spring 2012 events

Tuesday, January 24, 2012 at 7 p.m.
Sawyer Center Theater, Sawyer Fine Arts Center

Experience the thunderous rhythms of the ancestral Japanese Taiko drums and the magical sounds of the bamboo flutes. Hear and feel the ancestral Taiko drums give thunderous voice to traditional and new compositions. Big Drums, powerful rhythms, and electrifying, room-thumping energy. This exciting group draws from Japan's rich tradition of music and performance to create a highly visual performance. With colorful traditional costumes and dynamic motion, Taikoza's shows are immensely popular with audiences of all ages. Drawing from Japan's rich tradition of music and performance, Taikoza has created a new sound using a variety of traditional instruments. In addition to drums of assorted sizes, Taikoza incorporates the shakuhachi and the fue (both bamboo flutes) and colorful dances. This is a ticketed event. To purchase tickets for this event using our online system, click here.

Film: The Help
Monday, January 30, 2012 at 7 p.m.
Clements Hall, Ivey Science Center

The #1 New York Times best seller by Kathryn Stockett comes to vivid life through the powerful performances of a phenomenal ensemble cast. The Help is an inspirational, courageous and empowering story about very different, extraordinary women in the 1960s South who build an unlikely friendship around a secret writing project — one that breaks society's rules and puts them all at risk. Filled with poignancy, humor and hope, The Help is a timeless, universal and triumphant story about the ability to create change. For more information, click here. This event is free and open to the public.

Scott Ainslie Presents: One Hundred Years of Robert Johnson
Tuesday, January 31, 2012 at 7 p.m.
Wheeler Hall, Ware Campus Center

In this special one-man show, multi-instrumentalist, Robert Johnson author and authority Scott Ainslie explores Johnson's music, times, and life story, presenting acoustic performances of the songs that electrified his contemporaries and went on to make music history. The story of Scott Ainslie's life is nearly synonymous with his deep love and talent for playing Delta Blues and especially the music of Blues legend, Robert Johnson. A community-based artist, Ainslie is part storyteller, part historian, part educator, and all musician. Armed with a lion-hearted voice and no fewer than three or four instruments – acoustic guitar, National slide guitar, fretless gourd banjo, diddley bow (one-string slide instrument), Scott also shares carefully chosen historical anecdotes and his personal experiences with scores of elder Blues musicians across the US South. Ainslie is the author of "Robert Johnson at the Crossroads." This event is free and open to the public. This event is funded in part by the Helen L. Eberle Endowment for Music Performance.

Alpine Quartet Directed by Gabrielle Vanoni
Wednesday, February 15, 2012 at 8 p.m.
Wheeler Hall, Ware Campus Center

An evening concert of traditional songs from the Italian Alps. Alpine Quartet under the direction of Gabriele Vanoni will perform the Alpini Songs which dramatize Italian experience during World War I and World War II. The Alpini troops were recruited from the inhabitants of the Italian Alps. Their war songs became famous around the world, not only because they tell of war and hardships, but mostly because they convey esprit de corps, the beauty of desire and the undefeatable human heart. The evening will be accompanied by Italian treats! This event is free and open to the public. This event is funded by the Olivetti Series Endowment Fund.

Tom Weiner Presents:
Called to Serve: Stories of Men and Women Confronted By The Vietnam War Draft
Tuesday, February 21, 2012 at 7 p.m.
Wheeler Hall, Ware Campus Center

“Called to Serve: Stories of Men and Women Confronted by the Vietnam War Draft” is Tom Weiner's first book. Tom was drafted in May 1971. He tells his story, as well as the stories of other men and women who were drafted. The book seeks to promote long-overdue healing from the after-effects of the Vietnam War. It depicts through oral history a wide range of stories and allows the reader to understand what happened to those who served, those who resisted, those who left, those who chose conscientious objection, those who beat the draft and those who loved, counseled and supported. This event is free and open to the public.

Film: Surviving Hitler
Monday, February 27, 2012 at 7 p.m.
Clements Hall, Ivey Science Center

As a teenager in Nazi Germany, Jutta is shocked to discover she is Jewish. She joins the German resistance and meets Helmuth, an injured soldier. The two become sweethearts and soon co-conspirators in the final plot to assassinate Hitler. “Surviving Hitler: A Love Story” is a true harrowing tale of war, resistance, and survival. At the center of the documentary is a love story for the ages, with riveting narration by Jutta herself, original 8mm footage shot by Helmuth and, miraculously, a happy ending. This event is free and open to the public.

Sally Hirsh-Dickinson
Wednesday, February 29, 2012 at 7 p.m.
Wheeler Hall, Ware Campus Center

Dr. Sally Hirsh-Dickinson, a former Colby-Sawyer College faculty member, is returning to the college to discuss her new book, Dirty Whites and Dark Secrets: Sex and Race in Peyton Place. Hirsh-Dickinson contends that it scandalized the nation precisely because of the way in which sexuality in the novel is conflated with America's problematic relationship to race. This charge is buttressed by the oft-forgotten detail that the fictional Peyton Place was founded by one Samuel Peyton, an escaped slave. Hirsh-Dickinson argues that the town's inability to come to terms with its black history informs its dysfunctional relationship to sex, power, and justice, mirroring America on the eve of the civil rights movement. She writes of New England in the larger American consciousness, touching on discussions of white studies and the racialized lower classes in American fiction. Dirty Whites and Dark Secrets is a thought-provoking study of a genre classic that will speak to both scholars and students about the deeper truths hidden in popular fiction. This event is free and open to the public.

Bob Harris
Monday, March 19, 2012 at 7 p.m.
Wheeler Hall, Ware Campus Center

Bob Harris is an author, comedian, TV writer (Bones, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation), New York Times contributor, quiz show champ (Jeopardy!, Greed), and former AP award-winning syndicated radio commentator. In 2008, Bob was hired by Forbes Traveler to circle the globe while helping to compile their annual list of the finest accommodations on earth, but was instead overwhelmed by the brutal contrast between the world's rich and poor. As a result, Bob has now lent every dime of his Forbes paychecks in small amounts to more than 1,500 entrepreneurs in 52 countries on five continents via the online lending platforms Kiva.org, Babyloan.org, and Rangde.org. In his upcoming book, “The 1st International Bank of Bob,” Harris travels across five continents to follow the online loan process from his own desk to the ultimate recipients. This event is free and open to the public.

Thursday, March 22, 2012 at 7 p.m.
Wheeler Hall, Ware Campus Center

Newpoli is a group of exceptionally talented singers and musicians, all alumni from Berklee College of Music and New England Conservatory, that performs Southern Italian Folk Music, mainly from the regions of Campania and Puglia, integrating a wide variety of styles such as Tarantella-Pizzica, Tammuriata, Villanella and the Neapolitan Canzone, encompassing music from the Middle Ages to the 19th century. They have performed throughout New England, at venues such as the Berklee Performance Center, Ryles Jazz Club, The Lizard Lounge, The Middle East, First Night and the Dante Alighieri Society. In 2006 and 2008 they were interviewed and featured by RAI International, the Italian International public television. Their debut CD “Newpoli “ was released in March 2008. Formed in October 2003, the group consists of two singers, Carmen Marsico and Angela Rossi, a Tamorra player (traditional Italian percussion), Fabio Pirozzolo, a percussionist, Michael Daillak, an accordion player, Roberto Cassan, a classical guitarist, Björn Wennås, a double bass player, Kendall Eddy, a flute player, Geni Skendo, and a violinist, Megumi Sasaki.This event is free and open to the public. This event is funded in part by the Olivetti Series Endowment Fund.

Film: The Lives of Others
Monday, March 26, 2012 at 7 p.m.
Clements Hall, Ivey Science Center

At once a policital thriller and human drama, "The Lives of Others" begins in East Berlin in 1984, five years before Glasnost and the fall of the Berlin Wall. East Berlin is being kept under strict control by the 'Stasi' the East German Secreet Police as part of their goal to know everything.

The film traces the work of a hightly skilled Stasi officer Captain Gerd Wiesler. He conducts surveilance on well-known intellectual George Dreyman and his lover Christa-Maria Sieland, a popular actress. These two are notorious rule breakers. Captain Wiesler becomes increasingly absorbed in their lives and dissillusioned in the process.

The film is as timely as it is timeless. It is potent and should not be missed.

This event is free and open to the public.

John de Graaf Presents:
Pursuing Happiness Instead of Chasing Growth
Wednesday, March 28, 2012 at 7 p.m.
Wheeler Hall, Ware Campus Center

John de Graaf is a documentary filmmaker with more than 15 national PBS specials, including the popular, Affluenza. The De Graaf Environmental Filmmaking Award, named for him, is presented annually at the Wild and Scenic Environmental Film Festival in Nevada City, California. He is the co-author of the best-seller Affluenza: The All-Consuming Epidemic and the editor of Take Back Your Time: Fighting Overwork and Time Poverty in America. John is the Executive Director of Take Back Your Time and also serves on the board of the national environmental organization, Earth Island Institute. He was the founder of the Hazel Wolf Environmental Film Festival and is currently writing a new book, What's the Economy For Anyway?. He has taught at The Evergreen State College.

Thomas Jefferson enshrined the right to the pursuit of happiness in our Declaration of Independence and held that increasing the happiness of its citizens was the only “orthodox purpose of happiness.” What if we took his words seriously? Can we even measure happiness? A new science says it's possible and around the world, individuals, organizations and governments are looking for new ways to measure progress that go beyond the Gross Domestic Product. Moreover, the earth's limits and our ecological crises require us to think differently about how much we produce and consume. The Happiness Initiative engages students in a conversation about what really matters for their well-being and how to get more of what matters instead of merely more. John de Graaf, co-director of the Happiness Initiative will offer a lively and engaging presentation about the project and how Colby-Sawyer students, faculty and staff can get involved. (See www.happycounts.org for more info.)

This event is free and open to the public.

Andrew Cutrofello Presents:
Hamlet's Melancholy
Wednesday, April 4, 2012 at 7 p.m.
Wheeler Hall, Ware Campus Center

Hamlet, the original Man in Black, describes himself as melancholy. What it meant to be melancholy in Shakespeare's day is different from what it means today. In Shakespeare's day, it meant to be filled with black bile, to have a certain complexion, to be meditative, and to be capable of communicating with spirits. Today, being melancholy means being sad or depressed. Our sense of the term derives from modern psychologists like Freud. Interestingly, Hamlet fits the new description of melancholy as much as he does the old. Is this a coincidence? In his presentation, Andrew Cutrofello will discuss some of the different ways in which philosophers, literary critics, and psychologists have thought about Hamlet's peculiar disposition.

Andrew Cutrofello is Professor in the Philosophy Department at Loyola University Chicago. He received his Ph.D. from Northwestern University in 1989, and taught for five years at St. Mary's College in Indiana before coming to Loyola. His current interests include Kant, continental philosophy, and metaphilosophical reflections on the history and meaning of the analytic/continental distinction. Dr. Cutrofello has published a number of books and articles, including Imagining Otherwise: Metapsychology and the Analytic A Posteriori, The Owl at Dawn: A Sequel to Hegel's Phenomenology of Spirit, Discipline and Critique: Kant, Poststructuralism, and the Problem of Resistance, and most recently, Continental Philosophy: A Contemporary Introduction.

This event is free and open to the public.