UT School of Visual & Performing Arts

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Faculty work exhibited at Stranahan Theatre

March 11 marked the beginning of a new collaboration between the Department of Art and The Stranahan Theater. A show of photographs by Eric Ziegler, called “From the Middle of Nowhere” was unveiled as it was announced that faculty from the Department of Art will be displaying their work at the Stranahan, in rotating exhibitions. Ziegler is the Lecturer of Multidisciplinary Art and Foundations in the Department of Art.

“The Stranahan Theater, widely known for its presentation of all forms of live performances, draws countless guests, both locally and regionally. As a result of this ability, our theater can, at any given event, have thousands of people within our four walls. What an opportunity to allow our blank walls to be a platform for visual arts, and, in the process, enhance our patrons’ experience! We recently contacted the University of Toledo about partnering with us for this very purpose and couldn’t have received a more willing and excited response. What a great venture for the two of us and for the public not only to see the great forms of art, but also to have the chance to purchase them!” – Stephen Hyman, Executive Director, Stranahan Theater & Great Hall

“I am excited to be partnering with the Stranahan Theater for this exhibition of three photographs, selected from my series “From the Middle of Nowhere.” This exhibition marks the start of what will certainly be a beneficial collaboration between two centers of creativity in Toledo. The theater will provide the University of Toledo’s College of Communication and Arts with a new platform to harness our creative power. I am looking forward to what may be possible in the future through this partnering.” – Eric Zeigler, Lecturer of Multidisciplinary Art and Foundations

“The Department of Art in the College of Communication and the Arts at UT is now partnering with the Stranahan Theater. We are bringing the visuals arts to this wonderful, landmark performing arts center. On a rotational basis, our faculty will be exhibiting their works in the halls of the Stanahan. We are excited that the exceptional work of our faculty will be highlighted at the Stranahan, giving audiences a chance to engage in our multi-sensory artistic offerings.” – Debra A. Davis, Dean – College of Communication and the Arts, School of Visual & Performing Arts, University of Toledo

Zeigler’s “From the Middle of Nowhere” photograph collection is currently on display in the upper balcony lobby of the Stranahan Theatre, located at 4645 Heatherdowns Blvd., in Toledo.


Midsummer Borrowings Festival

Midsummer Borrowings events on campus

The College of Communication and the Arts (CoCA) celebrated its annual Arts and Humanities Festival with a series of events in collaboration with the Toledo Symphony Orchestra (TSO) and its production of “Midsummer Night Mysteries,” March 27-28. UT students and faculty took part in the Symphony production at the Peristyle. Leading up to the performances, CoCA presented related lectures, a concert and a film screening on campus.

Friday film screening
On Friday, March 20 in the Haigh Auditorium of the Center for Visual Arts, a screening of the 1935 Max Reinhardt film A Midsummer Night’s Dream was introduced by Dr. Matt Yockey, Assistant Professor of Film in the UT Department of Theatre & Film.

Nominated for Best Picture, this film adaptation of Reinhardt’s successful Hollywood Bowl production of the Shakespeare play includes extensive use of Felix Mendelssohn’s music as re-orchestrated by Erich Wolfgang Korngold and ballet sequences choreographed by Bronislava Nijinska. The cast includes Mickey Rooney, Olivia DeHavilland and James Cagney, among many other familiar names and faces.

Sunday Great Gallery concert by Bezonian Trio
On Sunday, March 22, the Bezonian Trio featuring Antonina Chekhovskaya, soprano, performed in the Toledo Museum of Art’s Great Gallery. The concert featured pieces that recall two of Shakespeare’s most famous plays – Macbeth (Beethoven’s Piano Trio in D major, Op.70 #1 “Ghost”) and Hamlet (Ophelia’s Song by Dimitri Shostakovich). The Bezonian Trio is comprised of Merwin Siu (violin) and Damon Coleman (cello) of the Toledo Symphony, and Dr. Michael Boyd (piano), professor of piano at The University of Toledo.

Mendelssohn’s Music, Reinhardt’s Diaphanous Damsels, Shakespeare’s Fairies
On Wednesday March 25, Matthew Wikander, Distinguished University Professor Emeritus of the UT Department of English, presented a lecture about fairies in A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

“We are spirits of another sort,” the fairy king Oberon reminds Puck as Shakespeare’s Midsummer Night’s Dreamers awaken into morning. Puck has just been describing the dawn as a time when “damned spirits” return to their “wormy beds”—a kind of reverse zombie apocalypse. Oberon’s and Puck’s disagreements do not begin or end here, but this interchange raises the question of what kind of fairies the fairies in Shakespeare’s plays are, and, by extension, the further question of how to represent them. This talk focused on the problem of representing fairies musically, in Mendelssohn’s incidental score, cinematically, in Max Reinhardt’s film version of his famous stage production, and poetically, as the fairies appear in Shakespeare’s text.


CoCA Collaboration with the Toledo Symphony

The College of Communication and the Arts (CoCA) celebrated its annual Arts & Humanities Festival with a series of events in collaboration with the Toledo Symphony Orchestra (TSO) and its production of “Midsummer Night Mysteries,” March 27-28. UT students and faculty took part in the Symphony production at the Peristyle. Leading up to the performances, CoCA presented related lectures, a concert and a film screening on campus. More on those in another post.

Midsummer Night Mysteries with TSO

Mendelssohn’s ethereal Overture, effervescent Scherzo, and iconic Wedding March highlight the first half of “Midsummer Night Mysteries.” The North American premiere of Volker David Kirchner’s Labyrinthos presented the Bard’s fairies, lovers and comic sidekicks, alongside music inspired by the Italian Baroque master Claudio Monteverdi. Stephan Sanderling conducted and Cornel Gabara, associate professor of Theatre and Head of Acting at UT, directed and portrayed the dual character Egeus/Bottom.

A number of UT students and faculty participated in the performance. UT faculty who acted in the show included Irene Alby, Lecturer in the Department of Theatre and Film, who played Hippolyta/Titania and as mentioned above, Gabara played Egeus/Bottom.

UT Theatre students involved in the production included Ian Davis as Demetrius; Jeffrey Burden as Oberon/Theseus; Nolan Thomaswick as Lysander; Victoria Zajac as Hermia; Keely-Rain Battle as Puck; and Elif Ertürk as Helena. Students also doubled up and played other roles, such as the mechanicals and fairies.

Set design was done by Gabara; costume design was done by Daniel Thobias, Assistant Professor of Theatre and Head of Design in the Department of Theatre and Film; and lighting was handled by James S. Hill, retired chair of UT Department of Theatre & Film.


Art History professor recognized for assessment expertise

At the April 1, Assessment Appreciation Lunch, Dr. Mysoon Rizk, Associate Professor of Art History, received the Academic Program Award for excellence in assessment. This is the second year running that professor Rizk has been recognized for this achievement. The Art History program was nominated this year due to the strong assessment measures its faculty employ to determine how and what students are learning, and the clarity with which they link those measures to the results and subsequent actions they take in response to the results received. To do this, the Art History faculty designate particular assignments, which are then evaluated against a common rubric. The results are totaled, and shared with all faculty, who meet together to determine if any results are lower than expected, and what should be done to address any such result.


Accolades for UT student journalists

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The Independent Collegian was named the best all-around non-daily newspaper in Region 4 at the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) convention in Athens, Ohio. Blake Bacho received first place honors in sports writing, and the staff was a finalist in editorial writing. UT:10 News was named a finalist for best all-around television newscast. The student journalists from UT compete with their peers from Ohio State, Bowling Green, Michigan Central, Marshall, and other universities in Ohio, Michigan, West Virginia and western Pennsylvania.


Professor’s book on propaganda translated

Brian Patrick Polish book cover

“The Ten Commandments of Propaganda,” by Professor of Communication Brian Anse Patrick, has been translated into and published in Polish

Brian Patrick, a professor in the Department of Communication, is one of the most colorful researchers and writers in our college. His recent books have covered issues ranging from the NRA to zombies. His classic book The Ten Commandments of Propaganda has now been translated for the first time, into Polish. 10 Przykazań Propagandy can be purchased online at the One Press website.


Zeta Phi Eta nominated for best student organization award

Zeta Phi Eta group photo

Members of Zeta Phi Eta, the national professional fraternity for communication, the arts, and sciences

Zeta Phi Eta, the national professional fraternity for communication, the arts, and sciences was recently nominated for the Parks Thompson Best New Student Organization Award at The University of Toledo.

This award honors Toledo’s most successful student organization formed within the last year. The Beta Theta Chapter of Zeta Phi Eta was founded in January of 2014, having only 10 members. Zeta Phi Eta currently has 37 active members.

Throughout the year, Zeta Phi Eta has participated in many philanthropic events on campus such as Relay for Life, The Big Event, Wrap up Toledo, and Tie One On.

According to the Office of Student Involvement, “the organization will be selected based on their organization’s development, leadership development of members, ability to overcome obstacles, and contribution to University and/or community.”

The recipient of this award will be announced in April.

More information regarding the Parks Thompson Best New Student Organization Award can be found at http://www.utoledo.edu/studentaffairs/osi/parksthompson/


Professor’s film shown at distinguished festivals

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A still from Holly Hey’s film “the dumdum capitol of the world”

Congratulations to Associate Professor Holly Hey, who screened her film The Dum Dum Capitol of the World at the Ann Arbor Film Festival, the Athens Film Festival, and the Queens World Film Festival.

A brief synopsis: The Dum Dum Capitol of the World (Holly Hey, 2014) 21 minutes.
An experimental documentary that contemplates landscape, home, memory, queerness, and time. The project illuminates social constructs about sexuality, self, and human instinct. Visible and latent hostilities directed towards queerness surface.


Art Imitates Space: UT Department of Art at Ritter Planetarium

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Image of space by Xueling Zhao

The University of Toledo Department of Art will be among the stars this spring, beginning Tuesday, April 14 in Ritter Planetarium. As part of the Planetarium program “Stars: Powerhouses of the Universe,” photographs made by students will be on display in the lobby gallery and on the dome as well.

The exhibition, titled “Faux Space,” is the third such photo show at the planetarium. The image on display were made in the Department of Art’s Fall 2014 introductory photo course, ART 2030: Photography, taught by Professor Deborah Orloff. Students were challenged to create photos that evoke a sense of space – in the extraterrestrial sense. They used a diverse range of materials to create their images including food, toys, pots, glitter, fire, lasers, smoke, and oils. All images were made with a DSLR camera; they are not computer-generated or taken from space.

The gallery images will be on display throughout the summer whenever Ritter Planetarium is open to the public.

Student artists featured in the exhibition include:
Shalissa Bailey, Jamie Campbell, Andrea Fackelman, Emily Frank, June Galvin and Danielle Hedger; Qiong Jia, Leanne Jones, Chariti Lockhard, Nicelle McCuchen, Kathlynn Meyer and Kayla Perez; Alexandra Ray, Daniel Rivera, Madison Roy, Jamie Snyder, Drew Tansel, Chelsea Thompson, Xueling Zhao and Yue Zhao.


On the uHeart Digital Media Conference

This fall, five students – Anna Bui, Opal Dunlap, Lydia Sims, Gina Todd, and Shelly Trivisonno – received scholarships from the CoCA Dean’s Office to attend the uHeart Digital Media Conference. We asked them to fill us in on their experiences.

ANNA BUI

What is your major?
My major is New Media Design.

What interested you about attending this conference?
I attended this conference because I love learning about technology and digital media.

What did you learn from the event?
I learned a lot about the business aspects and using social media as a marketing tool.

Did you have a favorite speaker, and what did you take away from his/her presentation?
All the speakers were great and informative! I really enjoyed Brian Buirge and Jason Bacher. They were entertaining and clever. They discussed their many failures with their startup and it is neat to see how far they have come!

How do you think what you learned at uHeart will help you in your school and professional work?
There are more skills I am interested in learning to become a well-rounded professional. As a designer who has an understanding of the basics of programming, I now want to learn more about the business aspect of the industry.

Did uHeart change the way you think about professional opportunities after graduation?
Yes, most definitely. Attending uHeart definitely opened my eyes to possible career options that I might want to venture into.

Would you recommend this conference to your classmates and colleagues?
I would definitely recommend this conference to my colleagues. It is truly inspiring to be in an atmosphere surrounded by professionals in the digital media industry. Technology is the future and I want to be a part of it.

OPAL DUNLAP

What is your major?
My major is Communication with a concentration on Broadcasting.

What interested you about attending this conference?
I was interested in attending the conference because I am a business owner who needed to acquire more information on building my brand.

What did you learn from the event?
I learned a lot from the event. I learned about not only building my company brand, but also my personal brand. I learned to do what I am passionate about and never hesitate. I learned skills that can help me move my company forward.

Did you have a favorite speaker, and what did you take away from his/her presentation?
All the speakers were wonderful. My two favorite speakers were Brian Kibby and the guys from Good F***ing Design Advice. I also loved Larry Burns.

How do you think what you learned at uHeart will help you in your school and professional work?
What I learned at uHeart will not only help me in my school and professional life, but in life, period. uHeart taught me a lot about digital media and how to use it effectively, but it also taught me to go after what I want passionately, to block out negativity and that failure is a part of success.

Did uHeart change the way you think about professional opportunities after graduation?
Yes. uHeart changed my thoughts on professional opportunities after graduation, because it showed me how to go after them and gave me the courage to do so.

Would you recommend this conference to your classmates and colleagues?
I would recommend this conference to everyone even those who do not own a business. I was honored to win a spot at the conference and even if I don’t next time I will try and get the money to go again. I loved the experience and opportunity it presented to me.

LYDIA SIMS

What is your major?
I have a double major with Communication and Theatre with a focus on broadcasting and performance.

What interested you about attending this conference?
One of the major things that interested me about this conference was the digital media aspect. I wanted to get a deep understanding of what companies are doing to get prepared for our changing world of multimedia. I found this pertinent information because I do want to become a multimedia journalist. Also, I learned that there is huge market for everyone, and you have to be very persistent about knowing what you want plus have goals to measure your success. As a company or as a person you have to be willing to lean new things and adapt.

What did you learn from the event? Did you have a favorite speaker, and what did you take away from his/her presentation?
All the speakers offered great knowledge, but hands down my favorite speaker was Brian Kibby! He was amazing. I felt like he was talking directly to me. Some of the content of the speakers was a little hard to understand if you did not work in the everyday work force. However, Kibby talked in a manner and on topics that everyone could take something away. One of the best highlights from his speech was personal branding. He talked heavily about using social media to only enhance your personal brand. Never be negative on social media and always be positive no matter what is going on in your life. If you are serious about what you want to do, start a blog. This gives your future employer something to read about you before your interview, thus giving you a leg up above your competition.

Kibby also talked about going over and above to be prepared for your interviews. He gave a personal testimony that he said shaped his career. He was applying for a position in a company that was starting a company in a new location. He said he did what he always did for a job interview. Lo and behold, he did not get that job because he did not go over and above. The person that did get it the job took the time to travel to that location and ask around to the employees about making the company better. Kibby stressed the importance of standing out above your peers.

Also, another great speaker was Sean Nicholson. He took the concept of marketing to a whole different level. He took a extremely difficult concept and made it simple to understand with his Prezi presentation.

How do you think what you learned at uHeart will help you in your school and professional work?
The concepts that were shared at the event definitely enhance my school work and will ultimately alter me as a professional worker. One of the key things that I took away was to seek opportunity now and go above and beyond my employer’s expectations.

Did uHeart change the way you think about professional opportunities after graduation?
uHeart definitely changed my mindset about professional opportunity. There were professionals there that had a bachelor’s degree in something completely different then what you’d suspect. However, if you market yourself right and know the end goal you can do anything with your degree. That is another thing learned from Kibby.

Would you recommend this conference to your classmates and colleagues?
I would definitely recommend everyone to participate in this event, it broadened my goals and gave me a position outlook on my future! One of the highlights that I recommend for next time is bringing Brian Kibby back.

GINA TODD

What is your major?
My major is Communication with a focus in Broadcasting.

What interested you about attending this conference?
I was interested in attending this conference because I attended last year and had an amazing experience! I learned so much and had a great time doing it, so why wouldn’t I want to come back?

What did you learn from the event?
I learned quite a bit at the conference, but the greatest thing I learned was how important it is to market yourself. My generation is full of innovators and we are a lot more powerful than we think! Being intelligent is a power itself but it’s wasted if you don’t know how to sell or present yourself.

Did you have a favorite speaker, and what did you take away from his/her presentation?
My favorite presentation was the one we saw from the founders of Good F***ing Design Advice. Of course, it was hilarious and definitely stood out beyond other presentations, but the message lying beneath all of the humor was also very powerful. I loved that they showed us all of the mistakes and struggles they dealt with when starting up their business and how they got through it. I’ve always been a positive person but the biggest part I took from their presentation is that positivity should be permanent, even when things are going terribly wrong.

How do you think what you learned at uHeart will help you in your school and professional work?
What I learned at uHeart will help me in school and professional work because I now have a better understanding of marketing myself and making myself stand out above others. There is always going to be someone better and worse than you at something, and how much you shine in a room full of people with the same qualifications and experience you have is completely up to you.

Did uHeart change the way you think about professional opportunities after graduation?
uHeart completely changed the way I think of opportunities after graduation. I want to do everything I can right now to have a great social media presence because that is what I really want to work with. I’ll start with getting ready to create my website and hopefully a blog! I never thought I’d leave the conference wanting to work in media as badly as I do now, and I am extremely interested in working for Google!

Would you recommend this conference to your classmates and colleagues?
I would definitely recommend this conference to my classmates and colleagues. No matter what your major is or whether or not you have your own business, we are living in a digital world. Media controls absolutely everything nowadays and understanding ow to function within media is crucial. Businesses cannot survive without digital media in this generation, so I would strongly advise everyone to start creating a positive digital footprint.


SHELLY TRIVISONNO

What is your major?
New Media Design Practices BFA

What interested you about attending this conference?
As a design student, I think it is important to see what professionals are doing and how it relates to what I am learning in my classes. As a business minor, I was interested in seeing how people used both marketing and design within their specific field.

What did you learn from the event?
There was quite a wide variety of speakers that presented at the conference. Many entrepreneurs spoke about the many failures they encountered along the way before they found success. Many spoke about the importance of innovation and staying relevant in the marketplace through rich engagement with their customers.

Did you have a favorite speaker, and what did you take away from his/her presentation?
Lacie Sandstom from Google and Brian Kibby from McGraw Hill were both exceptional speakers. Lacie spoke about aligning utility within the market and how to keep customers interested and coming back for more. She gave a lot of good examples of how Google and other companies are constantly reinventing themselves and their brand.

Brian Kibby spoke a lot about creating a genuine personal brand and how hard work goes a long way. He also spoke about optimism and enthusiasm being the key to sustained success and keeping up these standards on the web and social media.

How do you think what you learned at uHeart will help you in your school and professional work?
uHeart Digital Media Conference was an amazing experience. It further reinforced the importance of passion and determination in the field while also informing us on the new technologies and social media tactics being used by some of the big players in digital media.

Did uHeart change the way you think about professional opportunities after graduation?
I am always nervous about getting a job after graduation. uHeart showed me the wide range of work there is in this industry and all of the passionate people I have the opportunity to work with. I also was able to talk to some of the speakers that really resonated with me.

Would you recommend this conference to your classmates and colleagues?
I would definitely recommend this conference to classmates and colleagues. When I walked out of the first day of uHeart, I was completely inspired and couldn’t wait for what the next day had in store. At this part of the semester, it seems that deadlines are colliding and coursework is getting harder to handle. uHeart got me out of this mid-semester slump and reminded me that I am in the right field and gave me that second wind of inspiration that I really needed.