Did you know one of the finest contemporary classical musicians operating today lives right here in Columbia? It’s true: Percussionist Greg Stuart’s work explores various alternative percussion techniques, including sustained friction, gravity-based sounds via small grains, sympathetic vibration and electronic instruments; he’s been featured at avant-garde musical festivals and venues across the globe, from New York City and San Diego to Berlin and Ljubljana. He performs tonight at Conundrum Music Hall with local improviser — or, in his words, “chaos magician” — Chris Johnson; the duo opens for gorgeous ambient experimental drone duo Nagual. Doors open at 8 p.m., with music beginning at 9 p.m.; admission is $5. Call 250-1295 or visit conundrum.us for more information.
Rye whiskey, rye whiskey, rye whiskey, we cry!: Tonight, 701 Whaley hosts the Great American Whiskey Fair; On Tap has more.
Harriet Tubman, maybe the most famous abolitionist outside of Frederick Douglass, died 100 years ago this year. Benedict College celebrates Tubman’s life with Harriet Tubman in South Carolina, an exhibition of quilts from black fiber artists addressing Tubman’s work in South Carolina, as well as in the North, and how it relates to life today. The exhibition opened last week at the Ponder Fine Arts Gallery, but the opening reception is today from 4:30 to 7 p.m. Admission is free. For more information, visit benedictcollegevisualarts.com.
What’s Brian Sanders, formerly of the MOMIX company of dancer-illusionists, gonna do with all that JUNK, all that JUNK up in his found-object contemporary dance company? Find out tonight at Harbison Theatre; the arts section has more.
The Colonial Life Arena welcomes another Sesame Street Live! touring production today; the Broadway-style show Can’t Stop Singing features the famous Muppets in perpetual song. Elmo? Can’t stop singing. Cookie Monster? Can’t stop singing. Big Bird? Can’t stop singing. Bert and Ernie? You get the idea. Tickets run from $20 to $57, and the Muppets take the Capital City at 10:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. Call 1-855-456-2849 or visit lmctix.com for more information.
If your kid isn’t scared of the Sesame Street monsters, he or she will probably do just fine at the South Carolina State Musuem’s Tricks and Treats family-friendly Halloween event, today from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. This year’s celebration is Egyptian-themed — coinciding with the museum’s Tutankhamun: Return of the King exhibition — meaning the games, costume contests, scavenger hunt and other activities are full of pharaohs, mummies and more. Activities are free with museum admission; call 898-4921 or visit scmuseum.org for more information.
Pat Conroy was born in Atlanta, but his work is linked interminably to the South Carolina coast: He graduated from The Citadel, he lives in Beaufort, and he sets most of his novels in the Lowcountry. (Conroy’s most famous novel, Prince of Tides, which was made into a major motion picture, was set in New York City, but its characters were from South Carolina.) Conroy, along with Aïda Rogers, Dot Jackson, Vennie Deas Moore and Sam Morton, sits on the State of the Heart: South Carolina Writers on the Places They Love, where the Palmetto State writers will talk about writing, the state they love, and writing about the state they love. The panel convenes at 5:30 p.m. at the University of South Carolna Fritz Hollings Library; admission is free. Call 576-6016 for more information.
Halloween isn’t for another 12 days, but the Columbia QuadSquad isn’t waiting to get in on the spook-tacular action. It precedes its 6 p.m. Home Team Championship Bout between its Belles on Wheels and Capitol City Vixens B-squads with a Monsters vs. Zombies monster mash-up at 4 p.m. The flat track fracas takes place at the Jamil Temple; tickets are $12. Visit columbiaquadsquad.com for more information.
If you went to the South Carolina State Fair last week, you probably saw folks with cameras running around like madmen. They were taking part in the Indie Grits 48-Hour Film Blitz, wherein they had two days to write, shoot and edit a movie imagined and produced entirely on the South Carolina State Fairgrounds. The films get a final screening at 7 p.m. in the Rosewood Building, where a panel of judges will name a best-in-show. Admission to the screening is free with fair admission; it’s also the fair’s closing day, meaning today’s your last chance to eat a giant corndog or ride the Polar Express — until next October. For more information, visit scstatefair.org.
Like other watersheds in Richland County, Rocky Branch Creek is beset with problems: pollution, for one, and stormwater runoff. (Yes, when Five Points floods, Rocky Branch is to blame.) But Sustainable Midlands is out to save and restore Rocky Branch; today’s Rocky Branch Bash in Martin Luther King Park features food, music, bike tune-ups, educational activities and more — including a rubber duck race — in celebration of Columbia’s famously cool creek. (Bonus point: The Whig’s providing the cash bar.) The bash runs from noon to 6 p.m.; admission is free. For more information, visit sustainablemidlands.org.
Today is Celebration of the Mind Day. Look upon Eight Days. We’ll show you the life of the mind.
M.T. Anderson is the author of several award-winning books for children and young adults; his 2006 American historical novel, The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing, won the National Book Award in Young People’s Literature. He visits the University of South Carolina Fritz Hollings Special Collections Library at 6 p.m. to speak at the university’s Fall Literary Festival; admission is free. Visit artsandsciences.sc.edu for more information.
The Mighty Sound of the Southeast — that’s the Carolina Band, for those of you who don’t follow Gamecock football — performs tonight at the Carolina Coliseum; think it’ll do the fight song? You bet it will, plus music from this season’s halftime shows. The music starts at 7:30 p.m.; admission is $10. Fight! Win! Kick ass!: Call 777-4278 for more information.
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