performance and creative-thinking skills through the many vocal and movement-based activities.

Not only will they learn to act, but at the end of the eight-week class, the students will have created an original script and a host performance of that.

These classes will be held 4:45-6:15 p.m. every Monday.

To find out more information on pricing and to register, contact the Charleston Acting Studio at 795-2223. It's at 915 Folly Road (Camp and Folly roads).

www.midtownproductions.org

MLK concert

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s poignant message still reverberates throughout the nation.

This Saturday, join the Charleston Symphony Orchestra Gospel Choir and Spiritual Ensemble as they perform a concert titled "His Light Still Shines."

Advance tickets to the tribute to the life and legacy of King are available for pickup in person at the North Charleston Cultural Arts Department office at North Charleston City Hall (2500 City Hall Lane) or Royal Missionary Baptist Church (4761 Luella Drive) in North Charleston. The concert will take place at 7 p.m. Saturday at Royal Missionary Church.

www.northcharleston.org

Sculpture competition

If you're a sculpture lover, make sure to check out the sixth annual National Outdoor Sculpture Competition and Exhibition installed at Riverfront Park at the Navy Yard in North Charleston.

Well-placed among 10 acres of walking paths, a fishing pier, boardwalk and children's play area, are imaginative, large-scale sculptures by 14 artists.

Organized and presented by the North Charleston Cultural Arts Department, this is a great outdoor place to have a picnic while enjoying works of art. The park is free and open daily, and this exhibit will be on view through March.

For maps, images and artists' statements, go to www.northcharleston.org.

Concert association

The Charleston Concert Association started the new year off with an announcement that it had been awarded more than $11,000 from the S.C. Arts Commission.

The grant will allow it to continue bringing great performances to town.

"We are very excited to receive a grant from the S.C. Arts Commission," said Jason Nichols, president of the Charleston Concert Association. "This support is especially appreciated in light of today's economic conditions. It will be a tremendous help toward the cost of bringing national and international performers to Charleston."

The concert association has other generous supporters, as well. Local businesses such as Handsome Properties, Baker Motor Co. and Levelwing, as well as foundations and individuals, are helping to match the commission's grant.

"Grants from the Yaschik Foundation, South Arts and Target are also being used to help with the local match," said Carolyn Lackey of the concert association.

Lackey suggests local residents experience first-hand how the funds are benefiting the association by attending the upcoming performance of "Complexions Contemporary Ballet" at 7 p.m. Saturday at the Gaillard Auditorium.

Tickets are available at the Gaillard box office and through www.ticketmaster.com.

For information on the arts commission, call 803-734-8696 or go to www.southcarolinaarts.com.

Learn more about the Charleston Concert Association's upcoming shows by calling 727-1216 or going to www.charlestonconcerts.org.