2018 Artist: Ashley Barnes

Individual Artist Criteria:  Individual Artist category is open to artists of exceptional talent and creativity, in any discipline, whose contribution to the arts has helped guide and influence directions, trends and aesthetic practices.

Ashley Barnes:  Ashley Barnes is a creative force in the Wilmington dance community.  Barnes is known for her work interpreting classic children’s literature for the stage while incorporating dance, spoken word, original music, and handcrafted costumes.  Productions are staged for consistently sold out audiences.  An example of her work is her interpretation of Charlotte’s Web.  For Charlotte’s Web, Barnes wrote the script and recorded the narration herself.  She also featured an original score created by local musicians and worked with an additional nine actors to record lines of different characters.

A native of Goldsboro, Barnes arrived in Wilmington in 2007 to work with The Dance Element.  In 2009, she became its owner and artistic director.  At The Dance Element, Barnes instructs dancers of all ages in not only dance, but all aspects of a production, including set design and art works, costume design, and technical requirements.  Her work and instruction is built upon years of study and training.  Barnes started dancing at the age of 3, moved through the prestigious North Carolina Governer’s School, and studied dance with a concentration in ballet and visual art with a concentration in painting at East Carolina University.  This multidisciplinary training is applied to her work.

In addition to creating original productions and training dancers of all ages, Barnes works to promote the careers of young dancers who wish to pursue dance as a profession.  Her nonprofit called Element Productions helps young dancers with tuition or other costs associated with furthering their careers.

Barnes is an artist of exceptional talent and creativity and has helped influence the greater Wilmington dance community and arts of multiple disciplines.

The Dance Element:  thedanceelement.com

Element Productions:  elementproductions.org


Join us at The Arts In Wilmington Awards on January 20, 2018

Purchase your ticket here:  AIWawards2018.eventbrite.com

Our Sponsors:  The Arts In Wilmington Awards are made possible with the support of Certified Arts Friendly businesses

Information:  Contact Craig Stinson at 910-524-2679 or Email