CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – Several prominent dignitaries from across the world are gathering at the Gaillard Center, starting Thursday evening, for the Denmark Vesey Bicentenary to commemorate Vesey’s 1822 plot to free the enslaved people of Charleston.

Lowcountry cultural institutions are celebrating the life and legacy of Denmark Vesey.

“This event,” Mother Emanuel Church historian Lee Bennett Jr. said, “is the kick-off event for three days of cultural conversations and performance marking the bicentenary of Denmark Vesey’s planned slave insurrection of 1822.”

The event is a partnership between the International African American Museum, Mother Emanuel Church and the Gaillard Center. Each institution says it is important to acknowledge Vesey’s bravery.

“To have that have happened 200 years ago today here in this very city,” Lissa Frenkel, president and CEO of the Charleston Gaillard Center, said, “it feels extraordinarily meaningful for our community to engage with that story and with this national hero.”

Organizers say this event is significant because for many years, there have been several misrepresentations about what Vesey stood for.

“I think this gives us an opportunity to have a discussion to dispel some of the misinformation,” Bennett said. “Growing up, we just didn’t know a lot about Denmark Vesey.”

The three-day celebration features a lineup of star studded performers meant to educate attendees about Vesey’s life through art.

“We will be featuring popular music with Anthony Hamilton on Friday,” Frenkel said. “We have a free concert with the Charleston Symphony Orchestra, Lowcountry Voices and Partly Cloudy Brass Band on Saturday. And then, we’re ending the bicentenary with a comedy performance by D.L. Hughley on Saturday evening.”

More information about the Denmark Vesey Bicentenary schedule of events can be found here.