Community Day w/Wake Baptist Grove Church
Saturday, June 3, 2017
TheGifted Arts had the opportunity to perform at Wake Baptist Grove Church in early June. Wake Baptist hosts an annual community outreach day that is full of food, fellowship, worship and local inspirational talent. It's an opportunity for local residents and the church community to come together to inspire and empower, as well as discuss how we can be in service to one another. Of course, as new neighbors on Main Street, the evident mission alignment, and at the request of our newest Board Member, who is a Deacon of the church, we were happy to participate in the affair. You can view a snippet of our performance below.
Anthem: Fashion With a Purpose
A Recap of our 4th annual fashion show fundraiser | Saturday, April 8, 2017
“To be or not to be Gifted?" These young artists show us their answer.
Empowering youth to transcend their limitations! Show day is always an energy packed and often hectic day. April 8th was no exception. Tight time schedules required that traditional GiftedAcademy programming be forfeited for the day, due to final show preparations. Hair, makeup, cue-to-cue creation, screen board, closing of advance ticket sales, and finalization of outfits for the scenes took precedence that day.
The IMAX Theater inside of Marbles Kids Museum is to date our biggest venue, and as such the students and the staff were definitely feeling the pressure. While pressure is sometimes a motivator, as we got closer to the 2:45, the time when we would break for lunch and head over to the venue, the GiftedArtists were getting more and more excited about the event. We did a quick run-through of the full show and then before we knew it was time to leave for the venue. Read and view more photos here.
TheGifted Arts on WRAL
Tuesday, April 4, 2017
We made our first news appearance in April! Exciting, right? We agree. We later discovered that a WRAL representative attended The Mix. This was a pleasant surprise, especially when we were asked to join WRAL NC for a mid-day news segment. It was an opportunity to share about the impact and opportunities TheGifted Arts is creating in Garner and the greater Triangle, while also promoting our annual fashion show. Even though they were a ball of nerves leading up to the interview, it was an incredible and memorable three minutes for the co-founders, CJ Morgan and Nicholé Morgan. The GiftedArtist participants also shared in this joy as they had the chance to witness something they belonged to experience a moment of TV celebration.
April Food's Day in Historic Downtown Garner
Sunday, April 2, 2017
We were so thrilled when the Development Director of Historic Downtown Garner, Mari asked us if we'd be interested in performing in not one, but two 20 minute performance slots for their April Food's Day affair. It made sense to us, as it was right in our neck of the woods, we love a good crowd and the TGA family loves to eat! So, we said "YES!" Take a sneak peak of our afternoon below. The video is already set to begin at *footage from the rodeo, but you can feel free to watch the full video, which includes clips from The Mix at Google Fiber Space and fashion show rehearsals.
*first dance clip scene has original choreography from our dear friend Rob Rich.
The Mix....A second opinion.
Published on March 27, 2017
In 'Recapping,The Mix,' below you heard what we thought about the event and the behind the scenes. If you'd like to get another perspective on the evening's affair and more photos, we had a surprise and special guest blogger that was in the house that night from The Daniels Daily Reader. Check out his version of the night by reading more here
Social Event, Music Fanfare, and TheGifted Arts
By: Rafik Keith, TheGifted Arts Board Member and Staff Volunteer
April 6, 2017
By far, the best event we’ve had here to date.”
- Lee S., Event & Programming Manager, Google Fiber Space
Saturday, March 25th - An evening intended to highlight TheGifted Arts' impact and to bring awareness to our cause, thank our supporters and rally new ones. The spirit and energy captured was just what the Downtown Raleigh community needed that warm night. This night truly showcased the power of community, giving and meaningful impact.
The afternoon started like a regular Saturday. GiftedAcademy program was focused on preparation for the upcoming fourth annual fashion show, Anthem: Fashion With a Purpose. The event takes place this Saturday, April 8th in Downtown Raleigh inside Venture Hall of the IMAX Theater of Marbles Kids Museum; a big venue for big expectations. Three hours of running through the scenes, discussion of outfits and vendors was the priority for the day, before our special, first ever evening affair.
Of course the GiftedArtists had a blast, but we were running on a short timeline, so each set had to be run-through with a purpose, efficiently and to the point. The amount of professionalism that our students display when it is called upon never ceases to amaze us. Parents were also responsive to requested pick-up times. Much of what we accomplish at TheGifted Arts cannot be done without the quick, responsive, and continuing engagement of our Gifted parents. We thank you for all of your support and ongoing involvement in our mission and your child’s overall development.
Getting to the Venue
At 3:00pm, our parents arrived to pick up the students and we began to pack and prepare for The Mix. Supplies were gathered and final communications were made to our sponsors. With preparations complete, the staff headed to our incredible venue for the evening, sponsored by Google Fiber Space - Downtown Raleigh.
At 4:30pm, we dashed to unpack the lights, sound equipment and refreshment supplies. The Google staff extended a kind and warm greeting. They were excited to see us and us them! Lee Stimmel, our gracious point of contact and host for the night came out from the lounge area and said hello and introduced himself to the remainder of the team. He also didn’t hesitate to pull up his sleeves and assist with unloading and rearranging furniture. The venue décor itself was breathtaking. Simple, modern and warm are the best words to describe the openness and comfort of their new space.
Setting up for the show flowed smoothly and mainly as planned. Our GiftedArtists started flowing in and wasted no time in chipping in with station set up, carrying supplies, and preparing the food for the evening. Our friends and local Raleigh faves at DeMo’s Pizzeria and Deli and Sushi Blues Café helped keep appetites satisfied, as well as contributions from Carolyn Sampson and team of the MLK Jr. Taskforce of Cary. It was safe to say that leftovers were not an issue that night.
At 6:30pm it was show time and the doors were open! Gifted parents were showing up and there were a few guests starting to appear. Kendrick Mayes (seen bottom right of below photo) of the Town of Garner, as well as host of The Good News Network took the mic and began to showcase his gifts. With his crisp, original 2bgifted tee-shirt, he emceed with smooth operation, a big smile and kept the evening light and exciting. Everywhere you turned, if Kendrick was there guests were being entertained and escorted about the venue. Thank you so much Kendrick for your time, being so awesome and helping to make this such a special event.
GiftedArtists greeted guests, shared their personal TGA stories and walked our attendees through a self-discovery journey of their own; helping them identify both goals and sacrifices to make as they work to channel their greatness and purpose, just as our students explore in GiftedAcademy.
Live entertainment was also plentiful that night with a healthy combination of performers managed by MelaVaci and of course our very own GiftedArtists. Tanya took to the mic first and mesmerized us with her vocals. All eyes in the building turned to her as she sang and uplifted our souls.
Brandon Foster was next to perform. He is an aspiring artist out of the Garner area. He performed several of his uplifting gospel songs and really gave us a show. His showmanship was evident in the reaction in the crowd, as well as their urge to sing along.
As the bustle of the evening went on, I could tell that the our GiftedArtists were starting to feel the energy. One guest, also an educator mentioned just how impressed she was with the level of investment the students demonstrated, shouting over the music, “my goodness, they’re so engaged!” The surprise we discussed comes from a known issue among educators and those alike around the limited engagement oftentimes witnessed with students in the classroom setting. Not our students. That night, you could see that they were absorbing the vibrant energy of the room and sure enough they couldn’t contain it anymore and gave an impromptu performance of some of their signature dance routines that turned the party out.
The evening was a raving success and the students really enjoyed seeing and feeling the support from the community, our amazing sponsors, and the patrons in attendance. We are overwhelmed with the amount of support received and cannot begin to thank you enough. Until next time...
Again, we hope to see you all for another ‘Gifted Experience’ on Saturday, April 8th for our 4th annual fashion show, Anthem: Fashion with a Purpose. Our show is intended for all audiences. The show has been produced annually as a fundraiser and showcase, which will be hosted at Venture Hall inside of the IMAX Theater of Marbles Kids Museum. You can learn more and purchase tickets on Eventbrite.com or in person from one of our staff members. Please feel free to contact our Executive Director, Nicholé Morgan at firstname.lastname@example.org for more details and sales.
Special Thanks to Our Wonderful Sponsors for the Night!
Corner Boys BBQ | VUR Travel | Davin Travel | TAGO On The Go Travel | MLK, Jr. Task Force of Cary | Women's Federation for World Peace of NC (WFWP ofNC) | World Church/World Mission Inc. (WCWM) | Projects Designed Especially For You (PDEFY) | Our Family Reunion Inc. (OFR) | Legal Shield Associate & Small Business Specialist
Special Guest: Valonda Calloway
Saturday, January 21, 2017
Mrs. Valonda Calloway brought the smiles, moves and the heat. Fresh and early on the morning of Saturday, January 21, 2017, TheGifted Arts had the pleasure of welcoming NC’s own, Valonda Calloway into our performance studios. We had the opportunity to experience many of the talents that she possesses in what was a very high energy ninety-minute instructional gift.
GiftedArtists warmed up with a fitness number, dove into the world of ballet technique, before moving into what I’d classify as a jazz, modern, hip-hop fusion number. With vocal, snap and clap guidance that Valonda used as tools to guide our students across the floor and a high bar for excellence and collaboration...no one was exempt and everyone would dance, even if it was in a pair.
While finding moments to catch their breath, students would still smile from ear to ear and beg for Mrs. Calloway to be in their group, when called to demonstrate their learning. You could feel the excitement and passion that Valonda has for youth and the arts as she would often times offer her stamp of approval with an affirming, ‘YAS!’ and an occasional, ‘Do it!,’ as she coached and observed from the side. As far as TheGifted staff were concerned, she was one of us...right at home.
With a lifetime of dance experience, complemented by her time teaching at the NC Dance Institute, we were so humbled to have Valonda grace us with her presence. She gave us one hundred-percent and more from the time she walked in, until the time she left later that afternoon. We look forward to seeing her soon!
Co-Founder | CEO
MLK Jr., March: Downtown Raleigh
Monday, January 16, 2017
Where do we go from here?
Shortly after a long day of TGA programming followed, by an even longer evening at the Putting on the Ritz Gala, members of TheGifted Arts family reconvened on Monday morning, January 16th to join fellow marchers for the annual MLK March in Downtown Raleigh, NC.
It’s an important time for togetherness and for our GiftedArtists to understand the value and necessity in understanding their human rights and the opportunity in celebrating differences and the fight for equality.
As such, we joined the hundreds of individuals, sorority and fraternity members, church groups, marching bands and those alike to honor the great Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Our GiftedArtists and those that came to support us joined in on hymnals, call and responses and chants for peace and togetherness.
While it was often hard to fathom our current reality that so closely resembles the fight for equal rights decades ago, we must continue to inform and encourage our young people in so that they love, appreciate and value their own self-worth enough for them to stand up for it and their brothers and sisters; knowing that they too are worthy of all of life's chances and it's many blessings.
Co-Founder | CEO
Putting on the Ritz: Gala Recap
Saturday, January 14, 2017
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday is a nationally, and in some places internationally, celebrated holiday that both commemorates the legacy of Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and encourages all to commit to acts of service and kindness.
There are many ways in which people choose to honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and this year, TheGifted Arts had the fortunate pleasure of partnering with the MLK Jr. Task Force of Cary, Women’s Federation for World Peace NC and the Universal Peace Federation of NC to co-host members of these organizations and the greater community for the Putting on the Ritz Gala on Saturday, January 14, 2017.
That evening, our guests sang along and swayed as recording artist, Gerald Hinton moved the crowd with memorable vocal performances, including one of his originals, Show Me. L’Oreal Walters gave off a soulful vibe as she made a powerful delivery with a cover performance of an India Arie classic and Tanya Barrett, a long-time supporter of TheGifted Arts (TGA) and lovely vocalist also captivated us with a cover from the hot TV drama Empire, entitled, 'What is Love?.'
As I am sure you’d expect, we had our very own GiftedArtists grace the stage with a myriad of dance performances filled with a miming, hip-hop and break-dancer, pop-lock feel. Taylor, Chandler, Mija, Coral, Madison, Calief, Jay and TGA alumna Kamiah did not disappoint the audience's expectations. They exuded excellence. Guests smiling, mimicking moves and dancing in their seats is always a good sign of a great performance and that's just what we saw happen that evening.
As the estimated one hundred guests mingled in their fine suit jackets, flowy skirts, pearls and up-dos, tunes spun from the sounds system of DJ CJ (Morgan), poker chatter faded in and out in the casino room, bidding from the silent auction left many with unique and exciting takeaways and refreshments offered from a long list of local Community Partners, Corner Boys Catering, All Things Parties and those alike satisfied the taste buds of energized guests.
We consider this night a triple win: we fellowshipped in honor of the great Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., raised funds for not one, but four charities, and raised awareness for all of our causes in the process.
We are grateful to Ms. Carolyn Sampson, President of the MLK Task Force of Cary for not only this unique opportunity to collaborate and join in this momentous occasion, but her ongoing belief, support, and approval for the mission of TheGifted Arts (TGA). This is a memory that our families and TheGifted Arts team will not forget. Special thanks to our silent auction donors from Kween Essentials, The Picture Guy Photography, and Wines for Humanity. Of course, to all those who attended this evening and/or offered a contribution to our cause be it monetary, time or in-kind, we thank you and hope to see you at our events in the future. We are certainly stronger with you. Much more to come! Please feel free to check our Events tab for more information, as it's updated periodically and you're forever a welcomed guest at a TGA performance.
CoFounder & CEO
TheGifted Arts, Inc
Happy Holidays: Garner Christmas Parade 2016
December 3, 2016
They danced, they marched and left it all on Main Street!
Our GiftedArtists experienced their first parade to date, which took place on our very own neighborhood streets. As tunes buzzed from the pick-up truck in front of us that cued us to wow the onlookers, calls for candy heard from the children onlookers and the brisk cold air brushed passed us, our Gifted parade goers did not hesitate to bust an eight count with a smile and a burst of energy.
TheGifted Arts performed seven different routines throughout the course of the afternoon parade, with our biggest holiday performance to take place right in front of the Main Stage, which also just happened to be right in front of our new location. By design? Perhaps. Our student's moms cheered, while the Town of Garner's camera crew circled around us and we did what we know and love to do ---- perform with all we had, as if it were the last time. But don't just take our word for it. Click on the video below to see the performance for yourself. It's already cued to begin just before we are introduced. If you like what you see, please come see us at our next Garner event scheduled for the February 25, 2017 Talent Showcase hosted by the Garner Performing Arts Center. We will have five acts in the showcase line-up.
We are looking forward to this year's holiday festivities come the end of the year.