Lawrence University Theatre Production Earns Two Actors Invitations to Regional Competition

For the second straight stage production, two Lawrence University actors have earned invitations to the Irene Ryan Acting Scholarship Competition as part of the annual American College Theatre Festival.

Devin Scheef, a junior from Racine, and Nick Endres, a junior from Sun Prairie, were selected for Ryan Competition based on their recent performances in Lawrence’s production of Carlo Goldoni’s “Il Campiello,” an 18th-century comedy set in Venice that looks at life and love in a small neighborhood.

In the four-show production staged Feb. 19-22, Scheef played the role of Fabrizio, a crotchety Neapolitan trying to marry off his niece. Endres portrayed Anzoletto, a jealous peddler.

Scheef and Endres will be among 200 student actors participating in the five-state regional competition next January at Illinois State University in Normal, Ill. Participants in the regional acting audition vie for two $500 scholarships and the chance to advance to the ACTF’s national auditions at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., next spring.

In addition to Scheef and Endres for their acting roles, Jessica Whitehead, a junior from Burlington who served as stage manager for “Il Campiello,” was nominated to stage manage for the 10-minute play festival at next years regional competition.

Earlier this year, senior Brendan Marshall-Rashid and sophomore Matt Murphy represented Lawrence at the 2004 Irene Ryan Acting Scholarship Competition for their roles in last fall’s production of Shakespeare’s
“A Winter’s Tale.”

The ACTF was founded in 1969 to recognize and celebrate the finest and most exciting work produced in college theatre programs and provide opportunities for participants to develop their theatre skills. Conducted since 1972, the Irene Ryan Acting Scholarship was established in the will of the late actress, best known for her role as the lovable and feisty ‘Granny Clampett’ on the TV hit show “The Beverly Hillbillies.”

Author SARK Shares Her Passion for the Positive in Lawrence University Convocation

Author, artist and inspirational tour de force Susan Ariel Rainbow Kennedy — professionally known as SARK — shares her infectious perspective on living life to its fullest Thursday, March 4 in a Lawrence University convocation.

SARK presents “Make Your Creative Dreams Real” at 11:10 a.m. in the Lawrence Memorial Chapel. She also will conduct a question-and-answer session at 2 p.m. in Riverview Lounge of the Lawrence Memorial Union. Both events are free and open to the public.

With more than two million books in print, SARK is the author and illustrator of a dozen personal growth, inspiration and creativity books, including the bestsellers “Succulent Wild Woman” and 2002’s “Prosperity Pie: How to Relax About Money and Everything Else.” She’s also embraced the importance of creativity in her books “Inspiration Sandwich,””The Bodacious Book of Succulence,” “Change Your Life Without Getting Out of Bed” and “Eat Mangoes Naked.”

She has been profiled in the PBS series “Women of Wisdom and Power,” shared her passion for life in the documentary film “The World According to SARK” and is a periodic guest on National Public Radio. For more than 10 years, she has provided positive motivation via her own “Inspiration Line.”

A self-proclaimed recovering procrastinator/perfectionist, SARK grew up in Minneapolis. She studied at the Minneapolis Art Institute, the University of Tampa and the University of Minnesota, where she earned a degree in radio and television production. She makes her home today in San Francisco, where she oversees Camp SARK, a company that produces inspirational cards, posters and calendars.

Progress on Human Rights Goals in Newly Independent African, Caribbean Countries Focus of Lawrence University Lecture

The success of former European colonies in Africa and the Caribbean that earned their independence in the 1950s and ’60s in reaching stated goals on matters of civil liberties, economic justice and educational and social access for the masses will be examined in the second installment of Lawrence University’s four-part international studies lecture series “Democracy, Development and Human Rights.”

John McCartney, associate professor of government and law at Lafayette College, presents “The Struggle for Human Rights in Africa and the Caribbean,” Thursday, Feb. 26 at 7 p.m. in the Wriston Art Center auditorium on the Lawrence campus. The event is free and open to the public.

A scholar of African politics, Latin America and the Caribbean, McCartney will discuss the United Nations’ 1948 “Universal Declaration of Human Rights,” which recognized the importance of civil and political rights, as well as the “economic, social and cultural rights for the dignity and free development of the personality of the individual.” Using selected case studies, McCartney will illustrate the successes and failures of several decolonized African and Caribbean nations that have attempted to live up to the U.N. guidelines as newly independent states.

In addition, McCartney will speculate on the future of human rights in Africa and the Caribbean and address the question of whether human rights are synonymous with Western democratic rights.

Before joining the Lafayette faculty in 1986, McCartney spent six years as the president of the Vanguard Party, a social democratic political party in the Bahamas. He began his academic career as a member of the political science department at Purdue University. He is the author of the book, “Black Power Ideologies” and co-wrote the book “The Struggle for Freedom in the Bahamas.” McCartney earned his doctorate in political theory at the University of Iowa.

The “Democracy, Development and Human Rights” lecture series is sponsored by the Mojmir Povolny Lectureship in International Studies. Named in honor of Lawrence’s long time professor of government, the lectureship promotes interest and discussion on issues of moral significance and ethical dimensions.

Lawrence University Graduate Wins Houston Opera Competition

Heidi Stober, a 2000 Lawrence University graduate, won the Houston Grand Opera’s Eleanor McCollum Competition for Young Singers Feb. 12 at the Wortham Theater Center. She received the $12,000 Scott F. Heumann Memorial Award for her first-place performance.

A soprano, Stober was one of 17 singers invited to the semifinal auditions last week from among more than 450 singers who applied for the competition from around the world. She was among seven singers selected to compete in the finals.

Stober, 25, earned a bachelor of music degree cum laude in vocal performance from Lawrence, studying in Professor Ken Bozeman’s voice studio. A native of Waukesha, she is currently the apprentice soprano in the Utah Symphony and Opera Ensemble Program in Salt Lake City.

While at Lawrence, Stober performed the roles of Laetitia in “The Old Maid and the Thief” and the countess in “The Marriage of Figaro.” She performed as Lisa in Milwaukee Opera Theater’s “La Sonnambula” in 2001 before leaving for Boston, where she earned a master of music degree from Boston’s New England Conservatory. While there, she received the John Moriarty Presidential Scholarship and performed the roles of the dew fairy in “Hansel and Gretel” and Laurie in “The Tender Land.”

During the 2002-03 season, she portrayed Yvette in “La Rondine” and Sally in “Die Fledermaus” for the Boston Lyric Opera, earning the BLO’s Stephen Shrestinian Award for Excellence. Stober sang as studio artist with Colorado’s Central City Opera in the summers of 2002 and 2003, covering Nellie in “Summer and Smoke” and singing the roles of first wife and first gossip in the world premiere of “Gabriel’s Daughter.”

Stober returns to Lawrence June 4 as a guest soloist for the Lawrence Symphony Orchestra’s and Concert Choir’s performance of Penderecki’s “Credo.”

U.S. Foreign Policy Scholar Opens Four-Part Lawrence University Lecture Series with Road Map for Global Democratization

Larry Diamond, senior fellow at the prestigious Hoover Institution and professor of political science and sociology at Stanford University, discusses the prospects and potential road map for global democratization in the opening address of Lawrence University’s four-part international studies lecture series, “Democracy, Development and Human Rights.”

Diamond presents, “Can the Whole World Become Democratic” Thursday, Feb. 19 at 7 p.m. in the Wriston Art Center auditorium on the Lawrence campus. The event is free and open to the public.

With the U.S.-led effort to build a functioning democracy in Iraq — one of the most formidable and unlikely countries in the world in which to achieve such a goal — as a backdrop, Diamond will explore the scenarios for “universal democracy” to emerge in the coming decades. At present, there are more democracies in the world –approximately 120 or 60 percent of all countries — than ever before. Many of those are poor, non-Christian, non-Western, Muslim-majority countries that have defied the typical democratic template, but have managed to maintain democratic institutions for more than a decade now.

For additional global democratization to occur, Diamond asserts the United States and other established democracies need to design aid policies that promote economic development, focusing on combatting corruption and fostering structures of accountability that ensure public resources are used to advance the overall public welfare. In addition, new forms of pressure should be applied on the world’s remaining dictatorships through strategies of international assistance that reward leaders who govern responsibly while denying resources to the world’s most corrupt and repressive regimes.

Diamond will argue the ultimate key to increasing democratic reform globally rests on national humility to forge a collective approach and the steadfastness to see it through over a long period of time.

One of the nation’s leading scholars on democratic development, regime change and U.S. foreign policy affecting democracy abroad, Diamond has written or edited more than 20 books, including “Developing Democracy: Toward Consolidation,” and “Promoting Democracy in the 1990s: Actors and Instruments, Issues and Imperatives.”

Diamond, who earned his Ph.D. at Stanford, joined the Hoover Institution, a public policy research center devoted to advanced study of politics, economics and international affairs, in 1985.

Other lectures scheduled in the series include:

February 26 — John McCartney, professor of government and law, Lafayette College, “The Struggle for Human Rights in Africa and the Caribbean,” Wriston Art Center auditorium, 7 p.m.

April 14 — Minxin Pei, senior associate and co-director, China Program, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, “Democratizing China: Lessons from East Asia,” Wriston Art Center auditorium, 7 p.m.

April 20 — Jonathan Greenwald, senior fellow at the International Crisis Group, “Prospects for Peace in the Middle East,” Wriston Art Center auditorium, 7 p.m.

The “Democracy, Development and Human Rights” lecture series is sponsored by the Mojmir Povolny Lectureship in International Studies. Named in honor of Lawrence’s long time professor of government, the lectureship promotes interest and discussion on issues of moral significance and ethical dimensions.

Lawrence University Hosting Forum for Appleton Mayoral Candidates

The Lawrence University College Democrats, in conjunction with the College Republicans, will host a forum with the three Appleton mayoral candidates Tuesday, Feb. 10 at 8 p.m. in Riverview Lounge of the Lawrence Memorial Union. The event is free and open to the public.

Lawrence senior Kim Dunlap will serve as moderator of the forum featuring incumbent mayor Tim Hanna and challengers Charlie Goff and William Siebers. In addition to addressing issues focusing on the new College Avenue bridge, riverfront development, diversity in Appleton and parking, the candidates will entertain questions from the audience.

A primary election on Feb. 17 will trim the field to two candidates for the spring election on April 6.

Lawrence University Hosting Summit on Fox, Wolf River Water Quality

U.S. Department of the Interior Assistant Secretary of Policy, Management and Budget Lynn Scarlett, former Wisconsin governor Tony Earl and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Regional Administrator Tom Skinner are among the guests scheduled to speak Feb. 12-13 at the “Summit on New Tools for Water Quality in the Fox-Wolf River Basin” at Lawrence University.

Organized by the Fox-Wolf Watershed Alliance, the two-day working conference will bring together stakeholders from the government, business, academic, agricultural and nonprofit sectors to explore how to most effectively integrate emerging regulatory and incentive-based innovations into ongoing efforts to limit nutrient loading into the Fox and Wolf river basins. The lower Fox River basin currently has the highest concentration of Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) waters of anywhere in the state.

Skinner, a 1983 graduate of Lawrence, opens the summit Thursday, Feb. 12 at 9:15 p.m. in Lawrence’s Science Hall, Room 102 with the keynote address “Regional/Great Lakes Water Quality.” Skinner has served as the EPA’s Region 5 administrator since 2001 and is responsible for implementing federal environmental programs in Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin. In addition, he serves as EPA Great Lakes National Program Manager and U.S. Chair of the Binational Executive Committee for the Great Lakes, the main forum for U.S.-Canadian discussions on Great Lakes issues.

On Friday, Feb. 13 at 12 noon in Downer Commons, Scarlett presents “The National Water Policy.” Prior to joining the Bush administration in July 2001, Scarlett served as president of the Los Angeles-based Reason Foundation, a nonprofit current affairs research and communications organization. She spent 15 years as director of the Reason Public Policy Institute, the policy research division of the foundation, where her research interests focused on environmental, land use and natural resources issues.

Earl will close the summit Friday, Feb. 13 at 2:15 p.m. in Downer Commons with the keynote address “Where Do We Go From Here?” Earl, Wisconsin governor from 1983-87, is a partner with the Quarles & Brady law firm in Madison, handling environmental issues. He also serves as the chair of the board of directors of the Center for Clean Air Policy, a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit organization that promotes innovative solutions to environmental and energy problems and spent 15 years as a member of the board of directors of the Great Lakes Protection Fund, which supports collaborative actions to improve the health of the Great Lakes ecosystem.

“This summit is bringing some highly ranked federal and state water quality experts to Lawrence to discuss new strategies to improve water quality in the Fox River, Green Bay and Lake Michigan,” said George Meyer, former Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources secretary and current Scarff memorial visiting professor of environmental studies at Lawrence. “This is a wonderful opportunity for the citizens of the Fox Valley and northeast Wisconsin to offer direct input into policies to improve water quality in their area.”

In addition to several technical sessions, the summit will include panels on regulatory framework and market incentives from both rural and urban perspectives.

Based in Appleton, the Fox-Wolf Watershed Alliance is an independent, non profit organization that identifies issues and advocates effective policies and actions to protect, restore and sustain the water resources of Wisconsin’s Fox-Wolf River Basin. To register for the summit or for a complete schedule of events, contact the FWWA at 920-738-7025 or visit www.FWWA.org.

Works of Unheralded Civil War Poets Discussed in Lawrence University Address

Lawrence University scholar Faith Barrett examines the diverse cross-section of American poetry produced during the American Civil War and the role that poetry played in defining new versions of American identity in the aftermath of the war in an address at Lawrence.

Barrett, an assistant professor of English at Lawrence, presents “Drums Off the Phantom Battlement: American Poets and the Civil War,” Tuesday, Feb. 10 at 4 p.m.in the Wriston Art Center auditorium on the Lawrence campus.

The address is the third and final in the lecture series held in conjunction with the traveling national exhibition, “Forever Free: Abraham Lincoln’s Journey to Emancipation,” which is on display in the Lawrence library until March 5. Both the lecture and the exhibition are free and open to the public.

While Civil War-era poetry has been largely neglected by most American literature scholars who have traditionally limited their focus to a few select poets such as Walt Whitman or Herman Melville, writers who explicitly addressed the war in some of their work, Barrett argues the Civil War produced an extraordinarily rich and interesting body of poetry, including works by women, African Americans and poets who chose not to publish.

In her address, Barrett will discuss and share works from some of the less well-known writers of that era, including Sarah Morgan Bryan Piatt, a Kentucky-born poet who moved North at the start of the war, George Moses Horton, an African American poet who published two volumes of poems while he was a slave in North Carolina and Obadiah Ethelbert Baker, who wrote several volumes of journals and poetry while serving in the Second Iowa Cavalry. She will examine both the political differences that divided these writers and the ways in which poetry served as a vital political function of the day.

Barrett, who joined the Lawrence English department in 2003, is co-editor of the forthcoming anthology “To Fight Aloud, Is Very Brave: American Poetry of the Civil War” (University of Massachusetts Press). The author of the 2001 poetry chapbook, “Invisible Axis,” Barrett earned her doctorate in comparative literature at the University of California-Berkeley.

Celebrated! Lawrence University’s Annual Spring Festival Ending

For the first time in nearly 30 years, Lawrence University will not host its annual Celebrate! spring festival of the arts.

Citing a growing student interest in other campus events in the spring along with the increasing difficulty in recruiting Lawrence students to serve as volunteers to plan and work the festival, the student committee charged with organizing Celebrate! has decided to cancel the event. Diminishing attendance in recent years was also a factor in the decision.

“We’re extremely proud of the fact we’ve been able to host a community-wide event of this scope and quality for all these years,” said Paul Shrode, associate dean of students for activities at Lawrence. “But for a variety of reasons, students have gradually shifted their attention away from Celebrate! in recent years and have put their energies and interests into other activities. From its inception, Celebrate! has been a student-initiated and student-organized campus event and we respect their decision to focus on other activities that they believe better serve the current interests of the student body.”

Celebrate! planning committee chair Sandra Marks, a Lawrence junior, observed that while the festival has undergone many changes through its history, “The past few years have been particularly challenging with the advent of the mid-term reading period (an academic period that coincides with Celebrate! designed to allow students concentrated time to focus on their coursework), poor weather, the increase and growth in other campus spring events and competition from other area festivals and fairs.”

“Planning for Celebrate! 2004 began in the fall of 2003, with meetings centered around changing the festival to meet the interests voiced by students through a survey,” added Marks. “Unfortunately, with limited student involvement, lost revenues and in the face of declining community support, it proved difficult if not impossible to continue the event.”

Celebrate! began in 1975 as a successor to the Renaissance Fair, a campus event that featured students dressed in Elizabethan costume. Traditionally held on the Saturday before Mother’s Day each May, Celebrate! offered a variety of live musical entertainment, dozens of arts and crafts booths, activities for children and an assortment of food vendors. At its peak, as many as 25,000 people and more would roam the Lawrence campus during the day-long festival, but in recent years attendance had fallen to about 7,500.

In recent years other student-organized spring events, including the Earth Day festival, which has taken on a broader family-oriented theme, and Shack-a-thon, a fund-raising event that seeks to raise awareness of the plight of the homeless with proceeds going to the local Habitat for Humanity chapter, have grown in scope and student interest.

“While it is regrettable in many ways, Celebrate! is a campus tradition that has simply run its course,” said Shrode. “While Celebrate! is no longer, I want to reassure the Fox Valley community that Lawrence will continue its involvement in other local events that utilize the campus such as Art-off-the-Park and Octoberfest.”

Lawrence University V-Day to perform Eve Ensler’s Vagina Monologues

V-Day Lawrence University, now in its third year, is pleased to announce that Eve Ensler’s The Vagina Monologues will be performed again this year, on Friday and Saturday, February 13th and 14th, 2004 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, February 15th at 5:30 p.m. in Harper Hall, a theatre in the university’s Music-Drama Center (420 E. College Avenue). Tickets are $5.00 for students, $8.00 for adults and may be purchased in advance through the Lawrence University Box Office (920-832-6749) or at the door. Through the production, V-Day hopes to generate awareness, raise funds to end violence against women, as well as provide a night of entertainment.

Sophomore Alissa Melczer, originally from Evanston, IL, makes her directing debut at Lawrence University with this year’s Vagina Monologues production. “I want to make the show a more universal representation of femininity,” says Melczer. In addition to the work of the actresses, this year’s show will incorporate a variety of pieces of art by members of the Lawrence community.

Proceeds from the production will go to several charities, around the Fox Cities, the United States, and the world. The primary recipient this year will be the Fox Valley Sexual Assault Crisis Center, with additional proceeds going to Men Can Stop Rape and the community of Juarez, Mexico, where over three hundred women have been abducted, abused or murdered over the past few years. “Violence against women is a widespread problem,” Lawrence V-Day President Sadie Weber states. “We hope that our efforts will not only increase awareness among the Lawrence community, but in the Fox Valley area as well.”