Daniel A. Rodriguez awarded distinguished professorship in city planning

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Daniel A. Rodriguez awarded distinguished professorship in city planning

 He was also named director for the Center for Sustainable Community Design

Daniel A. Rodriguez has been named the Distinguished Professor of Sustainable Community Design.

Daniel A. Rodriguez has been named the Distinguished Professor of Sustainable Community Design.

 

(Chapel Hill, N.C.—Aug. 27, 2014) – Daniel A. Rodriguez has been named the Distinguished Professor of Sustainable Community Design in the department of city and regional planning at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The professorship was established to support cutting-edge research in sustainable development.

 

Rodriguez also joins the UNC Institute for the Environment as director of its Center for Sustainable Community Design. Institute Director Larry Band announced the appointment, effective July 1. The center informs, educates and builds societal capacity to move communities toward sustainable design through research and outreach.

 

Rodriguez is an expert in transportation planning, public transit and transportation policy. His research focuses on the relationship between transportation and the built environment, specifically how each affects planning choices about the other. Rodriguez also directs the Carolina Transportation Program.

 

Band expects Rodriguez’s background will contribute a great deal toward the Institute’s mission of solving local to global challenges. “Daniel’s expertise studying the complex issues of land use, transportation and environmental health impacts will be a tremendous asset for the institute and will assist in increasing collaboration and engagement on these multi-disciplinary issues,” Band said.

 

Rodriguez has a doctorate from the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor and has been a member of the UNC City and Regional Planning faculty since 2001. He also serves as an adjunct faculty with the Department of Epidemiology and is a faculty fellow with the UNC Highway Safety Research Center.

 

-Carolina-

Institute for the Environment Contact: Katie Hall (919) 962-0965, mchall@email.unc.edu

Communications and Public Affairs contact: Susan Hudson, (919) 962-8415, susan_hudson@unc.edu

 

New app turns cell phones into personal safety devices

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New app turns cell phones into personal safety devices

App is available on iPhone and Android platforms

 

(Chapel Hill, N.C. – August 26, 2014) — To help the campus community remain safe, both on and off campus, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is providing an app that turns cell phones into personal safety devices. The Rave Guardian Campus Safety App, a joint initiative between Student Affairs and the Department of Public Safety, is available to students, faculty and staff for free.

 

With the app, people can create an online safety network where they can check in with family, friends and Department of Public Safety officers.

 

02 UNC-GuardianWith the app people can:

  • Set a safety timer to notify people they trust to check in on them when they are alone or in an unfamiliar place. They can activate the timer to alert Public Safety and any other designated friends or family members if the timer isn’t turned off within the set timeframe;
  • Invite family members, friends or other people they trust to be Guardians, and communicate with them within the app, much the way people already do with their cell phone contact list;
  • Call UNC Public Safety directly for help if they are in trouble, and send text tips – including photos – if they see something suspicious; and
  • Link directly to a Smart911 safety profile they create; each profile contains information including residence details (both home and campus), medical conditions and more. The profiles are displayed to UNC Public Safety officers or to Smart911-enabled 911 centers nationwide when individuals call 911 from off campus.

 

Carolina is the first college or university in North Carolina to use Rave Guardian. The app can be downloaded on both Apple and Android devices. Once the app is downloaded and people have created their profiles, their cell phones will display “UNC Guardian.”

 

The University has used other Rave Mobile Safety products for several years. Rave Alert sends text messages and emails through Alert Carolina; Rave Guardian allows people to create an online safety network; and Smart911 allows faculty, staff and students to create their safety profiles.

 

Learn more about the new Rave Guardian safety app at http://raveguardian.unc.edu/.

– Carolina –

 

Communications & Public Affairs contact: Patty Courtright, patty_courtright@unc.edu, 919-962-7124

 

 

 

Botanical Garden to present ’Following in the Bartrams’ Footsteps‘ Aug. 30-Nov.2

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Botanical Garden to present ’Following in the Bartrams’ Footsteps‘ Aug. 30-Nov.2

The contemporary art exhibition and related events pay tribute to the influence of botanical illustrators John and William Bartram

 

(Chapel Hill, N.C.—Aug. 22, 2014) An exhibition of 44 original contemporary plant illustrations that offers a fresh look at 18th-century botanical illustrators John and William Bartram opens Aug. 30 at the North Carolina Botanical Garden. “Following in the Bartrams’ Footsteps” will be on display through Nov. 2 in the DeBerry Art Gallery of the James and Delight Allen Education Center.

 

Many of the 26 events associated with the exhibition are free and open to the public but require registration online at http://ncbg.unc.edu/bartram/. The listing of events also includes information about any fees required. Among the workshops, talks and classes are discussions led by Andrea Wulf, who wrote “The Brother Gardeners: Botany, Empire and the Birth of an Obsession,” on Sept. 28 and “Cold Mountain” author Charles Frazier, whose main character carries a copy of William Bartram’s “Travels” on his long journeyon Oct. 19.

 

“Following in the Bartrams’ Footsteps” was organized by the American Society of Botanical Artists in New York and Bartrams’ Garden, a 45-acre historic site less than 15 minutes from the heart of Philadelphia.

 

Between the 1730s and the 1790s, John and his son William Bartram traveled throughout the eastern wilderness, discovering and drawing as many kinds of plants as they could. The two are credited with identifying more than 200 native plants.

 

“The exhibit and rich array of associated programs is a remarkable representation of the mission and diverse activities of the North Carolina Botanical Garden,” said Peter White, director of the garden. “John and William Bartram not only represent the best scientific explorers of their day, but were also inspired by the beauty of the natural world and the bounty it offers us all.”

 

The two-month fall exhibition will include Bartram plant discoveries in the NCBG and adjoining Nature Trail. Two of the featured illustrations are works by Bill Alberti and Maryann Roper, graduates of the NCGB Certificate in Botanical Art and illustration.

 

Carolina-

 

Website:www.ncbg.unc.edu/bartram

Botanical Gardens media contact: Jennifer Peterson, (919) 962-9457, jennifer.peterson@unc.edu

General questions: (919) 962-0522, bartram@unc.edu

News Services contact: Susan Hudson, (919) 962-8415, susan_hudson@unc.edu

 

Alert Carolina siren, text message test successful

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Alert Carolina siren, text message test successful

(Chapel Hill, N.C. – August 20, 2014) – The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Wednesday (Aug. 20) successfully tested its emergency sirens as well as text-message delivery as part of the Alert Carolina safety awareness campaign.
 
The sirens sounded an alert tone in conjunction with a brief pre-recorded public address message. The test siren activation was followed by two test text messages – one for when the sirens initially sounded and another for the “all clear” – to cell phone numbers registered by students, faculty and staff in the online campus directory.

 

The sirens are located at Hinton James Residence Hall off Manning Drive; the Gary R. Tomkins Chilled Water Operations Center behind the Dogwood Parking Deck; Winston Residence Hall at the corner of Raleigh Street and South Road; near Hill Hall behind University Methodist Church; and next to University buildings and support facilities near the Giles Horney Building off Martin Luther King Boulevard; as well as at the Friday Center, located about three miles east of the central campus.

 

Text messages were sent to 44,356 unique cell phone numbers registered to students, faculty and staff, with 90 percent of the siren activation messages delivered within 6.5 minutes. That means 113 messages, on average, were delivered per second. In addition, the University sent 55,066 emails for both the initial siren activation and “all clear”; the send time for delivery of 90 percent of the test messages was approximately 17 minutes and for the “all clear” messages, 29 minutes. Because it is so important to get emergency-related information to people as quickly as possible, University officials constantly work to improve the delivery times for Alert Carolina messages.

 

In an actual emergency, the sirens would sound if an armed and dangerous person was on or near campus, a major chemical spill or hazard had been reported or a tornado warning was issued for the Chapel Hill-Carrboro area by the National Weather Service. The sirens also could sound for a different emergency, as determined by the Department of Public Safety, for which a general siren and alert message would be activated.

When the sirens sound, people should go inside or take cover immediately, close windows and doors, and stay until the “all clear” message sounds. The sirens are not designed to be heard inside buildings or while driving in vehicles. And there can be limitations with text messaging if there are problems with cell phone service or if users are out of service range.

 

To help educate faculty, staff and students about what to do when the sirens sound for a significant emergency or immediate threat to health and safety, the University created and distributed “What You Should Do For An Emergency Warning” posters to all campus classrooms, offices, residence halls and laboratory spaces. The poster is accessible at alertcarolina.unc.edu.

 

University officials emphasize that the sirens and text messages are part of a multi-layered approach to communicating in an emergency. Those efforts are anchored by alertcarolina.unc.edu. The University also communicates through means including campus-wide email and voice mail (only for campus land lines), official University social media accounts, the Adverse Weather and Emergency Phone Line, 919-843-1234, for recorded information, and the University Access Channel (Chapel Hill Time Warner Cable Channel 4) along with other campus cable television channels.

– Carolina –

Communications & Public Affairs contact:  Melanie Busbee, (919) 962-0550, mbusbee@unc.edu

 

UNC-led team given $2.2 million grant to develop water strategy for Southeast

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UNC-led team given $2.2 million grant to develop water strategy for Southeast


Professor Gregory Characklis and his team will develop innovative strategies for meeting future water demands in a region not accustomed to scarcity

 

(Chapel Hill, N.C. — Aug. 14, 2014) – The National Science Foundation and the U.S. Department of Agriculture awarded a $2.2 million grant to a team led by Gregory Characklis of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Characklis and his team will develop innovative strategies for meeting future water demands in the Southeastern United States in a sustainable way.

 

Characklis is a professor of environmental sciences and engineering at the Gillings School of Global Public Health and director of the Center for Watershed Science and Management at the UNC Institute for the Environment.

 

The Southeastern United States, an area generally accustomed to abundant water supply, faces unprecedented water scarcity caused by global climate change, population growth, economic expansion and limits on the development of new sources.

 

This project will bring together experts in hydrology, economics and engineering, as well as local government and utility officials, to design water management strategies for regions like the Southeast that are facing new and acute water shortages. The strategies will be able adapt to changing conditions and different regions.

 

“Unlike water-scarce regions, such as the Western U.S., the infrastructure, legal and regulatory systems in the Southeast have developed in a manner that assumes an almost inexhaustible supply of water,” Characklis said.  “An entirely new water-management paradigm is required to accommodate this new regional reality.”

 

Characklis and his interdisciplinary team will develop models to analyze how climate change and land-use trends impact regional hydrology and how infrastructure and regulatory systems will need to adapt. This flexible approach will include the use of reservoirs, water reuse and conservation. Much of the work will be conducted in North Carolina’s Research Triangle area, with input from regional utilities and local governments.

 

UNC researchers from the Gillings School of Global Public Health, College of Arts and Sciences, Institute for the Environment and School of Government will participate in the project, along with collaborators from Cornell University and the U.S. Forest Service Southern Research Station.  From the latter, James Vose and David Wear, project leaders of the Center for Integrated Forest Science based in Raleigh, and John Coulston, supervisory research forester from the Forest Inventory and Analysis program, will provide expertise in land use, climate and hydrologic responses.

 

-Carolina-

 

 

Institute for the Environment website: http://www.ie.unc.edu/

Institute for the Environment contact: Katie Hall, (919) 962-0965, mchall@email.unc.edu

 

 

University to test emergency sirens Aug. 20

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University to test emergency sirens Aug. 20

 

(Chapel Hill, N.C. – August 13, 2014) — The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill will test its emergency sirens on Wednesday, Aug. 20, between noon and 1 p.m. as part of Alert Carolina, a campus-wide safety awareness campaign.

 

Anyone outside on or near campus, including downtown Chapel Hill and locations near the William and Ida Friday Continuing Education Center and University facilities off Martin Luther King Boulevard north of campus, may hear the sirens during the test. No action is required. The sirens will sound an alert tone along with a brief pre-recorded public address message. When testing is complete, a different siren tone and voice message will signal “All clear. Resume regular activities.” Samples of the alert and “all clear” audio tones are available at alertcarolina.unc.edu

 

The sirens sound only for a major emergency or an immediate safety or health threat such as:

  • An armed and dangerous person on or near campus;
  • A major chemical spill or hazard;
  • A tornado warning for the Chapel Hill-Carrboro area issued by the National Weather Service; or
  • A different emergency, as determined by the Department of Public Safety.

 

If the sirens sound, go inside or take cover immediately. Close windows and doors. Stay until further notice. The sirens also broadcast short pre-recorded voice messages. When the threat is over, the sirens sound again with a different tone to announce along with the voice message: “All clear. Resume regular activities.”

 

“The sirens are the fastest way for the University to alert people about a major emergency or life-threatening situation on or near campus,” said Chief Jeff McCracken, director of public safety. “We conduct regular tests of the siren system so people will be familiar with what the sirens sound like and to help our students, faculty and staff think about what to do in an actual emergency.”

 

During the test, the University will send test text messages to the nearly 50,000 cell phone numbers registered by students, faculty and staff – one when the sirens sound and a second one to mark the “all clear.” In an emergency, the University also will post safety-related announcements on the Alert Carolina website (alertcarolina.unc.edu).

 

To help educate faculty, staff and students about what to do when the sirens sound for a significant emergency or immediate threat to health and safety, the University created and distributed “What You Should Do For An Emergency Warning” posters to all campus classrooms, offices, residence halls and laboratory spaces. The poster is accessible on the Alert Carolina website at http://www.alert.unc.edu/external/content/document/1395/1255639/1/AlertClassroomPoster.pdf.

 

People outside on or near campus may hear the sirens at six locations:  Hinton James Residence Hall off Manning Drive; the Gary R. Tomkins Chilled Water Operations Center behind the Dogwood Parking Deck; Winston Residence Hall at the corner of Raleigh Street and South Road; near Hill Hall behind University Methodist Church; University buildings and support facilities near the Giles Horney Building off Martin Luther King Boulevard; and near the William and Ida Friday Continuing Education Center about three miles east of the central campus.  If you are inside a building or driving in a car, don’t expect to hear the sirens.

The sirens and text messaging were last tested in February 2014. The University will continue regular testing at least once each semester as part of Alert Carolina, launched in March 2008.

 

The University uses multiple ways to reach students, faculty and staff based on criteria outlined in the Emergency Notification Protocols, which were adopted in 2011. The University will inform the campus community using four different types of notifications: Emergency Warning (sirens), Timely Warning (text and email), Informational Message (email) and Adverse Weather Message (text and email).
 

– Carolina –

 

Communications & Public Affairs contact: Patty Courtright, 919-962-7124, patty_courtright@unc.edu.

 

Statement from Chancellor Carol L. Folt on State Budget Completion

August 7, 2014

 

Statement from Chancellor Carol L. Folt on State Budget Completion

 

 

“We appreciate the General Assembly’s hard work in the Short Session to provide University employees with a much-needed pay increase, as well as the flexibility to reward deserving faculty with existing funds. State support has always been a critical part of our ability to attract and retain the best and brightest scholars who will educate the next generation of leaders and inventors. UNC-Chapel Hill is committed to delivering excellent and affordable public higher education to its students, and supporting its outstanding faculty and staff, regardless of fiscal climate. Our campus community stands ready to work with the General Assembly and the Governor in the long session to ensure that Carolina – and the entire university system – remain competitive in the state, national and global environment.”

 

 

Carol L. Folt, Chancellor
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

 

 

Largest cancer genetic analysis reveals new way of classifying cancer

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Largest cancer genetic analysis reveals new way of classifying cancer

(Chapel Hill, N.C. – August 7, 2014) – Researchers with The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) Research Network have completed the largest, most diverse tumor genetic analysis ever conducted, revealing a new approach to classifying cancers. The work, led by researchers at the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and other TCGA sites, not only revamps traditional ideas of how cancers are diagnosed and treated, but could also have a profound impact on the future landscape of drug development.

 

“We found that one in 10 cancers analyzed in this study would be classified differently using this new approach,” said Chuck Perou, Ph.D., professor in genetics and pathology, UNC Lineberger member and senior author of the paper, which appears online Aug. 7 in Cell. “That means that 10 percent of the patients might be better off getting a different therapy – that’s huge.”

 

Since 2006, much of the research has identified cancer as not a single disease, but many types and subtypes and has defined these disease types based on the tissue – breast, lung, colon, etc. – in which it originated. In this scenario, treatments were tailored to which tissue was affected, but questions have always existed because some treatments work, and fail for others, even when a single tissue type is tested.

 

In TCGA’s work, researchers analyzed more than 3,500 tumors across 12 different tissue types to see how they compared to one another — the largest data set of tumor genomics ever assembled. They found that cancers are more likely to be genetically similar based on the type of cell in which the cancer originated, compared to the type of tissue in which it originated.

 

“In some cases, the cells in the tissue from which the tumor originates are the same. But in other cases, the tissue in which the cancer originates is made up of multiple types of cells that can each give rise to tumors,” said Katherine Hoadley, Ph.D., research assistant professor in genetics and lead author. “Understanding the cell in which the cancer originates appears to be very important in determining the subtype of a tumor and, in turn, how that tumor behaves and how it should be treated.”

 

This new approach may also shift how cancer drugs are developed, allowing research to focus more on the development of drugs targeting larger groups of cancers with genomic similarities, as opposed to a single tumor type as they are currently developed.

 

One striking example of the genetic differences within a single tissue type is breast cancer. The breast, a highly complex organ with multiple types of cells, gives rise to multiple types of breast cancer; luminal A, luminal B, HER2-enriched and basal-like, which was previously known. In TCGA’s analysis, the basal-like breast cancers looked more like ovarian cancer and cancers of a squamous-cell type origin, a type of cell that composes the lower-layer of a tissue, rather than other cancers that arise in the breast.

 

“This latest research further solidifies that basal-like breast cancer is an entirely unique disease and is completely distinct from other types of breast cancer,” said Perou. In addition, bladder cancers were also quite diverse and might represent at least three different disease types that also showed differences in patient survival.

 

As part of the Alliance for Clinical Trials in Oncology, a national network of researchers conducting clinical trials, UNC researchers are already testing the effectiveness of carboplatin – a common treatment for ovarian cancer – on top of standard of care chemotherapy for triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) patients, of which 80 percent are the basal-like subtype. The results of this study were just published Aug. 6 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology and showed a benefit of carboplatin in TNBC patients. This new clinical trial result suggests that there may be great value in comparing clinical results across tumor types for which this study highlights as having common genomic similarities.

 

As participants in TCGA, UNC Lineberger scientists have been involved in multiple individual tissue type studies including most recently an analysis of a comprehensive genomic profile of lung adenocarcinoma. Perou’s seminal work in 2000 led to the first discovery of breast cancer as not one, but in fact, four distinct subtypes of disease. These most recent findings should continue to lay the groundwork for what could be the next generation of cancer diagnostics.

 

 – Carolina –

Lineberger contact: Katy Jones, (919) 962-3405, katy_jones@unc.edu

News Services contact: Thania Benios, (919) 962-8596, thania_benios@unc.edu

 

 

 

UNC Process Series features seven artistic works-in-development

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UNC Process Series features seven artistic works-in-development

 

(Chapel Hill, N.C. – August 7, 2014) – The 2014-2015 Process Series will feature seven new artistic works-in-development at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, beginning Aug. 21.

 

All performances begin at 8 p.m. Shows are free to the public, with a suggested donation of $5 at the door. The series offers audiences an opportunity to examine the creative process as artists and performers explore new ideas. Audience feedback following each performance is vital to the continued growth of the works.

 

“For our seventh season, the Process Series will bring together performers and scholars from several different departments at UNC and from all over the country to present works from a variety of disciplines, from videography to hip-hop to interactive theater,” said Joseph Megel, founder and artistic director. “This exciting year of incredibly diverse works explore a uniquely human experience, and we hope our audiences grow, engage and participate in the discussion.”

In partnership with UNC’s year-long focus on the WWI centenary, the series will feature three new works investigating themes and untold stories of WWI and its legacy.

 

The season also includes a new “in-house” play reading series in partnership with the department of dramatic art and PlayMakers Repertory Company. For more information on the readings, visit http://processseries.unc.edu.

Performances include:

 

‘Dolly Wilde’s Picture Show’

Aug. 21 and 22
Studio 6, Swain Hall

 

Combining live performance, multimedia and the photographic series “Oscaria/Oscar” (1994), by SPIR Conceptual Photography (María DeGuzmán and Jill Casid), “Dolly Wilde’s Picture Show” tells the story of Oscar Wilde’s supposedly identical niece, one of the First World War’s first female “motor-drivers.” In the script by Rebecca Nesvet, Dolly Wilde’s notorious heritage and the outbreak of war give her unprecedented purpose and freedom, but also burden her with demanding ghosts. Traversing the no-man’s-land between memory and photography, the 19th century and the 20th, Dolly struggles to build a revolutionary life in the ruins of history — as did her postwar generation.

 

‘The New Generation Project: Contemporizing the African American Art Song and Negro Spiritual’

Sept. 5 and 6
Rehearsal Room, Kenan Music Building

 

In an effort to preserve America’s arranged Negro spiritual and to introduce unknown African American poets through art songs, internationally known sopranos Louise Toppin and Marquita Lister are pioneering “The New Generation Project.” Through the project, they are commissioning new works from dozens of composers and poets to create a new songbook that confirms the contemporary relevancy of the art song and spiritual traditions.

This performance was rescheduled from the 2013-2014 season.

 

‘Ice Music’

A still from “Ice Music” (photo by Tobias Johnson)

A still from “Ice Music” (photo by Tobias Johnson)

Sept. 12 and 13
Nelson Mandela Auditorium, FedEx Global Education Center

 

“Ice Music” is a multimedia work for chamber music ensemble, video and dance. It creatively explores various aspects of ice — its structure, power, fragility and its interaction with animal life and human presence. Inspiration for “Ice Music” comes from Brooks de Wetter-Smith’s trips to Antarctica, the High Arctic and explorations within glacial ice. Through its constantly shifting nature, ice underscores an undeniable connection we all share in our history as a species.

This performance was rescheduled from the 2013-2014 season.

 

‘Over the Top’

Oct. 9 and 10
Studio 6, Swain Hall

 

“Over the Top,” by Vanessa Gilbert and David Higgins, takes on the Great War with levity and gravity as a performed, scaled history of World War I with a game for the audience. Hosted by a fictional last-living WWI veteran, “Over the Top” presents a garden party whose guests are personifications of the nation states involved in World War I, playing out their changing relationships and allegiances. Once Austria-Hungary throws the first lawn dart, the audience becomes mobilized as participants so they, too, can play War.

 

‘King of the Yees’

Family photograph of Lauren Yee, author of “King of the Yees”

Family photograph of Lauren Yee, author of “King of the Yees”

Nov. 7 and 8
Nelson Mandela Auditorium, FedEx Global Education Center

Take any Chinese last name, and there exists a corresponding “family association” with branches in each major American city: Chinese men’s clubs were formed over a hundred years ago after the building of the Transcontinental Railroad. For nearly 20 years, playwright Lauren Yee’s father Larry has been a driving force in the Yee Family Association. And now Lauren is writing a play — about legacy, obsolescence and the great and powerful house of Yee. Amid a backdrop of crumbling Chinatowns and all-too-lifelike museums, Lauren races through history, space and the fourth wall to find her father’s story and chronicle this disappearing piece of American culture.

 

‘Geomancy: Divination by Geography’

Feb. 13 and 14, 2015
Studio 6, Swain Hall

 

Soldiers on the Western Front spent months or years in small geographical areas; they lived in the earth and knew every tree and rubbled farm. Their survival depended on their ability to read the land, and then on their ability to take precise actions to eliminate any threat. Using texts from a poem cycle by contemporary poet Elizabeth T. Gray Jr., World War I period texts ranging from poetry to trench songs to military instruction manuals and field maps, “Geomancy: Divination by Geography” explores how those actions morph into ritual and how our sense of safety depends on our deepest connections.

 

‘Beat Making Lab: In Performance’

Producer/DJ/drummer Stephen Levitin aka Apple Juice Kid (left) and musician/educator/activist Pierce Freelon (right), who together lead the Beat Making Lab

Producer/DJ/drummer Stephen Levitin aka Apple Juice Kid (left) and musician/educator/activist Pierce Freelon (right), who together lead the Beat Making Lab

March 20 and 21, 2015
Studio 6, Swain Hall

 

Since 2012, musician/educator/activist Pierce Freelon and producer/DJ/drummer Stephen Levitin aka Apple Juice Kid have led the Beat Making Lab, an international music and cultural exchange program that promotes innovative collaboration and social/entrepreneurial impact. The exceptional artists will work with past Beat Making Lab participants from around the world to develop a new performance fused with audience participation that demonstrates the impact of music, art and activism.

 

The Process Series is sponsored by the Institute for the Arts and Humanities; the College of Arts and Science; the departments of communication studies, art, music, English and comparative literature, dramatic art, and African, African American and diaspora studies; and the Office of Diversity and Multicultural Affairs.

 

Process Series 2014-2105 season: http://processseries.unc.edu/performances/14-15-season/

Institute for the Arts and Humanities: http://iah.unc.edu

 

Photos: http://uncnews.unc.edu/?p=41680
A still from “Ice Music” (photo by Tobias Johnson)

http://uncnews.unc.edu/?p=41682
Family photograph of Lauren Yee, author of “King of the Yees”

http://uncnews.unc.edu/?p=41679
Producer/DJ/drummer Stephen Levitin aka Apple Juice Kid (left) and musician/educator/activist Pierce Freelon (right), who together lead the Beat Making Lab

 

– Carolina –

 

Process Series contact: Allison Driskill, Wagon Wheel Arts Promotion, (919) 455-0215, allison@wagonwheelarts.org

College of Arts and Sciences contact: Kim Spurr, (919) 962-4093, spurrk@email.unc.edu

 

 

 

 

PlayMakers kicks off PRC2 season with ‘Rodney King’

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(Chapel Hill, N.C. – August 5, 2014) — PlayMakers Repertory Company will present the regional premieres of three thought-provoking productions in its 2014-2015 PRC2 second-stage series, kicking off Sept. 2 with Roger Guenveur Smith’s powerful new one-man show “Rodney King.”

 

PlayMakers’ producing artistic director Joseph Haj describes the PRC² series as “three dynamic productions followed by a ‘second act’ of post-show conversation with creative artists, expert panelists and our audience.”

 

PlayMakers is the professional theater company in residence at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. PRC2 performances are presented in the Elizabeth Price Kenan Theatre at UNC’s Center for Dramatic Art on Country Club Road.

 

Ticket prices start at $15. Tickets may be purchased at www.playmakersrep.org or by calling (919) 962-PLAY (7529). Subscription packages including PRC² shows are also available.

 

PRC² productions for 2014-2015:

 

‘Rodney King’ by Roger Guenveur Smith: Sept. 2-7, 2014

 

Coming to PlayMakers from acclaimed runs in New York and Washington, D.C., “Rodney King” is a poetic, rhythm-charged look at the flawed everyman behind the myth. King endured police brutality, the glare of an unrelenting media and notoriety as the symbolic spark of the LA riots. His plaintive “Can we all get along?” remains an open question in America’s complicated relationship with race.

 

A critic has said that actor/solo performer Smith “likes his topics hot.” His one-man stage shows include “A Huey P. Newton Story” and “Frederick Douglass Now.” Screen credits include Spike Lee’s “Do the Right Thing” and “Get on the Bus” as well as Steven Soderbergh’s “K Street” and “Oz” on HBO.

 

The Los Angeles Times raved that Smith’s performance in “Rodney King” is “solo wizardry … riffing as freely and confidently as Sonny Rollins on sax.” The Washington Post called it “intensely cathartic and moving.”

 

Performances: 7:30 p.m. nightly Sept. 2-5 and 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. on Sept. 7.

 

‘Wrestling Jerusalem’ written and performed by Aaron Davidman, directed by Michael John Garcés: Jan. 7-11, 2015

 

“Wrestling Jerusalem” grapples with identity, social justice and history, exploring the competing narratives at the center of the Palestinian/Israeli conflict that has lasted generations. TheSan Francisco Chronicle calls it a “remarkable solo performance” [of] “yearning beauty … deep sadness and wistful hope.”
Performances: 7:30 p.m. Jan. 7-11 and 2 p.m., Sunday, Jan. 11.

 

‘Mary’s Wedding’ by Stephen Massicote: April 29-May 3, 2015

 

“Mary’s Wedding” is a tale of young love on the eve of the Great War. The night before her wedding to another man, a girl dreams of meeting a soldier, and their blossoming love and the winds of fate that blow them apart when he goes to battle in World War I. Haunting and achingly romantic, in the words of the playwright, it’s “a memorial to both the Great War and Great Love.” Broadway World described the play as “[a] wonderfully tender, poignant story of innocent first love and the vicissitudes of fate.”
The production is one of PlayMakers’ contributions to UNC’s commemoration of the centenary of World War I.

 

Performances: 7:30 p.m. nightly April 29-May 3; and 2 p.m., Sunday, May 3.

 

Based in UNC’s College of Arts and Sciences, PlayMakers is the Carolinas’ premiere resident professional theater company. New York’s Drama League has named PlayMakers one of the “best regional theatres in America.”

 – Carolina –

PlayMakers contact: For press information, interviews, photos, poster art or more on the series, contact Connie Mahan, (919) 962-5359, cmahan@email.unc.edu.

College of Arts and Sciences contact: Kim Spurr, (919) 962-4093, spurrk@email.unc.edu

News Services contact: Susan Hudson, (919) 962-8415, susan_hudson@unc.edu