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Friday, February 8, 2008

Artists' Exchange To Host Swan Day

Swan Day, a New International Holiday Celebrating Female Artists

On Saturday, March 29, 2008, The Artists' Exchange, located on Rolfe Street in Cranston, will be alive with song, sights, and inspiration, each with just one thing in common: all their creators are women. As the host of Swan Day (Support Women Artists Now), a new international holiday designed to increase awareness of female artists, The Artists' Exchange will showcase and celebrate the work of female artisans, visual artists, filmmakers and performers.

Internationally, Swan Day will be an annual event taking place on the last Saturday of Women's History Month (March). As a symbol of international solidarity, there will be events all over the world featuring women artists on SWAN Day. 2008 marks the first year of this annual event.

SWAN Day at The Artists' Exchange will be a day-long festival featuring women from a wide variety of disciplines. Artisans will have booths to showcase their work, while performing artists will be featured throughout the day. Completing the day's line-up will be screenings by fearless femmes in film. There will also be a raffle which will include items by local woman-owned businesses in Rhode Island.

This grass-roots festival is being spearheaded by Toni Pennacchia of MergingArts Productions and members of Anne's Cordial, a Providence-based band who play a blend of blues, folk, rock, and bossa nova. The members of this trio are Erin Reed Ferenbaugh, a harpist and vocalist; Eva Kendrick, a composer and singer who writes original music for the band; and Natalie Markward, a singer and blues guitarist who arranges the music for the band.

By focusing attention on the work of women artists, SWAN Day will help people imagine what the world might be like if women's art and perspectives were fully integrated into all of our lives. The long-term goal of SWAN Day is to inspire communities around the world to find new ways to recognize and support women artists as a basic element of civic planning.

Performers hale from near and far, including New Hampshire's award-winning composer/pianist Deborah Wyndham, who has performed live on NPR; Connecticut's precocious talent Porter Singer; and Rebecca Hart, a Brown University alum who returns to Providence to headline this event. Her band the Rebecca Hart Project won the WBRU Rock Hunt and who earned Best Female Vocals and Best Song from the Providence Phoenix. She has since moved to New York, where she has had a successful career performing extensively in Los Angeles, New York and Ireland.

New and familiar faces to the Providence music scene are also on tap, such as Allysen Callery, whose CD Hopey was in the Top Picks list of the Providence Phoenix for 2007; Boston's American short story folk singer-songwriter, Thea Hopkins, whose song "Jesus Is on the Wire" was recorded by Peter, Paul and Mary; and experimental pianist Sharon Crumrine with Betty Widerski on electric violin.

Other performances include the RI Raging Grannies, poetry by Laurie Robertson-Laurant, vocalist Ellen Santaniello, veena player Durga Krishnan, and performances by a classical a cappella ensemble.

Artisans include Diana Brennan, a photographer and printmaker, Jyll Ethier-Mullen of the whimsical online shop Sickfeet, and Mi OK Song Bruining, an illustrator whose work reflects her life as a Korean adoptee in America.

SWAN Day will run from 11-9pm. Admission will be $10 for adults and $5 for children under 16. The Artists' Exchange is located at 50 Rolfe Street in Cranston. For more information abut SWAN Day RI, please contact Project Coordinator Eva Kendrick at 774-526-5093 or swandayri@gmail.com).You can learn more about Anne's Cordial at www.annescordial.com.

(This is not an RIFC Event!)

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