News

  • Rodman Hall Art Centre wins at OAAG awards

    (Source: The Brock News, Thursday, November 6, 2014. Photo: Installation view – Jimmy Limit – “Recent Advancements”)

    Brock University’s Rodman Hall Art Centre was recognized with two prestigious prizes this week at the 37th annual Ontario Association of Art Galleries (OAAG) Awards, presented at the Gladstone Hotel in Toronto Nov. 5.

    Twenty-eight public art galleries in 19 cities across Ontario were nominated for awards.

    Communities represented in the visual art nominations this year included Barrie, Cambridge, Chatham-Kent, Hamilton, Kingston, Kitchener, Kleinburg, London, Mississauga, Oakville, Oshawa, Ottawa, Owen Sound, St. Catharines, Sarnia, Toronto, Waterloo, Whitby, and Windsor.

    The OAAG Awards are annual, province-wide, juried art gallery awards of artistic merit and excellence.

    They recognize the new exhibitions, publications, programs and community partnerships that have been commissioned by and produced by Ontario’s public art galleries over the previous year.

    Jimmy Limit: Recent Advancements, curated by Marcie Bronson, was recognized as Exhibition of the Year, Monographic.

    In her acceptance speech, Bronson noted that this exhibition was St. Catharines-based Limit’s first public art gallery showing.

    The award citation noted the curator and artist as well as the Rodman Hall installation team, including Danny Custodio, Matthew Tegel and Jesse Harris.

    Inspired by commercial photography practices and the design of industrial supply catalogues and weekly flyers, Jimmy Limit builds and photographs simple constructions of hardware store goods and fruits.

    Selecting his varied subjects for their aesthetic interest rather than function, he engages them from a strictly formal standpoint.

    Through photographs and installations, Limit engages layers of reflection on past and present photography traditions to explore the relationship between an object and its image in a consideration of how desire is created and sold.

    The exhibition catalogue Milutin Gubash – co-published by Rodman Hall Art Centre, Carleton University Art Gallery, Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery, Southern Alberta Art Gallery and Musée d’art de Joliette – received an Honourable Mention in the category of Art Publication of the Year.

    Serbian-born artist Milutin Gubash has developed a diverse practice focused on the investigation of his own personal, social and cultural identity.

    This first monograph examines the overlap of history, humour and authenticity found in his multifaceted practice.

    Often cast as the lead alongside his family and friends, Gubash employs narrative to blur the boundaries between real, lived lives and the people who we wish we were.

    Produced to accompany a multi-venue 10-year survey of Gubash’s work, the publication includes original essays and complete photographic documentation. Milutin Gubash lives and works in Montreal.

    Stuart Reid, director/curator of Rodman Hall Art Centre, said the awards are important recognition from peers.

    “They mean a great deal to our institution,” he said. ” We are very proud of the excellent program of contemporary art exhibitions that Rodman Hall produces for the Brock community and the people of Niagara.”

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    Categories: Announcements, In the Media, News

  • The Avanti Chamber Singers celebrate the release of their new CD “Beauty is Before Me” with their concert Viva La Musica!

    voice-of-niagara-cdSaturday, November 15, 2014, marks the release of the Avanti Chamber Singers’ third CD “Beauty is Before Me,” the fifth installment in the “Voices of Niagara” CD series, featuring works by local composers.

    The release will occur in conjunction with the Avanti Chamber Singers’ (ACS) season-opening concert, Viva La Musica! Presenting compositions from 1600 to the present day, this concert is a celebration of the joy and power of music. Rising Toronto oboist Aidan Dugan will perform as the featured guest artist.

    The CD is a collaborative project by ACS, Brock University’s student choirs, and the former Niagara Vocal Ensemble, all conducted by Harris Loewen. The sequence of works on the album flows through a variety of themes: the beauty of nature, the patron saint of music (St. Cecilia), the War of 1812, elegiac reflections, and a group of spirituals.

    The occasion also marks the re-release of the first two CDs in the series, recorded by the Niagara Vocal Ensemble, an all-women’s ensemble that was active in the Niagara Region between 1991 and 2011. All CDs are available through ACS and the Department of Music at Brock University.

    As with all five recordings in the “Voices of Niagara” CD series, the music on every track is written or arranged by composers with a Niagara connection, most recorded for the first time. Composers represented on this latest recording include Penny Blake, John Butler, the famous Nathaniel Dett (1882-1943), Erik Gero, Brock professors Peter Landey and Harris Loewen, Gail Poulsen, folk singer Stan Rogers, Matthew Tran-Adams, and Ronald Tremain (1923-98), Brock’s first Professor of Music.

    The concert opens with a rousing fanfare written especially for the occasion, based on the familiar round “Viva La Musica.” The program includes works by the great Renaissance composers, Jacob Handl and Orlandus Lassus, as well as a variety of more modern pieces. Canadian composers (e.g. Stephen Chatman, Eleanor Daley, Ruth Watson Henderson) are well represented, and the concert also provides samples of works from the latest CD. Oboist Aidan Dugan will perform lyrical pieces by familiar 19th century composers Felix Mendelssohn and Robert Schumann.

    Conductor Harris Loewen states, “This latest album marks an exciting milestone in this multi-choir CD project that has been developed and released to the public over the last few years. I’m so extremely grateful for the fine and energetic musicianship that all the singers and instrumentalists have contributed in both concert and recording. It’s a truly wonderful choral legacy for the region.”

    The Viva Voce Choral Series, presented by the Department of Music, is a key part of the Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts’ mandate in building connections between the community and Brock University.

    Come and enjoy this choral celebration and CD release on Saturday, November 15 at 7:30 p.m., held at St. Barnabas Anglican Church, 31 Queenston Street, St. Catharines. Admission at the door is $25 for adults; $20 for seniors & students; $5 for the eyeGo program for high school students. A $5 discount is available for advance tickets (excluding eyeGO) and can be purchased at two St. Catharines locations: BookSmart (Scott & Vine Plaza) and Thorold Music (Glendale Avenue).

    For more information contact: Marie Balsom, Communications
    Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts
    T: 905-688-5550, ext. 4765 | E: mbalsom@brocku.ca | W: brocku.ca/miwsfpa

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    Categories: Announcements, Events, Media Releases, News

  • ‘The Changing Face of Theatre Criticism in the Digital Age,’ A remarkable two-day colloquium with international reach, part of the Walker Cultural Leader Series for 2013-14

    Jill Dolan

    In photo: Jill Dolan

    Listening to theatre companies, they’ve never needed theatre critics more. Listening to them after a bad review, they’ve also never resented them more. This strange dance of mutual need has been going on since the first time someone recited dialogue on stage, and someone in the next day’s paper wrote “it doth sucked, verily.” But what of that relationship today? Do critics matter? Can anyone with a blog call themselves a theatre critic? Are critics there to serve theatre companies or readers? (John Law)

    See the complete article by John Law in the Niagara Falls Review about his upcoming participation in the two-day colloquium ‘The Changing Face of Theatre Criticism in the Digital Age‘ organized by Professor Karen Fricker of the Department of Dramatic Arts on the occasion of the special visit by Jill Dolan, Annan Professor in English, Professor of Theater in the Lewis Center for the Arts, Director, Program in Gender and Sexuality Studies, at Princeton University, noted theatre blogger (thefeministspectator.com) and a Walker Cultural Leader for 2013-14.  Special guests J. Kelly Nestruck of The Globe and Mail and Richard Ouzounian of the Toronto Star will join local guests and luminaries including cultural leaders like Jackie Maxwell, artistic director of the Shaw Festival, and Steve Solski, director of the St. Catharines Centre for the Performing Arts.

    The two day program begins this Friday morning with the public lecture, “Moving the Body Politic: How Feminism and Theatre Inspire Social Re-imaginings” by Professor Jill Dolan.  The lecture is presented in association with the Department of Dramatic Arts and the Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies.

    For a complete list of participants and more information please see the Brock News Article, the Department of Dramatic Arts and the Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts web pages.

    Come join us! There is no charge to attend and engage in what will surely be a remarkable exchange of ideas and opinions in this “blossoming” cultural scene of Niagara (Professor Karen Fricker).

    All events will be live-streamed at BrockVideoCentre’s DART channel  [Click on the “live video” button on that page.]

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    Categories: Announcements, Current Students, Events, In the Media, News

  • In The Works

    intheworksthumb_1The Department of Visual Arts & the Centre for Studies in Arts and Culture present:
    In The Works
    Donna Akrey, Scott Sawtell and Jessica Thompson
    Faculty and Instructors from Brock University’s Department of Visual Arts and Centre for Studies in Arts and Culture speak about art, research and works-in-progress. All are welcome to attend and be part of the discussion.

    When: March 2, 2013 – 3:00pm
    Location: Niagara Artists Centre, 354 St. Paul St., St. Catharines
    Cost: $0
    Sponsor: the Department of Visual Arts and the Centre for Studies in Arts and Culture
    Contact: Prof. Duncan MacDonald dmacdonald@brocku.ca

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    Categories: Events

  • The Blue Room

    blue_room_poster_image_220_no_border_0By David Hare, freely adapted from Arthur Schnitzler’s La Ronde

    Director: Virginia Reh
    Scenographer: David Vivian
    Lighting Design: Ken Garrett
    Assistant Director: Jessi Robinson

    February 14, 15 & 16, 2013: 7:30pm – 9:30pm
    Matinee: February 15, 2013: 1pm – 3 pm

    Directed by Professor Virginia Reh, The Blue Room is David Hare’s 1998 adaptation of Schnitzler’s Reigen (La Ronde), first produced in 1921. The plot is a “sexual daisychain”: the Girl couples with the Cab Driver, then the Cab Driver with the Au Pair, etc. Each time the new participant in one scene moves on to the next scene and so on, until in the final scene the Girl returns and encounters the Aristocrat. The play looks at casual sexual encounters as a (mostly) unsatisfactory substitute for human connection. This is a universal and timeless quest. The play is an important exploration with diverse current points-of-view: as each character has encounters with two different partners, the play explores the shifting status relationships (both social and personal). The relational dynamics of the play have interesting correspondences to explorations on social media.

    Tickets: Adults $15.00, Students/Seniors $12.00, Groups $10.00, eyeGo $5.00 H.S.T. extra

    Theme-oriented and moderated workshops will be available. DART 3F93: Social Issues Theatre for Community Development, taught by Professor Joe Norris,  will employ Process Drama and Applied Theatre techniques to explore themes that underlie the Blue Room. Scenes will be created that delve into issue of identity, innocence, risks, thresholds, secrets, awkwardness, beliefs, mores, taboos, exploitation and power. With a participatory dimension cast and audience will enter into conversations to explore the issues further.

    Please see DART’s page for more information.

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  • Powwow held on Campus Sept.7

    Adrienne Smoke. Photo By: DK Martin

    Adrienne Smoke. Photo By: DK Martin

    (Source: The Brock NewsMonday, August 27, 2012 | by )

    Students, staff and Niagara residents were invited to start their school year off to the beat of a different drum.

    The Student Justice Centre hosted a powwow on Friday, Sept. 7 in Jubilee Court to celebrate the fall harvest in partnership with the Tecumseh Centre for Aboriginal Research and EducationAboriginal Student Services and Brock University Students’ Union.

    The event featured inter-tribal drumming and dance demonstrations, and opportunities for audience members to participate in traditional dancing.

    “It’s a gathering to celebrate life and be thankful as well as to hang out with old friends and make new ones,” said Adrienne Smoke, a third-year drama student, who came up with the idea for the event. “Powwows are about sharing our culture to help educate people about the current native people not the ancient ones we read about in old outdated textbooks.”

    This free event also featured a barbecue, vegetarian options and samples of traditional food, such as three sisters soup, corn bread and strawberry juice. The Brock farmers market was also held during the powwow.

    Doors opened at 10 a.m. with the grand entry happening at noon. Closing ceremonies were at 3:30 p.m.

    For more information or to participate as a dancer, drummer or vendor, email the Student Justice Centre, visit them online or call 905-688-5550, ext. 6325.

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    Categories: Announcements, In the Media, News

  • cSTAC Prof hits national airwaves this Sunday in CBC quiz

    Prof. Sharilyn Ingram's knowledge of Canada will be tested on CBC Radio Sunday.

    Prof. Sharilyn Ingram’s knowledge of Canada will be tested on CBC Radio Sunday.

    (Source: The Brock NewsFriday, June 22, 2012 | by )

    Humanities professor Sharilyn Ingram will put Brock University on a national stage this weekend. She’s one of three academics who will duke it out in a pre-Canada Day quiz on CBC Radio’s flagship current affairs program, the Sunday Edition.

    The show was pre-taped with host Michael Enright earlier this month, though Ingram is sworn to secrecy about who prevails in the good-natured derby between herself, University of Calgary professor Rebecca Sullivan and Anthony Stewart of Dalhousie University.

    She says the experience was fun, if a bit nerve-wracking. The questions cover a broad range of topics, from history to geography and pop culture.

    “There are some very creative answers, and we all laughed a lot,” said Ingram, who teaches in the Centre for Studies in Arts and Culture. “The quiz was meant to be a light-hearted look at all things Canadian, and I think it lived up to this goal.”

    Staging a quiz with contestants in three different studios across Canada has its challenges. She said each contestant was asked to bring their own noisemaker to signal their attempt to answer.

    “I learned that it was most important to be the first to get the noisemaker going, and only then worry about whether you knew the answer – which accounts for some pauses, as well as some wild guesses.”

    Ingram ended up on CBC through a twist of fate. At a recent social event in Toronto, a producer for the program was mentioning the search for an academic who is a good fit for a pop-culture quiz on Canada. A friend of Ingram’s was present, and the rest is history.

    “One of my former employees said I would be perfect – never defeated in Trivial Pursuit.”

    The quiz will air June 24 during the show’s final hour, between 11 a.m. and noon, on 99.1 CBC Radio One.

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  • Brock welcomes more community partners to downtown project

    Artist's rendering of the Marilyn I. Walker School for the Fine and Performing Arts

    An artist’s rendering of the Marilyn I. Walker School for the Fine and Performing Arts showing the new theatre for the Department of Dramatic Arts.

    (Source: The Brock News)

    As Brock University prepares to select a contractor for its new arts school in central St. Catharines, community members are coming forward to financially back a project many people see as being a crucial bridge to future economic and cultural health.

    This summer, contractors will be invited to bid on the major job of renovating and expanding the old Canada Hair Cloth textile mill into the new home for Brock’s Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts. Work is to begin this fall.

    Besides relocating 500 students, faculty and staff into the downtown, the new school will also complement and share some facilities with a public Performing Arts Centre being built by the City of St. Catharines on an adjacent lot. Both projects are scheduled for completion in 2014.

    Brock’s school has a construction budget of $39.6 million. The Ontario government has given $26.1 million to the project, and the University is continuing efforts to raise more than $10-million to pay its share.

    Important supporters of the Brock project were revealed today when it was announced that three donors with strong ties to the community and Brock University are making gifts totaling more than a quarter-million dollars.

    Peter and Janet Partridge are giving $100,000 to the project. Art and Val Fleming have also committed $100,000. And the St. Catharines law firm of Lancaster Brooks & Welch is donating $75,000 to the new school.

    Peter Partridge, Vice President and Portfolio Manager with RBC Dominion Securities and a past member of Brock’s Board of Trustees, said their gift is a way of giving back to the community.

    “To have a cultural campus strategically positioned in the heart of the downtown is very important,” he said. “This is going to bring a whole new level of artistic experience not only to young performers but to an audience here in Niagara.”

    The Flemings are also eager to see the Walker School flourish.

    “We really believe in Brock,” said Val, a Brock graduate and past member of the Board of Trustees. “We especially want the Walker project to succeed. It’s a wonderful opportunity, and we believe the downtown will definitely be rejuvenated because of it.”

    At the offices of Lancaster Brooks Welch, senior partner Dave Edwards said the law firm believes the benefits of the new school will be more than economic.

    “This will change the culture of the city centre for the better by bringing students into the downtown during normal working hours,” said Edwards, a former member and chair of the Brock Board of Trustees. “It will provide an integration that’s entirely different compared to when they’re only downtown at nighttime.

    “It makes you think of Kingston, and how students there are often in the downtown during the day. This will help our restaurants, stores, coffee shops, and bring a new vibrancy to the downtown throughout the day.”

    Douglas Kneale, Dean of the Faculty of Humanities at Brock and a member of the committee overseeing the University’s downtown project, said the support is very heartening and much-needed.

    “The truth is, we really are all in this together, this strengthening of the community,” said Kneale. “And when you have partners like these marvelous people, it is this kind of support that helps make these dreams come true for everybody.”

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  • Graduates of the Department of Dramatic Arts are on the boards again and this time they are playing IN THE SOIL.

    clockmaker-poster-three-220w

    The Clockmaker by Stephen Massicotte

    April 27 @ 8:00pm and April 28 @ 2:00pm
    Sullivan Mahoney  Courthouse Theatre 101 King Street,  St Catharines

    Tickets: $10 at the door
    Festival pass: $25 through inthesoil.on.ca

    Nathan Tanner MacDonald – Director
    Geoffrey Heaney – Performer
    Dylan Mawson – Performer
    Michael Pearson – Performer
    Caitlin Popek – Performer
    Kate Hardy – Stage Manager
    Finn Archinuk – Designer

    Nathan Tanner Mac Donald – a resident of the St Catharines and recent graduate of the Department of Dramatic Arts – has brought together a company of DART students to present The Clockmaker by Stephen Massicotte.  A metaphysical rollercoaster, The Clockmaker may seem like little more than a love story set inside a murder-mystery-to-be, but it just might end up exposing the very truth of existence itself. The show will be performed April 27 @ 8:00pm and April 28 @ 2:00pm at the Sullivan Mahoney Courthouse Theatre in downtown St Catharines.

    Nathan recently performed in the 2011 STRUTT wearable art show and this past summer he wrote and directed Circus, which played at Factory Theatre in the 2011 Toronto Fringe Festival. Nathan’s company includes graduates and Geoffrey Heaney, Dylan Mawson, Michael Pearson, Caitlin Popek as Performers, current student Kate Hardy as Stage Manager and graduate Finn Archinuk as the Designer.

    In the Soil Arts Festival brings Niagara artists from a range of disciplines together to provide unique audience experiences. The festival nurtures the creation of new work, showcases talent, encourages innovation, offers learning opportunities for youth and provides intimate and uncommon platforms for audiences to experience work by contemporary performing and literary artists, musicians and media artists. In the Soil is Niagara’s homegrown arts festival and is working to make a Niagara that is self-determining and culturally distinct.

    for more information see the IN THE SOIL website.

    Break-a-leg, Nathan, Caitlin, Dylan, Finn, Geoffrey, Kate and Michael!

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    Categories: Alumni, Current Students, Events, News

  • Spring Course opportunity in Dance Education

    Looking for a unique course opportunity this Spring?

    Register for PEKN 2P06, running April 30th to June 1st , Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10:00 to 13:30.  Registration opens for non-PEKN majors after April 5th.

    PEKN 2P06
    Dance Education
    Introduction to dance as an art form through making, performing and appreciating dance. Emphasis on the creative process, dance skills and vocabulary through exploration of dance concepts and observational skills.
    Lectures, lab, 3 hours per week.
    Restriction: open to BPhEd, BPhEd (Honours)/BEd (Intermediate/Senior), BPhEd (Honours)/BEd (Junior/Intermediate) until date specified in Registration guide. After that date available to BKin and BSc (Kin) majors until date specified in Registration guide. Students must have a minimum of 4.0 overall credits.
    Prerequisite(s): PEKN 1P90 and 1P93 or permission of the instructor.
    Note: students will be expected to pay the cost of a ticket to a dance performance on campus. Modes of instruction/evaluation will normally include vigorous physical activity.

    The foundation of this course is Laban’s Movement Principles coupled with Valerie Preston-Dunlop.  There will not be a critique based on a live performance in the spring session.  To view videos from past sessions of the course please go to the IRC and review the collection on reserve under PEKN 2P06.

    For more information contact Janet Westbury at jwestbury@brocku.ca

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