Nick Terry, assistant professor of music, recorded four compositions with his ensemble, the Los Angeles Percussion Quartet, this August at Skywalker Sound (a Lucasfilm Co.) on the classical music label Sono Luminus. The recording, to be released in early 2012, is one of the very first 7.1 surround-sound recordings of percussion chamber music, and will be distributed internationally to over 60 countries via NAXOS, one of the world’s largest classical music record labels. Two of the four works were composed by Conservatory of Music faculty members Jeffrey Holmes and Dr. Sean Heim (the latter composer’s work was commissioned by the esteemed FROMM Music Foundation). The compositions were performed live at Zipper Hall in downtown Los Angeles.
Donald Guy, assistant professor of theatre, was commissioned to serve as the lighting designer and production coordinator for Festival Ballet Theatre’s production of Le Corsaire Suite & Mixed Repertoire at the Irvine Barclay Theatre. He was also recently the Lighting Designer for Shirley Valentine by Willy Russell at The Laguna Playhouse, Carnival of Wonders at The Orleans Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, and for Saint Louis Ballet’s production of Romeo and Juliet at the Touhill Performing Arts Center in St. Louis, MO.
Louise Thomas, associate professor of music, performed on September 18 with Elizabeth Pitcairn, who plays the iconic “Red Violin”. The performance was primarily to benefit UCLA’s Medical School and was held at what was once the Beverly Hills estate of Elvis Presley, now the residence of Redken co-founder Paula Kent Meehan. The event was co-hosted by Candy Spelling and attended by tennis stars Andre Agassi and Stefanie Graf.
Alicia Okouchi-Guy, assistant professor of dance, was selected by the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs to serve as a Peer Panelist for Small and Mid-Sized Dance Organizations. This elite panel of dance professionals meets in the Cultural Affairs building in Los Angeles to discuss and provide their individual recommendations for the allocation of grants. Professor Okouchi-Guy was charged with reviewing all eligible proposals, discussing project worthiness, making comments and assigning numerical scores. The Grants Administration Division awards approximately $3 million annually to nurture and support community service providers and community artists in Los Angeles. She was also invited to judge the 2011 – 2012 Los Angeles Clippers Spirit Professional NBA Dance Team auditions and was elected to the American College Dance Festival National Board of Directors Baja Region. In addition, Donald McKayle, Artistic Director of UCI Etudes Dance Ensemble, invited her to coproduce an evening of concert dance hosted at UCI. This Chapman/UCI coproduced concert showcased a select group of dancers from the dance departments of Chapman University and the University of California, Irvine. The highlight of the concert was the first ever collaborative endeavor combining Chapman University dancers with UCI dancers to perform Mr. McKayle’s masterpiece “Rocks and Gravel” from Rainbow ‘Round My Shoulder.
Dr. Grace Fong, director of keyboard studies in the Conservatory of Music, recently returned from her performance as a soloist for An Evening in Olde Vienna with the Indianapolis Symphony, where music critic Tom Aldridge wrote: “With K. 271 she shared one of Mozart’s supreme compositions, possibly as Mozart himself might have played it (or wished it done). Every note audible with perfect phrasing, clean articulation and delicate nuance—seemingly effortless passage and octave work in the difficult final movement.. one sits back and goes, wow! Each time she has mesmerized with her essentially faultless playing.” Next week, Oscar-nominated Mike Figgis’ music video featuring Dr. Fong is premiering at the Royal Opera House, London, at the 2011 Deloitte Ignite Festival.
Liz Maxwell, assistant professor of dance, recently spoke on a panel titled “Reconstruction by All Available Means” held in Seattle by the Dance Critics Association. Attending the conference were preeminent critics and dance historians from many publications, including the New York Times, Village Voice, Dance Magazine and others. Professor Maxwell then traveled to New York to deliver a research paper written in conjunction with Professor Robin Kish. This conference was hosted by the Dance Kinesiology Teacher’s Group and was focused on sharing teaching tools and practices in Dance Science and Somatics. Their paper, “Curricular Programming to Facilitate Somatic and Anatomical Awareness in Higher Education”, discussed the rationale for and successes and challenges of creating space within the College of Performing Arts curriculum for effective collaborative programming between dance science and somatics.
Tamiko Washington, associate professor of theatre, is the Artistic Director of OC-Centric, Orange County’s new play festival. Her inspiration to create the festival stems from the desire to support Orange County’s playwrights with an emphasis on producing new plays. The debut festival included the following plays: Do Hoosiers Go to Heaven? by Eric Eberwein, In Search of Reason by Gene Fiskin, The Myth of the Cubicle by Ken La Salle, and Sex, Love & the Premature Evacuation by Joni Ravena. The festival featured Off-Broadway directors Ray Chao and Allison Mosier, Hunger Artists Theatre resident director Jill Johnson, and Professor Washington.