VCUarts in 2015

Taylor Thornberg
Spectrum Editor

While many of us are begrudgingly coming out of our winter break hibernation and dragging ourselves back into routines, some exciting things happening in VCUarts will hopefully wake us right up. 

2015 looks to be a productive year for VCUarts, with plenty of events starting in January alone. From music to dance to cinema, many departments, both professors and students, are planning ahead.

With the opening of The Depot last spring and the start of construction on the Institute of Contemporary Art, the visual arts departments will have no shortage of things to look forward to in 2015.

For starters, The Depot is hosting an exhibition of works from former VCUarts Department of Sculpture professor Myron Helfgott. Curated by the director of the Anderson Gallery, Ashley Kistler, the exhibit’s grand opening is Jan. 16 and it will run until March 8. All three floors of the gallery will be filled with almost 45 years of Helfgott’s work, including room-sized installations and sculptures.

According to the Anderson Gallery’s press release, Kistler worked closely with the artist for two years to assemble more than 50 works, both recent pieces and “significant pieces selected from over the decades.”

Helfgott came from Chicago to VCU in 1968, and after retiring in 2003, continued to create a prolific number of works, now including kinetics and audio, from his studio.

VCU Department of Dance and Choreography also has a lot in store for 2015, and will be hosting three nights of performances in February at the Grace Street Theater. The event, called VCU Dance NOW, features new choreography from guest artists Doug Varone and Dawn Marie Bazemore, as well as faculty from the department.

Varone is an award-winning choreographer with a successful company in New York, and also works in opera, fashion and film. Bazemore was the department’s Fall Artist in Residence. The concert will be performed entirely by VCU Dance majors on Feb. 19, 20 and 21.

The VCU Department of Music brings hundreds of musical acts to the campus each year at the W.E. Singleton Center, and this year is no exception. Perhaps the most highly anticipated event is a full weekend of Spanish flamenco coming in March.

Three concerts will highlight all aspects of flamenco, including guitar, singing and dancing. The first, given by flamenco guitar legend Torcuato Zamora, kicks off on Friday, March 20, followed by a “flamenco fiesta” with guitarist Miguelito, dancers and a singer on March 21 and a “flamenco finale” given by VCU alumna Leah Kruszewski.

Finally, the VCU Cinema department released the schedule of films for the spring 2015 Cinematheque program. Each one was carefully selected by department staff in collaboration with the VCU French Film Festival, the Virginia Production Alliance and the James River Film Festival. Nine films from all over the world, including Thailand, France, China and Germany, will be screened on a 35mm projector for free on Tuesday nights throughout the semester. The schedule is listed on their Facebook page and all screenings will be held at the Grace Street Theater.

Although it’s never easy getting back into the groove of school after a long month of freedom, a little flamenco, a new art exhibit and free films could certainly make the transition easier.

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