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The ArtsCenter

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300-G E Main St
Carrboro, NC 27510 United States
919.929.2787 https://artscenterlive.org/

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About The ArtsCenter

The ArtsCenter is a 501(c)(3) Arts Education non-profit located in Carrboro, North Carolina which offers classes, performances, and art exhibits all year round. The ArtsCenter facilities include a 350-seat theater, classrooms, a dance studio, a 100-seat performance space, and an art gallery. The ArtsCenter is the single largest employer of artists in Orange County, and serves more than 100,000 students and citizens throughout the area.

Our Mission

The ArtsCenter exists in order to educate and inspire artistic creativity and to enrich the lives of people of all ages. The vision of The ArtsCenter is to create an educational environment that provides opportunities, inspiration and tools to people of all ages and skill levels to participate in the arts.

Our History

The ArtsCenter, originally known as ‘ArtsSchool’ was founded in 1974 by artist Jacques Menache. Menache found inspiration for the ArtsSchool from his time living in Mexico City, where he found many multidisciplinary cultural institutes. During this time, Carrboro did not have as much of a strong artistic presence as it does today. Carrboro was seen as more of an industrial town. “There was a need in the community for cultural arts,” said Menache. Menache recognized the need for a space which could meet the needs of the artists in the community and shape the cultural climate of the town.

Menache rented a space on the second floor of present-day Armadillo Grill on Main St in Carrboro and organized classes for students. After opening the ArtsSchool, Menache advertised drawing and painting classes in the local paper. Soon after, Menache realized that the space he rented could be used for more than just drawing and painting classes. “The room was beautiful and had wooden floors,” says Menache, “so I had the floors refinished and started teaching dance classes, doing a little performing, and then pretty soon, people wanted to do theater in the space.” In time, Menache imagined that the walls in the space were “great for a little gallery”, and he began to host art openings. Later, Menache began projecting films in the back office.

“In the first 3 years, ‘74-’77, we were showing movies and having little dance performances, teaching classes in several disciplines, having concerts, and it snowballed. I ended up renting the whole upstairs and started teaching more classes. I put in a little art supply store for the students who came for drawing, and built a darkroom and started teaching photography” says Menache. By 1979, the ArtsSchool had over 300 students.

In 1979, As the ArtsSchool continued to expand, Menache raised the necessary funds to relocate across the street to Carr Mill Mall. As the ArtsSchool relocated, Menache changed the name to The ArtsCenter, to reflect the growth in space and diversity of programs. As well as a strong visual arts program, the organization included space for various performance arts, concerts, films, and poetry readings.

Eventually, the owner of Carr Mill Mall passed away. When a new owner bought Carr Mill, Menache decided to relocated once again. Menache saw that the Piggly Wiggly Supermarket across the street was about to close down and inquired about renting the space. After raising the funds, was able to secure a space in the old supermarket. This 20,000 sq. foot location was renovated and remains the location of the ArtsCenter today.

Some claim that the ArtsCenter contributed greatly to the artistic atmosphere in present-day Carrboro. Others claim that the ArtsCenter came at a time when there was already a catalyst for artistic growth. Some examples of this include the fact that big businesses and retailers were discouraged from opening in Carrboro, which contributed to a small-business and homegrown atmosphere.

November 2019

Carrboro Film Festival

November 16 - November 17
The ArtsCenter, 300-G E Main St
Carrboro, NC 27510 United States
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Now celebrating its fourteenth year, The Carrboro Film Festival has grown to become the premiere festival in the Piedmont region of North Carolina. Featuring world class films of every length and genre, CFF is known for packed houses and standing ovations. This two day celebration, from November 23-24, 2019, of Film ART, NOT Film Business, is recognized by filmmakers the world over as a place to immerse themselves with like minded Film creators, creators of art in cinema. The Carrboro…

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Live Event Photography Workshop

November 17 @ 1:30 pm - 4:00 pm
|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 1:30 pm on Sunday, repeating until November 17, 2019

The ArtsCenter, 300-G E Main St
Carrboro, NC 27510 United States
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$70

Learn live event photography from visiting artist and professional photographer, Tod Seelie, at The ArtsCenter in Carrboro. The $70 enrollment fee includes two classes – plus a press pass to a show of your choosing at Cat's Cradle – during the week of November 10-17, 2019. In the first class, Tod will discuss tools, techniques, and how best to anticipate the complexities of live event photography. Students will then attend and shoot a live performance at the Cat’s Cradle. The following weekend, students…

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Lindy Tuesdays (Starts Sept. 10)

November 19 @ 6:15 pm - 9:15 pm
|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 6:15 pm on Tuesday, repeating until December 10, 2019

The ArtsCenter, 300-G E Main St
Carrboro, NC 27510 United States

Lindy Tuesdays with Richard Badu (Sept 2019)

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Lindy Tuesdays (Starts Sept. 10)

November 26 @ 6:15 pm - 9:15 pm
|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 6:15 pm on Tuesday, repeating until December 10, 2019

The ArtsCenter, 300-G E Main St
Carrboro, NC 27510 United States

Lindy Tuesdays with Richard Badu (Sept 2019)

Find out more »

December 2019

Lindy Tuesdays (Starts Sept. 10)

December 3 @ 6:15 pm - 9:15 pm
|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 6:15 pm on Tuesday, repeating until December 10, 2019

The ArtsCenter, 300-G E Main St
Carrboro, NC 27510 United States

Lindy Tuesdays with Richard Badu (Sept 2019)

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Keller Williams

December 6 @ 8:00 pm - 9:30 pm
The ArtsCenter, 300-G E Main St
Carrboro, NC 27510 United States
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$32

Since he first appeared on the scene in the early ’90s, Keller Williams has gained fame creating his own much-imitated hybrid of guitar-driven bluegrass and groovy, loop-based electronica. Williams has performed and recorded with legends like Victor Wooten, Bob Weir, Bela Fleck, and The Travelin’ McCourys. Recent highlights include a 2017 tour with ArtsCenter favorite Leo Kottke (Shut the Folk Up and Listen) as well as his 2019 album of originals and covers, Add. From acoustic to electric, bluegrass to…

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Lindy Tuesdays (Starts Sept. 10)

December 10 @ 6:15 pm - 9:15 pm
|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 6:15 pm on Tuesday, repeating until December 10, 2019

The ArtsCenter, 300-G E Main St
Carrboro, NC 27510 United States

Lindy Tuesdays with Richard Badu (Sept 2019)

Find out more »

Circle 12 Holiday Show

December 20 @ 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm
The ArtsCenter, 300-G E Main St
Carrboro, NC 27510 United States
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$15

The ArtsCenter’s annual Songs from the Circle shows are a celebration of the best in classic American Folk and Bluegrass. This seasonal event is a veritable homecoming of the regional folk music community in an intimate, convivial setting. The ArtsCenter is excited to welcome the Songs from the Circle crew back to celebrate the Holiday Season for their fourth annual Holiday Show!

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