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New ASC award honors lifetimes of creativity

The Arts & Science Council has announced recipients of its inaugural ASC Honors program, recognizing creative individuals in science, literature, history, design, visual or the performing arts with a lifetime achievement award.

2008 ASC honorees are dancers Patricia McBride and Jean-Pierre Bonnefoux; historian Steve Crump; visual artist Herb Jackson; musician Arthur Smith and scientist Dr. Francis Robicsek. The awards will be presented Oct. 6 in the McColl Family Theatre at ImaginOn.

The awards will be given every three years to individuals who have at least 20 years of experience in their fields and whose careers are marked by creativity and innovation.

About the honorees:

Patricia McBride and Jean-Pierre Bonnefoux: McBride, associate artistic director of N.C. Dance Theatre, is celebrated as an outstanding American ballerina. For three decades, the New Jersey native danced a repertory of 42 original roles all over the world. At 18, she became the youngest principal dancer in the New York City Ballet. Within a year, George Balanchine choreographed a solo for her. She has danced with Mikhail Baryshnikov and Rudolf Nureyev.

Bonnefoux, artistic director and president of N.C. Dance Theatre, trained at the School of Paris Opera Ballet. By 21, he earned the title Danseur Etoile, reserved for the most distinguished dancers in France. In 1970, Bonnefoux joined the New York City Ballet as a principal dancer. He and McBride have built NCDT into a world-class company.

Herb Jackson: His abstract works have been the subject of over 100 solo exhibitions. He's now associate professor of art at alma mater Davidson College, a philanthropist and a champion of emerging and under-recognized artists.

Arthur Smith: The Clinton, S.C., native is a celebrated composer, guitarist, fiddler and banjo player, whose “ “The Arthur Smith Show” ran in national syndication for 32 years. He built and managed the first commercial recording studio in the Southeast.