UM Libraries

April guide to the arts at the U

By Amanda M. Perez

April 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.

As preservation week approaches this month, the University of Miami Libraries is using this opportunity to highlight its effort in collecting and chronicling the experience of living through COVID-19 from our South Florida Community.  

The project, “Documenting COVID-19: South Florida’s Pandemic Experience,” is aimed at recording the communities’ experiences and perspectives from content generated and contributed by them. All will be made available through the library’s digital collections and by visiting the library.

“We are living in a moment where there is so much change happening around us, and it’s important to acknowledge all of our hardships and experiences that have shaped our world today,” explained Martha Horan, head of Preservation Strategies.

The library is collecting digital content in the form of text, photos, audio, and video files through a submission form that is available on its project website. One can digitally submit  files by using the University of Miami Libraries Distinctive Collections Documenting COVID-19 submission form. In the future, the library will also be accepting physical or analog submissions, such as journals, photographs, flyers, and scrapbooks. 

“We want to document everything we experience at this time—from firsthand and secondhand accounts of those who have fallen ill to how COVID-19 has impacted everyday parts of life, such as grocery shopping, dating, graduating, community organizing, protesting, working, and being a student, and how our different identities impact these experiences further,” said Archivist Kalani Adolpho.

Preservation week is a national event sponsored by the American Library Association and runs from April 25 through May 1.

“The theme for Preservation Week this year is Preserving Community Archives, and so this was a good opportunity to highlight this important work the archives team is doing to document and preserve this historic moment,” explained Horan.

Throughout preservation week, the library plans on hosting several webinars highlighting the work being done at UM Libraries.

To learn more about their lineup of events visit the Preservation Week website.

The following is a list of additional events during April.

UM 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.

April 8, 1:00 p.m.

Monsters and Creatures: vampires, werewolves, dragons, and other frightening things hiding in Special Collections—Presented by Chelsea Jacks, reference assistant, Special Collections.

What is a monster? Is it something that hides in the darkness waiting to scare us, or simply a projection of our own fears and uncertainties? Whether a tall tale, superstition, mythical creature, or all of the aforementioned, monsters inhabit a special place in art, fiction, and history.

Register here.

Frost School of Music

April 10, 7:30 p.m.

Musical Theater Ensemble—The Schwartz Effect

The gifted artists of the Frost Musical Theater Ensemble, led by director Frank Ragsdale, celebrate the music of legendary Broadway lyricist and composer Stephen Schwartz. A winner of four Grammys and a three-time Academy Award winner, Schwartz is one of America's most important and beloved musical theater composers and lyricists of our time. 

Set a reminder here.

April 20, 7:30 p.m.

Artist Launch Competition Finals 

Valerie Coleman, director 

Frost School of Music presents its best and brightest Classical artists in an audience's choice competition for the Artist Launch Award. 

Set a reminder here.

April 22, 7:30 p.m.

Frost Studio Jazz Band and Frost Jazz Vocal Celebrate the Music of Nelson Riddle

Kate Reid and Stephen Guerra Jr., directors

The Frost Studio Jazz Band and the Frost Jazz Vocal program perform arrangements by students and faculty members inspired by the great Nelson Riddle and his numerous arrangements for Ella Fitzgerald, Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole, and Peggy Lee.

Set a reminder here.

April 24, 7:30 p.m.

Frost Chorale—Reflections

Dr. Amanda Quist, conductor; Dr. Anita Castiglione, piano; and Scott AuCoin, graduate assistant conductor 

The Frost Chorale looks back at the experience of this past year during COVID-19 and how reflecting on the things that make us all human kept their music together, even when they were often forced to be physically apart.

The concert is a journey of reflections on light, faith, destiny, hope, and joy, and is inspired by great poets and composers, religious settings, current events, and even social media posts. Performing a wide range of works from the Renaissance through music written in the past few years, the program features pieces by Bach, Brahms, Frost composition faculty member Shawn Crouch, Frost alum Sydney Guillaume, and Vicenti Lusitano, an African-Portuguese priest and musician who was the first published Black composer. Each piece or set connects to our collective human experience, with the goal of drawing us closer to one another as we remember all the ways we are united.

Set a reminder 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 session lasts about 40 minutes (30-minute guided practice with 10-minute reflection and Q & A).

Register here.

April 8, 5:30 p.m.

Lowe Connects: Art History and Augmented Reality: Designing Virtual Art Exhibitions in the Classroom

This installment of Lowe Connects consists of a presentation and celebration of the work done by students in the art history course ARH 347 (Spring 2020) on a virtual art exhibition experienced in augmented reality through the Magic Leap headsets. With objects in the Lowe’s Antiquities Gallery as the starting point, the course participants devised the content and theme of the exhibition and designed the application themselves. The students will present demos of their augmented reality applications, discuss the creative process involved and learning outcomes derived from the project, and reflect on the potential for the use of Extended Reality (XR) technologies for the discipline of art history, cultural institutions, and beyond.

Register here.

April 9, 11:00 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.

Wynwood Art Gallery

Melissa Agnes Tychonievich: “Remembrancer”

“Remembrancer” is a Master of Fine Arts exhibition by Melissa Agnes Tychonievich, featuring a collection of full-color, life-sized figurative oil paintings and monochromatic lithographic prints. Using the visual symbolism of their own interpersonal relationships, Tychonievich explores pictorial connections between representational images and non-objective techniques in contemporary painting. The work is identified as existing between the conceptual binaries of the representational and the concrete, each individual painting articulating its own personalized place on this spectrum. As a queer, nonbinary person, Tychonievich uses the societal gender binary of male and female as a personal allegory in their work, investigating implicit feminist themes of sexuality, identity, and gender expression.

On view until April 25. By appointment only. To schedule a visit, contact Milly Cardoso, gallery director, at

Center for the Humanities

April 8, 7 p.m.

Humanities Hour: "The Spirit Writing of Lucille Clifton"

This talk, by feminist Marina Magloire, will use unpublished archives to discuss the poet Lucille Clifton's little-known practice of automatic writing and spirit communication. Her spirit communication spanned decades and encompassed everything from past life regressions to conversations with departed spirits as diverse as Langston Hughes, Beethoven, Billie Holiday, and Jesus. Magloire argues that throughout Clifton’s poetry, she insists upon the primacy and specificity of her black woman’s body as a site of spiritual encounter, even as her spirit communication complicates the notion of black feminist embodiment by presenting the black woman’s body as one transitory incarnation among many.

Magloire is a Black scholar of Black and diasporic literature. Her current book project explores the influence of Afro-Caribbean spirituality on Black American female writers and performers in the 20th century.

Register here.

April 14, 8 p.m.

Online Book Talk with Logan Connors, associate professor, Modern Languages and Literatures

“The Emergence of a Theatrical Science of Man in France, 1660-1740” highlights a radical departure from discussions of dramatic literature and its undergirding rules to a new, relational discourse on the emotional power of theater. Through a diverse cast of religious theater-phobes, government officials, playwrights, art theorists, and proto-philosophes, Connors shows the concerted effort in early Enlightenment France to use texts about theater to establish broader theories on emotion, on the enduring psychological and social ramifications of affective moments, and more generally, on human interaction, motivation, and social behavior. This fundamentally anthropological assessment of theater emerged in the works of anti-theatrical religious writers, who argued that emotional response was theater's raison d'être and that it was an efficient venue to learn more about the depravity of human nature. A new generation of pro-theatrical writers shared the anti-theatricalists' intense focus on the emotions of theater, but unlike religious theater-phobes, they did not view emotion as a conduit of sin or as a dangerous, uncontrollable process; but rather, as cognitive-affective moments of feeling and learning.

Register here.