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School Department News

Noonkester School of Arts and Letters

Tuesday, July 28, 2015 - 1:13pm
William Carey University hosted a regional workshop for the Mississippi Foreign Language Association at the Hattiesburg campus on July 24.
 
The workshop, now in its fourth year at Carey, is held for teachers to share experiences they have in their respective classrooms and to also learn new ways of instructing their students.
 
Seven presenters were featured, including Sirlene Capers, South Jones High School; Erica Scott, Delisle Elementary School in Pass Christian; Edgar Serrano, the University of Mississippi and Oxford University School; Dr. Aurora Fiengo-Varn, Gulfport High School; Yohanna Jimenez, St. Luke’s Episcopal School in Mobile, Alabama; Lucy Solano, Petal High School; and Hector Barberena, Pascagoula High School. Jimenez, a former president of the state foreign language association, served as coordinator of the workshop.
 
Topics covered at the workshop ranged from the benefits of educational travel for high school students to using social network site Pinterest as a resource for teachers. The presentation given by Fiengo-Varn and Jimenez, titled “Optimizing YouTube Videos in the World Language Classroom,” and the presentation given by Serrano, titled “A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words, Really,” tied for “Best of Mississippi” at the 2014 association state conference.
 
In addition to the presentations, attendees also learned about various foreign language professional associations and enjoyed a luncheon and door prizes.
Wednesday, July 1, 2015 - 8:39am
The 40th anniversary season of Carey Dinner Theatre continues with “Beehive,” a musical tribute to popular female singers of the 1960s, from July 7-18 in the Joe and Virginia Tatum Theatre on the Hattiesburg campus of William Carey University.
 
Created by the late Larry Gallagher, “Beehive” acknowledges the contributions of female musicians and showcases Aretha Franklin, Lesley Gore, Janis Joplin and The Shirelles. The musical also takes the audience on a chronological journey through the decade from beehive hairdos to hippie fashions. Reviews of the musical state that the show is “…designed as a fun and kitschy nostalgic romp, which includes comedy and dance, for a night of entertainment bigger than the highest-teased hairdo.”
 
The audience is treated to 40 of the decade’s most memorable songs including “My Boyfriend’s Back,” “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow,” “One Fine Day,” “Natural Woman,” “Proud Mary,” “Me and Bobby Magee,” “Where the Boys Are” and “Make Your Own Kind of Music.”
 
The four female performers are Jamie Ferguson of Clinton; Heather Pate of Greenwood; McKenzie Pollock of Vicksburg; and Holly Marie Weber of Tampa, Fla. The musical is directed by Tim Matheny, chair of the Carey Department of Theatre and Communication, with musical direction from Dr. Howard Keever, a Carey professor of music. The scenic designer is Chris Permenter of Hattiesburg with Bronwyn Teague of Tupelo serving as lighting designer. Kelly James-Penot and Wes Hanson, both of the University of Southern Mississippi theatre department staff, serve as costume designer and technical director, respectively.
 
“This is an all-encompassing musical representing the decade, not just one genre of that decade,” said Matheny. “The music reflects the changing times and attitudes of the sixties. From the innocent early part of the decade … through the war and Civil Rights Movement … to women’s rights, the music is indicative of the changing dynamics of women, as well as their art during that time.”
 
Technicians for the dinner theatre are Connor Bingham of Jackson; Ben Salters of Carriere; Heather Steward of Wellford, S.C.; Savannah McCarty of Hattiesburg; John Tyler Robinson of Hattiesburg; Katie Welch of Pontotoc; and Elizabeth Wiggins of Senatobia. Box office staffers are Logan McCarty of Hattiesburg; Miranda Rester of Sumrall; and Rebekah Romack of Hattiesburg.
 
The admission price of $30 includes a buffet meal, the show and sales tax. Dinner is served at 7 p.m. and the performance follows. The box office is open from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Call (601) 318-6221 to make reservations.
Saturday, May 16, 2015 - 2:18pm
Carey Dinner Theatre, "Mississippi's unique dinner theatre," celebrates its 40th season in 2015 with two musicals in June and July at the Joe and Virginia Tatum Theatre on the Hattiesburg campus of William Carey University.
 
The first show is "Church Basement Ladies," a musical comedy by Jim Stowell and Jessica Zuehlke with music and lyrics by Drew Jansen. The story takes place in the heart and soul of the church, the basement kitchen, where several ladies cook meals and perform other tasks for the congregation. In the funny, down-to-earth comedy, the ladies handle a traditional Norwegian fish dinner, a funeral and a fundraiser while starving off potential disasters, having fun, sharing and debating recipes, instructing the young and keeping the pastor on course. The show features original songs including "Closer to Heaven," "The Pale Food Polka" and "Mother of the Bride." The show runs June 11-27.
 
The second show, "Beehive," is a musical tribute to the popular female singers of the 1960s. Written by Larry Gallagher, "Beehive" takes the audience on a chronological journey through the decade, from its beehive hairdos to its hippie fashions and beyond. Along the way the audience is treated to 40 of the decade's most memorable songs including "My Boyfriend's Back," "Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow," "Natural Woman," "Proud Mary," "Me and Bobby Magee," "Where the Boys Are" and "Make Your Own Kind of Music." The show runs July 7-18.
 
Carey Dinner Theatre was founded in 1975 when O. L. Quave, then-chair of the Department of Theatre and Communication at Carey, and other faculty and staff members wanted to give their young performers a professional and educationally sound opportunity to express their talents in a unique format. There was also a desire to offer the public quality entertainment that the whole family could enjoy. Out of these goals and ideas, the dinner theatre was born.
 
Two students, Keith Thompson and Jay Rogers, wrote and composed "It's Make Believe," a musical, which was produced in the first season of what was then called Carey Summer Showcase. The 1975 show, with its four performers, technicians, office personnel and staff, launched one of Mississippi's most valuable summer traditions.
 
A distinctive feature of Carey Dinner Theatre from the beginning has been that student members serve tables during dinner. By the time the performance has started, each person in the audience has had some personal contact with at least one member of the dinner theatre's company.
 
Selected from auditions held every spring, college students from across the country try out for performing, technical and clerical positions. Over 50 schools, including a large number of schools from the Deep South, have been represented by members of the company. Examples of schools represented include Vanderbilt, Julliard, Wake Forest and Duke. Dinner theatre alumni can be found across the country in professional and educational theatres and in a wide variety of professions not specifically related to theatre.
 
The admission price of $30 includes a buffet meal, program book, the show and sales tax. The box office will open June 1 and will be open from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Individuals interested in becoming dinner theatre contributors receive special privileges, including invitations to the annual pre-season open house and early box office access. Call (601) 318-6221 to make reservations, be added to the mailing list or to receive contributor information.
Monday, May 11, 2015 - 8:11am
Four William Carey University students were inducted into Alpha Gamma Gamma, the William Carey University chapter of the Sigma Tau Delta English honor society, on May 1.
 
Inductees include Alyssa Ward of Hattiesburg; Hailey Nowell of Hattiesburg; Marissa James of Hattiesburg; and Nicole Carr of Taylorsville.
 
Carey has been affiliated with Sigma Tau Delta for over 20 years. The honor society was founded in 1924 as "an order designed to promote the mastery of written expression, encourage worthwhile reading and foster a spirit of fellowship among those specializing in the English language and literature." Admission to the chapter is open to undergraduate and graduate students with an overall "B" average in English courses and ranking in the highest 35 percent of the student’s class in general scholarship. The sponsor of the Carey chapter is Dr. Marsha Newman, associate professor of English.
Thursday, May 7, 2015 - 2:29pm
Eleven William Carey University theatre students were honored at the 2015 Theatre Awards Dinner, an annual event recognizing the contributions and talents of theatre majors and students of other majors who participate in theatre throughout the academic year. 
 
Chris Permenter of Hattiesburg was named Most Valuable Player. This is the theatre’s most prestigious award and is voted on by the students.
 
Acting Achievement Awards were presented to Billy Burkes of Meridian; Branden Lindsay of Simpsonville, S.C.; Miranda Rester of Hattiesburg; and Nadia Trinanes of Hattiesburg. Acting Awards are voted on by a secret panel outside of the theatre who have attended every major production by Carey Theatre throughout the year.
 
Lindsay also received the Ryan Gill Memorial Scholarship established by Carey Theatre and Communication Chair Tim Matheny and funded by friends in honor of the 1994 theatre graduate. Rester also received the Joyce Quave Roberts Scholarship, which honors the memory of the sister of Professor Emeritus Obra L. Quave, chair of theatre and communication for more than 40 years. Trinanes also received the R.E. Cromis I Memorial Scholarship, which is awarded to a theatre major in memory of the husband of Wilda Cromis of Pontiac, Mich.
 
Technical Achievement Awards were presented to Jana Barkley of Picayune and Joey Roderick of Blue Ridge, Ga. Technical Awards are voted on by theatre faculty based on achievement in the design and technical aspects of theatre. Roderick also received the Shannon T. Robert Theatre Award. This scholarship was established in 2007 by Carey alumnus John Clearman in honor of Robert’s exemplary service to Carey and its students as a member of the theatre department faculty.
 
Taylor Abbott of Picayune received the Obra L. Quave Scholarship, established in 2001 on the occasion of “Echoes for Excellence,” a tribute to Quave and his years of service to Carey. Amanda Campbell of Nicholson received the Obra Quave Legacy of Learning Scholarship while Ashlyn Watts of Picayune received the O.L. Quave Theatre Scholarship, a scholarship also established by Clearman in honor of Quave.
 
Nicoli Huthison of Carriere received the Mark Wilkinson Scholarship. Friends of the late Mark Wilkinson, a Carey theatre graduate, established this annual scholarship for a theatre major.
 
Logan McCarty of Hattiesburg received the Bob Crumpton Memorial Scholarship. This scholarship was established by Dr. Allison Chestnut in memory of the civic and denominational leader from Pensacola, Fla., and is given to a theatre major.
 
Rebekah Romack of Poplarville received the Norma W. Sullivan Memorial Scholarship, which is named in honor of the 1921 Mississippi Woman’s College graduate and faithful patron of Carey music and theatre.