Colorado College News: Theatre and Dance, Focusing a Lens on Music Thu, 16 Mar 2017 00:00:00 MDT ]]> <p>By <strong>Laurie Laker &rsquo;12</strong></p> <p>At the heart of all great photography is opportunity, and luck. Being in the right place, at the right time, with the right equipment makes the world of difference. What counts more, however, is skill.</p> <p>The immense skill of storied photographer Colorado Springs&rsquo; own Larry Hulst, whose iconic work spans decades of music history, is on display at the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center. The exhibition, titled&nbsp;<a href="">&ldquo;Front Row Center,&rdquo;</a> runs until May 21, and features some of the most important figures in modern music. What Hulst does so masterfully is capture the energy of moments, those seconds you tell your friends about after the show, the sight of sonic history.</p> <p>Collaborating with the Fine Arts Center on the exhibition catalog are many CC faculty, each focusing their lenses of expertise on Hulst&rsquo;s work, the artists captured, and their own passions for music. Assistant Professor of Music Ryan Ba&ntilde;agale focuses his energies on Paul McCartney and Willie Nelson; Assistant Professor of Theatre and Dance Idris Goodwin, also a spoken word and hip-hop artist, turns his attentions to Lauryn Hill, Muddy Waters, and Robbie Robertson. Associate Professor of English Steven Hayward, who edited the catalog, reflects on the live ferocity of guitarist Pete Townsend and the &ldquo;supercool&rdquo; of Michael Hutchence of INXS, while his department colleagues Natanya Pulley and Michael Sawyer capture the majesty of David Bowie, the honed (in)sanity of Iggy Pop, and the electric wizardry of Jimi Hendrix.</p> <p>These historic artists, and many more, are caught in light and noise in Hulst&rsquo;s photographs. Their legacies, living or otherwise, are almost audible from the pictures.</p> <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="color: black; font-family: 'Arial',sans-serif; font-size: 10pt;">A panel consisting of the CC faculty members who worked on the book, as well as special guests Joy Armstrong, Natanya Pulley, and Kirsten Turner, will discuss the exhibit and the photographs this coming First Monday on March 27, at 11:15 a.m., in the Kathryn Mohrman Theatre.</span></p> <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: 'Calibri',sans-serif; font-size: 11pt;"><span style="color: #000000;" color="#000000"><span style="color: #000000; font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: medium;" color="#000000" face="Times New Roman" size="3"> </span></span></span></p> <p><span style="color: #000000; font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: medium;" color="#000000" face="Times New Roman" size="3"> </span></p> Dance Draws on Work of CC Students, BrainCare Participants Wed, 22 Feb 2017 11:15:00 MST ]]> <p>The BrainCare participants stand facing the CC dance students, each assigned a role. Some have their eyes open; those with their eyes closed are being led by their partners in a movement exercise in a community room at BrainCare, a Colorado Springs facility that provides support for individuals with acquired or traumatic brain injury.</p> <p>&ldquo;Go slowly with continuous movement,&rdquo; says Colorado College Dance Professor Shawn Womack, who is leading the workshop. &ldquo;It doesn&rsquo;t have to look a certain way; just experience being together.&rdquo;</p> <p>After a few minutes, the partners switch roles, with those who were leading now following. &ldquo;Who is taking care of whom and who is being cared for?&rdquo; Womack asks quietly, as the pairs &ndash; those guiding and those being guided &ndash; move hesitantly around the room. As the exercise ends, she notes, &ldquo;A gift was given and a gift received.&rdquo;</p> <p>The workshop, which features unlikely participants &ndash; Colorado College students and individuals recovering from traumatic brain injuries &ndash; explores the various aspects of caregiving: care giving and care taking, care managing and care receiving, and the fundamental difference between &ldquo;care&rdquo; and &ldquo;tending.&rdquo; After the exercise, one BrainCare participant observes, &ldquo;You can pay people to attend to you, but you can&rsquo;t pay people to care for you.&rdquo; Adds another, &ldquo;When you&rsquo;re giving trust you have to do it willingly. When you&rsquo;re receiving care you have to accept it.&rdquo;</p> <p>In the previous week&rsquo;s workshop, CC students and BrainCare participants explored what is left behind and what is gained following a traumatic brain injury. People with limited mobility tend to look to dancers as experts, as being extremely capable, Womack says. At the beginning of each session, which started in December and runs through February, the students and BrainCare participants sit in a semi-circle and talk about the issues common to both their situations. Among those are care giving and receiving, a sense of loss, the acceptance of limitations, and the importance of discipline in achieving one&rsquo;s goals.<br /><br />Many of those themes will be explored in &ldquo;Never Not Falling,&rdquo; a piece choreographed by Womack and performed by seven CC students and Paul Ashby, a BrainCare participant who says, &ldquo;I&rsquo;m nervous, but excited about doing this. I hope I can remember everything.&rdquo; The segment is part of the &ldquo;DanSix: Mobilities&rdquo; performance, running March 9-11 at 7:30 p.m. in the Kathryn Mohrman Theatre on the Colorado College campus. The title of the piece is intentional, Womack says, noting that &ldquo;never not falling&rdquo; is heard differently than &ldquo;always falling.&rdquo; One has to pause and think through what &ldquo;never not falling&rdquo; means, says Womack.</p> <p>Womack became interested in the intersection of traumatic brain injury, movement, and dance after her younger sister was diagnosed with a degenerative brain disease and Womack became her caregiver. Her sister moved in with Womack last summer. &ldquo;Caring for her has changed me and changed the way I think about mobility,&rdquo; Womack says. Losing mobility is something all dancers face as they age, but a traumatic brain injury accelerates the loss of mobility. Womack is looking at the issue through two lenses: hers and her sister&rsquo;s, professional and personal, and the choreography is informed by these experiences.</p> <p>The students participating in the project signed on for various reasons. <strong>Trevon Newmann &rsquo;18</strong>, one of only two participants who is a dance major, says, &ldquo;I was interested because I have never met anyone with a brain injury. Brain care and dance is a connection I haven't seen or experienced before. I was just curious, because I do believe that dance is for everyone no matter the physical abilities or limitations. I think dance can be used for relationship building, communal healing, and self-reflection. This is what we do in the workshop. We have a dialogue with words and movement.&rdquo;</p> <p>Education major and dance minor <strong>Natalie Cuadrado &rsquo;19</strong> says she joined the project because she has been interested in neuroscience for a long time. &ldquo;I was interested in seeing connections between dance and the brain, especially in cases of trauma. I love having the opportunity to connect my interests of dance, neuroscience, and education all into one project. In my time spent with patients at BrainCare, I have been able to witness how movement can be not only a way of expression, but also a way of connecting people, despite differences and barriers. It has been such a unique experience to get outside of the CC community and do something larger, while still being able to bring back what we have learned and perform on campus.&rdquo;<br /><br /><strong>Sonya Padden &rsquo;19</strong>, who plans to major in sociology, says she was interested in the project because her grandmother, who passed away a few years ago, had Alzheimer&rsquo;s. &ldquo;I didn&rsquo;t really deal with it when it happened,&rdquo; she says. &ldquo;I just felt sad; it was a weight in our family.&rdquo;</p> <p>Padden is excited about the upcoming performance because it&rsquo;s &ldquo;a processed-based performance. It&rsquo;s about the process of understanding this. It&rsquo;s not a visual truth, it&rsquo;s a feeling truth.&rdquo; Rather than being highly polished and tightly choreographed, she says the performance seeks to be &ldquo;as genuine as possible.&rdquo; There is a special power of the arts that breaks down boundaries as to who gets to participate in art, she says.</p> <p>&ldquo;I think this performance goes beyond entertainment,&rdquo; Womack says. &ldquo;It looks at the physical process, it questions, confronts, and connects.&rdquo; Womack says the piece has three major components: it comes from a place of empathy, it looks at questions of control, and it examines issues of transparency and honesty.</p> <p>Colorado Public Radio interviewed Womack and Ashby in a recent piece titled <a href="">"What Happens When People with Brain Injuries and Colorado College Students Dance Together."</a></p> <p>Womack has been consulting with Ryan Platt, CC associate professor of performance studies, on the cultural representations of disabilities in the dance performance. Additionally, several BrainCare participants will attend upcoming rehearsals to give their input. &ldquo;We want their voices to be heard during the rehearsal process as well as in the performance,&rdquo; Womack says. &ldquo;We want their feedback during the rehearsal process so their challenges, concerns, and words are fairly and accurately represented.&rdquo;</p> Idris Goodwin Wins Major Playwriting Award Wed, 18 Jan 2017 14:00:00 MST <p>Idris Goodwin, Colorado College assistant professor of theatre, has won the <a href="">2017 Blue Ink Playwriting Award</a> for his play &ldquo;Hype Man.&rdquo; Goodwin&rsquo;s work was selected from a pool of more than 500 entries, and is the latest in his series of break beat plays &mdash; all of which have received wide acclaim.<br /><br />The Blue Ink Playwriting Award is one of the most prestigious playwriting awards in the theatre industry. It comes with a $1,000 cash prize and the opportunity for Goodwin to further develop his script at the American Blues Theater, one of America&rsquo;s premier arts organizations.<br /><br />Goodwin has been at Colorado College since 2012, when he joined the faculty as a Mellon post-doctoral fellow. His B.A. is in film, video, and screenwriting from Columbia College, his MFA in creative writing from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and he continues graduate work at the University of Iowa&rsquo;s Iowa Playwrights Workshop. Goodwin&rsquo;s work has been recognized widely, including by the National Endowment for the Arts, the Ford and Mellon foundations, <em>The New York Times</em>, and National Public Radio.</p> Anne Basting ’87 Named MacArthur Fellow Thu, 22 Sep 2016 11:45:00 MDT ]]> <p><strong>Anne Basting &rsquo;87</strong>, who graduated <em>cum laude</em> from Colorado College with a degree in English, has been named a 2016 MacArthur Fellow. She is the second Colorado College graduate in two years to receive the esteemed MacArthur Foundation&rsquo;s highest honor, also known as the &ldquo;genius grant."</p> <p>Basting, a professor of theatre in the Peck School of the Arts at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, focuses on community-engaged performance. As a theatre artist and educator, Basting&rsquo;s work emphasizes the power of storytelling, artistic performance, and interactive creative experiences to build vital human connection among seniors suffering from dementia and cognitive impairment. She was recently <a href="">interviewed on NPR </a>by Kelly McEvers.</p> <p>In naming Basting an award recipient, the MacArthur Foundation notes that &ldquo;the overarching goal of Basting&rsquo;s work is to change the way we think about aging. Her improvisational, community-centered theatre pieces demonstrate that the strength of creativity remains regardless of age or cognitive status and can improve the lives of the elderly, their families, and caregivers.</p> <p>&ldquo;Across a variety of formats and platforms &mdash; theater, memoir, narrative, collaborative public performance, and academic research &mdash; Basting has developed an alternative concept of aging, one that focuses on its possibilities as well as its challenges and views sustained emotional connections as critical to our well-being as we age,&rdquo; notes the MacArthur Foundation.</p> <p>Basting is one of 23 fellows who will receive a $625,000 no-strings-attached grant in recognition of their exceptional creativity and potential for future contributions to their fields.</p> <p>Basting&rsquo;s breakthrough project, &ldquo;TimeSlips,&rdquo; is an improvisational storytelling method in which older adults with cognitive impairment imagine stories and poems in response to inspiring cues. Basting used a collection of poems by the residents of Luther Manor Home in Wisconsin to create and stage a theatre piece with the residents in 2000. She then refined and transformed &ldquo;TimeSlips&rdquo; into a formal therapy protocol guided by her fundamental insight that the creation of new stories can be an enriching substitute for lost memories. She has since created several theatre pieces with elder collaborators around specific themes or community issues. The most ambitious of these, "The Penelope Project," grew out of a series of writing, visual arts, and music and movement exercises that imagines the life of Penelope as she awaits the return of Odysseus in Homer&rsquo;s tale. Other projects have encouraged community engagement, promoted intergenerational interactions, and raised awareness around elder safety.</p> <p>Basting&rsquo;s perspective on aging and the power of stories is changing the perceptions of caregivers, family members, and policy makers around the artistic and creative capabilities of older adults, regardless of age or cognitive status. Her nonprofit, <a href="">TimeSlips Creative Storytelling</a>, offers online and in-person training programs and has helped long-term care facilities and caregivers around the world implement the program.</p> <p>In addition to receiving a B.A. from Colorado College, Basting holds an M.A. from the University of Wisconsin and a Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota.</p> <p>Basting joins <strong>John Novembre &rsquo;00</strong> as a Colorado College recipient of the MacArthur Foundation&rsquo;s genius award.</p> DamageDance Performance and Q&A February 8th Wed, 03 Feb 2016 15:22:00 MST <p>DamageDance seeks, through, dance, to explore the diversity of the human experience, increasing our awareness, understanding, and appreciation of our unique struggles, questions, and triumphs.&nbsp;</p> <p>DamageDance will be performing at Colorado College on Monday, February 8th at 3:30 PM in the Cossit gym, followed by a Q&amp;A.&nbsp;</p> "Everything Will Be Fine" Dance Thesis Performance This Weekend! Wed, 03 Feb 2016 14:38:00 MST <p>Caitlin Canty and Tinka Avramov will be presenting the Thesis performance "Everything Will Be Fine" this Friday and Saturday, February 5th and 6th, at 8 PM. See the facebook page for details!&nbsp;;</p> Thaddeus Phillips: Shape-shifter on a Liquid Stage Fri, 22 Jan 2016 13:15:00 MST <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 0px;">Thaddeus Phillips graduated Colorado College in '94 and has since founded and director for the award-winning Lucidity Suitcase&nbsp;Intercontinental.&nbsp;His most recent production,&nbsp;<em>17 Border Crossings,&nbsp;</em>weaves together 15 years of real adventures in international&nbsp;border crossings into "a dramatic examination of&nbsp;imaginary lines, arbitrary passports, and&nbsp;curious&nbsp;customs".</p> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 0px;">&nbsp;</p> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 0px;">"Thaddeus, whose 17 Border Crossings plays Feb 2-6 at the Blue Room Theatre in Perth, must be some kind of shapeshifter. Or, at least, his theatre must change wildly from piece to piece. In a way, both are true. He staged a solo version of Shakespeare's&nbsp;<em>The Tempest&nbsp;</em>in a plastic kiddie wading pool, with white sheets transforming from sails to billowing storm clouds to shadow screens to a stage curtain."</p> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 0px;">&nbsp;</p> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 0px;"><strong>Read more from this article on the American Theatre's website,&nbsp;<a id="LPlnk608121" title=" Cmd+Click or tap to follow the link" href="">here.</a></strong></p> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 0px;">&nbsp;</p> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 0px;"><a href="">Visit Lucidity Suitcase's Website</a></p> Professors' 'Critical Karaoke' Uses Music to Spark Discussion Tue, 11 Aug 2015 17:30:00 MDT <p>&ldquo;Critical Karaoke,&rdquo; an innovative public musicology endeavor begun by three Colorado College professors, is featured in an article titled <a href="">&ldquo;The Critical Karaoke Radio Project&rdquo;</a> in the latest issue of <em>American Musicological Society</em>. The project was founded by <a href="">Steven Hayward</a>, associate professor of English, novelist, and literary critic; <a href="">Idris Goodwin</a>, &nbsp;playwright, &ldquo;hip-hopologist,&rdquo; and assistant professor of theatre; and <a href="">Ryan Ba&ntilde;agale &rsquo;00</a>, assistant professor of music and author of the article.</p> <p>In the piece, Ba&ntilde;agale describes the project &mdash; an hour-long, monthly program, <a href="">&ldquo;Critical Karaoke,&rdquo;</a> and daily, 90-second modules called <a href="">&ldquo;A Day in the Life.&rdquo;</a> <br /> <br /> &ldquo;These interrelated audio programs bridge the divide between scholarly and public audiences, introducing new perspectives and insights on both familiar and unknown encounters with music,&rdquo; writes Ba&ntilde;agale. &ldquo;We hope to use music to inspire a wide-ranging, highly engaging, and uniquely diverse discussion of key themes not only in musicological scholarship, but also in the humanities more broadly.&rdquo;</p> <p>To date, the trio has recorded, produced, and released five episodes of &ldquo;Critical Karaoke&rdquo; and 115 &ldquo;A Day in the Life&rdquo; modules. The programming can be accessed via their <a href="">website </a>or <a href="">Facebook</a> page, or via an<a href=""> iTunes podcast</a>.</p> Soeren Walls ’17 Named Gilman Scholar Thu, 02 Jul 2015 10:00:00 MDT <p><b>Soeren Walls &rsquo;17, </b>a double major in computer science and theatre at Colorado College, has been awarded a <a href="">Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship</a> to study in Budapest at the Aquincum Institute of Technology during the fall semester. &nbsp;Walls is one of 860 American undergraduate students from 332 colleges and universities across the United States selected to receive the scholarship.<br /><br />The Gilman Scholarship Program is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State&rsquo;s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. The program aims to diversify the students who study and intern abroad and the countries and regions where they go.&nbsp; Scholarship recipients have the opportunity to gain a better understanding of other cultures, countries, languages, and economies &mdash; making them better prepared to assume leadership roles within government and the private sector.<br /><br />Students receiving a Federal Pell Grant from two- and four-year institutions who will be studying abroad or participating in a career-oriented international internship for academic credit are eligible to apply. &nbsp;</p> Goodwin Commissioned by Oregon Shakespeare Festival Thu, 07 May 2015 17:15:00 MDT <p>Idris Goodwin, assistant theatre professor, was recently awarded a c​ommission for a new play by Oregon Shakespeare Festival. The commission is part of the festival's American Revolutions: The United States History Cycle program. Plays commissioned by the program explore moments of change in America's past, aiming to better understand our national identity. Goodwin's work will be inspired by the writings and illustrations of Department of War representatives identifying possible routes for the transcontinental railroad in 1853-1855.<br />The Oregon Shakespeare Company presents an eight-month run of 11 plays by Shakespeare, other classic writers, and modern playwrights every year in Ashland, Oregon. The festival draws an audience of more than 400,000 annually.<br /><br />Goodwin is a lauded playwright whose work has been produced by MPAACT, the American Theater Company, at the ATL Louisville's Humana Festival, and Steppenwolf, among others. He directed his play "Verbal Vaudeville" at CC in December and has taught Hip Hop Aesthetics, Writing for Performance I and II, and Rewriting America: Playwrights &amp; Cultural Identity at CC this year. Goodwin was named Professor of the Year at the 2015 Honors Convocation, held Tuesday, May 5.​<br />&nbsp;</p>