School of Dance Alumna Giving Greensboro “Something Our Community Needs Right Now”

School of Dance Alumna Princess Johnson, founder of Royal Expressions Contemporary Ballet, is taking her company’s Juneteenth Arts Celebration online.

“The entire Greensboro community will benefit from watching it as we all seek healing and reconciliation in our varying ways,” Johnson said.

Read more in this Greensboro News and Record Article.

Photo from News and Record article. Princess Johnson talking with Ryan Deal, Executive Director of Creative Greensboro, at a recent rehearsal for the Juneteenth Arts Celebration.

School of Dance Alumna Organizing for Change

Melanie Greene (’13 MFA Dance) is a dancer and writer who hosts the Dance Union Podcast, with dancer J. Bouey. When the document titled “An Open Letter to Arts Organizations Rampant With White Supremacy” began circulating on the internet, Greene and Bouey used their podcast to begin dialogue and action to make a difference.

Their work is featured in this New York Times article, A Model for the ‘Dance World We Want’.

Spartan Artists ‘Say Their Names’

Downtown Greensboro looks a lot different this month. Vibrantly painted storefronts, challenging quotes from authors and musicians, and art that refers to love, justice, peace, grief, support, and hope.

Several Spartan students, alumni, and faculty are among the many on Elm Street proving the power of art.

Read the full article here:

Five Alumni Selected for GRAMMY Music Educator Award Quarterfinals

The UNCG School of Music is proud of the five alumni who have been selected as quarterfinalists for the 2021 Music Educator Award™ presented by the Recording Academy® and GRAMMY Museum®. These graduates span four decades of excellence in the Music Education area.

  • Alisha Cardwell (BM ’17) — Riverside High School, Williamston, NC
  • Jordan Lee (BM ’17) — Western Guilford High School, Greensboro, NC
  • Brian McMath (BM ’96, MM ’10) — Northwest Guilford High School, Greensboro, NC
  • Neil Underwood (BM ’82, MM ’87) — Lenoir-Rhyne University, Hickory, NC
  • Donny Walter (BM ’94, MM ’12) — Northwest Guilford Middle School, Greensboro, NC

The Music Educator Award was established to recognize current educators (kindergarten through college, public and private schools) who have made a significant and lasting contribution to the field of music education and who demonstrate a commitment to the broader cause of maintaining music education in the schools. A joint partnership and presentation of the Recording Academy® and GRAMMY® Museum, the recipient will be recognized during GRAMMY® Week 2021.

Congratulations to all and good luck!

Read the full list of 2021 Music Educator Award quarterfinalists.

A Message from the Director, School of Art

The killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery, and the often violent response to Black Lives Matter protestors over the last two weeks, challenge all of us who care for the members of our communities to work to replace the systems of inequality that have been built up over centuries. Segregation, redlining, employment discrimination and an often abusive criminal justice system were designed to disadvantage Black families, and it is naive and dishonest to think this is all somehow in the past. As recent events have again made clear, we do not live in a post-racial society, and while the harmful effects of systemic racism fall on all people of color, the scourge of violent police practices is particularly destructive in Black communities.

Many of our students, staff and faculty have been participating in protests here in Greensboro and elsewhere. This is important and necessary work for pushing the society towards justice and real equality. I don’t have any way of knowing what will happen in the future, but I am heartened to see the effort being driven by a diverse, committed and often very young core of activists and supporters. Like so many of the students I have seen in our classrooms and studios the last few years, these young people have a real vision of a better, more tolerant and more just world.

I would ask all of us in the School of Art to work towards that vision, with passion and commitment and a radical empathy for each other.

Chris Cassidy
Director, School of Art