The Ulysses Festival debuted last year with an emphasis on Russian culture as spotlighted through music, dance and art exhibits and performances, many of which revolved around pieces by master composer Peter Tchaikovsky. But this year's festivities are putting a techie spin on things (update those Facebook statuses now!). The 2013 festival theme, "Brave New Worlds: Technology and Art," explores technology and its link to the art world through lectures, exhibits, and performances. The month-long festivities kick off on April 4 with a panel discussion, dubbed "Technology & Art: Gimmick or Transformation?" at UNC-Charlotte Center City Campus. Other events include North Carolina Dance Theatre's Contemporary Fusion, a show that brings together the works of choreographers Jiri Bubenicik, Twyla Tharp, and Sasha Janes. Opera Carolina is also slated to stage an update of Bizet's The Pearl Fishers and Charlotte Symphony will perform American works from the 20th and 21st centuries during its American Masters and Pioneers. Bechtler Museum of Modern Art, Wingate University's Batte Center, Charlotte Jewish Film Festival, The Light Factory and McColl Center for Visual Art are also on the roster to participate in the series. For more information and a detailed schedule of events and available packages, visit www.charlottecultureguide.com/ulysses.