TEEM urges people to ‘Grow!’, UNCSA and WFU welcome special guests

by Mark Burger

The Temple Emanuel Environmental Movement is back in motion for the new year, and will hold a special screening of the award-winning documentary Grow! 7 p.m. Thursday at Temple Emanuel, 201 Oakwood Drive, Winston-Salem.

The film, directed by Christine Anthony (also the writer) and Owen Masterson, was filmed on 12 farms throughout the state of Georgia throughout an entire growing season and follows 20 young farmers who are making inroads into creating a network of sustainable farms for the 21st century.

Their actions are indicative of a nationwide movement of young farmers who are taking the plunge into an agrarian way of life. Grow! has received widespread acclaim and has racked up a number of awards, including Best Feature at the Colorado Environmental Film Festival, Best Documentary at both the Asheville Film Festival and the Macon Film Festival, the Audience Choice Award at Docufest Atlanta and the Focus Award at the Montana Cine International Film Festival, to name a few.

For this event, TEEM has partnered with North Carolina Interfaith Power and Light, and there will be a post-screening discussion featuring scheduled guests Christine Anthony and Owen Masterson, the filmmakers, as well as Mark Tucker, the director of the Forsyth County Cooperative Extension and Planning Committee of Piedmont Farm School, and Cory Brandt of Bethania Bottoms Farm. Not only will the message of the movie be discussed, but also ways that local residents can do their part to support and/ or participate in the growing (no pun intended) movement of 21st century farming.

Admission is free (donations gratefully accepted), and refreshments will be served. For more information, call 336.638.1640 or e-mail cynthia.silber@

The official website for the film is: This weekend, the University of North Carolina School of the Arts and Wake Forest University have joined forces to co-sponsor a special visit by noted African-American artists Will Alexander and Nathaniel Mackey, who are spending time this week as guest artists at both Winston-Salem schools.

This event, Bedouin Transforms: Neo Peregrinations, will involve the two prestigious visitors conducting master classes, poetry readings and book signings, culminating with a unique performance on Saturday. This event, the latest in an ongoing series co-sponsored by UNCSA and WFU, came into being thanks to funding from a Kenan Guest Artist Grant and the Office of the Provost at UNCSA, as well as the Department of American Ethnic Studies and the Office of Multicultural Affairs at Wake Forest University. UNCSA faculty members Julian Semilian (School of Filmmaking) and Rosemary Millar (Division of Liberal Arts) were instrumental in Alexander and Mackey’s visit.

The recipient of a 2001 Whiting Fellowship for Poetry and a 2002 California Arts Council Fellowship, author/poet/ visual artist Will Alexander’s works include Asia & Haiti (1995), Towards the Primeval Lightning Field (1998), Compression & Purity (2001) and Diary as Sin (also ’11).

Mackey, currently a professor of English at Duke University and a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets, won the 2006 National Book Award for Poetry and has been the editor and publisher of the poetry magazine Hambone for more than 30 years. His books of poetry include Four for Trane (1978), Eroding Witness (1985) and Splay Anthem (2006).

This Friday, there will be a poetry reading and book signing with Alexander and Mackey beginning at 2:30 p.m. in the Z. Smith Reynolds Library, Mendelbaum Reading Room, fourth floor, followed at 7 p.m. by a poetry reading and student poetry performance to be presented in the Byrum Center Auditorium. Both of these events take place on the campus of Wake Forest University, 1834 Wake Forest Road, Winston-Salem, and both events are free and open to the public.

On Saturday at 7 p.m., there will be the special presentation of Aural Lenses, an improvisational musical exploration of Will Alexander’s poetry, featuring Alexander on piano and UNCSA alumna Laura Ingram Semilian, voice, which will be held in the Scoring Stage of the UNCSA School of Filmmaking. The UNCSA campus is located at 1533 S. Main St., Winston-Salem. This event is also free and open to the public.

For more information about these or other ongoing or upcoming events, visit the official UNCSA website: or the official WFU website: