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Wednesday, March 20, 2002

  • Cast heats up Crucible tonight
  • Keystone Campaign nears launch
  • Seats open on UW's senate
  • Events on the first day of spring
Chris Redmond

The Fightin' Whites open some eyes

Cast heats up Crucible tonight

Professional director Kim Renders will direct the drama department's production of "The Crucible Project", which hits stage in the Theatre of the Arts tonight.

[Cast on stage] "We are very pleased to have Kim Renders as the director of the project," says Joyce Hahn of the department of drama and speech communication. "Kim is a professional actor-teacher-director whose depth of experience in the Canadian theatre community is enriching the rehearsal process.

"She is approaching the text as a starting point rather than a fixed shape and, therefore, the entire project is demanding far more input from all contributors than a traditional approach might invite."

The show as it will be seen this week (left) is "based on" Arthur Miller's classic "The Crucible", an intense drama about the Salem, Massachusetts, witch trials of 1692. But it's much more than just a staging of Miller's 1953 play, which was in part a dramatic reflection on the anti-Communist "witch hunt" then in progress.

Renders explains what she and the student cast are doing with Miller's original: "Arthur Miller wrote 'The Crucible' in response to an episode in American history known as the McCarthy Era. Now, more than fifty years later, the students of the University of Waterloo Drama Department are responding to Arthur Miller's 'The Crucible'.

"Using the process known as theatrical collective creation, the cast of 'The Crucible Project' have departed from the original concept of using the Salem witchcraft trials as a metaphor for the communist scare in the U.S. and have taken Miller's story and text to inspire their own ideas and theatrical images.

"Not only have elements of the text been explored and theatrically deconstructed, but students have also examined and dramatized their own issues inspired by 'The Crucible'. The resultant production is a collage of images created by the students, thematically linked both by 'The Crucible' and the story behind the play.

"The work is conceptual, often visual and poetic. Our goal has been as much to experiment with the art form as it has been to re-tell the story using the performers' own words and images. This approach has allowed student cast members to define the creative process for themselves, and to take responsibility for the final product both as authors and actors."

The results will be staged tonight through Saturday at 8:00 in the Theatre of the Arts, Modern Languages building. Tickets are $12 (students $10) from the Humanities box office, 888-4908.


Yan Li, part-time faculty member at Renison College, is this year's winner of the Taiwan-based Honorable Literary Medal for Overseas Chinese Writer. She'll be going to Taipei in May to receive the medal and give a speech. Today's Gazette has more about Li and her works, which include the novel Married to the West Wind, about the life of Chinese women in Ontario.

Keystone Campaign nears launch

The Keystone Fund is now the Keystone Campaign, as the annual faculty, staff and retiree fund-raising effort becomes a forerunner of the multi-million-dollar Campaign Waterloo that's about to be launched.

"All donations to the Keystone Campaign are an integral part of this $260 million major fund-raising initiative," says an announcement as the first annual Keystone Campaign gets ready to roll.

"The goal of the Keystone Campaign is to raise $4.5 million by the end of 2007! All donations will go directly toward each donor's choice of project and will support the overall campaign. The University recognizes that Canada's ability to solve today's complex problems and meet new challenges depends as much on talented and innovative people, as any advances in science and technology. Funds generated through Campaign Waterloo -- Building a Talent Trust, will enhance Waterloo's ability to attract and develop these innovative leaders of tomorrow."

The campaign has a new slogan too: "It's Our Waterloo!" That, says Bonnie Oberle of UW's development office, "will be a statement that you will be seeing frequently over the next five years. The tagline represents the University's faculty, staff and retirees who are taking ownership of our Waterloo by supporting the Keystone Campaign."

She said Keystone will be launched with "a major celebration" on June 20, "to generate momentum and enthusiasm". Tentative location for the event is Federation Hall. Faculty, staff, and retirees are invited to "join in the fun to see what the campaign is all about".

Volunteers working for the Keystone Campaign will be publishing a bi-annual newsletter -- also titled It's Our Waterloo! -- to share information about the campaign. A preview of the launch activities will appear in the first issue, due in May.

Oberle notes that "many dynamic and committed volunteers" make the Keystone Campaign happen. In January 2002, the Keystone Campaign Council was announced, and today's Gazette includes a list of people who have volunteered to serve on four Keystone Campaign working groups: Communications, Launch and Annual Events, Sponsorship, and Volunteers.

Seats open on UW's senate --a notice from the university secretariat

Nominations are requested for the following seats on Senate:

Faculty: One faculty member of the University to be elected by/from each faculty of the University, terms from May 1, 2002 to April 30, 2005.

Faculty-at-large: Seven faculty members of the University to be elected by/from the members of faculty of the University, terms from May 1, 2002 to April 30, 2005.

Conrad Grebel University College, Renison College and St. Jerome's University faculty: One faculty member of Conrad Grebel University College to be elected by/from the members of faculty of Conrad Grebel University College, term from May 1, 2002 to April 30, 2004. One faculty member of Renison College to be elected by/from the members of faculty of Renison College, term from May 1, 2002 to April 30, 2005. One faculty member of St. Jerome's University to be elected by/from the members of faculty of St. Jerome's University, term from May 1, 2002 to April 30, 2005.

Graduate students: Two graduate students of the University to be elected by/from the full- and part-time graduate students of the University, terms from May 1, 2002 to April 30, 2004.

Nomination forms are available from the Secretariat (x6125) and on the web, for faculty or graduate students. At least five nominators are required in each case. Nominations should be sent to the Chief Returning Officer, Secretariat, Needles Hall, Room 3060, no later than 3:00 p.m., Monday, April 1, 2002. Elections will follow if necessary.

A correction

Writing yesterday about UW's teams in the ACM programming contest, I remarked that while the Black team had come first in the regionals in November (and is off to Hawaii today for the world championships), UW's Gold team placed ninth out of a hundred-and-some teams in the regionals. I was quickly reminded that while that was originally true, the judges later discovered an error, and corrected judging boosted the Gold team of Gordon Chiu, Lars Hellsten, and Min Yee into fourth place.

Events on the first day of spring

Fourth-year systems design engineering students are presenting the results of their year-long design projects this week. The list of presentations show topics that range from "supervised classification of sea ice" and "adaptive twisting of aircraft wings" to "menstrual systems". And a few others: Presentations continue today and tomorrow from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in Davis Centre room 1302.

A "go high-tech, stay local" career fair runs from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. in the Davis Centre. "It's a great opportunity," says Charlene Hofstetter of Sybase Canada, "to meet human resources and technology professionals and find out about technology companies in the area." About 20 firms based in the Waterloo area are expected to be represented.

Music students are giving their end-of-term recitals at Conrad Grebel University College over the next few days. Today at 12:30, in the Grebel chapel, pianist Dominique Joseph accompanies musicians in various works by Handel, Schubert, Mozart and others. Performing will be Darlene Hemingway (soprano), Grace Wong (piano), Todd Schiedel (cello), Justin Au (tenor), and Edwin Vane (violin). Admission is free.

A "charity edition of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?" runs from noon to 2 p.m. in the Student Life Centre great hall. Students and professors from the six faculties will face off to raise money for their chosen charities; pledge forms will be available for spectators.

An instructional development session on "PHP, Flash (and Databases)" is scheduled, from 11:00 to noon in the "Flex lab" in the Dana Porter Library. Information: ext. 3779.

A seminar on "Building Secure Software: How to Avoid Security Problems the Right Way", by Gary McGraw of Cigital, starts at 2:30 in Davis Centre room 1304. McGraw is brought to UW by the Institute for Computer Research.

Marsha Weaver, post-doctoral fellow in applied mathematics, speaks at 3:30 in Math and Computer room 5158. Topic: "Geometry, Gravity and Cosmology According to Einstein".

The next seminar in the "Smarter Health" series sponsored by the InfraNet Project will be given today by Jeannine Parent of Health Canada, on federal government investment in health IT. It begins at 4:00 in Davis Centre room 1302.

Novelist David Macfarlane reads at 4:00 in St. Jerome's University room 327. His book Summer Gone won the Chapters/Books in Canada First Novel Award two years ago, and he writes "the best weekly column in the Toronto Globe and Mail", according to Gary Draper of the English department at St. Jerome's, who organizes these authors' readings.

Up in Ottawa, the Canadian Alliance of Student Associations has something going today:

CASA is lobbying the Federal Government for major changes to the Canadian Student Loan Program (CSLP) which include: adjusting the standards for parental contribution, increasing loan maximums (which haven't changed since 1995), and increasing the amount of money students can earn during a school year.

A captivating visual display of support for higher education will happen at Parliament Hill following the press conference at 11 a.m. 50 student leaders from across Canada will be assembling an impressive 24 foot by 36 foot banner with over 50,000 thumbprints of students on it with a very simple message -- Education Builds A Nation. This banner is in 24 sections and has visited every member school, from the West coast in Vancouver to the East coast in Halifax, Nova Scotia and every province in between.

Student leaders are meeting all next week with over 65 Members of Parliament to lobby for changes to the CSLP including the HRDC Minister Jane Stewart, Industry Minister Allan Rock, the Honorable Joe Clark and Deputy Finance Kevin Lynch.

CASA is "a coalition of 23 student governments", including UW's Federation of Students, "representing over 310,000 post-secondary education students nationwide".

Ontario's planned electricity deregulation will be discussed in forums tonight and tomorrow night, organized by the Civics Research Group. (Yesterday I wrote "Ontario's controversial electricity deregulation" and was chidden by one reader who insists that by my standards, everything must be controversial!) The CRG is hosting the Wednesday and Thursday sessions from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the Centre for Core Area Research and Design, 70 King Street East in downtown Kitchener.

The faculty association council of representatives meets at 5:00 today in Davis Centre room 1568.

"Theory and History of Individualist Feminism" is a talk to be given in the Humanities Theatre tonight (7:00) by Wendy McElroy, described as "author, speaker, freelance writer and editor of www.ifeminists.com". Her talk -- admission free -- is sponsored by Youth for Liberty.

Terry Copp of Wilfrid Laurier University's history department speaks tonight on campus, as part of a series on military history. His specific topic: "The Closing of the Falaise Gap, August 1944". Originally announced for a different location, Copp's talk will be given in Arts Lecture Hall room 116, starting at 7 p.m.



March 20, 1970: The Creative Arts Board finishes a two-day run of the play "Lysistrata", by Aristophanes, in the Theatre of the Arts.

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