Office of External Communications

Houston, TX 77204-5017 Fax: 713.743.8199

September 6, 2006

Contact: Contact: Mike Emery
713.743.8186 (office)
713.415.6551 (pager)

Blend of Performing, Visual and Literary Events Featured During 2006 – 2007 Season

HOUSTON, Sept. 6, 2006 – The Cynthia Woods Mitchell Center for the Arts (CWMCA) at the University of Houston is offering its first full year of public events featuring performances and lectures from a host of internationally renowned composers, performers, authors and artists.

Noted avant-garde composer Philip Glass, poet Anne Waldman, choreographer Douglas Dunn and critically-acclaimed string quartet ETHEL are among the artists who will perform on campus during the CWMCA’s 2006 – 2007 season.

“Our upcoming season represents the Mitchell Center’s development as an artistic force in our community,” said Karen Farber, the center’s director. “Artists like Philip Glass, Anne Waldman, ETHEL, and Big Dance Theater embody the center’s mission to bring world-class artists to campus with their unique collaborative projects, as well as workshops, lectures and master classes with the next generation of artists here at UH. Each 2006 – 2007 artist will also have direct interaction with UH students through workshops, master classes, and lectures.”

The center also will debut the series “Artists Up Close.” Presented by the center in collaboration with Blaffer Gallery and the UH School of Art, the series offers free public performances, readings and demonstrations by artists featured in Blaffer Gallery exhibitions. Among those scheduled to participate in this series are artists Siemon Allen and Ingrid Mwangi from the fall exhibition, “A Fiction of Authenticity: Contemporary Africa Abroad,” and artists Jean Shin and Mika Tajima from the spring show, “One Way or Another: Asian American Art Now.” In addition, these artists will work with UH art students through studio critiques.

“This is an excellent opportunity for students and the public to interact with these artists and learn about their work processes, how they became artists and why they make certain creative choices,” said Terrie Sultan, director of Blaffer Gallery and chair of the Mitchell Center’s board of directors.

• “Tanks Under Trees” – Anne Waldman and Douglas Dunn
Author, poet and spoken word performer Waldman joins forces with New York choreographer Dunn (artistic director, Douglas Dunn & dancers) for an original one-time performance that fuses physical movement with text and film projections. Based on Waldman’s book “Structure of The World Compared to a Bubble,” the performance also features live music from Houston musicians Max Dyer and Coronado “Charry” Garcia. 7 p.m., Wednesday, Oct. 11, Jose Quintero Lab Theatre.

• Philip Glass – “Creativity and Collaboration”
On the occasion of his 70th birthday, composer Glass will deliver a multi-media presentation about his career in artistic collaboration and creative innovation. Included in this event is a short film and live demonstrations on piano by the artist. 6:30 p.m. Monday, Feb.19, Moores Opera House.

• “In the House of Ethel” – ETHEL
The amplified string ensemble ETHEL brings its improvisational musical installation to campus. This site-specific performance has been performed at the U.S. Library of Congress, the Whitney Museum, the Staten Island Ferry Terminal and other grand locations. No performance is the same, and audiences are encouraged to roam freely throughout each performance space. 8 p.m., Saturday, March 3, Gerald D. Hines College of Architecture Atrium.

• “The Other Here” – Big Dance Theater
New York’s Big Dance Theater blends music, contemporary visual design and Eastern dance in this striking performance. Featuring Okinawan pop music and inspiration from Japanese author Masuji Ibuse, the production offers a unique vision of contemporary dance theater and complements the Blaffer’s spring exhibition, “One Way or Another: Asian American Art Now.” 7:30 p.m., May 2 - 3 at., Lyndall Finley Wortham Theatre.

• “Death of a Salesman” – UH School of Theatre with original music by Marcus K. Maroney
Arthur Miller’s Pulitzer and Tony award-winning classic comes to life on the stage of the Wortham Theatre. Broadway veteran Ken Ruta stars as Willie Loman, the suffering father and failed salesman. An original music score will be provided by composer Maroney and performed live. 8 p.m. March 30 – 31, 2 p.m. April 1, 8 p.m. April 6 - 7, Lyndall Finley Wortham Theatre.

• Annual Concert of Music and Dance – AURA Contemporary Ensemble and the UH Center for Choreography
UH musicians and dancers team up for this annual concert blending sound and movement. 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 4, Moores Opera House.

• Raphael Rubenstein
Visiting Scholar, author, arts journalist, and poet, Rubinstein will read from his book “In Search of the Miraculous: 50 Episodes from the Annals of Contemporary Art.” 1:00 pm, September 12, Dudley Recital Hall, Fine Arts Building.

• Dick Hebdige
Visiting Scholar, British cultural critic and theorist, Hebdige is an expert in the study of subcultures and their resistance to mainstream society. He will conduct three public lectures, each at noon in Fine Arts Building Room 110.

• Tuesday, Oct. 3 “Becoming Animal: Race, Terror and the American Roots”

• Wednesday, Oct. 4 “Un-imagining Utopia: Framing the Sixties”

• Tuesday, Oct. 10 “The X Syndrome: Vertigo and Autobiography”

• “Artists Up Close” – Ingrid Mwangi
African-born artist Mwangi delivers self-reflective physical and aural performances and multi-media installations. Blaffer Gallery is hosting her very first works to be on view in the United States in the exhibition, “A Fiction of Authenticity: Contemporary Africa Abroad.” She will deliver a slide presentation and lecture at 1 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 7 in Fine Arts Building, Room 110. Mwangi will also conduct a performance at 2 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 9 in Blaffer Gallery.

• “Artists Up Close” – Siemon Allen
South African artist Allen often focuses on the concept of national and individual identity as defined by constructed environment and historical representation. Allen will have work featured in the Blaffer exhibition, “A Fiction of Authenticity: Contemporary Africa Abroad.” He will present a lecture and slide presentation at 1 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 5 in Fine Arts Building, Room 110.

• “Artists Up Close” – Spring Artists from Blaffer exhibition “One Way or Another: Asian American Art Now”
January lectures and performances in conjunction with the exhibition. See later this fall for details.

About the Center
Funded by a recent $20 million grant from George and Cynthia Woods Mitchell, the Center combines the forces of UH’s Creative Writing Program, Blaffer Gallery and Schools of Theatre, Music and Art for collaboration and experimentation. The center offers public programs such as performances, exhibitions, lectures and symposia; residencies with visiting artists for creative development and teaching; courses in collaboration for UH students. All Mitchell Center projects hinge on the power of collaboration to foster innovation and generate new forms of creativity.

For more information about the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Center for the Arts at the University of Houston, visit

About the University of Houston

The University of Houston, Texas’ premier metropolitan research and teaching institution, is home to more than 40 research centers and institutes and sponsors more than 300 partnerships with corporate, civic and governmental entities. UH, the most diverse research university in the country, stands at the forefront of education, research and service with more than 35,000 students.

For more information about UH visit the university’s ‘Newsroom’ at