STAR POWER at PSU

September 12th, 2007 by Adam

Plymouth State University fine and performing arts offer a delicious smorgasbord this fall. From music and visual art to theatre performances and book readings.

PSU’s fall lineup promises diverse programming to pique multiple tastes and interests.

Details of date, time, location and cost are available in Plymouth State’s online calendar at thisweek.blogs.plymouth.edu.

Here’s a tempting sampler…

Music

An evening with composer Michael Rendish is the first offering from the PSU Department of Music, Theatre, and Dance, Tuesday, Sept. 18 at 7 p.m. at the Silver Center. Rendish is cochair emeritus of Berklee College’s film scoring department, a gifted performer and an award-winning writer who has composed, orchestrated and conducted some 30 film scores.

The Ruggieri Chamber Soloists— PSU music professor Dan Perkins on piano, John Lindsey of Ithaca College’s Chamber Music Institute on violin; and area music teacher and performer Linda Galvan on cello—perform piano trios by Haydn, Rachmaninov, and Brahms, September 23 at 1 p.m. at the Silver Center.

Jazz Standard Time, a PSU faculty quintet, follows at 4 p.m. September 29, performing a variety of jazz and Latin standards from the 1940s, 1950s, and 1960s.

November 1 is the 30th anniversary celebration of the All New England Choral Festival, featuring Plymouth State University Chorale and Chamber Singers, at the Silver Center for the Arts. The All New England Band Festival, featuring the top area high school musicians, comes to Silver on November 19.

Also in November, the PSU student jazz ensemble performs swing, blues, jazz, Latin, and funk with the PSU Big Band on Nov. 6 and nationally-known pianist and composer David Karp leads student pianists in a master class Nov. 3. The month ends with a student concert of piano concertos and other works for piano onNov. 30.

The Guitar Ensemble, PSU Chamber Players, and the Percussion Ensemble all have concert dates early in December, as does the PSU Dance Ensemble, with their annual winter dance extravaganza inspired by music, art, film, and the season.

Celebrate the holiday season on December 9 with Silver Revels, a festive and elegant holiday celebration with a lush dessert bar, inspiring choral music, and dancing to big band tunes. Proceeds from this event will help fund departmental scholarships.

Theatre

Professors Elizabeth Cox and Paul Mroczka inaugurate the PSU theatre season September 19–22 as the sharp-tongued, warring couple George and Martha in Edward Albee’s drama Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? PSU students Rebecca Rudolf, a senior theatre major and Sean O’Donnell, a senior criminal justice major with a theatre minor, portray Honey and Nick, respectively. Clayton Phillips, who is the artistic director of Barnstormers Theatre in Tamworth is the guest director. Two alumni round out the troupe for this production, with Jason Hibbard as scenic and lighting designer and Esther Hammon as costume designer. The performance is a fundraiser for theatre student scholarships.

Beginning October 11, PSU students will perform in Shakespeare’s popular romantic comedy A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

November 15–18, PSU presents The Spitfire Grill, a modern folktale billed as “a tale of friendship, love, and redemption set to an uplifting country soundtrack.”

Visual Arts

The Karl Drerup Art Gallery is excited to enter fall with a very special exhibition celebrating the art and rich legacy of Karl Drerup, founder of the Art Department at Plymouth Teachers College, who was renowned as an artist, craftsman and mentor. Enchanted Garden: Enamels by an American Master is a comprehensive exhibition that returns the work of this American Master to public view through October 27. Several gallery events enhance the exhibition.

Art exhibits in the Silver Center Lobby during the fall include the Annual Faculty Show through October 13, which showcases faculty as productive, successful artists, and provides a vital critical and creative conversation between the art department faculty and the greater PSU community.

Kurt Brian Webb: War—Dance of Death in Black, White and Blood Red All Over is at Lamson Library, September 12 – December 20 as part of the Lamson Library Prints Series. Each two-color print is superimposed over a contemporary news story relating to death and the war in Iraq.

Dreaming the Machine: The Kinetic Sculpture of Arthur Ganson is scheduled in Drerup Gallery November 7–December 20 and January 14–25. A self-described cross between a mechanical engineer and a choreographer, Ganson uses machines as playful objects for thoughtful meditation, rather than as instruments of productivity.

Voices of American Farm Women, an exhibit of photographs by Cynthia Vagnetti, will also be featured in the Silver Center from October 24¬–November 30. Vagnetti’s work documents women from across the U.S. whose farming techniques promote environmental responsibility, economic stability and community well-being.

The Silver Series

The 2007–2008 Silver Series will feature a mélange of classical, jazz, big band, bluegrass, vocal and Cajun music, thought-provoking writers, an award-winning journalist, and a holiday show with a big brass band.

“The Silver Series is our showcase of guest artists, and we pride ourselves on bringing in some of the hottest artists on tour today,” said Diane Jeffrey, director of the Silver Center for the Arts. “We’re very proud of the caliber of artists we’ve lined up for fall.”

Leading off the Series on September 30 is innovative young cellist Matt Haimovitz. From Bach preludes to his own twist on Jimi Hendrix’s version of “The Star Spangled Banner,” Haimovitz has appeared with the world’s most prestigious orchestras while maintaining connections with a new generation through innovative compositions, arrangements, venues, and musical forms.

October 13, PSU welcomes Ira Glass, the popular host of This American Life heard on National Public Radio, who will present a behind-the-scenes look at his popular show, share some of the most memorable stories, and take audience questions.

Expect nothing short of theatrical magic on October 25, when the State Street Ballet brings to life Carmen, the passionate story of lust, treachery, and fate based on the fabled temptress of Seville.

The Grammy-nominated Borealis Wind Quintet, one of America’s pre-eminent chamber ensembles, will perform November 2. And the Boston Brass All-Stars Big Band Holiday Show on December 2 is sure to put you in the holiday spirit with fun music and lively repartee touched with humor and personality.

Eagle Pond Author’s Series

The 10th anniversary of this successful series features novelists from around the country in readings, discussions, book signings, and author receptions. Named in honor of U.S. Poet Laureate Donald Hall’s ancestral home in Wilmot, N.H. that has inspired much of his work, this series brings to campus some of the most widely-read and revered contemporary American authors of our time.

“This season we’re diverting from poetry to feature the modern American novel. The writers are some of the most renowned and popular novelists of our time,” said Jeffrey.

Ernest Hebert, best known for the Darby series of novels about a fictional New Hampshire town, comes to Plymouth October 21. His most recent novel, Spoonwood, won the Independent Publishers Book Award for Best Regional Novel in the Northeast.

Pulitzer Prize-winning author Richard Ford reads from his latest novel, Lay of the Land, November 4. Lay of the Land has been hailed by critics as “masterpiece” and “candidate for the Great American Novel.”

In addition to the University’s online calendar, the Silver Center, the Karl Drerup Gallery and the Department of Music, Theatre, and Dance have individual Web sites.