Grande Dames of the Ballet Boards – 10 Questions with the Ladies Lumpkin and Harris

By Cynthia Boiter The adage that behind every great man is a great woman has never been truer than when peering over the shoulders of the artistic directors of Columbia’s two top ballet companies, William Starrett of Columbia City Ballet and Radenko Pavlovich of Columbia Classical Ballet. Respectively, Coralee Harris and Lee Lumpkin have served for years as the backbones of the ballet companies they love, support, sponsor, and fight for. Sometimes... Read More

Marina Lomazov

By Cynthia Boiter Tall and elegant, her poise and demeanor reflecting the discipline of the Soviet culture into which she was born, Marina Lomazov takes the stage with all the finesse of the piano diva she is widely recognized to be. Described by reviewers as “a mesmerizing risk-taker” and “one of the most passionate and charismatic performers on the international concert scene today,” there are many other places on the planet that an artist... Read More

Thomas Crouch is un Artista di Molti Mondi

By Cynthia Boiter Huddled in a dark pub on an approaching autumn day, Thomas Crouch could just as easily be prowling the cobbled streets of Italy like so many of his artistic influences. With an outer persona that conveys dissent, Crouch has the inner animus of a philosopher. Part Jeremy Bentham, part Jacques Derrida, Crouch wears well the mask of the misunderstood – until he finds comfort in the discourse at hand. And even though he still proceeds... Read More

Ron Rash – The Great Joy of Reading Southern Writing

By Cynthia Boiter Ron Rash speaks the way he writes, with a voice that is rich with history, low and close to the earth, reflecting the humble wisdom that comes from learning from the past and listening to the lessons of nature and the stories of one’s ancestors. A father, teacher, husband, poet, Rash is, above all, a gifted wordsmith who wraps his words around his readers with tender precision. Born in Chester, South Carolina, Rash’s people,... Read More

Natalie Brown – Keeping the Circus Going

By Cynthia Boiter Keep the circus going inside you, keep it going, don’t take anything too seriously, it’ll all     work out in the end. — David Niven Many years ago, and certainly before Columbia performing artist Natalie Brown was born, there was a game show which ran on the CBS network from 1950 until 1967 called What’s My Line? The point of the program was for four regularly appearing celebrity panelists to try to guess... Read More

Michael Krajewski- Raw

In the world of auto-didacts, it isn’t difficult to find visual artists. While pedagogy is essential to dancers and musicians, no matter what their natural talents and inclinations, some visual artists are naturals in the true sense of the word. They pick up a paintbrush or a piece of chalk, or sink their hands into a ball of clay, and almost mystically, something profound or beautiful appears.  Michael Krajewski is one of these artists. Though... Read More

Editorial- Issue 2

Dear Friends,  On behalf of the Jasper Family, let me take this opportunity to officially say, Thank You!  I don’t think any of us were prepared for the kind of welcome and support the Columbia arts community has given us as we’ve launched our new publication, Jasper – The Word on Columbia Arts. You’ve been exceptionally generous with your praise, wisdom, and advice. Hardly a day goes by that I don’t have someone offer a suggestion or... Read More

Editorial- Issue 3

Dear Friends, Endings and beginnings of everything, especially years, are a time for looking back and forward, realizing regrets and taking pride, learning lessons and patting one’s self on the back, being sad and being optimistic. At Jasper, we asked a group of artists and arts lovers what kind of New Year’s resolutions and wishes they would make for the Greater Columbia Arts Community, particularly if money was no object. As it turns out, money,... Read More

Editorial- Issue 1

Dear Friends,  Building a local arts magazine from the ground up must be something akin to building a guest house. You know what you want it to look like, and you hold dear the message you want to convey to your friends – you are welcome here, the door is always open, we want you to feel as if this is a place where you can come to be nurtured, to enjoy yourself, to reflect and grow.  But it would take a fool to try to undertake either endeavor... Read More

Editorial- Issue 4

Dear Friends, When our design editor Heyward Sims came up with the idea of making the cover of our first annual Women’s Issue pink, I was hesitant at first. I’m not much of a pink person. In fact, I haven’t worn the color much since I was pregnant and trying to will the universe to give me daughters – which, by the way, it did. I was hesitant because, like all of us, I’ve been mercilessly exposed to the social construction that pink is for... Read More