A video tribute to long-time North Carolina Arts Council employee Andrea Lawson is now available online. She passed away late last year and the video was recorded during a tribute in December when artists from across the state gathered to celebrate Andrea’s uplifting presence.
Artists performing included Kate Steinbeck, Pan Harmonia (Asheville); John Brown, accompanied by Kevin Van Sant (Durham); Lois DeLoatch Gomes (Durham); Louise Toppin accompanied by Timothy Holley (Chapel Hill); Gaspard Louis and Kristin Taylor Duncan (Durham); Nnenna Freelon (Durham); and Chuck Davis with members of the African American Dance Ensemble (Durham.)
Andrea’s sister, Kimberly Lawson (Little Rock, AK) sang Andrea’s favorite Nina Simone song, Four Women. Friends Donna Bradby (Greensboro) and Sheila Tolbert (Raleigh) spoke. Andrea’s mother Roberta and brother Lance attended from Louisville, Ky.
Other tributes included a haiku written by award winning poet and internationally recognized master of haiku, Lenard D. Moore, one of the last artists to forge a connection with Andrea:
your business card remains
in my shirt pocket
for Andrea M. Lawson (1969-2016)
Lenard D. Moore
December 5, 2016
The tribute can be viewed at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rcP8fSkR3zE.
Andrea joined the North Carolina Arts Council as Performing Arts Director in 2002, and in recent years took on added responsibilities for the African American Heritage Development and Community Engagement programs. Among other accomplishments, Andrea was one of the originators of African American Music Trails of Eastern North Carolina, which has elevated the visibility of many of our state’s great rhythm and blues, jazz and funk musicians.
To recognize and continue Andrea’s work, which focused on diversity and inclusion in the arts, a memorial fund has been established.
Donations may be sent to:
North Carolina Arts Council Foundation
PO Box 26263
Raleigh, NC 27611 or made online at http://www.artsfoundationnc.info/p/contributions.html
Contributions are tax deductible as a charitable gift. Please indicate In Memory of Andrea Lawson in the memo line or Special Instructions box.