September 5, 2002

Contact: Sarah Ray
802-443-5794
sray@middlebury.edu
Posted: September 5, 2002

MIDDLEBURY, VT - A lecture by three-time Pulitzer Prize-winning American playwright Edward Albee is just one highlight of "Art Matters: Visions for the Arts in the 21st  Century," an event on Sept. 19-21 which will mark the beginning of the Middlebury College Center for the Arts' (CFA) 10th anniversary celebration.  "Art Matters" is also the 2002 Middlebury College Nicholas R. Clifford Symposium, an annual forum devoted this year to the arts in honor of the CFA's founding 10 years ago.  All events are free and open to the public and all, except Albee's talk and a film screening, will take place in the CFA on South Main Street (Route 30).

Edward AlbeeEdward Albee will begin the event when he delivers the keynote address, "The Playwright vs. The Theatre," on Thursday, Sept. 19, at 8 p.m. in Mead Chapel.  John M. McCardell, Jr., Middlebury College president, and Mel Gussow, New York Times drama critic, Albee biographer, and member of the Middlebury College class of 1955, will provide introductory remarks before the talk.

Following Albee's lecture, two full days of performances, interdisciplinary panels, discussions, workshops and exhibits are scheduled, including "24 Hours of Art," a nonstop, round-the-clock arts bonanza featuring a gospel concert, dance performance and many other events in and around the CFA. 

The first of four panels, "Creativity and the Brain," convenes on Friday, Sept. 20, at 10 a.m. in the dance theatre.  Musician Stephen Nachmanovitch, a lecturer on creativity and author of "Free Play: Improvisation in Life and Art," will join Middlebury College faculty members-David Napier of the sociology and anthropology department, and David Parfitt and Tom Root of the biology department-on the panel, which will be moderated by Andrea Olsen, Middlebury College professor of dance.

At 1 p.m. on Sept. 20, student theatre majors will offer a reading of Albee's play, "Three Tall Women," in the Seeler Studio Theatre.  Following the reading, Gussow will moderate a discussion with the playwright.

Su Lian TanTo jump-start her panel, "Science, Culture, and Art," Su Lian Tan, associate professor of music, has created an array of live, looped, scratched and DJ sounds, including the music of rapper Damian Washington, a Middlebury senior.  The musical performance will begin the event and then continue off and on at various intervals throughout the panel discussion, conducted by members of the Middlebury College faculty. John Elder, professor of English and environmental studies; Jennifer Post, assistant professor of music and faculty curator of the ethnomusicology archives; and Rich Wolfson, professor of physics, will explore the relationship between technology and art. Their topics will include the production and transmission of cultural property, especially music; the creation and understanding of art generated by advances in science; and the concept of science as art. This event begins Sept. 20 at 4:15 p.m. in the Concert Hall.

"24 Hours of Art" gears up later that day at 5 p.m., when student, faculty, alumni and guest artists converge on the CFA in a round-the-clock series of performances, participatory events, workshops, exhibits, readings and installations. Curated by Peter Schmitz and Amy Chavasse of the Middlebury College dance program faculty, "24 Hours of Art" celebrates art- making in every conceivable medium, in unexpected locations, and at unconventional times. It promises to be a forum for exploration and risk-taking, a chance for artists and audiences to experiment with orthodoxy and innovation, and an opportunity to highlight many dramatic spaces in the CFA. A full schedule of events will be available at the start of the symposium.

Schmitz and DancersSchmitz and Dancers reunite with Middlebury College alumni Katherine Ferrier, Lisa Gonzales, Paul Matteson and Pamela Vail for a concert of choreography and performance as part of "24 Hours of Art," at 8 p.m. in the Dance Theatre. In 2000, this group and the Dance Company of Middlebury created "Felt Presence of an Absence," which they performed on campus and on tour. Material from that project will reappear in this evening's collaborative work. Solo and small-group pieces, choreographed and performed by each dancer, complete the concert.

A gospel concert by Janice Harrison-Aikens, mezzo soprano with the Harlem Spiritual Ensemble and solo performer with the Newark, N.J., Community Concert Choir, is another feature of "24 Hours of Art." The concert is hosted by singer and Middlebury College Twilight Artist-in-Residence François Clemmons, who says of Harrison-Aikens: "Her firm faith and superior talent make her one of the East Coast's most sought-after, up-and-coming gospel specialists.  I like best that she is able to touch her audiences very deeply with her simple,

spiritually connected approach to many of the standards like 'Walk in Jerusalem' and 'His Eye Is On The Sparrow.' " The Middlebury College Choir will join Harrison-Aikens, Clemmons and accompanist Dick Forman in the Concert Hall at 9:30 p.m.

A late night cafe will be in full swing at Rehearsals Cafe, located on the first-floor lobby, following the concerts. A visit here will offer an opportunity to catch additional performances by participants in "24 Hours of Art."

"The Arts and the Transformation of American Consciousness" is the topic of a Saturday, Sept. 21, panel at 10 a.m. in the Dance Theatre. The panel includes dance scholar and performer Brenda Dixon-Gottschild, Temple University professor of dance emerita; Daniel Belgrad, University of South Florida associate professor of humanities and American studies; Kirsten A. Hoving, Middlebury College professor of history of art and architecture; and Clemmons. Penny Campbell, lecturer in dance at Middlebury, will serve as moderator.

At 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, Stephen Prince, professor of film studies at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University and author of "A New Pot of Gold: Hollywood under the Electronic Rainbow, 1980-1989," will speak on "American Cinema at the Turn of the Century." A discussion will follow with a panel of Middlebury faculty, including Leger Grindon, professor of film/video; John Bertolini, professor of English and film; and Stephen Donadio, professor of American literature and civilization.  The events will take place in the Dance Theatre.

As "24 Hours of Art" wraps up at 5 p.m. on Saturday, Gussow will return to lead the symposium's summation. A discussion of ideas and issues raised throughout the symposium will take place in the Dance Theatre. Panelists will sign copies of their recent books immediately afterward. Books by panelists will be on sale throughout the symposium at the information desk on the second floor.

The final event of the weekend is a screening of David Lynch's "Mulholland Drive," shown in conjunction with the Hirschfield Film/Video Series, at 8 p.m. in Dana Auditorium in Sunderland Language Center on College Street (Route 125). This thrilling nightmare movie starts when Betty, immediately after arriving in Los Angeles, discovers a mysterious, confused woman in her apartment with a purse full of money.

All events are free and open to the public, and all will take place in the CFA on South Main Street (Route 30), except Albee's lecture and a film screening. Continental breakfasts and buffet luncheons will be available for panelists and audience members each day at no charge. For updated symposium information, visit www.middlebury.edu/clifford_symposium or contact the Middlebury College Box Office at 802-443-6433.       

Events Calendar Listings

"Art Matters: Visions for the Arts in the 21st Century"

2002 Nicholas R. Clifford Symposium

Thursday, Sept. 19-Saturday, Sept. 21

 

Thursday, Sept. 19

8 p.m.

Lecture: "The Playwright vs. The Theatre" by Edward Albee, three-time Pulitzer Prize-winning American playwright. John M. McCardell, Jr., Middlebury College president, and Mel Gussow, New York Times drama critic, Albee biographer, and member of the Middlebury College class of 1955, will provide introductory remarks before the talk.

Middlebury College Mead Chapel, Hepburn Road off College Street (Route 125) 

 

Friday, Sept. 20

10 a.m.

Panel discussion: "Creativity and the Brain" with musician Stephen Nachmanovitch, a lecturer on creativity and author of "Free Play: Improvisation in Life and Art," and Middlebury College faculty members David Napier of the sociology and anthropology department, and David Parfitt and Tom Root of the biology department. Moderated by Andrea Olsen, Middlebury College professor of dance.

Dance Theatre, Middlebury College Center for the Arts, South Main Street (Route 30)

 

1 p.m.

Reading of Edward Albee's play "Three Tall Women" followed by discussion with the playwright and New York Times drama critic: Middlebury College student theatre majors will offer a reading of Edward Albee's play "Three Tall Women."  Following the reading, Mel Gussow, New York Times drama critic, Albee biographer, and member of the Middlebury College class of 1955, will moderate a discussion with the playwright.

Seeler Studio Theatre, Middlebury College Center for the Arts, South Main Street (Route 30)

 

4:15 p.m.

Panel discussion and musical performance: "Science, Culture, and Art" with Middlebury faculty Su Lian Tan, associate professor of music; John Elder, professor of English and environmental studies; Jennifer Post, assistant professor of music and faculty curator of the ethnomusicology archives; and Rich Wolfson, professor of physics. The panel will be preceded and interspersed throughout by an array of live and recorded music.

Concert Hall, Middlebury College Center for the Arts, South Main Street (Route 30)

 

5 p.m.

"24 Hours of Art:" Middlebury College student, faculty, alumni and guest artists converge on the Center for the Arts in a round-the-clock series of performances, participatory events, workshops, exhibits, readings and installations. Curated by Peter Schmitz and Amy Chavasse of the Middlebury College dance program faculty. A full schedule of events will be available at the start of the symposium.

Middlebury College Center for the Arts, South Main Street (Route 30)

 

8 p.m.

Dance performance: Schmitz and Dancers reunite with Middlebury College alumni dancers Katherine Ferrier, Lisa Gonzales, Paul Matteson and Pamela Vail. Peter Schmitz, Middlebury College visiting assistant professor in dance, joined in 2000 with this group and the Dance Company of Middlebury to create "Felt Presence of an Absence," which they performed on campus and on tour. Material from that project will reappear in this collaborative work. Solo and small-group pieces will be included. "24 Hours of Art" event.

Dance Theatre, Middlebury College Center for the Arts, South Main Street (Route 30)

 

9:30 p.m.

Gospel concert: Janice Harrison-Aikens, mezzo soprano with the Harlem Spiritual Ensemble and solo performer with the Newark, N.J., Community Concert Choir, will be joined by the Middlebury College Choir, singer and Middlebury College Twilight Artist-in-Residence François Clemmons and accompanist Dick Forman. "24 Hours of Art" event.

Concert Hall, Middlebury College Center for the Arts, South Main Street (Route 30)

 

Saturday, Sept. 21

10 a.m.

Panel discussion: "The Arts and the Transformation of American Consciousness" is the topic of a panel that includes dance scholar and performer Brenda Dixon-Gottschild, Temple University professor of dance emerita; Daniel Belgrad, University of South Florida associate professor of humanities and American studies; and François Clemmons, Twilight Artist-in-Residence, and Kirsten A. Hoving, professor of history of art and architecture, both of Middlebury College. Penny Campbell, lecturer in dance at Middlebury, will serve as moderator.

Dance Theatre, Middlebury College Center for the Arts, South Main Street (Route 30)

 

1:30 p.m.

Lecture and panel discussion: Stephen Prince, professor of film studies at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University and author of "A New Pot of Gold: Hollywood under the Electronic Rainbow, 1980-1989," will speak on "American Cinema at the Turn of the Century." A discussion will follow with a panel of Middlebury faculty, including Leger Grindon, professor of film/video; John Bertolini, professor of English and film; and Stephen Donadio, professor of American literature and civilization.

Dance Theatre, Middlebury College Center for the Arts, South Main Street (Route 30)

 

5 p.m.

Summation and discussion of symposium "Art Matters: Visions for the Arts in the 21st Century:" Led by Mel Gussow-New York Times drama critic and member of the Middlebury College class of 1955-symposium participants will discuss ideas and issues raised throughout the symposium. Panelists will sign copies of their recent books immediately afterward.

Dance Theatre, Middlebury College Center for the Arts, South Main Street (Route 30)

 

8 p.m.

Movie screening: David Lynch's "Mulholland Drive," shown in conjunction with the Hirschfield Film/Video Series. This thrilling nightmare movie starts when Betty, immediately after arriving in Los Angeles, discovers a mysterious, confused woman in her apartment with a purse full of money.

Dana Auditorium, Sunderland Language Center, Middlebury College, College Street (Route 125)

All symposium events, except Albee's lecture and a film screening, will take place in the College's Center for the Arts on South Main Street (Route 30).  All events are free and open to the public. Continental breakfasts and buffet luncheons will be available for panelists and audience members each day at no charge. For updated symposium information, visit www.middlebury.edu/clifford_symposium, or contact the Middlebury College Box Office at 802-443-6433.

 

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