Arts Students Wow Friends and Each Other

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Students from the Arts Living Learning Community organized their own talent showcase event on Saturday, December 4th at the University Capitol Centre Recital Hall. More than a dozen fabulous acts were on stage, with community residents Meghan Batterson and Sydney Hayes leading the audience in an energized Jingle Bell Rock sing-a-long. The variety was astonishing, ranging from puppet theatre, classical musical performance, readings of original poetry, and a jazzy jump rope demo that brought the lively audience of about 100 people to its feet. The evening allowed residents to show off talents that may not have been evident to their dormitory floor neighbors, and get some well-earned fun time with each other as their first semester of college comes to a close.

Two graduate assistants who share oversight responsibility for the community were very pleased with the results and participation. Becky Simons, graduate programming assistant, felt the students did a great job of organizing the show. She added that the students hope to repeat the showcase during spring semester, with even more participants. Scott Wojciechowski, graduate assistant hall coordinator said, “I had a blast!  If that is our dress rehearsal for the spring, I CANNOT wait for that show!”

The performance was followed by a reception for performers and audience members sponsored by the Division of Performing Arts. Division Director and Theatre Arts chair Alan MacVey said, “The showcase was a Christmas treat that was filled with energy and fun. Almost as much fun as the acts on stage was the action in the audience, who whooped and hollered and clapped for their fellow performers. Fourteen weeks ago these students had never met each other and now they seem like lifelong friends.” The Division of Performing Arts has supported this living learning community since 2001 with funds from the Elizabeth M. Stanley Endowment. The School of Art and Art History joined the community this fall.

Students elect to live in the Arts Living Learning Community based on their major or on a strong interest in one of the performing or visual arts. They live and study together, perform together, and this year, take a common course and attend events as a group. The Arts Living Learning Community is a joint enterprise of the Division of Performing Arts, which is made up of the UI Departments of Dance, Music, and Theatre and the School of Art & Art History.

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