Introducing a new way to donate to the College of Fine Arts
Even during a global pandemic, WSU College of Fine Arts students and faculty are committed
to creating and sharing their art with you. Our community of patrons have long been
the backbone of the College of Fine Arts, and much of our success is due to your enthusiasm,
dedication, and support. Despite physical distancing requirements, students and faculty
are exploring innovative ways to bring you the same caliber of programming you are
accustomed to via streaming and other virtual mediums.
Typically, the costs of productions are offset by ticket sales, but in the absence
of live performances and a traditional box office experience, funding and resources are limited. Many of our virtual "events" will be offered for free online, and thus
donations become even more important in sustaining the quality of our content. Luckily,
the WSU Foundation has simplified the donation process with a new Text-to-Give option.
The Monty Hall Problem (streaming Thursday, Oct. 29th-Sunday, Nov. 1st)
Winner of the WSU Playwriting Competition
Playwright: Ben Conner Director: Jeannine Russell
Where does the smartest woman in the world go for advice? That very question is examined
in this fictional reflection of Marilyn vos Savant. In 1993, wrestling with the backlash
from a widely read and controversial magazine column she’s written, Marilyn visits
her therapist. A logic puzzle that ought to be purely imaginary takes menacing shape
when a saccharine game show host interrupts the session. Marilyn, her therapist and
Daytime Emmy-Award winner Monty Hall match wits in a reflection on doors, goats, and
what it means to be right.
A virtual Musical Theatre performance presented by 17 Musical Theatre Seniors.
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ShiftSpace, Wichita Festivals to light up downtown Wichita
WICHITA—Downtown will glow from the light of illuminated art works from 6–9 p.m. Nov. 6 during the First Friday gallery crawl. Get Lit: a Night of Light is a collaboration between Wichita State’s ShiftSpace Gallery and Wichita Festivals,
Inc. The event will take place near the gallery’s location at Groover Labs, 334 St.
“When we started to think about ways of safely coming together as a community, building
literal bubbles made a lot of sense,” said Kristin Beal, ShiftSpace gallery manager.
“The pandemic has changed our typical patterns of behavior, but we can still celebrate
the power of art, which is open to everyone.”
ShiftSpace invites WSU students and community members to build an inflatable bubble
using simple materials and step-by-step instructions provided by guest artist Kylie
Brown, creator of the MULTIBUBBLE project. Up to 20 free MULTIBUBBLE kits are available
to WSU students. They include plastic sheeting, tape, velcro, and a loaner fan courtesy
of Vornado. Community members may also join in, but will have to purchase their own
materials at a cost of about $60.
Dean Miller, CFA Faculty share their "Perspectives on the Pandemic"
As a part of their "Perspectives on the Pandemic" series, the Fairmount College of
Liberal Arts and Sciences invited Dean Rodney Miller to host a virtual talk entitled,
"COVID-19: Its impact on the performing arts and its audiences". Panelists Danette
Baker (Theatre) and David MacDonald (Music Theory and Composition), as well as industry
professionals Matt Miller and Marisa Santiago, discuss their insights into the state
of performing arts in the world today.
From the Fairmount College's video description:
"The disproportionate effect of COVID-19 on the events industry, of which the performing
arts is a significant portion, is devastating. It was the first industry to close
down and will be the last to fully open back up. This industry supports 11 million
jobs and generates over $1.75 trillion a year in direct, indirect and induced spending—greater
than agriculture, broadcasting and telecommunications, auto manufacturing, truck and
rail transportation, and computer systems design and related services.
"The arts, particularly the performing arts, constitute a majority of this gross domestic
product–over 4.2 percent of the national GDP. In Kansas alone, the arts constitute
around 3 percent of the state’s GDP ($4.2 billion), employing approximately 50,000
Kansans and representing $2.5 billion in salaries alone.
"When shutdowns occurred in March, this vital aspect of the American economy essentially
ceased to exist. It ceased to exist on college campuses as well. But we need what
the arts bring us now more than ever. How do we, as artists, respond to those needs
in the middle of a pandemic? How do we mentor/educate our students? How do we engage
our audiences in new and innovative ways? When will we return to normal, and what
will the new normal look like?"
Artists combine research, dance and film for She Moved the Prairie
(All images by Nora Dooley)
Despite the changing landscape of the arts under a global pandemic, Cheyla Clawson
endeavors to showcase the beauty and history of rural Kansas in her upcoming film. She Moved the Prairie is a sociocultural dance film project focusing on patterns of work done by women
on Kansas farms in the early 1900’s.
Supported by a Tallgrass Artist Residency, Clawson, the film's director and primary investigator, created over 75 minutes of material from June to August of 2020. Rehearsals then
began in late August with seven dancers, including guest artist and adjunct Dance
faculty member Sarah Frangenberg, with filming commencing mid-September. Dance student
researchers were supported through Clawson’s awarded faculty research grant and the
Performing Arts Angels donor group.
"I'm a third year student at Wichita State majoring in Filmmaking and I haven't participated
in anything like this before, " says Caitlyn Cody, director of photography. "Filming
an experimental period dance piece was a really interesting experience and it was
a great way to incorporate art back into our lives during COVID--we were able to film
outside and far apart. Cheyla was great to work with and she had a very specific vision
that turned out rather beautiful."
The movement phrases capture women’s physical labor practices on their land including
water hauling, gardening and domestic work. Through abstracting the body practices
of female farmers, a full dance was created to present in a final film. The project was
filmed throughout various rural locations in Douglass and Latham, Kansas. The movement
and film show indigenous prairie settings and convey the history and beauty of the
female body at work as the Kansas farm landscape was being developed.
Voice over incorporating historical perspectives and an original musical composition
written by School of Music graduate student Joey Willette will provide the soundtrack
for the film. She Moved the Prairie creatively weaves together art, culture, and history and contributes knowledge and
scholarship across several fields of study including dance, film, history, and agriculture.
The film is co-directed by Director of Film Studies, Bret Jones, with direction of
photography by Caitlyn Cody, dance production assistance by Nora Dooley, and student
research assistance by Amalia Wendlandt. She Moved the Prairie is expected to make its virtual debut in March of 2021.