Under the direction of Nadya Potemkina, the Wesleyan University Concert Choir, joined by Brian Fairley on piano, presented a concert featuring both a cappella and accompanied selections from classical and modern choral repertoire on Sunday, December 4, 2016 in Memorial Chapel.
Photos by Sandy Aldieri of Perceptions Photography. Click here to view the entire album on Flickr.
The Center for the Arts is one of the rare places in the state where you can consistently experience arts from around the world. This semester is no exception. In January and February, the Ezra and Cecile Zilkha Gallery hosts the work of ten contemporary Chinese artists born after the Cultural Revolution who are challenging traditional notions of Chinese identity and inventing new ways to shout out in the global arena. In February, Syrian singer Gaida brings her band to Crowell Concert Hall. At a time when her country is under siege, her soulful voice will remind us of the beauty and power of Syrian music and culture. And playwright Guillermo Calderón will discuss his award-winning works about Chile in the aftermath of the dictatorship.
Finally, the Music Department will host a March symposium on the work of the legendary experimental music composer David Tudor and, in April, the Theater Department offers Wes Out-Loud, a site-specific work created by Assistant Professor Marcela Oteíza and her students.
The semester ends on May 7 with Feet to the Fire: Riverfront Encounter, the second annual eco-arts festival featuring world music bands, educational exhibits, and site-specific performance works by area organizations at Middletown’s Harbor Park, located on the bank of the Connecticut River.
Artist in Residence and University Organist Ronald Ebrecht’s sixth annual opening of the Wesleyan concert calendar featured a lively recital of works by Johann Sebastian Bach, César Franck, Felix Mendelssohn, Charles-Marie Widor, and John Spencer Camp Professor of Music Neely Bruce on Friday, September 11, 2015 at 8:30pm in the Memorial Chapel. The concert also featured percussionist Anthony DeQuattro. The concert was preceded by a dinner with the artist co-sponsored by the American Guild of Organists. Click here to view the full album on flickr. Images by Sandy Aldieri of Perceptions Photography.
This year, we are looking forward to introducing you to artists who are asking important questions about our world today, questioning why things are the way they are, and helping us to envision how they might be.
At a time when our country is struggling to find its way in terms of race relations, we’ve invited writer/performer Daniel Beaty to campus for a residency that includes the October 9 performance of Mr. Joy, his highly acclaimed tour de force solo show about a community’s efforts to heal in order to dream again.
Composer, visual artist, and new media innovator R. Luke DuBois takes over the Ezra and Cecile Zilkha Gallery from September 16 through December 13 with his exhibition In Real Time, creating maps, scores, and videos that use real-time data flows and media footage to raise questions of artistic agency, privacy, and fair use. In time for the election season, the CFA has commissioned him to create a new work using research generated by the Wesleyan Media Project.
All this shares the fall schedule with performances by faculty and students, including the final class performance by students of Adjunct Professor of Music Abraham Adzenyah, who is retiring after teaching Ghanaian drumming at Wesleyan for the past 45 years. You won’t want to miss that concert on December 4.
As always, we hope you will look to the CFA as a place of enlightenment and enjoyment in the months ahead.
Quiara Alegría Hudes is the Shapiro Distinguished Professor of Writing and Theater at Wesleyan University. Her play Water by the Spoonful received the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. Her other works include the book for the 2008 Tony Award-winning “Best Musical” In the Heights, and the plays Elliot, A Soldier’s Fugue (2006) and The Happiest Song Plays Last (2013). Her younger cousin grew up in “the barrio,” graduated public school, enlisted at the age of seventeen, sustained a leg injury in Iraq, and became a veteran, all by the ripe age of eighteen. This talk on April 27, 2015 in Memorial Chapel told the true backstage story of what happened after Ms. Hudes turned her cousin’s life into a trilogy of plays. For him, opening night was only the beginning.
Click here to view the full album on flickr. Images by Sandy Aldieri of Perceptions Photography.
Artist in Residence and University Organist Ronald Ebrecht shared a Romantic fifth: the famous Fifth Symphony of Charles-Marie Widor, Moonlight and Roses, and other schmaltz in an afternoon intermezzo for Valentine’s Day on February 14, 2015, in Memorial Chapel. Images by Sandy Aldieri of Perceptions Photography. Click here to view the full album on flickr.
Wesleyan University is a center for creativity and innovation, and one of the best places for our community to come together to participate in that energy is at the Center for the Arts. Our year-long exploration of Muslim Women’s Voices in performance continues on February 27 with a rare opportunity to see a dance company coming to Middletown from the northernmost tip of Sumatra, Indonesia. The dances of Tari Aceh! feature quick, highly-coordinated movements of hands, heads, and torsos, punctuated by lively body percussion. It’s unlike anything you’ve ever seen before. And on April 17 and 18, you can get a first look at a theatrical work-in-progress by playwright and actress Leila Buck ’99 that was commissioned for Muslim Women’s Voices.
In April and May, we present “The Connecticut Meets the Nile,” a two-part happening that will highlight two great rivers. On April 10, Crowell Concert Hall hosts The Nile Project, an all-star gathering of musicians who live in the countries that border the Nile River and have come together to create music that draws attention to the environmental issues of a historic river that sustains millions of people. Then on May 9, at Middletown’s Harbor Park, Wesleyan and regional partner organizations present Feet to the Fire: Riverfront Encounter, an afternoon of music performances, visual art, and kid’s activities that will engage our community with our own beautiful river.
And throughout the winter and spring, you can put your finger on the pulse of what’s inspiring our newest artists by visiting the Senior Thesis Exhibitions in Zilkha Gallery, or by attending thesis performances by music, dance, and theater students performed throughout the CFA.
The premiere of To Not Forget Crimea: Uncertain Quiet of Indigenous Crimean Tatars, by Associate Professor of Dance Katja Kolcio in response to recent political changes in Crimea, was performed on Friday, October 24, 2014, at Memorial Chapel. Images from the warmup by Sandy Aldieri of Perceptions Photography. Click here to view the full album on flickr.