lecture programs

Former U.S. Poet Laureate Kay Ryan to visit SMU Feb. 25, 2016

Former U.S. Poet Laureate Kay RyanFormer U.S. Poet Laureate Kay Ryan will present a reading of her poetry at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 25, following a 6 p.m. reception in room 131 of SMU’s Dedman Life Sciences Building.

The event is cohosted by SMU English Professor Willard Spiegelman, the SMU Department of English and the Gilbert Lecture Series.

“Ryan will be reading from her poetry, presumably a mix of recent and earlier work,” Spiegelman says. “She is very engaging, humorous and compatible in an approachable way. She has a wonderful stage presence.”

In addition to serving as the nation’s 16th Poet Laureate from 2008-2010, Ryan has won a Pulitzer Prize and was named a MacArthur Fellow in 2011 – a prestigious distinction.

The event is free and open to the public. For more information, contact the SMU Department of English at 214-768-2945.

— Kenny Ryan

January 29, 2016|Calendar Highlights, News|

Poet, performance artist Sarah Kay to give SMU Tate Distinguished Lecture Jan. 26, 2016

Sarah Kay, Tate Distinguished Lecture Series, Jan. 26, 2016

Poet and performance artist Sarah Kay – a writer, educator, and co-director of an organization dedicated to improving children’s lives through poetry – will visit SMU Tuesday, Jan. 25 to speak in the 2015-16 Tate Distinguished Lecture Series. She will speak at 8 p.m. in McFarlin Auditorium

Kay is a spoken-word poet who began performing in New York at age 14 at the renowned Bowery Poetry Club in the East Village. In 2006, she became a member of the club’s Slam Team and a featured poet on “HBO’s Def Poetry Jam,” as well as the youngest poet to compete at the National Poetry Slam in Austin.

> Follow Sarah Kay on Twitter @KaySarahSera

In 2011, Kay created a sensation at the TED Conference in Long Beach, California with a performance of her poem B (If I Should Have a Daughter). The performance earned two standing ovations and has since been viewed almost 4 million times online via YouTube.

The poem itself has since been made into a short hardcover book, B, illustrated by Kay’s lifelong friend Sophie Janowitz, and has been ranked as the No. 1 poetry book on Amazon.com. An anthology of her works, No Matter the Wreckage, was published in 2014 by Write Bloody Publishing. Kay’s poems and articles have also been published in Pear Noir!, the Literary Bohemian, DecomP, Damselfly Press, Union Station Magazine, Foundling Review, the Huffington Post and CNN.com, among others.

> Watch Sarah Kay’s TED 2011 performance of B (If I Should Have a Daughter) in a new window video

Kay holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Brown University and an honorary doctorate in humane letters from Grinnell College.

She is the founder and co-director of Project VOICE (Vocal Outreach Into Creative Expression), which uses spoken-word poetry to entertain, educate and inspire young students.

> Visit Sarah Kay’s personal website: kaysarahsera.com

All SMU community members are invited to hear Sarah Kay speak and answer questions at the Turner Construction/Wells Fargo Student Forum at 4:30 p.m. in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Ballroom. Doors open at 4 p.m. Please tweet your questions for the forum to #SMUtate.

Students can go to the basement of McFarlin Auditorium at 7 p.m. with their SMU IDs for possible seating on a first-come, first-served basis.

> Follow the Tate Series on social media: Twitter – @SMUtate | Instagram – @smutate

January 25, 2016|Calendar Highlights, News|

SMU Jewish Studies celebrates Judeo-Spanish Culture Week Jan. 24-31, 2016

Judeo-Spanish Culture Week 2016 flyer

Schedule of events for SMU’s 2016 Judeo-Spanish Culture Week. Click the image for a full-size version.

The Jewish Studies Program in SMU’s Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences celebrates the unique culture of Jews in Spain with a series of events and lectures Jan. 24-31, 2016.

Highlights of Judeo-Spanish Culture Week include:

  • A screening of Flory’s Flame, a documentary about the life and music of 90-year-old Sephardic composer and performer Flory Jagoda, Sunday, Jan. 24. Free.
  • A discussion of “Jewish Treasures of Medieval Spain” with Danielle Joyner, visiting assistant professor of art history, and Shira Lander, director of Jewish studies, Monday, Jan. 25. Free.
  • A lecture on the future of the Judeo-Spanish language Ladino by Bryan Kirschen, assistant professor of Romance languages at Binghamton University and co-writer and co-director of the 2015 film Saved by Language, Thursday, Jan. 28. Free.
  • A concert featuring Trio SefardiHoward Bass, Tina Chancey and Susan Gaeta – who perform with Flory Jagoda using period instruments and specialized vocal techniques in their stories and songs. Tickets are $5 for SMU students, $15 for SMU faculty and staff members, and $25 for the general public; they are available online at smu.edu/triosefardi. Tickets will not be sold at the door.

All events are open to the public. For more information, contact Shira Lander, director of Jewish Studies, 214-768-2157.

Find more information, including a full schedule, at SMU’s Dedman College blog

January 21, 2016|Calendar Highlights, News|

Calendar Highlights: Mustang Must-do’s for Dec. 4, 2015

Meadows Chamber Music Honors Concert: The chamber music program presents a dynamic, varied, passionate performance of jury-selected wind, brass, piano and string ensembles. Come hear these students showcasing the results of a semester of intense, peer-driven collaborative work. The event is on Saturday, Dec. 5 at 7:30 p.m in Caruth Auditorium and is free and open to the public.

Is ForensicScreen shot 2015-12-04 at 1.51.39 PM Science an Oxymoron?: Forensic science evidence (e.g., fingerprints, DNA, microscopic hair, & bite marks) is widely believed to provide powerful proof of identity in both criminal and civil trials. But in recent years, forensic scientists in some areas have been taken to task for overclaiming, failing to test their assumptions, and neglecting to explain to judges and jurors how the risk of error affects the value of reported matches. Solutions will be explored by professor Jonathan Koehler, professor at Northwestern University School of Law, on Monday, Dec. 7 at 12:15 p.m. This event will be in 153 Heroy Halland is free and open to the public. Lunch will be provided. R.S.V.P. at lawandstatistics.eventbrite.com or 214-768-3527.

Learn more about Jonathen Koehler

The Science of Listening to Music: On Monday, Dec. 7, Professor Elizabeth Margulis, director of the Music Cognition Lab at the University of Arkansas, will examine the interface between science and music by using a series of the Lab’s recent experiments. The event will  begin at 4:30 p.m. in 2020 Owen Arts Center. For more information, click here.

Christmas and Crêpes: Come join the SMU Wesley Foundation at 3220 Daniel Avenue for crêpes, coffee, community, and Christmas music on Monday, Dec. 7 from 8 – 9:30 p.m.

Student Film Association Fall Film Festival: The Student Filmmakers’ Association will host their annual fall film festival showcasing the best recent short works created by SMU students. The festival is free and open to the public and will take place on Tuesday, Dec. 8 at 7 p.m. at the Angelika Film Center in Mockingbird Station.

Paws and Take a Break: A team of registered therapy dogs from the A New Leash on Life group will visit the Taubman Atrium on Wednesday, Dec. 9, hosted by Hamon Arts Library. Research has shown that spending 5-24 minutes with a calm dog reduces blood pressure and the levels of stress hormones in the body. Come visit with a certified therapy dog from 11 a.m. – 3 p.m.!

Therapy Dogs at Fondren

December 4, 2015|Calendar Highlights|

Documentary filmmaker Ken Burns returns to SMU’s Tate Distinguished Lecture Series Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2015

Ken BurnsRenowned director and documentary filmmaker Ken Burns, creator of Baseball, The War and The Roosevelts, will return to SMU Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2015 for another engagement with the Tate Distinguished Lecture Series. Burns will present The Oncor Lecture at 8 p.m. in McFarlin Auditorium

Burns has been making documentary films for almost 40 years. Since the Academy Award-nominated Brooklyn Bridge in 1981, he has directed and produced some of the most acclaimed historical documentaries ever made, including The Civil War; Baseball; Jazz; The Statue of Liberty; Huey Long; Lewis & Clark: The Journey of the Corps of Discovery; Frank Lloyd Wright; Mark Twain; Unforgivable Blackness: The Rise and Fall of Jack Johnson; The War; The National Parks: America’s Best Idea; The Roosevelts: An Intimate History; and, most recently, Cancer: The Emperor of All Maladies.

> Learn more about Ken Burns’ work at his website: KenBurns.com

In 2009, David Zurawik of The Baltimore Sun said, “Ken Burns is not only the greatest documentarian of the day, but also the most influential filmmaker, period. That includes feature filmmakers like George Lucas and Steven Spielberg. I say that because Burns not only turned millions of persons on to history with his films, he showed us a new way of looking at our collective past and ourselves.” The late historian Stephen Ambrose said of Burns’ films, “More Americans get their history from Ken Burns than any other source.”

His future projects include films on Jackie Robinson, the Vietnam War, the history of country music, Ernest Hemingway and the history of stand-up comedy.

Burns’ films have been honored with dozens of major awards, including 13 Emmy Awards, two Grammy Awards and two Oscar nominations. In 2008, at the News & Documentary Emmy Awards, Ken Burns was honored by the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences with a Lifetime Achievement Award.

This is Burns’ second visit to SMU to deliver a Tate Distinguished Lecture. Previously, he spoke during the 2004-05 series.

> Follow Ken Burns on Twitter: @KenBurns

All SMU community members are invited to the Turner Construction/Wells Fargo Student Forum at 4:30 p.m. in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Ballroom. Doors open at 4 p.m. Please tweet your questions for the forum to #SMUtate.

Tickets for the evening are sold out. However, students can go to the basement of McFarlin Auditorium at 7 p.m. with their SMU IDs for possible seating on a first-come, first-served basis.

> Follow the Tate Series on social media: Twitter – @SMUtate | Instagram – @smutate

December 1, 2015|Calendar Highlights, News|
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