The Batte Center takes audiences out for a SPIN

Contact: Kim Williams
Communications Writer 704-233-8320

Wingate, N.C. – Innovative, award-winning Toronto artist Evalyn Parry takes her audience on an uncommon theatrical and musical journey in SPIN. This tour-de-force performance celebrates the bicycle as muse, musical instrument and agent of social change and can be seen for one night only at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, April 5 at The Batte Center’s McGee Theater.

Inspired in part by the incredible true tale of Annie Londonderry, the first woman to ride around the world on a bicycle in 1894, Parry spins a web of stories from 19th century women’s emancipation to 21st century consumer culture, peeling back layers of history to ultimately reveal a profoundly contemporary and personal heart to her theme of liberation.

Parry’s co-star is a vintage bicycle, suspended in a mechanic’s stand on stage and outfitted with electronic pick-ups. Backed by her unusual and highly accomplished band, the bike is played by percussionist Brad Hart, who conjures an astonishing array of sounds. Sound artist Anna Friz plays instruments from the traditional accordion and harmonica to the more unusual amplified buzz from flashing bike lights, creating a richly textured and utterly unique sonic accompaniment to Parry’s songs and monologues.
According to the Torontoist, “the depth Parry gives to the concept of the bicycle through her script is quite staggering…an ingenious mixture of songs, monologues, video projection and modern technology.” SPIN is staged by award-winning director Ruth Madoc-Jones with video and production design by acclaimed designer Beth Kates.

Evalyn Parry is a critically-acclaimed spoken word artist, songwriter and theatrical creator who has entertained audiences through storytelling, poetry, music and theater festivals from coast to coast. Her work has been widely broadcast and anthologized; she has released three CD’s, written and produced five plays, and her latest musical performance project SPIN (starring the bicycle as muse, musical instrument and agent of social change) which premiered in March 2011.

Parry grew up in a family involved in a wide and esoteric variety of traditional arts and culture, from Morris dancing to the staging of medieval pageants, singing sea shanties to playing the Appalachian dulcimer and the Anglo concertina. She credits her unusual upbringing with sparking her passionate pursuit of the power of words; storytelling; live performance and folk music's capacity to both preserve cultural identities and to ignite social change.

Her recent performance highlights include The Yukon International Storytelling Festival, The Sound Symposium in St John’s NFLD, Hillside Festival, The Calgary International Spokenword Festival, The Lincoln Centre Out of Doors Roots of American Music Festival in New York City and The Banff Centre. Her spoken word commentaries have been featured on CBC radio and television; her spoken word videos featured on BRAVO, and both her previous releases enjoyed critical acclaim and charted on national campus and community radio.

Tickets are $15 and can be purchased online at or by calling the Batte Center box office at 704-233-8300 or Carolina Tix at 704-372-1000.

This performance of SPIN is part of the second annual Ulysses Festival celebrating Brave New Worlds: Technology and Art. Ulysses is a month-long, innovative addition to the rich Carolinas arts landscape. A collaboration between the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra, N.C. Dance Theatre, Opera Carolina, Wingate University, Bechtler Museum, Levine Museum of the New South, Charlotte Jewish Film Festival, McColl Center for Visual Arts, UNCC College of Arts + Architecture and the Light Factory, Ulysses will unify and celebrate the arts community in an unprecedented fashion this spring. To learn more about SPIN, visit .

The Batte Center
Opened in 1999, the George A. Batte, Jr. Fine Arts Center presents events in the McGee Theatre, Plyer-Griffin Recital Hall and Austin Auditorium. Located just a short five minute drive from Monroe, The Batte is just 2 blocks off of Highway 74 and only 30 miles east of Charlotte. Free parking is plentiful and all three performance spaces offer full wheelchair accessibility.

Wingate University
Wingate University, ranked as the 6th "best value" in the South by U.S. News & World Report, serves nearly 2,700 students on three campuses in Wingate, Matthews and Hendersonville, N.C. Founded in 1896, the University offers 35 undergraduate majors, 37 minors and career concentrations, numerous pre-professional programs, graduate degrees in business, accounting, education, physician assistant studies and sport administration, and doctorates in pharmacy, physical therapy and education. With a 14 to 1 student/teacher ratio, Wingate students gain the tools and support needed to excel in academics and apply that learning toward an extraordinary career and life.

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In addition to a robust intramural athletics program, Wingate student athletes compete in 22 NCAA Division II sports. The University has won the South Atlantic Conference Echols Athletic Excellence Award for the past six years. For more information, go to