White Horse Black Mountain will host a special benefit show, Stories of Resilience, Songs of Joy, on Saturday, June 5, at 7 p.m. both live and streaming online. Kat Williams & Friends will perform, joined on stage by Asheville world jazz trio Free Planet Radio, and ticket proceeds will go to support Under One Sky, a nonprofit organization that provides community and a continuum of services for youth in foster care and throughout their lives. “The night is definitely a win-win,” says Bob Hinkle, owner of the venue. “White Horse Black Mountain is proud to present Kat, especially as this is also a benefit for Under One Sky, a wonderful organization in aid of foster kids.”
An Emmy nominee, Williams is known as Asheville’s Queen of Soul and has been compared to icons like Nina Simone, Ella Fitzgerald, Mavis Staples and Etta James.
“Kat Williams could sing the phone book and move anybody in earshot,” says Hinkle. “Her voice and presence largely defy genre. She can sing them all, and sing them damn well. I don’t know if Kat is an old soul, but she’s sure got a lot of it.”
The event is made possible by a Buncombe County Tipping Point grant. “Youth in foster care are some of the most vulnerable members of our community,” says Pana Columbus, interim executive director of Under One Sky. “Those who age out without a permanent family are at high risk for homelessness, teen pregnancy and substance abuse. Under One Sky interrupts this cycle of poverty by creating a community of supportive adults and peers that sees, hears and values each youth we serve.”
In addition to the performance by Williams, who experienced foster care herself as a child, the evening will feature short film clips of alumni from the organization’s programs sharing their stories. “When youth in foster care are seen, heard and valued, the trajectory of their lives changes,” says Columbus. “When they feel a sense of belonging, and that they matter, they make healthier, more positive choices. Every program Under One Sky offers renews the human spirit by forging relationships that are positive, supportive and can last a lifetime.”
White Horse Black Mountain is located at 105 Montreat Road in Black Mountain. Tickets are $25 for the live show and $12 for the virtual event. Learn more and purchase tickets at WhiteHorseBlackMountain.com.