Utah Valley University’s Department of Music presents a week of Winter Concerts December 8-10. UVU’s Chamber Choir and Masterworks Chorale will perform A Christmas Festival of Music in celebration of the holiday season on Tuesday, December 8, 2009 at 7:30PM in the Ragan Theater. Directed by Dyanne Riley, the concert will begin with Vivaldi’s Gloria accompanied by harpsichord. Then both choirs will sing a selection of traditional carols. Among the carols will be a performance of Kurt Bestor’s Open the Door for the Children, an a cappella piece inspired by lyrics found in an old spiritualist hymnal.
UVU’s Symphony Orchestra, directed by Bryce Rytting, will perform in the Ragan Theater at 7:30PM on Wednesday, December 9, 2009. The concert will feature Mozart’s Haffner Symphony, initially commissioned as serenade music by the Sigmund Haffner family, and later rewritten to become one of Mozarts most popular symphonies. Edward Elgar’s Enigma Variations will also be performed. The Enigma Variations consist of an orchestra theme and fourteen variations, each of which is a portrait of one of Elgar’s close friends.
The winter concerts conclude on Thursday, December 10, 2009 with Dance the Night Away, performed by UVU’s Symphony Band. The concert will be held at 7:30PM in the Ragan Theater. Music by Dana Wilson, Vincent Persichetti, Robert Russell Bennett, Leonard Bernstein and Jim Colonna will be performed. Director of the Symphony Band James Colonna said, “If you enjoy rhythmic music to ‘dance to,’ then this is the concert for you. This concert features a variety of dance inspired pieces by Broadway Orchestrator Robert Russell Bennett, jazz inspired music by jazz pianist and composer, Dana Wilson and music for glory, by Leonard Bernstein.”
These performances are free and open to the public.
For more information contact the music office, (801) 863-8354

THEATRE: Much Ado About Nothing

UVU Theatre presents the North American Premiere of Something Wicked This Way Comes
Utah Valley University’s Noorda Theatre introduces its third showing, “Much Ado About Nothing,” by William Shakespeare. This production will open on December 3 and continue through the 12, with evening performances each night at 7:30PM (excluding Sundays). Tickets to the performance can be purchased through the box office in person or over the phone at 801-863-PLAY or online at uvu.edu/theatre. UVU Theatre and its season are supported by the School of the Arts.
John Graham, director of the production, said, “This romantic comedy about the vagaries of love and misplaced jealousy is just as relevant today as it was when it was written five hundred and ten years ago. It just goes to show that we haven’t progressed as much as we think.”
“Much Ado About Nothing” tells a story of love, wit and words. The bickering of Benedict and Beatrice and the drama of Claudio and Hero has delighted audiences for centuries. Although there have been numerous productions, UVU is putting a new spin on the story by placing it in the Mexican Revolution of 1910.
“Besides the obvious connection that the play happens during a time of war,” says Graham, “I find that many of the themes of the gender equality that occur in the play are mirrored by the Mexican Revolution. And besides that, it makes the play just plain fun with wonderful music and colorful costumes.”
For more information visit: uvu.edu/theatre.

BALLROOM DANCE | Winter Concert

Utah Valley University Department of Dance presents a winter concert performed by the Ballroom Dance Company, December 3, 4, 5 and 7 in the Ragan Theater. Since the Ballroom Dance Company’s October performance at the inauguration of President Matthew S. Holland, they have updated a large portion of the show and are looking forward to performing it for the general public. Scott Asbell, director of the company, said, “The Ballroom Dance Company is prepared to dazzle and excite audiences with ballroom dance of all styles and rhythms. With four World titles, you know the dancers are excellent, and with a complete two thirds major work-over of the show, it will be fresh and exciting.”
Tickets for the show can be purchased from Ballroom Dance team members, Campus Connection 801-863-8797, or at the door. Cost of the tickets is $10 per person. Curtains open at 7:30PM each night with seating beginning at 6:30PM. There will be a matinee performance on Saturday, December 5 at 2:00PM, with seating beginning at 1:00PM.
UVU’s Ballroom Dance Company competes and performs nationally and internationally, receiving numerous awards and honors. In May of 2010, the touring team will travel to Blackpool, England to compete in the prestigious Blackpool Dance Festival where they will compete against teams from all over the world. For the first time both UVU’s Ballroom Company and BYU’s Ballroom Dance Team will be in attendance at the festival during the same time.
For more information contact Scott Asbell, 801-863-8754, or visit uvu.edu/ballroom.


The UVU Percussion Ensemble will perform a Winter Concert, on Tuesday, November 24, 2009 at 7:30PM in the Ragan Theater.
The program includes a diverse selection of well-known percussion literature, featuring Steven Reich, John Cage/Lou Harrison, Peter Maxwell Davies, Radiohead, Ravel, Scarlatti, and Schnittke. Director Hilary Demske says that the ensemble "has prepared a program spanning a wide range of classical repertoire and styles.”
The recital offers the public an opportunity to hear original percussion music and creative arrangements of standard literature. It is free and open to the public.


UVU Repertory Ballet Ensemble Informal Showing
Utah Valley University Dance Department’s Repertory Ballet Ensemble will present an informal showing November 19 – 21, 2009. The performances will be held at 7:30 PM in Studio PE 152. This fall performance will feature choreography ranging from classical to contemporary ballet.
Shayla Bott, a lecturer in the Dance Department and the director of the Repertory Ballet Ensemble choreographed a classical work based on water, which features the entire company. Excerpts from Dulcinea’s Garden, from the classical ballet, Don Quixote, originally choreographed from Marius Petipa will be included the performance, as well as a comedic ballet, choreographed by Wilson Domingues, a Senior in the Ballet major, and a contemporary Pas de Deux by Associate Professor of Ballet, Mark Borchelt. Guest choreographer, Heather Gray, recent winner of the National Choreography Award through Regional Dance America, has created a new, contemporary piece for the company.
Bott stated that, “Through these performances, the students involved in Repertory Ballet Ensemble are able to progress more fully. The performances help take our ballet majors beyond simply being ballet students, into being competent artists with a fully developed sense of musicality and artistic expression. In addition, the performances expose the community at large to historically based classical works and cutting-edge contemporary ballet in one evening.”
Water Suites and the Petipa excerpts will be performed as part of Repertory Ballet Ensemble’s application to Regional Dance America. If accepted, the ensemble will travel to Richland, Washington, to attend and perform at the Regional Dance America/Pacific Region Festival in the spring.

NEW NOTES: new music by UVU Composers

UVU Department of Music presents New Notes: Student Compositions
Utah Valley University School of the Arts and Department of Music present, New Notes, a concert of new music by UVU student composers on Thursday, November 19, 5:00 PM.
“These student composers are working in a very eclectic assortment of styles, from serialized percussion works to mainstream vocal solos, from choral works to symphonic compositions, and from jazz to film scoring, “ says Dr. Marden Pond, UVU composition instructor. Participating composers range from first-time music creators to active composer whose works have already been performed in various settings. Pond emphasizes that, “ Each of these composers comes with a different set of goals and abilities, but they all have enthusiasm for creating music and a unique style and approach to the creative process. “ Performed by UVU musicians and other local performers, the concert will include chamber music, big band and small group jazz, choral music, vocal solos, piano compositions, orchestral music, and computer-performed pieces.
Featured composers will include: Alex Arnold, Julianna Boulter, Jacob Bradshaw, Lyndsi Bromley Bennion, Seth Commichaux, Chris Escalante, Branson Garner, Chris Hales, Rachel Hicken, David Johnson, Sara McKenna, Steve Orr and Kristine Stewart.
The concert will take place in room 416 of the Gunther Technology building. This event is open to the public and admission is free.

Donner-Galbraith Memorial Scholarship Benefit Concert

Blake Donner and Jenn Galbraith were two socially conscious friends who shared a passion for life. After the two students died in a tragic cave accident in 2005, the Donner-Galbraith Memorial Scholarship fund was established in their memory.

November 17th at 6:30pm, in the UVU Ragan Theater, the waning scholarship will receive life as celebrities and entertainers perform and commemorate the lives of these two beloved students.

Sponsored by Dr. Stephen Fullmer's English 276R class and produced by Stephen Carnegie, the show will feature a wide variety of entertainment and be truly inspirational. Enjoy the evening with Oscar winning writer of the Rain Man and Emmy winning writer of Bill, Barry Morrow. Performing that night will be multi-platinum selling artist Mark Slaughter. In addition, local artists Broke City, Hailey Hendricksen, Brady Fullmer, and Adjacent to Nothing will share their musical talents. An unbelievable dance will be performed at the event by Aubree Marchione and Nick Scott, furthermore, Grammy award winning producer Keith Thomas, Curb Warner Record label President Loren Balman, and award winning producer of Children's Broadcasting Brad Smith, will also be attending the event.


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National Invitational Postcard Exhibition
November 6, 2009 - January 15, 2010
Opening reception November 6, 6 - 8 p.m.

Through a network of artists, an artist from each of the fifty states was invited to make a postcard size (5" x 7") image dealing in some respect with the place in which they live. The curator of the exhibit is Jeanne Voltura, Director of the Bridge Gallery, City of Las Vegas, NV. The exhibition was exhibited at the Bridge Gallery from April - July of 2009. It is also traveling to these other venues as of this time: Woodbury Art Museum, Utah Valley University School of the Arts, Orem, UT, November 2009 – January 2010; McCutchan Art Center, University of Southern Indiana, January – March 2010; A.D. Gallery, University of North Carolina at Pembroke, Pembroke, NC, May – July 2010; USCB Gallery, University of South Carolina, Beaufort SC. Other venues are under consideration.

The art pieces represent visual contexts and environments with diverse impetus and purpose. While the concept of postcard art is not new, this iteration of such an event presents serious works of art on a miniature scale, as opposed to simply images that has transited the country through the US mail. Many of the works on paper are two sided - and are installed in such a manner as to permit the patron to examine each surface.

Antique Dolls from the McCurdy Doll Museum
November 6, 2009 – January 15, 2010

Shirley Paxman founded the McCurdy Doll Museum in 1978 in Provo, UT and named it for Laura Christensen McCurdy who provided more than 3,000 dolls. McCurdy, who was a teacher, collected and used the original dolls in her instructional programs. The museum’s dolls are grouped in such historical themes as women of the Bible, folk dresses of the world, Native American dolls, and first ladies of America. The museum, was located in a restored 1893 carriage house until 2005. The museum closed that year and the dolls have not been seen publically since that time. For the first time in four years, a special selection of dolls will be on display at the Woodbury Art Museum (UVU School of the Arts).

The dolls in this exhibition represent a small selection of the works created by Lewis Sorensen. Born in 1910, Sorensen became one of America's premier creators of wax dolls. Appearing in this exhibit is a series of 12 “Father Christmas” dolls representing traditions from a variety of nations. Sorensen developed a unique wax technique that he developed that is soft enough to carve, but firm enough to resist melting. The life-like, and individual characters of the ornately clothed figures adds charm to the stories of their origin.


Written by: Hilary Demske, (801) 863-7360
The Music Department is proud to present Harpsichord Week at Utah Valley University from November 16-21, 2009, celebrating the recent acquisition of a 2009 harpsichord built by Peter Fisk. The festival features renowned harpsichordist, Ling-Ju Lai, presenting five recitals in collaboration with UVU students and faculty. All events are free and open to the public.
Dr. Lai, a graduate of the University of Michigan and the Eastman School of Music, is a well-known Baroque specialist who has garnered consistent favorable reviews with her creative interpretation of Baroque keyboard music, particularly the complete Bach Partitas. The Baltimore Sun writes, “The depth of the sound sinks in with startling poignancy as Ling-Ju Lai lets the notes linger long in the air . . . a moment of musical insight to savor.”
The festival will begin with a solo harpsichord recital by Ling-Ju Lai on Monday, November 16 at 7:30 pm in GT 416 (Gunther Technology building). The concert includes selections from Rameau, Scarlatti, J.S. Bach, Farnaby, and Soler. “The opportunity to hear a solo harpsichord recital with an artist of Ling-Ju Lai’s caliber is extremely rare.” piano department chair Dr. Hilary Demske writes. “Often even musicians are not aware of the expressive power that the instrument has in the hands of the right performer. Ling-Ju Lai’s playing will transform the way you hear the harpsichord.”
The remaining four musical events will take place in the Ragan Theater. Thursday, November 20 at 7:30 pm will be ‘Harpsichord Concerto Night’. Dr. Lai will perform Vivaldi concerto in D Major and three Scarlatti sonatas with the UVU Percussion Ensemble featuring flute and marimba quartet. The d minor keyboard concerto of J.S. Bach with the UVU Honors String Quartet will follow.
On Friday, November 21 at 7:30 pm, the UVU Chamber Orchestra will perform Brandenburg Concerto No.5 with harpsichordist Ling-Ju Lai, violinist Dr. Donna Fairbanks, and flutist Mary Richards. The orchestra, directed by Dr. Donna Fairbanks, will also present Eccles Sonata in G minor with bass soloist Eric Hansen and Benjamin Britten’s Simple Symphony.
‘Harpsichord Week’ will conclude with two performances on Saturday, November 22, in GT 416. A student harpsichord recital will take place at 5:30, with performers and ensembles selected by Dr. Lai after individual private instruction throughout the week. After a brief pause at 6:30, the concluding recital at 7:00 will feature the UVU Chamber Choir performing selections from Vivaldi’s Gloria and faculty harpsichord ensembles.
Festival organizer Hilary Demske says that “with so many different ensembles performing, the students and audience can experience the depth and variety of the harpsichord. The best way to learn about Baroque music is to hear it, and this festival presents that opportunity for both students and the public led by a world-class artist.” For more information, please visit www.uvu.edu/music.


For more information: Amy Markgraf Jacobson (801) 863-6394
University Marketing & Communications: Erin Spurgeon, (801) 863-6807
Written by: Amy Markgraf Jacobson (801) 863-6394

Utah Valley University’s Synergy Dance Company presents “Recapture”
Utah Valley University’s Synergy Dance Company will present “Recapture” November 12-14 at 7:20 PM in the Ragan Theater. Tickets for the general public are $10; students, faculty and staff are $8. Tickets are available at Campus Connection: 801-863-8797.
“Recapture” is an evening of vibrant and reflective contemporary dance. Students, faculty and guest artists come together to present a unique and original collection of choreography. The movement will explore the intricacies of human relationships, witty investigations through the everyday mundane, and strength and identity in community. The performance offers a diverse array of evocative textures and tones.
Guest artist, Lisa Stoddard, has created an eclectic contemporary jazz piece with visceral dance vocabulary. Faculty members and Artistic Directors, Angie Banchero-Kelleher and Amy Markgraf Jacobson will premiere an organic and powerful work based on a sense of place and community at Utah Valley University. Faculty member Mark Borchelt has created a new work that will feature the diverse physicality of the men of the company. The concert will also feature student choreography from company members at they showcase their multifaceted abilities as artists.
Join UVU’s Synergy Dance Company for a clever, inspired, poignant and physical evening of dance. For more information on the Synergy Dance Company, contact Amy Markgraf Jacobson at 801-863-6394.


Something Wicked This Way Comes

Utah Valley University Theatre’s second show in the new Noorda Theatre is an adaptation of the classic horror novel, Something Wicked This Way Comes, by Ray Bradbury. While the book has been presented on stage and screen before, this is the North American premiere of Bradbury’s own adaptation for the stage. The production opens on October 22 and continues through November 7. Evening performances will be held at 7:30PM, with special midnight performances on October 30 and 31.

Something Wicked This Way Comes was originally written by award-winning Bradbury as a screenplay in 1955. Shortly after it was written, Gene Kelly approached Bradbury with a proposal to collaborate on a movie that Kelly would direct. Unfortunately, Kelly was not able to procure financing for the film. After this setback, Bradbury focused his attention on changing the screenplay to a novel. Five years later, in 1962, Something Wicked This Way Comes was published. Bradbury stated that, “without [Kelly’s] invitation to that screening, this book might never have been born.” In 1983, Disney made Something Wicked This Way Comes into a movie that went on to win the Saturn Award (Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror Films, USA) in 1984. In 2003, Bradbury created an adaptation for the stage, which was produced by the National Theatre of Scotland in Edinburgh in conjunction with Catherine Wheels Theatre Productions. Something Wicked This Way Comes is considered to be one of the scariest films of all time, which contributed to UVU’s decision to produce as this year’s Halloween show.

The play is an adaptation of the book and has, like all adaptations, some minor changes to fit the medium it is in. It is a mixture of both the book and the movie and tells the story of two young boys, Will and Jim, who find themselves caught up in the mystery of Mr. Dark’s Carnival. “When we were young, our playground was our world,” stated Dr. Terry Petrie, director of UVU’s production, “in this deliciously scary play we revisit the playground of our youth as we follow the story of a father and two boys coming of age. Together they struggle to defeat an evil carnival whose members are bent on luring in and capturing their very souls.”

This play is not for the faint of heart, but it is suitable for middle school aged children and up. There will also be a study guide online with fun facts and activities for families and teachers. Tickets to the production can be purchased by calling 801-863-PLAY or online at www.uvu.edu/theatre.

Upcoming Events

There will be a recital held tonight only in GT 416 at 7:30pm by opera singers: Jennifer Welch-Babidge and Darrell Babidge. This recital is free and open to the public.

Your last chance to see Charlotte's Web in the new Noorda Theatre is quickly approaching. This fun and delightful play based on the well loved book by E.B. White can be seen until October 3. Click here for tickets and more information.

The exhibition, Shaolin: Temple of Zen, will be on display at the Woodbury Art Museum until October 9. Over the past eight years, photographer Justin Guariglia has slowly but surely won the trust of the notoriously secretive warrior monks of the Shaolin Temple, a unique Chinese Buddhist sect dedicated to preserving a form of kung fu referred to as the "vehicle of Zen." With the blessing of the main abbot, Shi Yong Xin, Guariglia has earned the full collaboration of the monks to create an astonishing, empathetic record of the Shaolin art forms and the individuals who consider themselves the keepers of these traditions. It is the first time the monks have allowed such extensive documentation of these masters and their centuries-old art forms - from Buddhist mudras to classical kung fu - in their original setting, a 1,500-year-old Buddhist temple. This exhibition is free and open to the public. Click here for more information.

Rise, the Annual Art Department Faculty Exhibition is also on display now, at the Springville Museum of Art. This exhibition showcases current faculty work and will be available to be seen until October 16. Get more information here.

Nosferatu Selected for KCACTF Honors

Utah Valley University’s Department of Theatrical Arts in the School of the Arts is heading to Los Angeles in February as a regional finalist for the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival.

The department’s production of "Nosferatu," a mixed-media re-creation of the 1922 German vampire film of the same name, was one of only seven plays selected from more than 500 entries.

"We're very excited by the prospect of taking the play to Los Angeles," said director and UVU assistant professor Christopher Clark. "It's a big honor for us, and we are excited for students and faculty from other universities to see some of the work we are doing here at UVU."

"Nosferatu" combines live action with scenes from the original silent movie directed by F. W Murnau in front of live cameras. These shots are interspersed with shots from the actual film, creating a seamless transition between stage and screen that spans over 80 years. The project involves more than 40 students working onstage and off. Many of the actors pull double duty as dressers, electrical gaffers and set technicians.

"Taking a technically difficult play like this on the road is very daunting," Clark said. "But we are excited by the challenge of it."

The festival will be held in Fullerton, Calif. the second week of February 2009. The students perform the play twice, and will be adjudicated by national representatives for a possible invitation to perform in Washington, D.C. at the Kennedy Center.

"It is a real honor for a young and growing theater program to be chosen over more established programs," said Terry Petrie, chair of the UVU Department of Theatrical Arts. "I liken it to being chosen for the Big Dance in college basketball."

Utah audiences will have a chance to see the show before it heads to California. "Nosferatu" will be performed during the first week of February in the Ragan Theater on the UVU Orem campus. For tickets and show times contact Campus Connection at (801) 863-8797.

Photos from UVU's MLK event

Don LaVange took some great photos of dance students performing at the 15th Annual Martin Luther King Commemoration. You can find a slide show by clicking here.

UVU School of the Arts is now Blogging

We decided the School of the Arts needed a place to easily post our stories and events, and what is better than a blog? So please check back here for the latest news about our growing school.