The Cecily Shives story part III: A professional premiere

Posted by Courtney Clancy on Dec 18, 2017 4:13:57 PM

 

This past July, with nerves, excitement, and a U-Haul filled with her life’s possessions from four years spent in Kalamazoo, Cecily Shives moved across the country to begin her career as a professional ballerina. Unfortunately, however, this new life chapter did not start off on the right foot.

Just three weeks before her contract was set to commence with Ballet San Antonio, Cecily slipped and fell in rehearsal, breaking the fifth metatarsal in her foot. With an injury infamously known as the “dancer’s break,” Cecily was forced off the dance floor and into a boot before her professional career even started. The pain and frustration of being unable to dance, combined with the inevitable anxiety of coming into a new environment, left Cecily devastated.

 

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Topics: Department of Dance, Dance, College Decision, The Student Experience

The Cecily Shives story part II: College bound ballerina

Posted by Courtney Clancy on Oct 25, 2017 1:26:28 PM

 

Despite having two professional dancers as parents, Cecily’s dance journey wasn’t choreographed for her. Just watch her move about the stage or studio, and you’ll see that she got to where she is with her own commitment, resolve and talent.

“You’re only in this because your dad is with the Joffrey,” Cecily recalls peers sneering and suggesting when she was younger. While at times she internalized these resentful jabs and doubted herself, her dad, Willy Shives, reinforced that she was deserving of every role and spot because of her own abilities as a dancer.

“Even the times that I questioned it, he reminded me that he wouldn’t put me in a place that would reflect poorly on him,” she said. “I know I’ve earned [my success], but this flak is something I’ve had to deal with my whole life.”

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Topics: Department of Dance, Dance, College Decision, The Student Experience

Frostic School of Art students collaborate with Audiotree Music Festival

Posted by Courtney Clancy on Sep 18, 2017 11:16:23 AM

 

Next weekend, Audiotree Music Festival will return to Arcadia Creek Festival Place, once again bringing "music and community together" in downtown Kalamazoo. But this year, the artists on stage aren't the only ones sharing their talent with audiences; the work of Gwen Frostic School of Art students will also be on display for concertgoers to enjoy.

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Topics: Frostic School of Art, The Student Experience, Kalamazoo

How Music Mountain stole my heart and will steal yours too

Posted by Molly Hill on Sep 1, 2017 12:05:05 PM

 

You know those experiences where you leave and think to yourself, “That was one of the most amazing things I have ever done. When can I do it again?”?  That is how I felt when I left College Audition Advantage just a couple weeks ago, right as the Berkshires were starting to feel like home.

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Topics: The Student Experience, Department of Theatre, CFA Students in Summer, Going places - Summer 2017

Slam Dancing in Spain

Posted by Kirsten Smits on Aug 24, 2017 4:25:44 PM

 

This summer, I had the opportunity to intern through Performing Arts Abroad at a dance school in Barcelona Spain, Slam Dancing Studio. Over the course of six weeks, the internship involved many different roles and responsibilities. A role that impacted me most was the job of being a featured instructor at the school’s annual performing arts camp, which was taught in English. This camp was three weeks in length, Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., for ages 4-16.

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Topics: Study Abroad, Department of Dance, Dance, The Student Experience, CFA Students in Summer, Going places - Summer 2017

A summer tending to Victory Gardens

Posted by Samantha Berger on Aug 21, 2017 11:58:29 AM

 

This past May I packed up my car with the barest essentials for a three-month adventure and made the move to Chicago, Illinois. This would be a solo adventure, and I would be lying if I said I was without trepidation. My destination was reached in three hours and thus began a summer like no other: a summer interning with Victory Gardens Theater.

 Victory Gardens Theater offers a transformative space for young arts professionals, and I was lucky to have this door opened for me when I attended the National Arts Marketing Conference last November in Austin, Texas. I was able to network with people from the Chicago theater industry and ultimately land this internship and make my vision of speaking truth and affecting change through the art I love a reality.

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Topics: The Student Experience, Department of Theatre, CFA Students in Summer, Going places - Summer 2017

A summer as a stitcher

Posted by Adam Stocker on Jul 17, 2017 9:57:33 AM

 

My name is Adam Stocker, and I recently graduated from WMU's Department of Theatre as a technical production theatre major with an emphasis in costume construction. I grew up in Warren, Michigan, and I will soon  be moving to New York City to pursue all of my dreams and goals.

I spent my summer as a stitcher at The Glimmerglass Festival, an opera company in Cooperstown, NY. I worked here last year as an intern, and I came back this year as staff. The show I specifically worked the most on was Oklahoma! (Glimmerglass produces 1 musical and 3 operas each summer). I work 9 a.m. - 6 p.m. about six days a week, and I spend that time working in the costume shop, sewing away and building costumes. As a stitcher, my primary job is to construct the garments via a sewing machine.

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Topics: The Student Experience, Careers in the Arts, Department of Theatre, CFA Students in Summer, Going places - Summer 2017

Get Lost [and other advice for travelers]

Posted by Maddie Galer on Jun 23, 2017 2:31:56 PM

 

For the past month, together with 10 other students and 1 professor, I have traveled to 4 countries, 6 cities, 7 hotels and hostels, and 17 art galleries and museums, and I have walked more miles than I can count. This group is made up of some of the hardest working and generally wonderful people. This trip is called Book Arts in Europe because it's focused on the art of book-making. We have visited different studios in Switzerland, Italy, and now in Amsterdam. Being able to experience and work in these studios was inspiring, and being in these countries and different cities was even more so. After traveling for a month, here is some advice I have for new travelers:

 

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Topics: Study Abroad, Student Experience, Frostic School of Art, The Student Experience, Globally Engaged, CFA Students in Summer, Going places - Summer 2017

Traveling back home from home

Posted by Maria Vizcarra on Jun 19, 2017 11:28:25 AM

 

This summer, I was able to go back home from home, compete in a flute competition, meet new friends, and visit family!

It has always been hard for me to decide which place to call “home." Even though I am considered an international student here at WMU, I have been living in the United States for nine years of my life. This is due to the fact that I moved from Peru when I was 12-years-old. As a musician, I could not be more excited to have had the opportunity to train musically in the US and take what I have learned back to where I was born.

My fiancé, Gabe, and I were both able to take a week off work and embark on a beautiful trip back home to Peru for Festival Internacional de Flautistas. Technically, our physical home is here in Michigan, but who can complain about being able to call 2 places home?!

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Topics: Student Experience, The Student Experience, Globally Engaged, CFA Students in Summer, Going places - Summer 2017

Broncos in the Baltics

Posted by Savannah Gonsoulin on Jun 15, 2017 12:14:10 PM

 

It’s been about two weeks since the University Chorale returned from our ten-day competition and concert tour of Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia. Chorale is made up of singers from all different backgrounds and walks of life, but I think it’s safe to say that this tour was the adventure of a lifetime for every single one. We all set out on this adventure wanting the same things: to forge new connections with singers from around the world, to experience a set of cultures with deep roots in the choral tradition, and to better ourselves as musicians through exposure through these cultures. But I don’t think that any of us could have anticipated the life-changing experiences that waited for us there in the Baltics, or just how far beyond our own expectations this trip would take us. 

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Topics: School of Music, Student Experience, The Student Experience, Globally Engaged, CFA Students in Summer, Going places - Summer 2017

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