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Friday, October 30, 2020

Dance Video "The Activation" Champions Voting and Social Justice

Posted By on Fri, Oct 30, 2020 at 2:34 PM

Still from "The Activation" - COURTESY OF HANNA SATTERLEE
  • Courtesy of Hanna Satterlee
  • Still from "The Activation"
If you haven’t voted, this video’s for you. If you have, it’s still for you. “The Activation” combines dance, music, interviews and information to help viewers turn confusion into clarity, inertia into action.

Part music video and part rally for change, the five-minute work captures 22 Vermonters moving and dancing together on the Statehouse lawn and steps in Montpelier. In brief testimonials, they share their experiences and hopes for this election and beyond. In closing, the video invites viewers to consider supporting seven social justice organizations and then asks, “How will YOU activate?”

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Friday, October 23, 2020

Major Jackson to Leave UVM for Vanderbilt University

Posted By on Fri, Oct 23, 2020 at 12:46 PM

Major Jackson at Leunig's Bistro - SALLY POLLAK/FILE ©️ SEVEN DAYS
  • Sally Pollak/File ©️ Seven Days
  • Major Jackson at Leunig's Bistro
Major Jackson and Daniel Fogel arrived at the University of Vermont in the fall of 2002, each moving to Vermont from Louisiana.

Jackson, a poet, was a young faculty member joining the English department from Xavier University in New Orleans. Fogel, a Henry James scholar and university administrator, arrived from Louisiana State University to serve as UVM’s 25th president.  The two met that fall at an English department picnic, recalled Fogel, who’s now a professor in the department.

“I met Major, read some of his poems, and immediately began [working] from the president’s office and made sure that we retained him as long as we could,” Fogel said.

That effort was successful for nearly two decades: Jackson, 52, will leave UVM at the end of the semester for Vanderbilt University, where he’ll be the Gertrude Conaway Vanderbilt Professor of English. During his tenure at UVM, Jackson emerged as a prominent American poet of his generation, publishing four volumes of poetry, including this year’s The Absurd Man, and editing the 2019 volume of The Best American Poetry.

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Tuesday, October 13, 2020

From a Montpelier Porch, an Art Installation Joins an International Festival

Posted By on Tue, Oct 13, 2020 at 4:36 PM

"Interspace" seen at night - ALISA DWORSKY-DANNY SAGAN
  • Alisa Dworsky-Danny Sagan
  • "Interspace" seen at night
Alisa Dworsky and Danny Sagan, married architects, artists and educators at Norwich University, are participating in an international art festival without leaving home. On the porch of their house in Montpelier, the couple has constructed an installation called "Interspace" that can be seen not only by locals but by anyone in the world who cares to look.

CEC ArtsLink, an international arts organization with an office in St. Petersburg, Russia, hosts Art Prospect, its seventh annual public art festival, from October 15 to 18. Normally an on-site event with physical and augmented-reality installations, the event has perforce gone online because, well — what isn't virtual in 2020?

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Vermont International Film Festival Returns With a Focus on Journalism

Posted By on Tue, Oct 13, 2020 at 12:52 PM

Still from A Thousand Cuts. - COURTESY OF FRONTLINE PBS
  • Courtesy of Frontline PBS
  • Still from A Thousand Cuts.
Cries of "fake news" fill the political sphere. Social media companies reckon with a misinformation epidemic. Newsrooms confront their own biases. Clearly, 2020 is a pivotal year for journalism, and this year's Vermont International Film Festival is taking a long, hard look at the profession.

Running from October 23 to November 1, this year's VTIFF is all virtual, with a program of 12 films arranged in six pairs. Each pair is accompanied by a Q&A. Ticket holders have a three-day window to view each film, with the livestreamed discussion falling within that window.

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Thursday, October 8, 2020

Former Vermont Poet Laureate Louise Glück Awarded Nobel Prize

Posted By on Thu, Oct 8, 2020 at 5:11 PM

  • Courtesy of Katherine Wolkoff/Steven Barclay Agency
  • Louise Glück
The Swedish Academy has announced that its choice for the 2020 Nobel Prize in Literature is Louise Glück. Though she now resides in Cambridge, Mass., she lived for many years in Plainfield, Vt. In 1971, Glück was among the original members of the legendary creative writing faculty at Goddard College in the nation’s first low-residency program. In 1980 she was a founding board member of the New England Culinary Institute (her then-husband John Dranow was a cofounder of the school).

Glück served as Vermont’s poet laureate — known then as “state poet” — from 1994 to 1998, and as U.S. poet laureate 2003 to 2004.

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Friday, October 2, 2020

Rokeby Museum Hires New Director

Posted By on Fri, Oct 2, 2020 at 8:56 AM

  • Courtesy of Lindsay Houpt-Varner
The Rokeby Museum, a historic farm and Underground Railroad stop in Ferrisburgh, recently hired Lindsay Houpt-Varner as its first full-time director. The Rokeby, which was the home of an abolitionist Quaker family called the Robinsons from 1793 to 1961, is dedicated both to preserving the story of the Underground Railroad and exploring modern-day issues of race and social justice.

Houpt-Varner, who is 34 and has a PhD in early modern British history, comes to Vermont from Carlisle, Penn., after four years at the Cumberland County Historical Society. She studied Quakerism and had worked to preserve another site along the Underground Railroad in Pennsylvania. The Rokeby job, she said, “combined all of the interests that I had been gathering up over the past decades.”

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