• Celebrating its 45th anniversary, Ballet Hispanico's mission is to make the beauty of the arts and Latino culture accessible to all communities.

  • (l-r) Selena Kimball uses printed documentary evidence and works into constructed surfaces. Liz Nielsen's photographs are printed in an analog color darkroom.

  • The Harlem Gospel Choir performs worldwide, logging in two million travel miles. Trivia fact: They paid tribute to Prince, performing "Purple Rain" on Good Morning America.

  • William Cordova's works are bound up in his transcultural biography with subjects drawn from a continuum of radical movements and struggles for self-determination.

  • Providing an irreverent look at America's electoral insanity, Free Speech featured brand new political satire straight from sold out shows in Chicago and Toronto .

The Arts

The arts—performing, visual and literary—are a part of the daily educational experience at Davidson. Students, alumni and the greater Davidson family are invited to enjoy and participate in various art forms on campus throughout the year. Sculpture. Readings. Plays. Exhibitions. Chorale. It is all happening here.

As Davidson grows its focus on broad collaboration across the arts and sciences, opportunities for involvement in the arts and a transdisciplinary approach to learning will continue to develop on and off campus.

Events are free-except those having a link to tickets-and open to the public.

Key: 900 Room = C. Shaw Smith 900 Room, Alvarez College Union; BT = Barber Theatre, Cunningham Fine Arts Center; CI = Carolina Inn; DCPC = Davidson College Presbyterian Church, DFPH = Duke Family Performance Hall, Knobloch Campus Center; Hance = Hance Auditorium, Chambers; Lilly = Lilly Family Gallery, Chambers; TTH = Tyler-Tallman Hall, Sloan Music Center


artwork by Teresita Fernandez, Hank Willis Thomas and Shimon Attie


Vann Every Gallery
On View: October 20-December 9
Reception: Thursday, Oct. 20, 6-8 p.m. Gallery Talk: 6-6:30 p.m.

A strict binary has long existed between the contrasting effects of words and images. Words have been thought to be foundational, while images have been considered subordinate. Words have been valued as rhetorically primary, while images have been thought of as illustrative. But such bifurcation seems to artists and writers alike both constraining and unrealistic. How might the communicative and aesthetic status of words and images be profitably studied together? How do images and texts cooperate in single works of art as modalities in tension or unison? Seeing|Saying: Images and Words assembles important contemporary works from 18 artists (Shimon Attie, John Baldessari, Mark Bradford, Cris Bruch, Andrea Eis, Teresita Fernández, Howard Finster, Christian Marclay, Shirin Neshat, Dennis Oppenheim, Susan Harbage Page, José Parlá, Dan Perjovschi, Raymond Pettibon, Santiago Sierra, Hank Willis Thomas, and David Wojnarowicz) that play upon and experiment with words and images, inviting us to question the image-word divide, and reminding us of our current saturation - digitally and materially - in images with words.

Co-curated by Van Hillard, professor of Rhetoric and Writing Studies, Elizabeth Harry, assistant curator, and Lia Newman, director/curator.

The exhibition and related programming are made possible through the support of the Bacca Foundation Visiting Artist Lecture Fund, Herb Jackson and Laura Grosch Gallery Endowment, Malú Alvarez '02, and Davidson College Friends of the Arts.
Pictured to the left: (top) "Night Writing (Hero and Leander)" Teresita Fernández; (second) "Le Blanc Imite Le Noir " Hank Willis Thomas, courtesy of the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York; (third) "FINDERS, KEEPERS," Shimon Attie, courtesy of the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York.

two pieces of artwork by Bethany Collins "Southern Review" (detail) and "Colorblind Dictionary"

Bethany Collins: In Evidence

Smith Gallery
On View: October 20-Decenber 9
Reception: Thursday, Oct. 20, 6-8 p.m. Gallery Talk: 6-6:30 p.m.

Using educational materials such as erasers, graphite, old dictionaries, and found text from government documents, literary journals and historical records, Collins' exhibition presents evocative works on paper, altered books, and installation that explore the relationship between race and language.

Co-curated by Van Hillard, Professor of Rhetoric and Writing Studies, Elizabeth Harry, Assistant Curator, and Lia Newman, Director/Curator

This exhibition and related programming are made possible through the support of the Bacca Foundation Visiting Artist Lecture Fund, Herb Jackson and Laura Grosch Gallery Endowment, Malú Alvarez '02, and Davidson College Friends of the Arts.

Related Events

Lecture by W. J. T. Mitchell

Thursday, Nov. 3 • 7 p.m. • Lilly Family Gallery, Chambers Building

Lecture and Artwork by Nick Sousanis

Thursday, Nov. 10 • 7 p.m. • Semans Lecture Hall, VAC

Visit an accompanying exhibition of Nick's artworks from October 20-December 9 in Spencer Lobby of Chambers Building.
Pictured to the left: (top) "Southern Review" (detail), charcoal on paper, and (bottom) "Colorblind Dictionary," found object. Both courtesy of the artist and Richard Gray Gallery.

close-up color photo of hands playing a piano and artwork for A Midsummer Night's Dream


Friday, Oct. 28


5 p.m.  •  DCPC

Join the Davidson College Chorale & Davidson Singers as they offer the first choral concert of the season. This special performance for friends and family will highlight some of the vibrant and challenging repertoire the ensembles will be performing this year.


7 p.m.  •  900 Room, ACU

Join the DCSO in an eclectic performance of season highlights, featuring music from our Southern Excursion concert, a preview of The Planets, and more.


9 p.m.  •  TTH

New York-based renowned jazz pianist and Davidson parent Jerry Korman will join the Davidson College Jazz Ensemble, including his daughter, violinist and vocalist Arielle Korman '17, for this special Family Weekend performance.



October 26-30  •  DFPH  •  Tickets
By William Shakespeare  •  Directed by Ann Marie Costa  •  Scenic design by Joe Gardner

Perhaps Shakespeare's most popular and (let's face it) approachable work, this romantic comedy features a few of his favorite themes: the mystical difference between city and woods, lovers who must suffer before their happy ending, hyper-truth revealed through the play-within-a-play. And the bard ain't afraid to be a little bawdy. Likewise, this contemporary production expresses a bold vision: anything can happen if you open your mind to a new rhythm.This play is generally recommended for ages 13 and up due to sexual themes and complexity of language.

girl dancing


Wednesday, Nov. 2  •  7:30 p.m.  •  DFPH

This concert features the winners of the 2016 annual Concerto Competition, along with a refreshing dive into the realm of orchestral dance music.

photo of a female singing with two males singing behind her


Friday, Nov. 4  •  8 p.m.  •  DFPH  •    Tickets

America's premier gospel choir, the Harlem Gospel Choir, is synonymous with power vocals, glorious sound, and infectious energy. The unique musical tradition of gospel music arose out of the hardships of slavery and forever changed the landscape of music. The Harlem Gospel Choir will share the rich history of gospel as it relates to African-American culture and present a night of contemporary gospel classics as performed in the churches of Harlem today. Their harmonious songs of love, hope, and inspiration aim to touch the depths of your soul, lift your spirit, and take your breath away.

color head shot of Dan Forrest


Sunday, Nov. 6  •  3 p.m.  •  DCPC

Contemporary composer Dan Forrest's works have been hailed as "magnificent, very cleverly constructed sound sculpture" (Classical Voice), and "superb choral writing...full of spine-tingling moments" (Salt Lake Tribune). In the last decade, Forrest's music has become well established in the repertoire of choirs in the U.S. and abroad. His choral works have received dozens of awards and distinctions, and have been premiered in major venues around the world. Join Davidson's Choral Arts Society and Pro Arte Orchestra for a lush and heartfelt performance of Forrest's work Requiem for the Living.

choir singing


Friday, Nov. 11  •  7 p.m.  •  900 Room, ACU

The Davidson College Chorale and Davidson Singers bring beautiful music to a new venue this fall, performing in the 900 Room for the first time. This program will include fresh and fun offerings to start your weekend off right!

color photo of a couple dancing flamenco


Saturday, Nov. 12  •  8 p.m.  •  DFPH  •  Tickets

Ballet Hispanico is the nation's premier Latino dance that explores, preserves, and celebrates Latino culture. Their performance at Davidson will include staple works from their vast repertoire as well as a preview of the new work Línea Recta by Belgian-Colombian Annabelle Lopez Ochoa, one of today's most sought-after choreographers. Línea Recta pairs the hallmark passion of flamenco dance with highly inventive and intricate partnering, performed to Spanish classical guitar.

photo of a viola, a violin and a cello


Sunday, Nov. 13  •  3 p.m.  •  TTH  •  Tickets

The Central String Quartet returns to perform the great Schubert "C Major String Quintet" with guest cellist Alan Black. The ensemble includes Charlotte Symphony Orchestra violinists Joseph Meyer and Jenny Topilow, violist Kirsten Swanson, and cellist Marlene Ballena. Join us for this breathtaking afternoon highlighted by the crown jewel of chamber music pieces.

drawing of a boy in a toboggan smoking with a girl resting her head in his lap


November 16-20  •  TBT  •  Tickets
By Naomi Iizuka  •  Directed by Mark Sutch  •  Scenic design by Anita Tripathi

Naomi Iizuka's riff on Georg Büchner's Woyzeck tells the story of a young couple working desperately to make sense of their relationship while toiling to survive. Skin moves with supernatural fluidity, creating a beautiful play in which we feel the world squeezing tighter and tighter.

Contains adult situations and strong language. Recommended for ages 17 and up.

close-up of "Night Train" sheet music


Thursday, Nov. 17  •  7:30 p.m.  •  TTH

Under the direction of accomplished saxophonist Tim Gordon, the popular Davidson College Jazz Combo presents a mesmerizing evening of small group jazz literature and improv.

ballerina dancing in front of DCSO


Monday & Tuesday, Nov. 28-29  •  7:30 p.m.  •  DFPH

In its fourth season, the Holiday Gala continues to delight sold-out audiences. The unofficial beginning of the town's annual "Christmas in Davidson" event, the Holiday Gala brings together the college choirs, symphony orchestra and jazz band with local community talent to ring in the holiday with dancing, singing, festive light, and seasonal sounds. Get your tickets before they're gone and see for yourself why the Holiday Gala is our newest beloved holiday tradition!

choir singing at Vespers service


Sunday, Dec. 4  •  7:30 p.m.  •  DCPC

The Davidson College Chorale and Davidson Singers are honored to once again raise their voices during this lessons and carols service. Additional music from Carolina Brass.

student singers singing by candelight on Chambers stairs


Monday, Dec. 5  •  9 p.m.  •  Chambers Lawn

Join the Davidson Singers as they lead this year's carols at the annual Campus Christmas Party.

Christopher Gilliam conducting a choir


Tuesday, Dec. 6  •  7 p.m.  •  DFPH

Capping off our seasonal offerings, join the Davidson College Choirs at the second annual Messiah! Sing-Along. Grab your score and join the festivities as we gather together to sing through the Christmas portion (and some honorable mentions) of Handel's Messiah! Featuring the North Carolina Baroque Orchestra and professional soloists.

color head shot of Lorrie Moore


2017 Conarroe Lecture

Monday, Feb. 6  •  7 p.m.  •  DFPH  •  Tickets TBA

Lorrie Moore is the author of seven works of fiction. Recipient of The Irish Times Prize for International Literature, the Rea Award for the Short Story, the PEN/Malamud Award, the O. Henry Award, and a Lannan fellowship, she is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters. She received her B.A. from St. Lawrence, and her M.F.A. from Cornell University; she is Gertrude Conaway Vanderbilt Professor at Vanderbilt University.

Tickets are free but required. You may obtain tickets by emailing the Union Ticket Office at uniontix@davidson.edu, or by calling 704-894-2135. Sponsored by the Public Lectures Committee.


color head shot of Tom Gilroy


Visiting McGee Professor of Writing

Tom Gilroy has written and directed three award-winning films, including the critically acclaimed feature film Spring Forward, starring Liev Schreiber, Ned Beatty, Ian Hart, and Campbell Scott. A two-time fellow of the Sundance Labs, he was commissioned by R.E.M. to create "It Happened Today," a video-work inspired by the band's final album. Gilroy frequently teaches film at Columbia University, and is the author of three books of haiku and various political columns in The Huffington Post.

two actors from The Second City pointing at each other


Chicago's legendary sketch and improv comedy theater returned to Davidson with this irreverent look at America's electoral insanity. This topical new show featured political satire made famous by Second City stars like Tina Fey, Stephen Colbert, and Keegan Michael Key, as well as brand new scenes, songs and improv straight from their sold out shows in Chicago and Toronto.

black and white photo of Ernesto Lecuona playing the piano


As a part of National Hispanic Heritage Month, the DCSO presented a festive concert of Latin American music, featuring the works of Piazzolla, Ginastera, Moncayo, Lecuona, and more. (photo of Ernesto Lecuona)

Dan Boye and Jacque Culpepper looking at each other and singing


Over There! was a musical revue honoring the 100th Centennial of World War I and served as a tribute to the Americans who served so bravely on the battlefields. Musical selections featured two iconic American composers and showmen, George M. Cohan and Irving Berlin. Over There! featured the artistry of soprano Jacquelyn Culpepper, baritone Dan Boye, accompanist DeWitt Tipton and writer/director/narrator Francis Cullinan. Musical highlights includd Alexander's "Ragtime Band," "Give my Regards to Broadway," "Over There," "You're a Grand Old Flag," and "God Bless America" Narration included excerpts from touching letters from the battlefront, as well as comments from military personnel. From start to finish, Over There! revived the spirit of patriotism in audiences of all ages.

color head shot of Reggie Love


Reggie Love, author of Power Forward: My Presidential Education, spoke about his time as personal assistant to President Barack Obama. A graduate of Providence Day School in Charlotte, Love played basketball for Duke University before going to work for then senator Obama later transitioning to the White House. After leaving the White House, Love attended the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School of Business and is now a partner and vice president of Transatlantic Holdings. Love discussed his first-hand account of life as the president's "body man" and reflected on the 2016 presidential election.

artworks by Nancy Baker, Matthew Brandt and Liz Nielsen


From 1972 until 1976, Herb Jackson, Davidson College professor emeritus, initiated and hosted a landmark exhibition, The Davidson National Print and Drawing Competition. During those five years, artists from around the country shipped thousands of works of art to Davidson College to be juried by acclaimed artists and curators. Artists vied for a spot on the gallery walls and for awards, which included the purchase of works for the college's Permanent Art Collection. The series of exhibitions, and subsequent subset of the Permanent Collection, provided a glimpse into drawing and printmaking techniques and styles at the time. In commemoration of the 40th anniversary of the last Davidson National, and in the spirit of this exhibition, the Van Every/Smith Galleries were delighted to present "Making Marks: Water, Pigment, and Light," featuring works from eight artists from across the United States (Nancy Baker, Matthew Brandt, William Cordova, Chris Duncan, Selena Kimball, Lavar Munroe, Liz Nielsen, and Shoshanna Weinberger). Though this exhibition was curated rather than juried, the artists selected represented the range of possibilities for what works on and of paper could be, including an exploration of unique processes and materials capable of making marks - from graphite and gouache to water, sun, earth, and time.

This exhibition, related programming and brochure were made possible through the support of the Herb Jackson and Laura Grosch Gallery Endowment, Malú Alvarez '02, and Davidson College Friends of the Arts.

untitled narratives sculpture by William Cordova


Cordova explored topics implicative of transcultural migration through a multimedia installation centered around Fort Mose in St. Augustine, Fla., an area founded in 1739 by runaway African slaves and Native Americans fleeing British persecution. Just over two decades later, in 1763, the group relocated to Ceiba Mocha, Mantanzas, Cuba. Cordova's exhibition, comprised of reclaimed ephemera, film, photography, sound, and more, linked these early migrations with the movement of more than 80 Asian, Black, and Latinos from America to Cuba between 1968 and 1971-a time typically associated with Cuban exile into the U.S.

photos of (top) La Hora Espanola and (bottom) Ramin AlHaj


In collaboration with the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, Davidson was thrilled to offer this unique master class Al-Andalus, two connected events in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month.

Talk & Performance by La Hora Española

A pre-concert talk about the origins of Spanish classical music during Islamic rule in Spain featured performances by La Hora Española, a wonderful soprano and piano duo from Spain who specialize in finding the true essence of Spanish Music. The duo performed Islamic, Jewish, and Christian pieces that came from the time of Al-Andalus. UNC Charlotte's David Russell and a special guest offered a brief introduction to music in Al-Andalus, and its origins and influence on classical music.

Letters from Baghdad: Ramin AlHaj, oud & Ciompi String Quartet

This performance featured the Grammy-nominated Iraqi-American oud player and composer Rahim AlHaj with the illustrious Ciompi String Quartet in a concert called "Letters from Baghdad."

close-up color photo of a fiddle


Charlotte's own bluegrass and folk music legend Jon Singleton will take the stage to offer up some traditional Irish fiddle tunes alongside our gifted pianist David Gilliland.

Alan Michael Parker, left and Karl Plank, right


Alan Michael Parker is the Douglas C. Houchens Professor of English, and the author of eight collections of poems, including The Ladder, and four novels, including the forthcoming Christmas in July. His honors include three Pushcart Prizes, two inclusions in Best American Poetry, the Randall Jarrell Poetry Prize in 2013 and 2014, and the North Carolina Book Award.
Karl Plank is the J.W. Cannon Professor of Religion. His recent poetry and creative work has appeared in publications such as Notre Dame Review, Beloit Poetry Journal, and Zone 3. He is a past winner of the Thomas Carter Prize for nonfiction and a Pushcart nominee.