Masks designed for the Frost Opera Theater. Photo: Evan Garcia/University of Miami

March guide to the arts at the U

By Amanda M. Perez

March guide to the arts at the U

By Amanda M. Perez
Check out this comprehensive preview of arts-related events happening this month on and off campus.

The Frost School of Music’s Frost Opera Theater is taking artistic innovation to the next level as it returns to the stage. For the first time since the pandemic hit, Frost Opera Theater will premiere its first live performance with a limited audience. Alan Johnson, professor in the Department of Vocal Performance and music director of the Frost Opera Theater, explained that the production, “Masquerade 2021,” has been built with the health and safety of everyone involved.

“The students will be performing seven short operatic masterworks ranging between 10 to 30 minutes. We chose repertoire that doesn’t have large casts or large orchestras so we can maintain social distance,” said Johnson.

Jeffrey Buchman, assistant professor and stage director for opera, said that he learned a lot along the way while putting together the production.

“We always thought as performers that the eyes were the window to the soul of a performer, but what we’ve really learned is that so much of the lower half of the face is incredibly expressive, and eyes alone are a struggle to bring up expressivity,” he said.

In an effort to enhance the viewer experience, Buchman decided to create additional theatrical masks that all performers will wear as well.  “These masks range from full face oversized masks to partial masks with the goal of creating very bold and expressive kind of moments during the production,” said Buchman. 

Both Johnson and Buchman are looking forward to finally seeing students on stage. “It is exciting and rewarding to be in a room with live singing and acting as opposed to solitary, isolated rehearsals, and experiencing a production through a screen. I’m looking forward to it being very cathartic and enjoyable.,” said Johnson.

“There is nothing like the experience of being in a theater and doing it safely. I need this, and the students need it as well. This is our life blood, and it’s how we sustain ourselves in this art form. It’s what feeds our soul. There is nothing like it, and it doesn’t compare when we do things remotely,” said Buchman.

“Masquerade 2021” will be staged on March 5 and 6 at 7:30 p.m.

Set a reminder for the live streams:

Friday, March 5: https://youtu.be/cvQCdhZBgjw

Saturday, March 6: https://youtu.be/Hgcqb9cAtuc 

Frost School of Music

March 8, 7:30 p.m.

Frost Conductors Repertory Orchestra—Concertos

Gerard Schwarz, director

The Frost Repertory Orchestra and a myriad of the finest student-soloists present seven concertos covering more than 400 years of music history. Chosen by Gerard Schwarz, these student-soloists represent some of the finest musicians at the Frost School. The conducting students of Gerard Schwarz will be leading the orchestra.

Set a reminder here.

March 8, 7:40 p.m.

Small Jazz Ensemble Concert 

Errol Rackipov, John Yarling, and Tim Jago, directors

Listen to jazz music performed by the Odd Times Ensemble, New Music Ensemble, and Bass Desires.

Set a reminder here.

March 9, 7:30 p.m.

Frost Concert Jazz Band—Music from Home

Dafnis Prieto, director

Roxana Amed, guest vocalist

Guillermo Ospina, percussion

This concert will feature some spectacular music from Frost School faculty members, including professors John Daversa and Dafnis Prieto. The concert will also feature special guest Roxana Amed, singing a beautiful arrangement of Cucurrucucú Paloma by arranger and composer Alberto De La Reguera.

Set a reminder here.

March 10, 7:30 p.m.

All Stamps Scholar Ensemble Concert—Building Character

Jodi Levitz, director        

The Stamps Jazz Quintet, Class of 2021, directors

Jodi Levitz, director of Stamps Ensembles

Enjoy an exploration of inspiring characters and their influence on the growth of an artist. Featuring performances by the Stamps Jazz Quintet, Stamps String Quartet, Stamps Woodwind Quintet, and Stamps Brass quintet, and a new work for the All-Stamps Ensemble by composer Eli Feingold.     

Set a reminder here.

March 12, 7:30 p.m.

Frost Saxophone Ensemble

Dale Underwood, director

The Frost Saxophone Ensemble under the direction of Professor Dale Underwood presents an evening of music that showcases the sonic capabilities of the saxophone. Featuring studio members ranging from doctoral to first-year students, saxophone artistry is on display for this concert.

Set a reminder here.

March 21, 1:30 p.m.

Danish String Quartet Masterclass

Valerie Coleman, Chamber Music director

The Chamber Music Program at the Frost School of Music and Frost Music Live welcome Danish String Quartet members Fredrik Sjölin and Rune Tonsgaard Sørensen in a virtual masterclass. Frost student ensembles will perform live on the Gusman Hall stage. All Chamber Music Program masterclasses are in webinar format and open to the public via registration.

Register here.

March 21, 4:00 p.m.

Chamber Music Showcase III

Valerie Coleman, director 

The Frost Chamber Music Program presents an afternoon of masterworks for strings, woodwinds, brass, and percussion performed live.

Set a reminder here.

March 22, 7:30 p.m.

Frost Orchestras—Celebrations

Gerard Schwarz, director 

The Frost Chamber Orchestra presents Aaron Copland’s “Music for the Theatre,” a work celebrating Copland’s love of the Broadway tradition, and Richard Wagner’s “Siegfried Idyll,” a work composed to celebrate his wife’s birthday. The Frost Symphony Orchestra presents the world premiere of “Elegy” (for those we lost) by Aaron Kernis, celebrating the lives of those lost to COVID-19. The orchestra also performs Johannes Brahms’ “Symphony No 4,” the final symphony from the legendary composer.

Set a reminder here.

March 26, 7:30pm

Frost School’s HMI Celebrates Piazzolla at 100 with Maria Schneider

Scott Flavin, conductor

Maria Schneider, host

Argentinian composer and performer Astor Piazzolla (1921–1992) is one of the few musicians whose work is truly universal, crossing all boundaries. His music, which elevates the tango into a universal form of high art, has provided inspiration to many other composers as well. Join the Frost School and host Maria Schneider to celebrate his unique contributions, along with works of Golijov, a world premiere by Stephen Guerra, and three world-premiere arrangements by the talented HMI composition Fellows.

Set a reminder here.

Center for the Humanities

March 3, 1 p.m.

IRG Lecture: "Digital Humanities and Data Justice: Lessons from Intersectional Feminism with Laura Klein"

This talk will show how challenges to the male/female binary can challenge other hierarchical (and empirically wrong) classification systems, how an emphasis on emotion can expand our ideas about effective data visualization, and how our concept of "invisible labor" can exposes the significant human efforts required of our automated systems, as well as of our digital humanities work.  

Register here.

March 3, 8:00 p.m.

Book Talk with Michael Slote, professor of philosophy

Between Psychology and Philosophy: East-West Themes and Beyond

This open access book discusses a variety of important but unprecedented ways in which psychology can be useful to philosophy. Michael Slote shows that empathy and emotion play a role in speech acts (like assertion and thanking) that speech act theory has totally ignored. Similarly, he treats the age-old question of whether justice pays using psychological material that has not previously been recognized. Finally, the implications of psychological egoism are discussed in terms of some new psychological and, indeed, human distinctions. Human life is pervaded by instincts and aspirations that are neither egoistic nor altruistic, and recognizing that fact can help put egoism in its place. It is less of a challenge to morality than we have realized.

Register here.

March 9, 7:00 p.m.

Seminar: "A Conversation with Valeria Luiselli"

Valeria Luiselli will participate in a discussion of the Hostile Terrain 94 exhibit, to be installed on the first floor of the Otto G. Richter Library in late-February 2021. Hostile Terrain 94 is a participatory art project sponsored and organized by the Undocumented Migration Project and features more than 3,200 handwritten toe tags representing migrants who have died trying to cross the Sonoran Desert of Arizona between the mid-1990s and 2019. The conversation will be moderated by University faculty members Chantel Acevedo and Sallie Hughes and will center on topics such as immigration policies; the history of the Southern border; the narratives and lived experiences of immigrants, and how these stories are told; as well as how the exhibit relates to Luiselli’s current projects. Time will be allotted for questions from the audience as well. 

Register here. 

March 11, 7 p.m. 

Panel Discussion: "Oli Otya? Life and Loss in Rural Uganda"

This film tells the story of a team of palliative care nurses from a small hospital and volunteer doctors from the United States who care for villagers. These residents have little or no access to medical treatment, often endure pain and suffering rather than get relief, and turn to traditional healers hoping for a cure to life-threatening illnesses. The panel discussion features filmmaker Lucy Bruell and some of the health care providers from the film.

Register here.

March 23, 1:30pm

"Unequal Treatment: Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Miami-Dade Criminal Justice"

Join the Critical Cultural Studies Graduate Collective for a virtual discussion with Nick Petersen, assistant professor of Sociology and Law. Learn about his team's examination of individual and neighborhood racial and ethnic disparities across multiple decision points within the county's criminal justice system. Learn about the team’s discovery of disparities at every decision point that, regardless of ethnicity, resulted in disadvantages for Black defendants and neighborhoods while resulting in advantages for white defendants and neighborhoods. 

Register here.

March 24, 8:00 p.m.

Book Talk with David Kling, professor and chair, Religious Studies 

A History of Christian Conversion

Conversion has played a central role in the history of Christianity. In this first in-depth and wide-ranging narrative history, David Kling examines the dynamic of turning to the Christian faith by individuals, families, and people groups. Global in reach, the narrative progresses from early Christian beginnings in the Roman world to Christianity's expansion into Europe, the Americas, China, India, and Africa. Conversion is often associated with a particular strand of modern Christianity (evangelical) and a particular type of experience (sudden, overwhelming). However, when examined over two millennia, it emerges as a phenomenon far more complex than any one-dimensional profile would suggest. No single, unitary paradigm defines conversion and no easily explicable process accounts for why people convert to Christianity. Rather, a multiplicity of factors-historical, personal, social, geographical, theological, psychological, and cultural-shape the converting process.

Register here.

University Libraries

Every Wednesday, 4–5 p.m.

Mindfulness at Richter 

The University of Miami Libraries offers introductory mindfulness sessions for cultivating calm and focus. These 45-minute sessions introduce the fundamentals of mindfulness with periods of guided practice and opportunities for reflection and questions. 

Register here.

March 25, 1 p.m.

Deep Dives into Special Collections—You're Cooking What?!

From pie in the sky to foraging in your own backyard, Special Collections has menus, cookbooks, and guides for eating while jetting across the globe on a Pan American World Airways flight. Or you can test the flavors of Caribbean cooking. Join Special Collections for a culinary journey through a selection of cookbooks and menus and follow along to test some of the intriguing, unusual, and kitschy recipes.

Register here.

Lowe Art Museum

Tuesdays, 1:00 p.m.  

The Art of Mindfulness 

Join the Lowe Art Museum for a live virtual guided mindfulness practice each week. The Lowe’s Art of Mindfulness sessions last about 40 minutes (30-minute guided practice with 10-minute reflection and Q & A). 

Get more information here

March 4, 6:00 p.m.

Lowe Connects Spotlight: Artists of Color in the Performing and Visual Arts

The Frost School of Music and the Lowe Art Museum invite you to join a conversation with two renowned artists: Valerie Coleman, assistant professor of performance, chamber music, and entrepreneurship in the Frost School, and Beverly McIver, professor of the practice of Art, Art History, and Visual Studies at Duke University. Moderated by Melvin Butler, associate professor of musicology in the Frost School, this discussion will center on the artists’ creative output and call attention to how issues of race, intersectionality, and social justice influence the creation and reception of their professional work. 

Register here.

March 12, 11 a.m.

Coffee, Tea, What Do You See?

Grab your favorite morning beverage and join the Lowe for a virtual interactive discussion about art from the museum's collection. Led by the members of the Lowe’ staff, participants will be asked open-ended questions about the work of art to stimulate a group discussion.

No art experience is necessary! 

Register here.

March 19, 2:30-4:30 p.m.

Usketch @ the Lowe

Join an in-person, stress-relieving sketch class! Space is limited. Pre-registration is required.

Register here

Wynwood Gallery

Sidney Sherman: “Out of The Shadows”

“Out of The Shadows” is an exhibition featuring black and white self-portrait photographs by Sidney Sherman. Emphasizing gestures of performance, the artist explores three main characteristics: female form, distortion, and sequencing. Her images represent a narrative moment depicting the figure either in midair or simply an interaction with an object at a particular moment. Sherman’s images present a consistent element of darkness and shadow through the entirety of the work utilizing a singular light source while creating a static image in time. “Out of The Shadows” documents her existence as an artist, investigating how the perception of herself occupies space on a physical level.

On view until March 28. By appointment only. To schedule a visit, contact Milly Cardoso, gallery director, at m.cardoso1@miami.edu