|October 2007 Back to Simonsays e-mail|
|Welcome Public Affairs Assistants to Simonsays |
Shanna Gregory ('07) and Sean Wang ('07) joined the Public Affairs office soon after classes started in August, and they will be working on Simonsays and other communications projects this semester.
Poet Laureate of Connecticut Visits Simon's Rock
By Shanna Gregory ('07)
On September 20, Connecticut Poet Laureate Marilyn Nelson read several of her poems to an audience of students and townspeople alike. After a brief introduction by Peter Filkins, who said Nelson's poems "weave history and culture into stories," Nelson read from her book The Cachoeira Tales and Other Poems. She also read poems that had been inspired by Prudence Crandall, a pioneering Quaker educator who, in the early 1800's, insisted on educating black and white children together. She then shared part of her newest work on Venture Smith, the son of a prince who was kidnapped and sold into slavery.
The reading was followed by a reception with the author.
The Poetry and Fiction Series
Poet Jonathan Aaron will complete the series on October 25. The author of three collections of poetry, including Journey to the Lost City, Jonathan Aaron has received many honors, including fellowships from the Yaddo and MacDowell colonies, and the Massachusetts Endowment for the Arts. His poems, essays, and reviews have been published in The Paris Review, The New York Review of Books, and The Times Literary Supplement.Peter Filkins, Faculty in Literature, organizes the Poetry and Fiction Series.
Fruitless, a body of work by Tanya Marcuse ('81), is published, exhibited and nominated for major photography prize
Faculty member and alumna Tanya Marcuse is currently a nominee for a major international photography prize, the REAL Photography Award, for her latest work, Fruitless, photographs that memorialize fruit trees on land endangered by development. She was awarded a 2006 Photographer's Fellowship from the Center for Photography at Woodstock to support this work, as well as Simon's Rock Faculty Development Grants. A collector's edition of Fruitless was just published by Nazraeli Press, and a solo exhibition of the series opened at Julie Saul Gallery in New York City. Selections from Fruitless were included in the alumni exhibition at Simon's Rock and featured in the Spring 2006 issue of Orion magazine.
Marcuse's photos and book, Undergarments and Armor (Nazraeli Press, 2005), were featured in the Fall 2006 exhibition, "Love & War: The Weaponized Woman," at the Museum of the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City. Marcuse was a speaker at the FIT symposium in conjunction with the exhibit. Undergarments and Armor was subsequently shown in solo exhibitions at Belfast Exposed, a contemporary photography gallery in Belfast, Ireland, where she also gave a talk on the project, and at the Stephen Cohen Gallery in Los Angeles.
She is currently working on a series called Wax Bodies, photographs of 18th century anatomical models in Italy and Vienna. She presented her project at the University of Vienna at an interdisciplinary conference titled "Anatomy and Wax."Fruitless is a solo exhibition in New York, at the Julie Saul Gallery in New York, through October 6.
Lincoln College, Oxford University's Anne-Marie Drummond visits Simon's RockRepresentative meets with students and faculty
Lincoln College, Oxford University Senior Tutor Anne-Marie Drummond visited Simon's Rock on September 24 to meet with faculty and students. It was Drummond's first visit to the campus since the two colleges made a unique study agreement last year.
Simon's Rock is one of only two American colleges to have such an arrangement with Lincoln College, and Drummond said she does not envision expanding the program. The quality of the experience, including complete integration of the students, is made possible by the small numbers of the American students from Simon's Rock and Middlebury, she said. Drummond said the experience of working one on one with tutors, meeting weekly, and then working relatively independently during the week to prepare a weekly paper and presentation with the tutor, will provide a good stretch for American students.
Lincoln College is one of the world's oldest academic institutions, founded in 1427. It is also one of the most prestigious colleges at Oxford, and it is noted particularly for excellence in political science and literature, two of the subjects that Simon's Rock students will pursue there. The agreement between the colleges allows Simon's Rock students to study at Oxford as fully matriculated students for one year, and to return to Simon's Rock to complete their senior year and degree requirements.
Soon after arriving at Simon's Rock, Provost Mary B. Marcy began to work on this arrangement as a way to expand the growing study abroad and study away program at the College. Having earned her Ph.D. at Oxford, she was aware of the unique educational experience that university could give to Simon's Rock students. She is pleased about the caliber of the program that has been established with the two institutions:
When she announced the program last year Mary Marcy said, "It is very unusual and important that our students will live in residence, be fully matriculated at Oxford, and be taught by full Oxford faculty. Most Oxford study programs do not include these features."
Under the terms of the program, Simon's Rock may send as many as five undergraduates to Lincoln College, Oxford, each academic year. This year, Simon's Rock student Maung Kyaw Moe Tun is studying there.
During the afternoon and evening of Nov. 9, alumnus Douglas Ahlers (' 77), who has been involved with redevelopment in New Orleans, will speak on Katrina and rebuilding efforts. Aimee Michel, faculty in theater who moved to Simon's Rock from New Orleans, will direct a student production of The Tempest. John Lawson, a New Orleans artist who lost much of his work in the flood, but who has used the work he salvaged in interesting ways, has recently moved here, and he will discuss his work. More about this event will be available on the Simon's Rock website in coming weeks.
South Berkshire Concert Series
Thirty-five years ago, when Wallach was hired as a new music faculty, he inherited the concert series. "[The series] was very informal at the time, and my job was to formalize it," Wallach said. After deciding that the mission of the concert series was to provide students the exposure to quality music and to provide an educational and entertaining event on campus, the series was formalized and became an annual event in 1973.
Wallach prefers to use his personal contacts to identify prospective musicians who might be interested in coming to Simon's Rock. His programming has been successful, with performances ranging from pianist Peter Serkin to sitarist Veena Chandra to the group Anonymous 4.This year's concert series includes an impressive list of musicians. Pianist Gilbert Kalish will kick off the series on October 20. In addition, on November 10, the Prometheus Piano Quartet will perform the premier of "Odyssey Quartet" by Wallach. On February 9, 2008, Hiroaki Honshuku and Simon's Rock faculty member John Myers will bring jazz flute and guitar to campus. Musicworks of the Berkshires will present American Music at Midcentury on March 15; and on April 12, the Walden Chamber Players will present a trio of premier performances of Berkshire composers. Up-to-date information on the South Berkshire Concert Series can be found on their website: southberkshireconcerts.org (Above: Larry Wallach. Photo by Judith Monachina)