Fall 2023 Performing Arts Preview: Arts and humanities are alive at UW-Stout

Events build community through theater, choral and band concerts, International Night, visual arts, civil discussions
Abbey Goers | November 1, 2023

From theater audiences viewing a “live broadcast” and celebrating children’s creativity at Arts Alive, to musical performances, art exhibits, International Night and learning the history of slavery in the birth of the nation, the arts and humanities are alive at UW-Stout this November and December.

UW-Stout Theater

Fall Performing arts events lead off with University Theatre’s “Game Show” at the historic Harvey Hall Theatre, led by Director Audric Buhr. Performances are at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 9, through Saturday, Nov. 11, with a 1:30 p.m. matinee on Sunday, Nov. 12. Adult tickets are $15, and senior and student tickets are $10. Tickets are available at uwstout.universitytickets.com.

“Game Show” places the theater audience in the role of the TV studio audience of a fictional trivia-based game show. As the audience watches the “live broadcast” – where anything can and does happen – they also witness all the backstage, back-stabbing antics “behind the scenes.”

Daniel Ivankovic playing the guitar
Jazz in the Great Hall will feature Daniel Ivankovic, a computer and electrical engineering graduating senior, as vocalist / Aaron Durst

Musical Performances

The Blue Devil Jazz Orchestra will present Jazz in the Great Hall at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 11, in the Memorial Student Center Great Hall. And the Symphonic Band will present a Fall Concert at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 3, in the MSC Great Hall. Both groups are led by Director Aaron Durst. Tickets are $5 and are available online at uwstout.universitytickets.com, Memorial Student Center Service Desk, 715-232-1122, and at the door.

The Jazz Orchestra will play a number of different pieces, including the sounds of jazz-rock group Chicago, and will feature Daniel Ivankovic, a computer and electrical engineering senior from Eau Claire, as vocalist. He will also sing “Cheek to Cheek” by Irving Berlin, as made famous by Frank Sinatra. Two ballads will be a part of the concert: “God Bless the Child” by Billie Holiday and “When I Fall in Love” by Victor Young. Emma Nuechterlein, an applied social science senior from Kewaunee, will sing Henry Mancini’s “It Had Better Be Tonight.”

The Symphonic Band is preparing a variety of pieces for the December concert, including works by Vaclav Nelhybel; Gordon Jacob; “Rapture,” a new work by Brian Balmages; Pavel Tschesnokoff; Dmitri Shostakovich’s “Waltz No. 2”; John Mackey; and John Philip Sousa.

Chamber Choir
UW-Stout choirs will perform their concert How Is the Weather? at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 2. / Jerry Hui

The Symphonic Singers, Chamber Choir and Devil Tones Acappella will present their concert How Is the Weather? at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 2, at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church, 910 E. 9th St., in Menomonie. Tickets are $5 and are available online at uwstout.universitytickets.com, Memorial Student Center Service Desk, 715-232-1122, and at the door.

Led by Director Jerry Hui, the concert takes a lighthearted look at the weather in a variety of musical styles, from funny to romantic, from the Sesame Street theme to rocking gospel ballads. The evening will feature WQOW evening news anchor Shannon Hoyt, 2018 professional communication and emerging media alum, and meteorologist Matt Schaefer as hosts.

A companion art exhibit featuring weather-themed artworks by School of Art and Design students will be installed at the Art Lab, on the University Library first floor. The exhibit will open mid-November through January 2024.

Arts Alive, Chancellors Pick
Arts Alive will be held from 5 to 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 15, at the Raw Deal / Ann Oberding-Carlisle

Visual Arts

The second annual Arts Alive Community Art Show will be held at the Raw Deal the entire month of November, featuring the artwork of 45 K-12 students from the Menomonie school district.

An Arts Alive event will be held from 5 to 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 15, at the Raw Deal, with an awards ceremony at 5:45 p.m. UW-Stout Devil Tone Acapella and Jazz Embers groups will perform.

“Childhood is magical. Every child needs to express themselves through the arts and discover who they are as a person and as a budding artist. Arts Alive is a wonderful opportunity to participate in a professional art show as a child artist,” said Oaklawn Elementary art teacher Kim Roberts. “My students are so excited to be included. This is a powerful opportunity for them to see how important the arts are in our community.”

Art education Program Director Ann Oberding-Carlisle works with preservice art educators and community art teachers. “My work with them has been a highlight of mine here at Stout. Building community is the core of what we do in preparing our students to participate in civic life while advocating for the arts,” she said.

The event is coordinated by the art education program, the visual and performing arts department and sponsored by Arts Integration Menomonie.

Pheng Thao artwork, Soaking Spirits
Pheng Thao's photographic artwork, "Soaking Spirits." / Pheng Thao

The Student Artist-in-Residence program will hold its inaugural SAiR Fall Artist Talk. The two artists will give a presentation about their work in progress from 5 to 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 16, in the University Library second-floor open area. A tour of the SAiR collection in the library will follow. Refreshments will be provided by the Stout University Foundation.

Students selected to the prestigious program for the 2023-24 academic year are Pheng Thao, a studio art senior from Green Bay, and Joshua Fusco, a graphic communications junior from Shafer, Minn.

Thao, who has a concentration in photography, is researching what Hmong refugees faced during the Vietnam War. “I want to dive deep into their long escape on foot, loss of hope and any hidden stories that have been passed down through generations,” he said.

“Then, by visually projecting these emotional stories and data onto photographic or sculptural artwork, I’m able to build a bridge that connects Hmong people with their cultural past, present and possible future. To build an artwork where they can visually learn about who and what they once were or still are. I hope to continue to do more research and interact more with people about these topic choices,” Thao said.

All UW-Stout students are eligible to apply for the Bud and Betty Micheels Student Artists-in-Residence program. Selected artists work all academic year toward a two-person exhibit in Furlong Gallery in May and have one piece selected for the permanent collection in the library. Each student receives a $2,000 stipend, up to $1,000 for materials or related expenses as well as an appropriate workspace.

International Night
International Night is a cultural expo, free and open to the public. / Office of International Education

Culture & Literature

UW-Stout’s annual International Night, hosted by the Office of International Education and the International Club student organization, is from 5 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 16. in the Memorial Student Center Great Hall. The cultural expo is free and open to the public. It is an opportunity to connect with international students and learn about their countries and cultures.

OIE and the International Club will also host back-to-back presentations on the countries and cultures of Tunisia and Pakistan presented by IREX visiting scholars. The presentations will be from 6:30 to 8:15 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 14, in the MSC Oakwood room.

Events are in conjunction with International Education WeekMonday, Nov. 13, to Friday, Nov. 17, a joint initiative of the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Education to promote programs that prepare Americans for a global environment and attract future leaders from abroad to study, learn and exchange experiences.

The Literature Committee's Reading Across Campus will host a concert reading and exhibition of Lady Gregory's "The Rising of the Moon" from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 16, in Harvey Hall Theatre. It is a collaboration between the Literature Committee, University Theatre students and Director Audric Buhr. The concert reading is free and open to the public and will be accompanied by a pop-up exhibit on Lady Gregory prepared by Professor Joan Navarre's students.

Augusta, Lady Gregory, was an Irish writer, playwright and theater manager. Her translations of Irish legends, her peasant comedies and fantasies and her work with the Abbey Theatre played a considerable part in the late 19th-century Irish Literary Renaissance.

Philosophers Cafe
The Center for Applied Ethics offers civil discussions and Philosopher Cafes. / Center for Applied Ethics

Lectures & Conversations

UW-Stout’s Center for Applied Ethics will host a discussion with Pulitzer Prize winner Edward J. Larson on his book “American Inheritance: Liberty and Slavery in the Birth of a Nation” from 3 to 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 15, in the Memorial Student Center Ballroom A. Larson will discuss the relationship between liberty and slavery in the birth of the United States and the founding leaders championing liberty while enslaving Black people.

And a discussion, Should We Remove Racist Monuments? will be held virtually in Microsoft Teams from 4 to 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 30. Debaters will be Travis Timmerman, of Seton Hall University, and Daniel Demetriou, of University of Minnesota, Morris.

“We seem to live in an age where everything is politicized: slavery, racism, abortion, transgenderism, climate change, animal welfare, artificial intelligence, democracy and so on. The center’s mission is to help advance the discussion by having it in an informed, healthy and enjoyable way. People are yearning for informed and healthy discussions around these issues,” said center Director Xan Bozzo, assistant professor of philosophy.

The center also hosts Philosophers’ Cafés, informal, friendly conversations of contemporary issues. Meetings are open to all and are led by UW-Stout and UW-Eau Claire faculty. Upcoming conversations will be held at 7 p.m., at Brewery Nonic in Menomonie:

  • Wednesday, Nov. 8: Drawing the Line: Does Tolerance Have Limits?
  • Wednesday, Dec. 13: Back from the Dustbin? The Marxist Critique in the Twenty-First Century

“If you’re interested in helping advance the discussion and learning from others, then you’ll find our programs interesting and rewarding,” Bozzo said.


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