Archives—November 2011


Teaching beyond the classroom

Mary Ann Beckwith
Mary Ann Beckwith

Michigan Technological University Professor of Art Mary Ann Beckwith has always been able to connect with her students, but with her latest venture, she will be able to connect with students around the world.

Approached by one of the largest art suppliers in the country – Joe Miller and his company Cheap Joe’s Art Stuff out of Boone, N.C. – with the idea to make an educational video for aspiring artists and students, Beckwith jumped at the opportunity.

“I’ve taught for him many times, and he asked if I would allow him to produce an art video,” Beckwith said. “So we did it this summer. He has a professional video company that’s first-class … and in two days we did the entire video.”

Read more at the Mining Gazette.


Auditions for “Almost, Maine”

Auditions for “Almost, Maine” will be held beginning at 7 p.m., Sunday and Monday, Nov. 13 and 14, in the McArdle Theatre. Those auditioning only need to come to one of the two nights.

Actors need to arrive at 6:45 p.m. and complete the audition form. Also, they should bring calendars so a schedule can be set.

“The play consists of nine vignettes that depict various stages in male-female and male-male relationships,” according to director Roger Held. “On a cold winter’s night, with sunspot activity at its zenith, the northern lights precipitate a magical moment when one or both persons in the relationship have an insight that changes the relationship forever. Some are pretty darn funny. Some not so much. Remember, if it involves snowmobiles, it must be fun.

“We’re looking for ten men and nine women,” Held adds. “Each scene is about ten minutes long, and the plan is to use each actor in one scene.”

Lindsay Johns is the stage manager, and scripts will be available from Steve Dobbs at the office of the visual and performing arts department.

For more information, contact Held at 487-1080 or at rheld@mtu.edu.


The Tempest

Professor Roger Held, chair of the visual and performing arts department, presented “The Tempest: A Psychological Perspective with Historical Trimmings” on the 400th birthday of Shakespeare’s “The Tempest” on Tuesday, Nov. 1, at Ripon College, Ripon, Wis.


Fuddy Meers

The play “Fuddy Meers” is about a woman who suffers from amnesia.

“My character, she’s very endearing I think. She’s almost child-like in some ways because she’s very naive about some things because there are so many aspects of her life she can’t recall,” said actor Laura Larsen.

Patricia Helsel is the Assistant Professor of Theater and she says that everyone has done their part to turn this production into a masterpiece.

Read more at Upper Michigan’s Source.


Eric Whitacre Visits Houghton

World-renowned composer Eric Whitacre made a two-day stop at Houghton on October 20 and 21. He gave a free lecture at the Rozsa Center for the Performing Arts and directed the Michigan Tech Concert Choir, Superior Wind Symphony, and festival band and chorus.

He typically labels his style of directing as “compassionate fascism”. “When I get up on the stage, I am full of animation,” says Whitacre.

“It’s tremendously exciting and unheard of to have someone of such international notoriety come to a smaller place like Houghton,” Superior Wind Symphony director Nicholas Enz comments.

Choral director Jared Anderson says the chance to work with Whitacre is a “once-in-a-lifetime” opportunity. “He brings deep musical sensitivities, as well as a very encouraging manner to all of the groups that he works with.”

While at Michigan Tech, Eric Whitacre was sunshined by members of the MTU Huskies Pep Band.

The event was sponsored in part by the Mark Eugene Howard Endowment.