Edmond Chibeau looks at performance and theatre from the avant-garde communication perspective

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Location: Mansfield, Connecticut, United States

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Windsor Art Center Puppets

The World of Puppetry
Curator: Anne Cubberly
The Windsor Art Center
Windsor CT
16 March – 27 April 2013

Puppets and puppet art took center stage at the Windsor Art Center tonight and will hold that stage until the end of April.  The walls and ceiling of the space are covered with elements showing the history and current status of the world of puppets. 
As well as the exhibit of puppets in the main gallery there is a video in the video gallery, a table for building puppets in the workspace, and, in the side room, there are some examples of puppets made in schools.

The exhibition works on a multiplicity of levels.
There are performing objects.  Shadow puppets, Marionettes, Indonesian puppets, hand and rod puppets, examples of puppets from history and puppets that were made in the past few days.  
Curator Anne Cubberly brought together talented people and fascinating objects to create a compelling and informative show.  There are works by Frank Ballard, founder of the puppetry program at UCONN, Bart Roccoberton, current director of the Puppet Arts program at UCONN Paul Spirito, Sarah Beth Parks, and Cubberly herself.

The sophistication of conception and amount of detail in the execution of these works is a testament to the fact that puppetry is a high art that brings together threads from the visual, graphic, and performing arts.

The Windsor art Center is peculiar in that the members of the board, and the attendees at the show, seem to be more open to, and more responsive to, artwork than one usually 
discovers at an opening.  Their approach to art is knowledgeable and sophisticated without being precious or fussy.  The Windsor Art Center is a good place to see an artist's work. 

Associated with the exhibit is a series of lectures, performances, and workshops.  The dates and times can be found on the Windsor Art Center’s Facebook page or webpage.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Bob Woodward Speaks at Eastern

Bob Woodward, Author
Geissler Gymnasium
March 12, 2013
Edmond Chibeau & Bob Woodward

Bob Woodward is best remembered for his investigative journalism with Carl Bernstein into the Watergate scandal that brought down the administration of Richard Nixon in 1974.  Woodward spoke at Eastern Connecticut State University tonight.    As well as his speech in Geissler he had dinner with a small group of students, professors, and administrators, and then spoke to a group of Communication, Political Science, and History students and student writers for the Campus Lantern newspaper.  Speaking to the newspaper students he asked them to think about, “What does the first Amendment mean?” and “What are newspapers for?”  He told the young journalists that, “You are the instrument of accountability.” 
Speaking of what he called “the cartoon-gate episode” that had recently been a topic of considerable controversy at the University, he said he was going to take a copy of the Campus Lantern student newspaper, “Back to Washington DC to show them that the first Amendment is alive an well in Connecticut.”

Speaking about TV news outlets he said that, “Fox is for the conservatives, MSNBC is for the liberals, and CNN is for the airport.” 

Introduced by Political Science professor William Salka, Mr. Woodward spoke to approximately one thousand people.  He drew parallels between the Nixon administration and administrations that came after.  Referring to the need for a free and open press he said that, “Democracy dies in darkness.” 
He went on to discuss the ways in which presidents make some of their decisions, and the methods used to try to keep those decisions, away from the voters and the press.  

Led off by a thoughtful question by Jordan Sakal, a communication student at Eastern, several students from of Eastern Connecticut State University, the University of Hartford and the University of Connecticut asked questions and received thoughtful replies from Woodward.  When asked about the future of the nation he responded with, “What I worry about most is secret government.” 

Woodward was witty, articulate, insightful and kind.  The audience was informed, entertained, and pleased with their opportunity to see one of the great journalists in American history.

Saturday, March 09, 2013

ECSU Remembers Victoria Soto

9 March 2013
     ECSU held a memorial for alum Victoria Soto, the 27 year-old teacher who lost her life at Sandy Hook Elementary School as she was defending her students.  She pushed the first-graders into closets and cupboards to hide them from the gunman who had entered the school.  Vickie graduated Eastern in 2008.  The memorial was uplifting, sad, and beautiful.  Elsa Núñez, President of Eastern and Governor Dannel Malloy both spoke.  Rachel Schiavone, Vickie’s roommate at Eastern, and her sister Jillian Soto also spoke. 
      Novelist Wally Lamb read a poem by Howard Nemerov, and poet Daniel Donaghy read Testament, a poem he wrote in celebration of Vickie’s life and in memory of her sacrifice.  Coley O’Toole played and sang his song for Vickie, Angels on Earth.  Hari Koirala, Chair of the Education Department and Ann Higginbotham, chair of the History Department both shared their memories of working with Vickie.  Pianist Eric Ouellette, Guitarist Morgan Brown, The Eastern Flute Ensemble, the Trumpet Trio, and the Eastern Chamber Singers, conducted by David Belles provided music.  We walked out into the warm March sunshine and I suspect that everyone in attendance was a richer, stronger person as a result of having been brought together to celebrate the live of Victoria Soto.

Monday, March 04, 2013

Kubrick/Spielberg/Napoleon Complex

Napoleon always hired the best media artists, Jacques Louis David among them.  The Emperor understood Public Relations.
Steven Spielberg is going to make a TV series about Napoleon.  He will use material that had been developed by Stanley Kubrick before he died.  Kubrick started the work in the 1970s but did not finish the project.  Spielberg doing Kubrick is a great combo!  Spielberg wrote and directed AI Artificial Intelligence from a Kubrick idea.  This should be good when it finally happens.