Back at Bates, just in time

I had really been looking forward to Thanksgiving break– I was so busy with schoolwork, plays, and other commitments that I was relying on the relaxing week at home to rejuvenate me in time for the finals crunch. And it totally did. Bates has amazing vacations; March is the only month  where students don’t get some time off– all of the others have breaks!

Anyways, because I had two or three days of break more than most of my friends from home, I was able to take the beginning of the week to just catch up on sleep, go for appointments, and spend time with my family. It was great to reunite with all of my high school friends though, especially considering it is the time when everyone is figuring out their majors and what they want to do. I will admit though, most of their majors were complicated seven word things that related to like geography and environmental political planning… I offered a one word response “ENGLISH.”

Everyone was busy with schoolwork, though. We even took over a room at the Winchester Public Library on Friday to write essays on a variety of subjects from a variety of classes at a wide range of colleges. I was very busy working on the second and final paper for my Anthro/Religion course on Ancient Greece. I’m writing about social myth and testimony at a sanctuary for Asklepius, and how a story involving tattoos makes significant remarks about social status. Thank goodness I spent the time over the break though, because now I have other things to think about: FINALS. They’re looming in the distance, but tonight, as all of my friends were gradually arriving back on campus, no one was thinking about the giant tests and the end of the semester. Everyone was just glad to be back, me included. The rest and relaxation of home is nice, for a little while, but Bates and the people here are just as important to me.

Extracurricular Theater+School=?

Tonight I am acting in a performance, but instead of for the Robinson Players, the student theater organization, it’s for the Directing Class. The theater department offers many experience-based courses in addition of their lecture courses, including Beginning Acting, Advanced Acting, Acting for the Camera, Directing, and Directing for the Camera among others. Around the end of fall semester, the Directing course culminates in an evaluation of a play they have directed. The first performance, just before Thanksgiving recess (TONIGHT!!!) is a traditional proscenium performance. Then, once we return from break, it is reblocked, for an arena setting, and then performed again right before finals.

This year, there are 5 students in the class, each of whom directed a “hospital play.” My director, Michelle, was the first director I had at Bates when we were both first years, last fall. Last year, I also participated in the directing class shows, but the class had 16 people in it– I had to be in two just so each show could get fully cast!

This show has really crept up on me, but last night at dress rehearsal everything was going so well that I’m sure tonight will be a success! Next step: HOME!

Hello stage

This past weekend, I had my first performance at Bates this year. I’m on the board of directors for the student theather organization, The Robinson Players, and every fall we put on an “Evening of One Acts”. My show, Sociability, was one of them. It was a lot of fun, working with the cast and a great director, CG Niquette.

The play, written by Charles Disenzo, was a comedy based around two competing couples in the late 1950s-early 196os. Their competition, of course, slowly spins out of control, culminating in a crazy conclusion where clothes are ripped and vases and lamps destroyed.

It was a challenge though, juggling that along with my other responsibilities. I was, for the most part, in two shows for much of production. I’m performing in a play for the directing class next week and having two practices a day, along with lots of school work, was not uncommon for me. But, so it goes. It’s really rewarding when I know that I’ve put on a great show, and it’s something I’m proud of– and that my friends really enjoy as well!

Just about another week or so and then it’s home for a relaxing Thanksgiving break… if only I didn’t have an exam, a term paper, and a show first…

Art Commons: It’s ALIVE!

All the hard work from winter semester, continuing into short term has finally paid off: Tuesday marked our first official ART COMMONS meeting! Art Commons is a student art space that stemmed from the Art-In, a demonstration of how the empty Old Commons building could be a perfect place for student art. After the art-in, Bates gave us a chance with Rowe Room, and we had a big opening during short term where tons of students painted the walls and made the space feel more lived in and comfortable. This year, after meeting with a lot of deans, and a lot of different committees we finally got access and the green light to get Art Commons active in the 2009-2010 school year.

We’ve decided to structure the space to being open about 24 hours a week, broken up into 2 two-hour shifts each night, Sunday through Friday. Our meeting Tuesday was to explain this process to interested students, and to ask them to PLEASE apply for a monitor position. Each two hour shift will be supervised by an Art Commons Monitor, a key-holding student selected by the three managerial club members (myself, Charlotte Brill, and Matt Reynolds). Their job is to open the space up for others to come in and use it, and to keep an eye on what happens. It’s also super exciting when you have a key to something official on campus. But maybe that’s just me being a dork…

We’ve received many applications, which is really great news for us ! We’re really hoping for Art Commons just to keep growing and keep gaining momentum… the student interest in art exists, it’s just a question of translating it into something that can work well at Bates! I’m so happy to be a part of this!


Happy Foliage

Taken at the annual Leaf Jump

photo credit Kaitlin Weinman ’12, October 30 2009

Most Magnifique Montreal

This week following October break has proved very busy for me– the short breathe of relaxation in the form of a Canadian journey seems now only a memory in light of the two shows I’m rehearsing for at the moment (one goes up Friday!), the  art space I helped create that opens to the student body this week, and the debate I have in my Psychology of Personality class.

Still, the trip was awesome! I was less enthusiastic than most of my friends to go; it seemed like a lot of money and a lot to pull together last minute. We had 9 girls crossing into another country; I am first to admit I had less than lots of confidence. Somehow though we really pulled it off!

We got there Wednesday night, and we were staying in a private 9-person room at a hostel. Yes, that means three sets of triple bunk beds. The hostel, Montreal Backpackers Globetrotter Hostel, was awesome. I’d never stayed in a hostel and was very worried. The place was really clean, friendly, and affordable. We were able to spend our down time (which for the record there wasn’t much of) in our own sort of home base, very comfortable.

We spent our days fighting the weather, which wasn’t too great, seeing the sights, walking the streets and even examining exotic insects at the Botanical Gardens. We spent our nights running around the city seeing concerts and meeting new people. We also ran into at least 10 other Batesies. Clearly Montreal is a destination… I definitely recommend making the trek at some point in your Bates career!

Back to the grind….