blog postsMellon grant to involve 15 schools and focus on 'Global Midwest'Jan 14, 2014 9:00 am17 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The Illinois Program for Research in the Humanities has been awarded a $3 million grant by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to fund a consortium of 15 humanities institutes.Video game features music by honored U. of I. composition professorDec 16, 2013 9:00 am36 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Like most musicians, Erin Gee - a composition professor at the University of Illinois - experiments incessantly with her instrument, trying to coax it into delivering an increasingly wider range of intriguing sounds. In Gee's case, her instrument is simply her mouth, but what she does with it defies conventional categorization. It's not singing, or scatting, or even beat-boxing. Instead, she has created her own musical toolbox - a collection of clicks, hums, pops, sighs, trills, whispers and whistles that composer Martin Brody has described as "new vocal molecules created by recombining the atomic elements of speech."IJPAN project closes with Illinois and Tokyo dancers plus avatarsDec 6, 2013 9:00 am13 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - For three years, the Illinois Japan Performing Arts Network has been using the powerful computing resources of the University of Illinois to foster collaborations and interactions among Japanese and American artists, scholars and audiences. The project's first production, in October 2010, featured Yoshi Oida performing his acclaimed solo show "Interrogations: Words of the Zen Masters." Since then, the network has hosted 15 events, including performances by Japan's most revered Noh and kabuki theater artists; musicians renowned for their mastery of the biwa, koto, sho and angular harp; and live streams of performances from the Japan Society of New York.Theater professor juggles directing, teaching and actingDec 5, 2013 9:00 am4 views Less than 48 hours after the curtain went up Nov. 7 on “Clybourne Park,” director Lisa Gaye Dixon was off to New York, leaving the cast of U. of I. theater students to carry on through the end of the show’s 10-day run.U. of I. English professor and team document life in Chicago's public housingNov 13, 2013 9:00 am39 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Growing up in Chicago's Hyde Park-Kenwood neighborhood, Audrey Petty lived about two miles from the Chicago Housing Authority's Robert Taylor Homes. Those 28 high-rises, arranged in horseshoe clusters along the Dan Ryan Expressway, contained more than 4,400 apartments, giving the complex the dubious title of largest public housing development in the nation. But though she could practically see the drab concrete towers from her doorstep, Petty regarded the Robert Taylor Homes as a foreign, mysterious and impenetrable enclave.Nathan Gunn chosen to lead new U. of I. Lyric Theatre programOct 30, 2013 9:00 am126 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Internationally renowned opera singer Nathan Gunn has been named general director of the University of Illinois' new Lyric Theatre program, which - like Gunn - will embrace a broad spectrum of vocal theater repertoire, from musicals to opera.Films to be shown at Illinois focus on post-quake massacre in 1923 JapanOct 24, 2013 9:00 am34 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - In 1923, a 7.9 magnitude earthquake shook Tokyo and Yokohoma, essentially leveling Japan's two largest cities and causing more than 100,000 deaths. The subsequent aftershocks, fires and ensuing panic bred rumors that "malcontent Koreans" living in Japan were setting the fires, poisoning water wells and plotting a revolution. To prevent this alleged uprising, vigilantes aided by police and the military massacred more than 6,000 Koreans.U. of I. Library acquires archives of acclaimed writer Gwendolyn BrooksOct 17, 2013 9:00 am811 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The University of Illinois Rare Book and Manuscript Library has acquired the literary archives of Gwendolyn E. Brooks, the first African-American to win a Pulitzer Prize and the poet laureate of Illinois for the last 32 years of her life, until her death in 2000. The archives, which had been kept by Brooks' daughter Nora Brooks Blakely, comprise more than 150 boxes stuffed with manuscripts, drafts, revisions, correspondence, scrapbooks, clippings, homemade chapbooks in which Brooks neatly handwrote her earliest (unpublished) poems, and heavy bronze awards ensconced in velvet-lined boxes collected later in her career.Sculpture to be dedicated in honor of U. of I. industrial design mentorOct 16, 2013 9:00 am64 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The University of Illinois College of Fine and Applied Arts will celebrate the initiation of a new professional mentor program on Oct. 26 (Saturday) with the dedication of a sculpture created by an alumnus and placed in honor of his former professor.New practice area for Marching Illini neatly solves multiple problemsOct 15, 2013 9:00 am268 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The University of Illinois Marching Illini provides the soundtrack for a long list of cherished football traditions. Gridiron games wouldn't be nearly as much fun without the band leading the players out of the tunnel, playing "Imperial March" from "Star Wars" on third downs, and of course "Oskee Wow Wow" after every touchdown. But the band is about to abandon one lesser-known custom that dates back several generations - and everybody is happy to see this one go.Passes for 2014 Roger Ebert's film festival go on sale Nov. 1Oct 14, 2013 9:00 am1 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Those wanting to take in all of the 16th annual Roger Ebert's Film Festival, or "Ebertfest," can purchase festival passes starting Nov. 1.Music professors step out of the classroom to playOct 1, 2013 9:00 am33 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - University of Illinois School of Music professors are performing in a variety of high-profile venues this fall.Japan House to feature Japanese quilting at annual open houseOct 1, 2013 9:00 am28 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Sashiko, the Japanese quilting practice that dates back to the 17th century, will be featured at Japan House on Saturday (Oct. 5), during open house, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.'Parks and Recreation' star to co-host Japan House fundraiserSep 19, 2013 9:00 am1269 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Nick Offerman, best known for his role as Ron Swanson on the hit NBC comedy series "Parks and Recreation," will bring his "American Ham Tour" to the University of Illinois Krannert Center for the Performing Arts on Oct. 26 (Saturday) as a benefit for Japan House. He also will co-host an "East Meets Midwest" fundraising dinner at Prairie Fruits Farm in Champaign on Oct. 27 (Sunday) with Shozo Sato and his wife, Alice. Shozo Sato is the founder of Japan House and a professor emeritus of art and design.'Parks and Recreation' star to co-host Japan House fundraiserSep 19, 2013 9:00 am3 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Nick Offerman, best known for his role as Ron Swanson on the hit NBC comedy series "Parks and Recreation," will bring his "American Ham Tour" to the University of Illinois Krannert Center for the Performing Arts on Oct. 26 (Saturday) as a benefit for Japan House. He also will co-host an "East Meets Midwest" fundraising dinner at Prairie Fruits Farm in Champaign on Oct. 27 (Sunday) with Shozo Sato and his wife, Alice. Shozo Sato is the founder of Japan House and a professor emeritus of art and design.Pygmalion Literary Festival reading series starts Sept. 27 in UrbanaSep 18, 2013 9:00 am8 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The popular Pygmalion Music Festival, held annually at the University of Illinois Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, Krannert Art Museum and other venues in Urbana-Champaign, has added a two-day literary festival this year. Among the writers who will be reading from their works: Matt Bell, the author of "In the House Upon the Dirt Between the Lake and the Woods"; Dan Chaon, the author of "Among the Missing" and "You Remind Me of Me"; and James Greer, the author of "Artifical Light," "The Failure" and "Guided By Voices: A Brief History."Symposium at Illinois to feature science fiction authors and musicSep 18, 2013 9:00 am8 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Best-selling author Kim Stanley Robinson will deliver the keynote lecture at "Writing Another Future," a symposium on science fiction, the arts and humanities, Sept. 25-27 (Wednesday-Friday) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. In addition to presentations and panel discussions, the event will include several concerts. Organizers hope the symposium will spark interest in science fiction writing as part of the university's ongoing explorations of science, technology and society.Fall lineup of speakers announced for 2013 MillerComm seriesSep 5, 2013 9:00 am0 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The fall 2013 Center for Advanced Study/MillerComm lectures begin Sept. 18 (Wednesday) with Gunther Schuller - musician, composer, conductor, educator, historian and publisher. He has won a Pulitzer Prize, a MacArthur Foundation "genius" award and three Grammy awards. Schuller, a George A. Miller Visiting Artist, has composed more than 180 works covering genres from symphonic to operatic to jazz, founded publishing and recording companies, and served as the president of the New England Conservatory for a decade. Instead of giving a lecture, Schuller will be interviewed at 7:30 p.m. by University of Illinois French horn professor Bernhard Scully, who is performing Schuller's Quintet for Horn and Strings the next night (Sept. 19) at the Allerton Music Barn Festival in Monticello, Ill.Dance performances, new art exhibitions featured at Krannert Art MuseumSep 5, 2013 9:00 am31 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Dance performances both live and in video installations are being featured this month at Krannert Art Museum - not to be confused with Krannert Center for the Performing Arts. The dance exhibitions represent the second installment in the art museum's Openstudio series, which presents live musical or dance performances in conjunction with artist residencies, intended to forge interdisciplinary learning and cultural exchange.Novelists, poets to take part in Carr Reading SeriesSep 5, 2013 9:00 am14 views Award-winning novelist Micheline Aharonian Marcom will read from her latest book, "A Brief History of Yes," to open the fall 2013 Carr Reading Series at 4:30 p.m. Sept. 18 in the Illini Union Bookstore.Sinfonia da Camera kicks off 30th season with gala, performancesSep 4, 2013 9:00 am36 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Sinfonia da Camera, the professional chamber orchestra led by Ian Hobson, a professor emeritus of music at the University of Illinois, celebrates its 30th anniversary season with a gala at 6 p.m. on Sept. 15 (Sunday) in the lobby of Krannert Center for the Performing Arts. Cocktails, a formal dinner and dessert will be served while Hobson, guest soloists and Sinfonia musicians perform classical chamber music favorites and jazz standards. The evening will end with a live auction and dancing. Tickets are $150 per person (half of that amount is a tax-deductible gift) and are available through the Sinfonia da Camera office at 217-244-4350 or by email at email@example.com.Nine U. of I. faculty members named to Center for Advanced StudyAug 29, 2013 9:00 am53 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The Center for Advanced Study has announced nine new appointments to its permanent faculty - one of the highest honors the University of Illinois campus bestows for outstanding scholarship.Interactive app makes teaching music theory possible onlineAug 6, 2013 9:00 am228 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - University of Illinois music professor Heinrich Taube has developed a computer application that could change the way music theory is taught. Called Harmonia, the program allows teachers to create an endless variety of composition or analysis assignments, provides students with immediate feedback, and performs instant harmonic analysis of complex compositions. It is the first app created at the U. of I. to appear in Apple's iTunes store for computer applications, and could pave the way for teaching music theory online.Renowned artists to celebrate extraordinary range of the guitarAug 5, 2013 11:30 am5 views How many different kinds of sounds can come out of an instrument with just six strings? ELLNORA: The Guitar Festival will provide some answers Sept. 5-7 (Thursday-Saturday) at Krannert Center for the Performing Arts.Industrial design: Illinois' long history with the art of the inevitableJul 18, 2013 9:00 am268 views Toward the end of her freshman year at the U. of I., Michelle Kwak found herself floundering. Having aced all her advanced placement classes at Lemont High School (in suburban Chicago), she was caught off-guard by the rigors of her engineering courses, and turned to one of her deans for guidance. He knew that Kwak considered art her main hobby, and suggested that she check out industrial design - a program she had never heard of.The piano concerto taking center stage in classes, recitals at IllinoisJul 16, 2013 9:00 am55 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - This year's Summer Piano Institute at the University of Illinois will focus on the art of performing concertos - those virtuosic, multimovement works that typically feature a soloist accompanied by an orchestra. Ian Hobson, an Illinois professor emeritus internationally known for his concerts, recordings, conducting and adjudicating, chose to emphasize concertos partly because the collaborative nature of these works requires special abilities, and partly because concertos are a crucial component in most piano competitions.Famed composer Gunther Schuller among guest artists at music festivalJul 9, 2013 9:00 am19 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - In an effort to make a good thing even better, the perennially popular Allerton Music Barn Festival has been moved from its traditional Labor Day weekend slot to Sept. 19-22 (Thursday through Sunday). Jeffrey Magee, the director of the University of Illinois School of Music, said the shift is mainly an effort to avoid uncomfortable temperatures in the restored 19th-century Dutch hay barn, which is well-ventilated, though not air-conditioned.University of Michigan associate librarian to lead U. of I. librariesJun 10, 2013 9:00 am34 views CHAMPAIGN,Ill. - John P. Wilkin has been named university librarian and dean of libraries at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, effective Aug. 16, pending approval by the U. of I. Board of Trustees at its July 24 meeting in Chicago.Education Justice Project wins prize for innovative prison ESL classMay 17, 2013 9:00 am131 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Students in the University of Illinois Education Justice Project have received the Arcus Prize for Collaborative Social Justice Leadership at Kalamazoo College in Michigan. The students' project, Language Partners, was one of three entries honored last week from among 188 submitted by organizations in 23 nations. The $30,000 award will be split with two other social justice organizations.Exhaustive computer research project shows shift in English languageMay 15, 2013 9:00 am161 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - University of Illinois English professor Ted Underwood recently wrapped up a research project involving more than 4,200 books. Since that work revealed dramatic shifts in the English language between the 18th and 19th centuries, he's now expanding his research to include more than 470,000 books - almost every English language book written during that era and preserved in a university library.Dance professor Tere O'Connor one of 20 named a Doris Duke ArtistApr 30, 2013 9:00 am4 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Tere O'Connor, a professor of dance at the University of Illinois, has been granted a Doris Duke Artist Award. The awards represent a deep investment in the potential of the 20 recipient artists, who each receive an unrestricted $225,000 grant, plus $25,000 to fund an audience-development project and another $25,000 to invest in a retirement account that will allow them to continue their creative work later in life.AsiaFest to celebrate all Asian and Pacific Island cultures on SaturdayApr 29, 2013 9:00 am19 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Japan House has always celebrated Children's Day (formerly known as Boys' Day), but this year, it has joined with the Asian American Cultural Center to host AsiaFest, a celebration of all Asian and Pacific Island cultures.New master's program at Illinois will train translators and interpretersApr 29, 2013 9:00 am53 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The demand for translators and interpreters is projected to increase by at least 20 percent by the year 2020, and a new program at the University of Illinois will offer a master's degree to equip graduates to fill those jobs. Elizabeth Lowe, the director of the U. of I.'s Center for Translation Studies, says the program offers both on-campus and online options, and is accepting applications now for courses that will begin in the fall.Additional guests and film discussions announced for 'Ebertfest'Apr 3, 2013 9:00 am4 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Three additional guests and the schedule of film-related panel discussions have been announced for the 15th annual Roger Ebert's Film Festival, also known as "Ebertfest," taking place April 17-21 at the Virginia Theatre in downtown Champaign and at the University of Illinois.Sinfonia's season-ending concert to showcase romantic favoritesApr 1, 2013 9:00 am27 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Sinfonia da Camera, the professional chamber orchestra of the University of Illinois, will end its season April 9 (Tuesday ) with a concert aptly titled "Rush Hour Romance."Zoning restrictions also a key factor in foreclosure crisis, scholar saysMar 28, 2013 9:00 am63 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The causes of the foreclosure crisis seem obvious: Buyers purchased homes they couldn't afford, lured in part by lenders pushing subprime mortgages. Real estate values escalated, and when the bubble burst, buyers were left owing more than their homes were worth.Bond ... James Bond ... turns 60 and is to be celebrated at IllinoisMar 25, 2013 9:00 am162 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - "The scent and smoke and sweat of a casino are nauseating at three in the morning." That's the opening line of "Casino Royale," the novel that introduced secret agent James Bond to the world, launching a franchise of books and blockbuster movies that continues to this day. April 13 marks the 60th anniversary of the publication of "Casino Royale," and the University of Illinois will recognize the event with a collaborative celebration hosted by the Rare Book and Manuscript Library, the Spurlock Museum, and the Sousa Archives and Center for American Music.'Days of Heaven,' Tilda Swinton and Jack Black all part of 2013 'Ebertfest'Mar 22, 2013 9:00 am230 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Terrence Malick's 1978 film "Days of Heaven" won an Oscar for best cinematography, and Roger Ebert likely found that no surprise. It is "above all one of the most beautiful films ever made," Ebert said in a 1997 review.Renowned harpist to perform, conduct classes at U. of I.Mar 14, 2013 9:00 am5 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Harpist Naoko Yoshino, who has been performing with orchestras around the world since she was 17, will perform in a recital March 26 (Tuesday) at Krannert Center for the Performing Arts. The performance will mark the culmination of her three-day engagement at the University of Illinois, where she will be the Frances P. Rohlen artist-in-residence beginning March 24 (Sunday).Alma Mater sculpture restoration more extensive than originally thoughtMar 4, 2013 9:00 am261 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Because deterioration to the Alma Mater sculpture is more extensive than an initial inspection of the exterior indicated, the restoration of the 5-ton bronze statue is going to cost more and take longer.Girls Day to be commemorated March 3 at U. of I.'s Japan HouseFeb 27, 2013 9:00 am83 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Japan House will observe Hinamatsuri, or Girls Day, on Sunday (March 3) with tea ceremonies, the traditional display of hina dolls, and origami souvenirs. This event, like the Setsubun (lunar new year) celebration two weeks ago, has been coordinated by Japan House interns, who will attend Girls Day dressed in traditional kimonos.BAM! WAP! KA-POW! Library prof bops doc who K.O.'d comic book industryFeb 11, 2013 9:00 am1494 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Behavioral problems among teenagers and preteens can be blamed on the violence, sex and gore portrayed in the media marketed to them - that was the topic of televised public hearings held by the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Juvenile Delinquency in 1954 to address the scourge of comic books. The hearings, which resulted in the decimation of what was an enormous comic book industry, had been inspired in large part by the book "Seduction of the Innocent," by psychiatrist Fredric Wertham, based on his own case studies.Distinguished lecturers to appear for annual MillerComm seriesJan 31, 2013 9:00 am3 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Royal residences, racial stereotypes, social activism and international terrorism are among the topics to be addressed by the spring 2013 Center for Advanced Study/MillerComm lectures. The annual series, begun in 1973, is supported by the George A. Miller Endowment along with several University of Illinois units.Heavenly concert on tap for Sinfonia da Camera at Krannert CenterJan 30, 2013 9:00 am2 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Sinfonia da Camera's next concert will feature some special guests - an assortment of telescopes aimed at the night sky, and the "meteorite that ate Detroit," on loan from the Staerkel Planetarium. These attractions will help set the mood for a program that Sinfonia music director Ian Hobson has titled "The Solar System."Carr visiting author series to showcase two acclaimed poetsJan 29, 2013 9:00 am19 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Kathleen Graber - a former high school English teacher who was inspired to write poetry after taking students on a field trip - will read from her critically acclaimed collections at 4:30 p.m. on Feb. 13 (Wednesday) at the Illini Union Bookstore.Previously unknown Sandburg poem focuses on power of the gunJan 18, 2013 9:00 am772 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - In an apparently unpublished and previously unknown poem, Carl Sandburg addressed the topic of guns. Titled "A Revolver," the short piece was discovered last week among Sandburg's archives, housed in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.Contemporary Brazilian art to be featured in new Krannert exhibitionJan 16, 2013 9:00 am18 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Since the 1940s, Brazil has been called the "country of the future." The tag has hung on for so long, it has generated another adage: "Brazil is the country of the future - and always will be." This position perpetually on the cusp serves in part as the inspiration for "Blind Field," an exhibition of contemporary Brazilian art opening at Krannert Art Museum on Jan. 25 (Friday).Mother-son duo release new CD, 'Dialogues en Francais'Nov 29, 2012 9:00 am1 views Parents and their children often have special relationships that demonstrate a type of closeness unlike any other. UI French horn professor Bernhard Scully is quite familiar with that concept. He and his mother, pianist Joanne Minnetti, have formed a unique musical partnership over the years.Guide makes it easier to find the right books to give childrenNov 27, 2012 9:00 am1 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Holiday shoppers hoping to please the youngsters on their gift lists can turn to the "Guide Book to Gift Books" published by the Center for Children's Books at the University of Illinois. The annual guide, compiled by Deborah Stevenson, the editor of The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books - a leading book review journal for school and public librarians - provides one-sentence descriptions of more than 350 of the best recently published volumes of youth literature, along with both traditional and e-book prices.Collaborative journal to be first focused on pre-modern Chinese cultureNov 12, 2012 9:00 am36 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Zong-qi Cai, a professor of East Asian languages and cultures at the University of Illinois, has created a unique scholarly journal in partnership with Peking University in Beijing and Duke University Press. Titled the Journal of Chinese Literature and Culture, this biannual publication will be funded by Peking University during its first five years. It's the only journal wholly dedicated to the study of pre-modern Chinese culture, and the first instance of a Chinese university becoming directly involved with English-language scholarship outside of China, Cai said.