The Arts at Rowan offers variety for the campus community and beyond

The Arts at Rowan offers variety for the campus community and beyond

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The diverse range of artistic expression is on display every year at Rowan University, highlighted by the work of students, faculty, and visiting artists presented by the College of Performing Arts and Rowan University Art Gallery.

Spanning the genres of dance, music, theatre, and visual art, the cultural activity here is truly buzzing each semester. With the start of the Fall 2017 semester, that tradition continues and creates a home for the campus community and audiences from across the region to experience unique artistic visions, stirring productions on various stages, the breadth of musical styles, unique collaborations, special guests, and more.

In the area of visual art, Rowan University Art Gallery’s season is in full swing now with artist and environmental educator Brandon Ballengée’s exhibition, Sea of Vulnerability, on display through November 5. This collection of trans-disciplinary artwork, inspired by Ballengée ecological field and laboratory research, offers visual representations of biological species that are in decline, threatened, or already lost to extinction. Following that is Blurring the Lines, a Rowan art faculty exhibition running November 18 – December 16. This group show highlights the work of faculty artists from the College of Communication and Creative Arts.

Included among the many concerts and recitals from the Department of Music this year is a focused program of thematically-linked performances comprising the “Music of Social Justice” series. Through music, the endeavor seeks to encourage cultural competence through art by exploring topics of gender and racial inequality, poverty, trafficking, human rights, and other significant social justice issues. Audiences will have the opportunity to communicate cross-culturally and experience a stronger sense of empathy, a deeper understanding, and a greater respect for others despite contrasting ethnic, religious, political, gender, historical, and personal constructs that may define how they view and experience the world.

The series begins with the university’s Women's Choir participating in the Rowan University Women in the Arts Festival on October 25, presented by the Women’s Center in the Office of Social Justice, Inclusion and Conflict Resolution. The choir will offer selections from their Fall semester repertoire outside at Memorial Circle as part of this broader celebration which also includes public art stations, a DJ, slam poetry, and more. The Department of Music’s contributions to the festival continue with a Guest Lecture & Discussion featuring Dr. Colleen Sears, Assistant Professor of Music at TCNJ. Dr. Sears, whose research focuses on issues of gender equity and access in arts education, leads a discussion on the intersection of music education and social justice. This event will be held onstage in Pfleeger Concert Hall at 6:30 p.m. on October 25.

The “Music of Social Justice” event schedule is available through the Department of Music website, https://academics.rowan.edu/cpa/music. Please note that the list is growing and subject to change, so return to the website regularly for updated information.

That is not all the music that you will find in the concert venues and recital halls this semester. Jazz ensembles large and small play a variety of gigs throughout the semester. Recitals showcase the talents of our teaching artists in Faculty Spotlight Series events. You can get a taste of the broad range of operas in an evening of scenes and selections from a number of different works. Groups such as the Wind Ensemble and the Concert Band celebrate everything from the autumn and winter seasons to rock-n-roll. There are orchestral evenings and concerts showcasing student vocalists in men’s and women’s choruses and the larger Concert Choir.

For more information on Department of Music performances, visit https://academics.rowan.edu/cpa/boxoffice.

Among the offerings on the campus’ other stages are theatrical productions from the Department of Theatre & Dance, highlighted by the 2017-2018 mainstage season, “Home.” The scope of the productions presented under this theme seek to take audiences outside their own homes to become curious about those we don't know in an effort to challenge prejudices and discover commonalities. Experiencing life in another person’s home, neighborhood, or environment can lead to understanding and empathy. Perhaps most importantly, these productions hope to develop ambitious imaginations that bring people to a clearer view of the world around them.

The season begins with Anton Chekhov’s masterpiece, The Cherry Orchard. In this, one of the great play of the modern era, one of history's greatest playwrights captures a people, a family, a community - and a world - in transition. The story of Lyubov Ranevskaya and her family's return to their fabled orchard to forestall its foreclosure presents a picture of humanity in all its glorious folly, set during one of Russia’s greatest periods of social transformation. Starting with a preview on October 19 at 8 p.m., performances are October 20-21 at 8 p.m. and October 22 at 2 p.m. in Tohill Theatre.

Acclaimed Brazilian performance artist Christiane Matallo comes to Rowan for House of Murals, a new work developed during a seven-week artist residency through a collaboration between Matallo and faculty members Corinne Karon and Dr. Leslie Elkins. Playing at the intersections of tap dance infused with samba rhythms, improvisation, modern dance, and theatre, this original piece connects people and communities through movement, rhythm, voice, and storytelling. Following a preview on November 30 at 8 p.m., performances are December 1-2 and 8-9 at 8 p.m. and December 3 & 10 at 2 p.m.

The Department also presents the student-run Lab Theater, this semester featuring Samuel Beckett’s landmark play Waiting for Godot on October 5, 6 & 7 at 8 p.m. and ​Recessive Thirties: Culture, Class and Composers of 1930s Musical Theatre on November 9, 10 & 11 at 8 p.m. Visit https://academics.rowan.edu/cpa/boxoffice for more information.

For information on the programming offered by Rowan University Art Gallery, visit www.rowan.edu/artgallery or call 856-256-4521. Admission is free and open to the public.

For more information on performances and programming presented by the College of Performing Arts, call the box office at 856-256-4545, or email arts@rowan.edu. For ticketed events, call the box office or visit https://academics.rowan.edu/cpa/boxoffice.

Admission is always free for Rowan students with valid ID, based on availability. Student tickets cannot be reserved online, but by calling the box office or visiting the box office starting one hour before the performance.