|Friday, April 15th|
1:40 PM - 2:00 PM
Gogol Bordello is a self-proclaimed “Gypsy-punk” band. The band’s leader, Eugene Hütz, emphasizes the “realness” of his music while challenging the authenticity of other syncretic musics (such as the broadly-defined genre of “world music”). However, Hütz’s legitimacy as a Gypsy musician has been challenged by Roma (Gypsy) individuals in his home country of Ukraine.
To evaluate these contested claims of authenticity, I examine Russian Gypsy music to determine why Hütz’s reputation is in question. I then draw upon the works of James Young, a philosopher at the University of Victoria, who studies the aesthetic and moral implications of cultural appropriation. Young’s theories will serve as a background in my analysis of Gogol Bordello. While traditional definitions of music are valuable and must be considered, it is presumptuous to assume that these definitions are the only ones that matter. As information sharing increases contact between world cultures, conceptions of music as a cultural expression should be open to change.
2:00 PM - 2:20 PM
Cirque du Soleil, circus arts, and aerial movement are becoming more and more popular within contemporary cultures. Many dance companies, as well as theatre companies around the country are beginning to incorporate aerial movement into their movement repertories. This last wintersession, I had the opportunity to explore and practice the art of aerial dance. Under the supervision of professional aerialist Holly Rollins, I trained for and choreographed a solo performance focused on the concept of flight and incorporating aerial dance trapeze movement. This presentation will show video footage of the performance, as well as an in-depth discussion of my process of learning this form of movement that has never been explored at the University before. With the introduction of aerial dance to the School of Theatre and Dance, it will provide an opportunity for the performers to experience another art form that is becoming prevalent in the performance world. It will give students the opportunity to acquire another skill for their resumes, as well as a chance to experience a type of performance that is happening across the country. Having Holly present and having the opportunity to work with her has been an incredible opportunity, and I'm eager to share the experience with a larger community.
2:20 PM - 2:40 PM
AT&T's "Re-think Possible" campaign was a response to the company’s image problems that developed over the last decade. Consumers complained that the company provided little customer service, poor coverage and slow coverage. AT&T's new campaign aimed to broaden and improve its brand through selling an image of the company, rather than a specific product. The new campaign relies heavily on music to sell AT&T’s new image. I will discuss how music is used in two commercials in the campaign to target two separate and important demographics. My analysis of the music will draw upon ethnomusicologist Thomas Turino’s theories of music and meaning to explain how advertisers effectively use music to emotionally manipulate their targeted consumers, even without selling a specific product.
2:40 PM - 3:00 PM
Fans are very powerful creatures; without diehard fans, Serenity, the movie resolution to the short-lived television show Firefly would never have been made. Fan power can also manifest in magnificent fanart, or art depicting characters, stories, etc. from a work not of the artist’s making. On the Internet, fanart has become a staple of online art communities and commonly references shows, movies, and video games. While the majority of fanart is of questionable quality, a goodly minority features some of the most impressive art presently produced.
So what motivates me personally to create fanart? Adventurous stories and characters can stimulate powerful emotions and provide a vessel in which to pour my own creative interpretation. Exquisite fanart inspired me to become an artist. I hope to similarly influence others. With this presentation I will delve into the making of fanart with Renegade, my piece inspired by the video game Jak II. For years I have explored the techniques of digital art. As such, Renegade was made in Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop and predominantly exhibits digital painting. Through exposition and exhibition of progress shots I will break down the process of digital art.
Due to its derivative nature fanart is not often recognized as a viable art form, yet as with many films and books the point is not strictly originality but original reinvention. I will allow Renegade to speak for itself on this subject.