The SMU Office of the Chaplain has invited the University community to celebrate the life of longtime staff member Gary Shultz at 4 p.m. Monday, April 23, 2018. The event will take place in The Great Hall, Elizabeth Perkins Prothro Hall, in the theology quad.
A former Dallas Times-Herald journalist, Shultz was an SMU employee for more than 25 years and most recently served as director of online media relations and communications in the Office of News and Communications, SMU Public Affairs. Among his many accomplishments was his involvement in the creation of SMU’s first website. The smu.edu site continues to bear the marks of his original and ongoing work.
Shultz died on Thursday, April 5 after a brief illness. He is survived by his wife, Mary Ann, two daughters, and grandchildren. His family requests that memorial donations may be made to the Arbor Day Foundation.
For more information, contact the SMU Office of News and Communication, 214-768-7650.
This year’s Commencement speaker, Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings, is noted for his work to improve the quality of life in the city. He has created new strategies for growing the arts through the Mayor’s Business Arts Initiative, has used his visibility as mayor to organize a campaign against domestic violence and has put Dallas in the spotlight by taking a leading role with the U.S. Conference of Mayors.
Guests are urged to arrive early as seating in the coliseum is limited to four guests per student. Additional seating will be available for a simulcast of the event at Dedman Center for Lifetime Sports. The ceremony also will be broadcast outside Moody Coliseum on Mustang Plaza, and there will be a webcast of the ceremony online at smu.edu/live.
The University’s 2014 honorary degree recipients are Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Isabel Wilkerson, Methodist historian Richard P. Heitzenrater and SMU law professor Joseph W. McKnight. Each will be included in a symposium in his or her honor, all of which are free and open to the public.
The Baccalaureate Service will be at 8 p.m. Friday, May 16, in McFarlin Auditorium. Like the Commencement ceremony, it will be webcast live.
The traditional Faculty Breakfast begins at 7:45 a.m. in the Miller Event Center’s Champions Club, Moody Coliseum. If you are serving as a faculty marshal, you are encouraged to report to your assigned location by 7:50 a.m.
SMU’S 2012 Homecoming celebration provided several days of excitement, from reunions to Pigskin Revue to the parade (led by alumnus and TOMS Shoes founder Blake Mycoskie) to the Distinguished Alumni Awards. And to top it all off, the Mustangs delivered a 44-13 victory over the Memphis Tigers in Ford Stadium.
A new work by groundbreaking choreographer and 2010 Meadows Prize winner Shen Wei will be a marquee feature of SMU’s 2012 Spring Dance Concert. The show, presented by The Meadows Dance Ensemble of SMU’s Meadows School of the Arts, includes works by three award-winning choreographers and runs March 28-April 1 in the Bob Hope Theatre, Owen Arts Center.
This year’s works include the premiere of Five Preludes, a ballet by visiting artist-in-residence Adam Hougland; Song Awakened by SMU faculty member and noted jazz dance artist Danny Buraczeski; and The New You, a world premiere by Shen Wei.
The concert opens with Five Preludes, a neo-classical ballet on pointe set to five Rachmaninoff preludes. Choreographer Adam Hougland, a Dallas native, is principal choreographer for the Louisville Ballet and resident choreographer for the Cincinnati Ballet. He has won both the Princess Grace Award and the Choo-San Goh Award for choreography and was named one of Dance Magazine’s “25 to watch” for 2011.
Next on the program is Buraczeski’s Song Awakened, a work set to the songs of Cesária Évora, a noted singer of Creole-Portuguese soul music. The work debuted to critical acclaim at New York’s Joyce Theater in 2001; The New York Times wrote that Buraczeski “makes his dancers voiceless musicians who use their bodies, alone and together, to add rhythms to (Evora’s).” The piece is presented in tribute to Ms. Évora, who passed away in December at age 70. Buraczeski, a nationally known jazz choreographer, has received commissions from such organizations as the Walker Art Center, the Library of Congress, and the American Dance Festival. He also has received multiple fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, for whom he is now a regular panelist and consultant.
Following intermission, the Meadows dancers will perform the world premiere of The New You by Shen Wei – an internationally renowned choreographer, director, dancer and designer and the artistic director of New York-based Shen Wei Dance Arts. Perhaps best know as the lead choreographer for the opening ceremonies of the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Shen Wei created this new work from the ground up during his three-week Meadows Prize residency in January and February 2012.
“This work is about audiences experiencing new possibilities by building and revising systems that are sensed, but not necessarily known,” said Shen Wei. “Art opens doors we never thought had existed and enables us to access previously unknown dimensions. By sensing different art forms, audiences can discover novel structural foundations and embark on a new journey. I hope this experience can offer the students and the viewers an alternative possibility of space.”
Spring Dance Concert performance times are 8 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $7 each for SMU faculty, staff and students. Free parking is available at Hillcrest and Binkley or in the garage under the Meadows Museum. For more information or to purchase tickets, call 214-768-2787 (214-SMU-ARTS).