FORUM at Lees-McRae College

Summer 2022 Season

Welcome to the 43rd season of FORUM! Two performances of each show will occur on Monday evenings at 5 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. throughout the season. The doors will open 30 minutes before each performance and will run approximately 60+ minutes with no intermission.


Share your thoughts!

Complete a brief year-end evaluation to help the FORUM Music Selection Committee and the Board of Directors continue to plan for future programs. Thank you!


Jenene Caramielo

With the ability to roll from genres of music from pop to singing Broadway at a level that few reach, Jenene Caramielo has been traveling across the world captivating audiences with her eclectic background of musical theater, pop, country, and opera. Her talent for singing a wide variety of music has opened many doors along the way in her career and has allowed incredible opportunities. With a thirst for travel, she continues her career performing with her own show and is headlining on some of the top luxury cruise lines in the world such as Crystal, Regent, and Oceania. Jenene has sold out shows in some of the top cabaret rooms in the country. 

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Sherma Andrews

Sherma Andrews possesses skills known only to few artists. She performs passionately and authentically in many different genres and styles, leaving her audience stunned and captivated every time. Sherma’s production of “The Legendary Lady Singers" highlights some of the greatest female singers and their hit songs in a way that only Sherma Andrews can deliver. The show is a dynamic blast of entertainment worth seeing over and over again!

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A celebration of the biggest hits by the greatest divas in music history! Three female singers with powerhouse voices sing the biggest hits of the greatest divas in music history. This vibrant show spans four decades covering the 1960s through the 1990s with hits by Carole King, Celine Dion, Cher, Dolly Parton, Abba, and many more! An enticing mix of pure class, personality, and “goose bump-inducing vocals,” Divas3 successfully finds the balance of honoring the iconic hits of the era of the great divas. Their unique three-part arrangements are blended with solid, top-notch vocals. 

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Symphony of the Mountains

Symphony of the Mountains has a strong and proud heritage. The orchestra began when a small group of musicians dreamed of having a civic orchestra in 1946. Through the decades the musical enrichment included classical concerts, entertaining pops, and light musical offerings, captivating soloists and empowering opportunities for young musicians. In the '80s and '90s the orchestra grew steadily and increased its outreach. The orchestra has become a fully-professional orchestra. Today the orchestra consists of more than 70 professional musicians and is conducted by Cornelia Laemmli Orth.

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Mirror of Mathis

David Robbins is an international vocalist, entertainer, and impressionist singer. He has been thrilling audiences all over the country with his show of Johnny Mathis. Audiences have been in complete awe as soon as he hits center stage with his remarkable resemblance and vocal abilities that emulate the great artistry of Johnny Mathis. Robbins has the power and richness in his expressive voice. His phrasing and emotional depth get to the guts of a lyric, and he is easily capable of holding an audience in rapt attention.

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Folk Legacy Trio

The Folk Legacy Trio sings the songs of the great Folk Era from the ‘50s through the mid-‘70s, including songs from The Weavers, The Kingston Trio, The Limeliters, Peter Paul & Mary, The New Christy Minstrels, The Brothers Four, The Chad Mitchell Trio, Tom Paxton, Judy Collins, Joan Baez, Gordon Lightfoot, Simon & Garfunkel, and many others. It is a journey through American Musical History with their signature dynamic harmonies enriching some of the most beloved songs ever written.

The Folk Legacy Trio are George Grove, formerly with the Kingston Trio for 41 years, Rick Dougherty, former member of the Limeliters and Kingston Trio for 25 years, and Jerry Siggins, former lead singer of the legendary doo-wop group The Diamonds for 27 years. 

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Timeless Broadway with Daniel Narducci

A multi-faceted artist whose talents have been captured through live stage presentations, recordings, documentaries, and television, Daniel Narducci has appeared on stages from Lincoln Center in New York to the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. He has performed in concert with many of the world’s most prestigious orchestras and opera companies, appeared worldwide on musical theatre stages, and been seen on television productions with PBS and BBC.

Daniel Narducci was nominated as Best Actor in a Musical for the Indianapolis Regional Awards for his performances as Arthur in Camelot with the Indianapolis Opera.

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Jukebox Saturday Night

A musical review of the great Big Bands during the 1930s, '40s, and '50s. Performances celebrate America’s Swing Era featuring the greatest hits recorded by Glenn Miller, Duke Ellington, Tommy and Jimmy Dorsey, Count Basie, Benny Goodman, Jimmie Lunceford, Artie Shaw, Harry James, Les Brown, Woody Herman, and many others. Featured performers of this ensemble are veterans from some of the name bands as well.

Jukebox Saturday Night is managed by Glenn Miller Productions, Inc. With over 60 years of successfully managing the World-Famous Glenn Miller Orchestra, this company knows how to do Swing! Audiences can expect the same quality of the Glenn Miller Orchestra while hearing the biggest and best hits of the Big Band Era.

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FORUM was organized in 1979 by a small group of summer residents for the purpose of bringing a stimulating series of cultural programs to the area. With the help of Lees-McRae College, one of the region's most important resources, FORUM has grown significantly and embarks on its 43rd year of providing both cultural enrichment and wholesome entertainment to the community.

The key to FORUM's success is the dedicated involvement and cooperation between seasonal residents, local residents, and Lees-McRae College. The FORUM Board of Directors is made up of representatives from each of these groups.

The formula for the selection of programs is unique. Programs are selected as a result of personal contact with area residents and National Talent Agents. Recommendations are made to the Program Selection Committee who finalizes the selections by contacting the artists or their agent for availability during our time frame while staying within FORUM's limited budget. The Program Selection Committee attempts to balance its choices by providing presentations by vocalists, Big Band/brass, chamber ensembles, pianists, dance, and drama. Each year, this committee, led by the FORUM Vice-President, considers more than 50 candidates, reviews performers, and reduces the number of candidates to 16 possible programs. These are presented to the Board of Directors who in turn, selects the eight programs for the following year.

Expenses for FORUM programs are underwritten by contributors. In special cases, entire programs are underwritten by members of the community. FORUM plans each year's programs based on the previous year's contributions. The membership year is September 1 through August 31.

To continue our many years of service to the community, you are invited to become a FORUM Patron at $160 per person for open seating or a FORUM Centurion at $450 per person for reserved seating and reserved parking. Centurions and Patrons are provided a ticket to the eight performances each season. Checks should be made payable to FORUM or you may pay with VISA, Mastercard, Discover, or American Express.

To become a FORUM Centurion or Patron, contact Elizabeth Roberts at or 828.898.8748 or complete the online membership form.


    FORUM Board Members

    Executive Board

    President: Joe Samuel
    Vice President: French Harvey
    Treasurer: Mark Polderman
    Program Selection Committee Chair: French Harvey
    Governance and Nominating Chair: Nancy Hoyt
    Advertising Chair: Cynthia Holley
    Area Representative Chair: Pat Polderman
    Member at Large: Ed Bowles


    Board Members and Committees

    Program Selection Committee: Ed Bowles, Julie Harvey, Nancy Hoyt, Barbara and Jim O’Connell, Ira and Ellen Salomon, Rosemary Scaringe, Bobbie Lewis-Solar

    Area Representatives: Ed Bowles (Linville Land Harbor), Joy Coval (Sugar Mountain), Mike Fields (Linville Ridge), Mary LePage (Sugar Mountain), Bill Lumpkin (Banner Elk), Barbara O’Connell (Beech Mountain), Barbara Whitten (Hounds Ears)

    Endowments: Harold Kaplan, Nancy Vogelsang

    Governance and Nominating: Jeanine Ramey

    Head Usher: Miller Murray

    Lees-McRae Representatives: Lee King (President), Edward Roberts (Vice President for Institutional Advancement), Elizabeth Roberts (FORUM Coordinator)


Elizabeth Roberts
FORUM Coordinator | 828.898.8748
PO Box 649
Banner Elk, NC 28604