In celebration of women and creativity

Southern Oregon University's Women's Resource Center invites you to celebrate all your senses: entertain your ears, taste sweet chocolate and wine, gaze upon art, drink in the scent of flowers and plants, dance and be merry. All this will take place when the center presents its fourth annual "Athena in Velvet: A Spring Celebration of Women and Creativity," scheduled for 8 p.m. Friday, May 30, at the SOU Britt Ballroom, 1250 Siskiyou Blvd., Ashland.

The evening features an eclectic blend of music and art. Performers include spoken word artist Claudia Alick, belly dancer Tiazza Wilson and Eugene's The Ovulators. Local women artists have donated various art pieces for a silent auction open to bidders throughout the show. Performance artists will embody the theme through their transformation into human statues, inspired by the goddess Athena and the arrival of spring. Proceeds from the event will benefit the Women's Resource Center's creativity program, "Vivacious Voices: Empowerment through Education and Expression."

Alick joined the Oregon Shakespeare artistic staff in 2007 as associate producer. She curates the outdoor performance series "The Green Show," orchestrates OSF's 2007 Mixing Texts: Hip-Hop Boot Camp, and serves as the artistic office liaison to the education department and the community at large. She also acts as artistic office producer on the productions of "Fences" and "Coriolanus." Prior to joining OSF, Alick served as the artistic director of Smokin' Word Productions, as well as authoring and directing plays staged at The Kennedy Center, the Hip Hop Theatre Festival and Cherry Lane Theater. Alick is known internationally for her poetry performances. She also is recognized as a member of the award-winning NY Neofuturists, and is a performer on HBO's Def Poetry Jam. She teaches and designs original professional development workshops nationwide, guest lecturing at NYU and working with theater outreach programs. Alick holds an M.A. in Performance Studies from the Tisch School of the Arts of New York University and a B.A. in Theatre from The George Washington University.

Wilson, originally from Morocco, lives in Southern Oregon, where she pursues her love of dance. She has been teaching belly dancing since she was 19 and is the artistic director and choreographer of the Sahara Belly dancers, a professional belly dance troupe based in Medford. She also is the new choreographer of the Oregon Conservatory of Performing Arts dance team. Wilson has studied Egyptian, Turkish and Moroccan styles of belly dancing and teaches dance technique including floor work, stomach work, dancing with veil, wings, zills, canes, zar and Khaleeji. She has a bachelor's degree in information sciences from the School of Information Sciences in Rabat, Morocco, and a bachelor's degree in accounting from Southern Oregon University.

The Ovulators began their "indy, power, pop, glamour, rock band" in their hometown of Eugene in 2002. Band members Dori, Tina, Stardust and Kayla were cast in a stage performance of "Hedwig and the Angry Inch," which garnered "Best Theatrical Performance" in The Eugene Weekly. In 2005, they were named "Best Rock Band of Eugene." The group's second album is due out this year.

Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at the door. Tickets are available at the SOU Women's Resource Center.

For more information, see, call 552-6216 or visit Southern Oregon University's Women's Resource Center in the Underground of the Stevenson Union, 1250 Siskiyou Blvd. Ashland.

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