FORUM at Lees-McRae College

Summer 2024 Season

Welcome to the 45th 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.

Season Tickets
FORUM Patron = $160 per person (open seating)
FORUM Centurion = $450 per person (reserved seating and reserved parking)

Single Tickets
Adult tickets = $35
Child tickets = $10


Location and Box Office
All performances are in Hayes Auditorium, Broyhill Theatre on the Lees-McRae College campus in Banner Elk, North Carolina. The doors open 30 minutes before each performance and will run approximately 60+ minutes with no intermission.

191 Main Street
Banner Elk, NC 28604

Box Office:
The Box Office is open one hour prior to the start of each performance. With questions outside these hours, please contact Pamela Adolphi by email at or by calling 828.898.8748.

Please note: Email communication is preferred and typically has a quicker response time. The FORUM phone is not monitored on a daily basis.

Share your thoughts! Following each performance, complete a brief survey to help the FORUM Music Selection Committee and the Board of Directors continue to plan for future programs. Thank you!

Take the survey

FORUM 2024 Season

Shake Baby Shake

Shake Baby Shake is an explosive retrospective stage show biography of the golden age of rock 'n' roll. Performing the hits of the major artists of the 1950's and 60's, pumpin’ piano entertainer Lance Lipinsky and his authentic show band the Lovers, tell the story behind the music. Preserving the original authentic sound of the music combined with high energy showmanship, Lance Lipinsky explores the melting pot of styles that created pop music's most innovative decade.

Rhinestone Cowgirls

Pay homage to the iconic female vocalists of yesterday and today: Legendary Ladies of Country Music! Three powerhouse singers perform fresh arrangements of classic and contemporary country hits in this elegant and authentic journey celebrating the evolution of country music’s humble beginnings to the giants of today’s music industry. Relive classics like Patsy Cline's “Crazy,” Tammy Wynette's “Stand by Your Man,” and Loretta Lynn's “Coal Miner’s Daughter” as well as new favorites like Martina McBride's “Independence Day” and Carrie Underwood's “His Last Name.”

Symphony of the Mountains

Returning for the 5th straight year, 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, musical enrichment included classical concerts, entertaining pop and light musical offerings, captivating soloists, and empowering opportunities for young musicians. In the 80’s and 90’s the orchestra grew steadily and increased its outreach. The orchestra has become a fully professional orchestra. Today the orchestra consists of more than 60 professional musicians and is conducted by Cornelia Laemmli Orth.

Believe–A Tribute to Cher

With 10 years of theatrical experience in musicals behind her, Kara easily rose to the challenge, proving to one and all that she could portray Cher, without any difficulty at all. Suddenly, Kara had a new calling. One that has served her very well. Now, after a decade performing in dinner theatres, casinos, concert halls, and at corporate events, Kara has built a reputation as one of the top Cher tribute artists in the world. Her combination of boundless energy, charisma, humor, and talent lets her easily morph into her alter ego, Cher, and gives audiences the powerful and unforgettable experience that only a true star can give. 

The Modern Gentlemen

With an extraordinary origin story starting out as members of the Rock n' Roll Hall of Fame band “The Four Seasons”, Landon Beard, Todd Fournier and brothers Brian Brigham and Brandon Brigham were almost predestined to become the MODERN voices of yesterday. They were all handpicked by the legendary Frankie Valli to perform for audiences all over the world with the music icon. After well over a decade together, Valli graciously gave his blessing to start their own group. This marked a significant turning point in their careers, allowing them to showcase their own talents and carve out a unique place in the music industry.

7 Bridges–Ultimate EAGLES Experience

The Ultimate EAGLES Experience is a stunningly accurate tribute to the music of the Eagles. Using no backing tracks or harmonizers, 7 Bridges faithfully re-creates the experience of an Eagles concert from the band’s most prolific period. 7 Bridges offers the perfect blend of songs to capture all levels of Eagles devotees. Every show features one brilliant hit single after another with some mighty Don Henley and Joe Walsh surprises sprinkled into the mix. 7 Bridges is a tour de force of talent, combining incredible musicianship, vocal precision and a stage presence that has garnered them nationwide acclaim.

The Sounds of Soul

Get ready to relive the hits of Motown and beyond as this exciting, high-energy act unleashes superior vocals and slick dance moves powered by pure soul! Performing a combination of Motown classics mixed with some of the greatest pop and R&B hits ever written, featuring hits from The Temptations, The Four Tops, Aretha Franklin, Whitney Houston, The Supremes, Lionel Richie, Tina Turner, Barry White, and more! Since launching in 1996, THE SOUNDS OF SOUL has headlined from Los Angeles to the French Quarter. On the airwaves, the group has appeared on the internationally syndicated show “Dance Connection” (seen in over 100 television markets), and they have shared the stage with The O’Jays, Bobby Brown, and funny man Sinbad.

Broadway to the Big Screen with Jenene Caramielo

Back by popular demand after appearing in 2022, she can roll from genres of music from pop to singing Broadway at a level that few reach. She has been traveling across the world captivating audiences with her eclectic background of musical theater, pop, country, and opera. Her talent to sing a wide variety of music has opened many doors along the way in her career and has allowed incredible opportunities. With a thirst to travel she continues her career performing with her own show and is headlining some of the top luxury cruise lies in the world such as Crystal, Regent, and Oceania. Jenene has had sold out shows in some of the top cabaret rooms in the country. 


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 44th 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 become a FORUM Centurion or Patron, contact Pamela Adolphi at or 828.898.8748.


    FORUM Board Members

    Executive Board

    President: Joe Samuel
    Vice President: French Harvey
    Treasurer: Harold Kaplan
    Program Selection Committee Chair: French Harvey
    Governance and Nominating Chair: Nancy Hoyt
    Advertising Chair: Lisa Bender
    Area Representative Chair: 
    Member at Large: Wayman Duffey


    Board Members and Committees

    Program Selection Committee: Lisa Bender, Jacquie Brauser, Barbara and Jim O’Connell, Larry and Renee Pitt, Ira and Ellen Salomon, Rosemary and Bill Scaringe, Don Tyler

    Area Representatives: Jacquie Brauser (Eagles Nest), Mary LePage (Sugar Top and Sugar Mountain), Jim and Barbara O’Connell (Beech Mountain), Ira and Ellen Salomon (Land Harbor), Mike Tenzyk (Linville Ridge), Marilyn Williams (Banner Elk)

    Endowments: Harold Kaplan
    Governance and Nominating: Marilyn Williams
    Social Committee Chair: Julie Harvey
    Head Usher: Miller Murray
    Logistics: Wayman Duffey

    Lees-McRae Representatives: Lee King (President), Susan Boyette (Vice President for Institutional Advancement), Pamela Adolphi (FORUM Coordinator)


Pamela Adolphi
FORUM Coordinator | 828.898.8748
PO Box 649
Banner Elk, NC 28604