Rhodes Wins Award
School of Theatre and Dance senior Megan Rhodes received an Undergraduate Research and Creative Activity Award to create an evening-length theatre and dance production.
"I see a lot of opportunity to bring the worlds of dance and theatre together," Rhodes said. "But not in the musical theatre way."
With the support of dance professor John Dixon, Rhodes submitted a proposal to the Office of Undergraduate Research in the Division of Research and Graduate Studies. "I was aware of my audience," Rhodes said. "I approached them from an academic point of view and outlined social issues rather than just the creative issues I am exploring."
The piece will feature one male actor and six female dancers. The actor will host a dark circus of sorts, serving as a ringleader. He'll interact with the dancers, who are characters of his creation, to explore concepts about property, power, submission and control.
"Everything will be black and white, with an old freak show feel to it," Rhodes said."Scene changes will be very obvious and intentional. The narrator will bring the audience in and remind them that they're watching a show." At the beginning of the piece, the six dancers will be costumed in white, transforming to black as the piece progresses.
Funding will support promotional materials, costumes, stage lighting and scenic design. Rhodes envisions a movable throne in three pieces that will convey the idea of destruction moving toward organization. The production will be tied together thematically by a black and white circus tent.
Rhodes said she was inspired to create the work after reading books about organ harvesting.
The piece will run in the School of Theatre and Dance's studio theatre on March 20 at midnight and again on March 21 at 4:00 and 5:00 p.m.
Rhodes grew up in Rose Hill, NC, home of the world's largest frying pan. She was accepted into the dance performance program at East Carolina University, but was urged to audition for the professional acting program in her sophomore year. As a double-degree student, she has acted in "The Furies," danced on ECU's stages in a work choreographed by David Dorfman and performed at the Kennedy Center in "Consumption," a piece by professor John Dixon that was juried in the American College Dance Festival Association's National College Dance Festival. She served as assistant choreographer to professor Tommi Galaska for the recent ECU/Loessin production of "Kiss Me, Kate."
West Wins Award
Senior Katie West received a $2,000 Undergraduate Research and Creative Activity Award to create an art installation in the Jenkins Fine Arts Center.
The interactive exhibition will transform the Burroughs Wellcome Gallery into a tech savvy labyrinth. “A labyrinth, as a reference, connects to spirituality,” West said. “Each time you go through, you discover something about yourself. Each time it takes something away, and each time you should take something with you.”
Using a surfeit of white muslin, crafted objects, recorded sound, and box screen televisions and projectors, West intends to engage all five senses. “This installation should enlighten you,” West said.
“I wanted to push myself and do something different,” West said. “I’ve been into dance, poetry, acting and music, and those mediums of art move you. I want to have that effect with this installation, to make people instantly feel moved.”
West will spend the next several months transforming her vision into reality. The exhibition will open March 30 and run until April 4, 2015.
Nearly concurrently, West must meet degree requirements and have a senior show in metals, where she studies with professor Bob Ebendorf. “It’s a little ambitious,” West says. “The labyrinth is my baby, but I’ll still create the best senior show ever.”
SOC Director Chosen for "Outstanding Health Communication Scholar Award"The National Communication Association (NCA) Health Communication Division’s Awards Committees has chosen ECU School of Communication Director Linda Kean as the recipient of the 2014 “NCA Health Communication Division’s Outstanding Scholar Award.” This award is one of the highest academic honors among the distinguished members of this organization.
Dr. Kean’s research focuses on health communication with an emphasis on the mass media. One facet of her research is designing and evaluating mass media campaigns that promote the adoption of positive health behaviors. Dr. Kean is also interested in how advertising and entertainment media messages influence individuals’ perceptions, attitudes, and behaviors regarding health topics. Her work has been published in a variety of academic journals including, Communication Research, Health Communication, Media Psychology, Journal of Health Communication and Women & Language.
The National Communication Association is an internationally recognized communication scholarship organization with thousands of members across every state. This year, the NCA will celebrate its founding in 1914 with a Centennial celebration. Dr. Kean will accept the award in Chicago in late November at the NCA’s annual meeting.
School of Communication alumni are in New York's Top 50 PR Agencies
Friends of the School of Art and Design Fourth Annual Artist Studio Tour
Recently, the Friends of the School of Art and Design Fourth Annual Artist Studio tour featured homes of art collectors in addition to artists’ studios. Below are the studios/homes featured on the November tour:
Betsy Markowski, sculptor
The artists contributed one of their works to be included in a raffle.
For additional information contact Mary Jane Gaddis, Director of Development, email@example.com or 252/328-1268.
Artist, ECU alumna illustrates children’s bookHannah K. Shuping, a 2013 East Carolina University graduate and Raleigh resident, recently illustrated the children’s picture book, “The Possible Police,” written by Wylde Scott.
The story teaches children that naysayers and doubters in the world can’t stop them from imagining and achieving their dreams.
“History is filled with plenty of people who didn’t give up in the face of rejection or lack of encouragement and succeeded in living out their wildest dreams,” Scott said. “To overcome all of ‘The Possible Police’ they will encounter, we must encourage and support our children to develop, explore and enrich their imagination.”
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The 2014 Revue is here!
The latest REVUE, the College's Magazine, is out! The 2014 edition of the College's magazine, REVUE, is now available for digital viewing and download as a PDF file. The cover features the art work of new School of Art and Design faculty member Dan Elliott.
Study in Italy!
Enjoy the benefits of studying abroad for less than the cost of out-of-state tuition. Italy Intensives is a program for all students from all majors. Freshmen and sophomore students are encouraged to earn required humanities, social science, foreign language and fine arts credits overseas. Students take ECU classes from the ECU course catalog that are taught by ECU professors. Watch the video for behind-the-scenes footage of this amazing offering.
Learn about the program: http://www.ecu.edu/italyintensives
Learn from students who have already enjoyed Italy Intensives: http://italyintensives.tumblr.com/
Der Follies Premieres at Greenville Town Common
James Raney, a sophomore dance performance major, won an Undergraduate Research and Creative Activity grant last fall. He used the award to support the creation and performance of Der Follies, a piece that premiered at Greenville's Town Commons outdoor stage on April 9, with a two-night run. The choreographer/dancer wrote: "I think of Der Follies as a world where presentation is valued over integrity. I believe that each character in Der Follies struggles with who they are versus what (or who) they show. What is being exaggerated or presented is not necessarily what is honest. The piece deals with vulnerability at its root and what it takes to shed the layers of oneself that are not true to the person…The audience gets a glimpse into the lives of some terribly troubled people and their situations, but also their humanity…and triumphs."
ECU Public Relations Student Society of America
Members of ECU Public Relations Student Society of America chapter pose at PR Day at NC State University on April 3. The annual event draws chapters from across the region, and ECU is well represented.
Sculpture Graces Airport Grounds
Jordan Brown poses with "Ascension," a sculpture installed at the Coastal Carolina Regional Airport in New Bern. Each year, sculpture students are invited to create works for installation on the grounds of the flight center. From many modeled submissions, ten concepts are awarded construction grants. One work is selected for purchase and displayed permanently.
Alumn’s Band Nabs Grammy
Tenor saxophonist/flutist/clarinetist Chris Bullock (BM ’03) is actively touring with Snarky Puppy, a 12-piece New York and Dallas-based ensemble playing music to “move the brain and booty.” Earlier this year, they released a live CD/DVD called “We Like It Here,” following a 2014 Grammy Award for Best R&B Performance. The band has also been touring internationally and recorded a new album with an orchestra in Europe.
Class Assignment Lands National Recognition
Tess Oglesby’s work was juried into the 2014 Society of Illustrators Annual Student Scholarship Competition in New York. Of 8,785 entries, a mere 329 pieces were accepted into the show. The piece will be produced in a catalog and exhibited for further jurying for the chance at a Society of Illustrators scholarship. The work, “Fizzed,” was an assignment in Joan Mansfield’s Art 4230: Intermediate Illustration course.
Book Artist Teaches West Coast Workshop
Lisa Beth Robinson (Art and Design) hosted a workshop at the San Francisco Center for the Book entitled “Four and Twenty Blackbirds: The Aerogramme.” First introduced in 1933, the aerogramme, a self-contained mailer and international letter, removed the need for an envelope when posting a missive. Students in Robinson’s workshop created stamps and mail-related images, printed aerogrammes and sent their mail art to friends and loved ones.
Professor Releases Debut Recording
Hye-Jin Kim (violin) released a debut recording, “From the Homeland,” with pianist Ieva Jokubaviciute. Kim takes an emotional and personal journey through four works, exploring Sibelius’ thought that “Music begins where the possibilities of language end.” The album includes violin sonatas by Debussy and Janacek and rarely heard works by Sibelius and Smetana.
The CD, on the Concert Artists Guild label, is available at www.cdbaby.com/cd/hyejinkim.
New Graduate Certificate Program in Health Communication
The School of Communication now offers a Graduate Certificate in Health Communication. The program is open to students currently enrolled in any graduate degree program, as well as to non-degree applicants with a bachelor’s degree.
The program requires 12 semester hours of health communication course work. The courses in the certificate program examine research, theory and practices of communication.
“Students earning the graduate certificate in health communication will acquire the knowledge and skills necessary to analyze, evaluate and apply effective communication in health contexts,” according to Laura Prividera, associate director of the School of Communication and director of the school’s graduate studies.
Students currently enrolled in the School of Communication MA program with an emphasis in health communication are not eligible to earn the certificate.
For more information, please contact Dr. Prividera at firstname.lastname@example.org
Returning alumna shares experiences in public relations, health communication and researchHealth communication professional and ECU School of Communication graduate, April Paul Baer, returned to campus as a visiting professional to the School of Communication earlier this year.
Baer is currently the Director of Student Wellness at Frostburg State University in Maryland. She received her bachelor’s degree in communication with an emphasis in public relations in 2006. After earning her master’s degree in the School of Communication’s health communication concentration in 2008, she began working for Frostburg State as the Coordinator for University Wellness.
“While working to obtain my master’s degree at East Carolina, I realized how much I enjoyed facilitating research within the realm of higher education,” said Baer. “Thankfully, it led me to where I am now.”
While visiting ECU, Baer was a guest lecturer in several School of Communication graduate and undergraduate classes, focusing on public relations and health communication. She also shared her recent work experiences with a nonprofit organization, The Water School, in rural Uganda.
Baer credits her graduate position with the School of Communication as a research and teaching assistant and her time with ECU’s Campus Living as a resident assistant with preparing her well for her current work.
In addition to class presentations, Baer spoke at the School of Communication convocation for students in the interpersonal and organizational concentration, and to the PRSSA organization.
Professor releases CD
Albany Records released a two-CD set featuring professor of voice John Kramar. The discs, "The Collected Songs of Alva Henderson," include 26 tracks and was made in August 2013 on the campus of Pepperdine University. Kramar was first engaged by Henderson to premiere four compositions set to texts by Dana Gioia, the former chair of the National Endowment of the Arts. Kramar continued to champion Henderson's works through a multitude of workshop performances of Henderson and Gioia's opera, Nosferatu, in which Kramar sang the title character.
Steve Vutsinas (BM ’89) was nominated as one of 30,000 candidates for a Grammy Music Educator Award. Last fall, he was named one of 25 semi-finalists representing 15 states. In December, the Grammy Foundation called to announce him as one of ten finalists.
While he didn't get to walk the red carpet with Daft Punk and Macklemore, he was recognized nationally for his contribution to his students.
"My head spins," Vutsinas told Virginia's WVEC. "I'm just a regular old guy that loves teaching." The "regular old guy" connects solidly with his students, who erupted into cheers as he took the call from the Grammy Foundation. By way of muchness, he programs traditional orchestral repertoire alongside popular works by groups including the Trans-Siberian Orchestra to engage his students. Since 2007, he's rehearsed an electric violin/rock and roll ensemble, "Fiddle Fire," that allows string students a shot at the same kinds of musical glory reserved for marching bands and show choirs.
Vutsinas is passionate about his profession. With 24 years of experience in the classroom, he currently teaches at Grassfield High School in Chesapeake, Virginia. He serves more than 200 students in orchestra, chamber ensembles and in “Fiddle Fire."
The Music Educator Award was established to recognize current educators (kindergarten through college, public and private schools) who have made a significant and lasting contribution to the field of music education and who demonstrate a commitment to the broader cause of maintaining music education in the schools.
Violin Major Performs with Raleigh, Durham Symphonies
Mary Catherine Cox, a junior violin performance major, won both the Raleigh Symphony Orchestra and the Durham Symphony Orchestra concerto competitions earlier in 2014. She performed with the Raleigh Symphony on February 23 and with the Durham Symphony on April 6.
Last semester she won the ECU Concerto Competition Ron and Patty Allison Prize and the opportunity to perform as soloist with the ECU Symphony Orchestra. She has been awarded All-State Honors Orchestra and has attended the Music Teacher’s National Association state auditions and international music festivals in France, England and Italy. In 2013, Cox was awarded a fellowship to study at the Madeline Island Chamber Music Festival in Wisconsin. She studies violin with Ara Gregorian.
Senior Project Attracts International Media Attention
Photographer Anna Hill, a senior in the School of Art and Design, posted photos from a class project on Reddit on December 9.
The four images in the series “Beauty is Only Pixel Deep” questioned digital manipulation. They hit their mark…globally.
On December 10, Hill was featured in an article on Yahoo! Shine. By the end of the week, the Huffington Post (US, UK and Canada), the Daily Mail (UK), Bustle, PetaPixel, the Frisky, the Gloss and the Blaze had picked up the story.
One outlet called her “brilliant.” Another said her work “kicked ass.”
“Who needs makeup when you can airbrush your photos?” asks Yahoo! author Elise Sole.
In the accompanying photo, Hill used Photoshop to contextualize unrealistic beauty expectations. See her digital portfolio online at http://nebulaedecay.com/digi/mji3xhi8p8l8k5ql6stklem3761eo5, or just Google Ms. Hill—her work will find you.
Photo: Anna Hill's "All in One" beauty kit image examines the nature of beauty.
Reminiscent of a candle flame,
the Ghost of Christmas Past (Gina Belmont) employs the help of Assistant Director Regina Epps (left) and Charles Dickens (Clinton Long) to take Ebenezer Scrooge (Landon Ferrell) on a whirlwind tour of dizzying infinities in A Christmas Carol. Professor Patch Clark directed the ECU Storybook Theatre production, staged for school and family audiences in Wright Auditorium. The show also toured to Marine Air Station Cherry Point.
Andrew Scanlon (organ) released “Solemn and Celebratory,” a recording featuring works by Bach, Durufle and Mendelssohn. Travis Garrison (Music) recorded the work, performed on the Perkins and Wells Memorial Organ housed at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Greenville. Scanlon notes that his desire was to showcase the versatility of the Fisk organ, affectionately known as “The Duchess.” The CD is available on the Raven label.
Alumnus on the Road with Nostalgic Revue
“Quintessential heartthrob” Von Lewis (BFA ’10, at left) is touring with Kit and the Kats, a multimedia cross-disciplinary musical romp through the pop songs of the late 1950s.
Next Great Artist exhibits in Greenville
Kymia Nawabi’s (BFA ’03) exhibition “Not for Long, my Forlorn,” was on display at the Greenville Museum of Art in early 2014. The body of work was based on alchemy, Greek and Egyptian mythology and world religions.
Nawabi adopted various gods, mythological creatures and burial ceremonies from different cultures as a part of her own belief system. She invented her own mythology of characters and landscapes that consider death, the afterlife, rebirth, spirits, souls and the cosmos.
In these emotionally charged drawings, Nawabi presents the viewer with moments of enlightened, transcendental states of existence, and perhaps, information about what happens to us when we die.
Nawabi won first place on season two of the Bravo network’s competition series “Work of Art: The Next Great Artist” in 2011. The exhibition was first mounted at the Brooklyn Museum in 2011.
Chamber Singers Compete, Win in Spain
The ECU Chamber Singers won second place overall in the Grand Prix category at the International Tolosa Choral Contest in Spain and were invited to perform at the Winners Concert.
The singing Pirates won a silver medal in the folklore category and a bronze medal in the polyphony category. Both awards included a cash prize.
The Chamber Singers, the only choir representing the Americas, finished 1.4 percent behind the winning choir from Sweden. Other ensembles hailed from Germany, Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, Indonesia, Russia and Spain.
Conductor Andrew Crane sent an email to the Chamber Singers immediately following the triumph. “The goal was simply to perform to the best of our ability and we accomplished that goal in every respect. I will never forget that performance...with all of its beauty, excitement and emotion. You owned that night, and as such were the only winners selected from that entire concert.”
The invitation to compete followed Crane’s posting of a Chamber Singers video to YouTube last year. He noticed that Javier Busto, a prominent Spanish choral composer, made a comment.
“This was exciting for us, that someone so renown, and halfway around the world, would take the time to tell us he liked our video,” Crane said. “I didn’t think much of it after that.”
In November 2012, Crane received an email that led to an invitation to participate in the choral contest. In addition to competing, the Chamber Singers performed individual concerts at local venues in the greater Basque region.
Above: Conductor Crane on stage in Spain.
Speech Communication Center Open to All
Just as one seeks the Writing Center when in need of written communication support, the ECU community is able to secure verbal communication support through the Speech Communication Center.
The Center, housed in the School of Communication, is the brainchild of professor Pam Hopkins, who envisioned the service five years ago. When space and funding became available in 2013, a former radio broadcast laboratory housed in 205 Joyner East was repurposed.
"We can help with the organization and delivery of speeches and group projects," Hopkins explains. "We're not just the speech place. We work to enhance all aspects of professional communication skills." She and her staff members—four graduate students funded thorough a BB&T Leadership Development grant—provide feedback to enhance effective communication.
The center has served thousands of students since opening in 2013. Hopkins and her staff are networking across campus to make certain that professors know the resource is available. "We are serving students from all majors, not just Communication," Hopkins explains. "And we assist students who speak English as a second language."
The Center works with non-students as well, addressing anxiety issues, helping to sharpen delivery for presentations at conferences, and training staff members who move into positions that require public speaking as a part of their job duties.
"We know from a variety of studies that effective interpersonal communication is a key component in hiring and promotion decisions," says Linda Kean, Director of the School of Communication.
"Students come to school to get a job," explains Blake Caruso, a masters of communication degree candidate who staffs the Center. "Verbal communication is always among the top ten skills employers seek when hiring," he says. "We can add value."
Center staff members provide participants with feedback in organizing, researching, writing and delivering effective presentations.
Learn more or secure an appointment at http://www.ecu.edu/cs-cfac/comm/center/index.cfm
Contact the Speech Communication Center staff at email@example.com or 328-2790.
Left: Professor Pam Hopkins addresses ECU employees from Human Resources in a workshop concerning effective communication practices.
Multimedia Newsroom Recognized
Several students and the School of Communication's state-of-the-art multimedia newsroom were featured in a web package by ECU News Services.
The newsroom features new computers, three studio cameras, a TriCaster, an audio board, an anchor desk and a green screen. The newsroom's virtual sets enable the anchoring desk backdrop to be transformed into a city skyline and other scenes. With the equipment, students are able to write and produce their own shows, creating an authentic news broadcast experience.
The newscasts created in the newsroom are available under "Pirate News Network" on YouTube. Read more.
Ceramics Exhibition Installed at Brody School of Medicine
Ceramic professors Jim Tisnado (background) and Seo Eo (in hat) were instrumental in installing a ceramics exhibition in the main lobby of the Brody School of Medicine. The new installation is the second major initiative to share art and design with the medical campus. School of Communication majors installed a giant cultural identification graphics presence last fall. An exhibition space for paintings is also in the works. Major Gifts Officer Nancy Ball initiated and stewarded the entire project.
Donor Gifts Rare Cello
Lucy Nicolaysen (pictured with Professor Emanuel Gruber, cello) donated her N.V. Vuillaume cello, dated 1844, to the School of Music. Her intent is that the School sell the instrument and use the proceeds to endow a scholarship.