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Summer Scene: Life in Two Languages

Categories: Midd Blogosphere, video

There’s never a dull moment for Middlebury Language Schools bilingual assistants — even if at times they might wish for a few. On any given day, they’re planning special events, coaching sports, setting up concerts, or solving myriad problems that help students stick to the famous language pledge: No English Spoken Here!  And through all of it, they transition seamlessly between the school’s language and English (where allowed, of course). Middlebury Magazine caught up with Joe Tamagni, a bilingual for the Italian School, to get a taste of his hectic pace and why he loves it so much!

Around the World in 10 Events!

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

top10[1]Every summer, a short but sweet burst of Language Schools events fills the campus with music, lectures, and art—all in language, of course.

Here are the annual “Top Ten” suggestions from Michael Geisler, vice president for the Language Schools, Schools Abroad, and graduate programs. Be sure to check the campus calendar for updates as well.

School of Hebrew
Sunday, June 11, 7:30 p.m.
Gitit Shoval and Ron Druyan concert
Mahaney Center for the Arts Concert Hall

Gitit Shoval, Ron Druyan, Tutti Druyan, and Shaqed Druyan perform renditions of Israeli and American music.  Shoval, one of Israel’s singing treasures, was discovered at the pre-Eurovision contest of 1979 when she was just 13 years old. Since then she has performed around the world, both solo and with various musical ensembles. In addition to her work for adult audiences, Gitit Shoval has provided the Hebrew voice of many children’s characters. She has six solo albums and four holiday and children’s albums to her credit. Her seventh solo album complements her current show, From Gershwin to Dylan: The Genius of Jewish Songwriters.

French School
Friday, July 5, 7:30 p.m.
“Chiche L’Afrique” performance, text and interpretation by Gustave Akakpo
Wright Theatre

“Chiche L’Afrique” is a one-man show performed by Togolese author and actor Gustave Akakpo, who invites political actors of Françafrique onstage. African leaders, Nicolas Sarkozy, Charles Pasqua, and others are the protagonists of this hilarious spectacle. With its ironic and cheeky tone, “Chiche L’Afrique” both entertains and provides insight into the situation in Africa, illuminating the consequences of bad governance on its local population. The show has received positive reviews since it was first produced in Paris, in 2011. It is directed by Thierry Blanc.

Spanish School
Friday, July 5, 9:30 p.m.
Chicha Libre concert
McCullough Social Space (standing room only)

Chicha Libre plays a mixture of Latin rhythms, surf, and psychedelic pop inspired by Peruvian music from Lima and the Amazon. This Brooklyn band includes French, American, Venezuelan, and Mexican musicians who combine covers of Peruvian Chicha with original compositions in French, Spanish, and English; re-interpretations of 1970s pop classics; and cumbia versions of pieces by Satie, Love, and Wagner. Chicha Libre has performed for audiences around the world.

Italian School
Saturday, July 6, 9 p.m.
“A Mediterranean Myth”
Wright Theatre

The Italian School’s opening performance, a one-act play, is a semi-serious tale for a feminine voice performed by Isabella Carloni, faculty member of the Italian School. Carloni is an actress, singer, and songwriter for theatre.

Chinese School
Saturday, July 20, 8 p.m.
Music from China Youth Orchestra
Mahaney Center for the Arts Concert Hall

The Music from China Youth Orchestra encourages and nurtures Chinese American youth, and invites all young people interested in Chinese culture to become active participants in Chinese music. Established by the New York-based professional ensemble Music from China and under the training of its artistic director, Wang Guowei, the group performs classical and folk arrangements played on traditional instruments consisting of bowed strings (erhu), winds (dizi, huslusi), plucked strings (yangqin, liuqin, zheng, ruan), and percussion.

Portuguese School
Saturday, July 27, 9 p.m.
Richard Miller, with guests Stacey Kent and Jim Tomlinson
Mahaney Center for the Arts Concert Hall

Miller and his acoustic guitar bring us music in several rhythmic styles, including Xote and Bossa Nova. Accompanied by Vanderlei Pereira on percussion and Gigi McLaughlin on the accordion, Miller’s “Rhythms of Brazil” brings together a combination of styles whose origins span from southeastern to northern Brazil. Stacey Kent (vocals) and Jim Tomlinson (saxophone) will be joining Richard on stage.

German School
Thursday, August 8, 8 p.m. (pre-performance talk in English at 7:30 p.m.)
Friday, August 9, 8 p.m. (pre-performance talk in English at 7:30 p.m.)
“Die Fledermaus”
Town Hall Theater

This beloved operetta by Johann Strauss will be performed by the carefully selected and talented students in the German for Singers Program as their culminating project of this summer. “Die Fledermaus” is a mischievous delight, a tale of friendly revenge and mistaken identities, with farcical elements and inspired silliness set to a luscious score by Strauss. No doubt, these elements will again be highlighted for maximum effect by the director and producer of the show, Bettina Matthias, who is the director of the German for Singers Program, and musical director Stefan Rütter.

Davis School of Russian
Sunday, August 11, 8 p.m.
School of Russian Choir
McCullough Social Space

Directed by Elena Sadina and Sergei Grachev, the School of Russian Choir, made up of students, will sing, dance, play folk instruments, and reenact various Russian folk rituals during this exciting performance.

Middlebury International Film Festival
June 22 – August 10, 7 p.m.
Dana Auditorium

Middlebury’s International Film Festival is like no other film series. Starting in June, the Language Schools will present a major foreign film on the big screen in Dana Auditorium each week. The schedule of this year’s film festival can be found here.

**Vice-President’s Pick**
Thursday, July 11, 8 p.m.
Le Vent du Nord
McCullough Social Space (standing room only)

Le Vent du Nord is the top traditional music group from Québec, performing melodies and stories and exploring multiple cultural music traditions. Since its beginning in 2002, Le Vent du Nord has exploded onto the folk music scene. The group’s first recording, Maudite moisson!, was awarded a prize for traditional album of the year in 2004. Their second album, Les amants du Saint-Laurent, was chosen album of the year at the Canadian Folk Music Awards. Le Vent du Nord won the 2011 Juno for best Roots & Traditional Album.

 

Area 51 notes – Apr. 25, 2013

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

Present:  Terry Simpkins, Mary Backus, and Doreen Bernier
Guests: Bryan Carson, Joe Antonioli, Carrie Macfarlane, Joy Pile

The Language School task force joined us to discuss their proposal for providing curricular technology support for this summer’s Language School programs. The team asked the ADs to review and approve various proposals, including:
Update curricular platforms documentation

  • Minor changes to current documentation will be made as needed;
  • Documentation that needs more extensive updating will be marked to alert users;
  • CTT will periodically review and revise documentation tagged as being in need of updating;
  • Joe A. will look into options for “tagging” [4/27 update - he has identified a couple of appropriate tags to use for this];
  • An annual documentation review should be planned; this may be something the Curr Tech Team can assume ongoing responsibility for.

Curricular technology questions, unscheduled

  • Joy has met with Mills coordinators and walked them through Moodle and the CourseHub.  Mills coordinators can now “masquerade” as other users to help troubleshoot issues themselves;
  • Joe A. has met with Joe D., Linda and Marty to introduce them to the CourseHub and Moodle platforms.
  • Vacations may need to be staggered to ensure continuous coverage, especially during the July 4 holiday;
  • ADs will ask their managers to balance vacations schedules within their groups.

Curricular technology questions, scheduled.

  • The ADs would like to discuss this in a small group setting with support providers;
  • Support for this, like most of the other LS tasks, will need to be revisited next year.

Onboarding Workshops for faculty/staff.

  • We are hoping support can come from the Ed and Training Team.  Mary will communicate with them about this;
  • Bryan will provide a list of skills has has covered in the past when doing this training.

Courseware Workshops for faculty/staff.

  • We would like LS bilinguals to shadow LIS staff this year as LIS staff conduct workshops.  We will discuss this idea with coordinators and directors.

Curricular resource site creation

  • Bilinguals and faculty who use curricular technology frequently will be asked to place request for site creation needs in advance to allow LIS to assess demands.  At this point, there is no guarantee LIS can fill every request.  Time spent performing this work may limit time available for other, equally important tasks;
  • Joe A. is meeting with LS coordinators next Wednesday.  He will set a deadline for LS departments to communicate needs/requests;
  • Joe A. noted that a temporary and fairly straightforward means for site creation would be to use our pilot implementation of SANSpace.  The down side to this would be if decided not to move SANSpace into production; we would then need to find another platform suitable for these sites;
  • Joe A. will also find out from the coordinators when the bilinguals will be arriving.

Conversations with the team will be continued through email to make sure the appropriate conversations are taking place.

Thanks for reading
Terry & Doreen

“Summer Games” at Middlebury Language Schools

Categories: Midd Blogosphere, video

Sports and activities have always been a big part of life at the Language Schools. They give students a language-specific cultural experience that truly augments the intensive immersive approach to mastering a language.

This summer, with the international flair of the London Olympics on our minds, MiddMag decided to see just what these language students were up to. From ardent competition on the fields and strategic moves at the table to athletic artistry in the dance studios, here’s a brief sampling of what we saw.


Summer Language Study Carrels

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

The library has once again designated several suites of carrels as specific Language Study Carrels. The carrels in the suites are available on a first come, first served basis and may not be reserved. A map of the suites can be found here, and more information regarding carrels in the library can be found here.

Around the World in 10 Events

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

Every summer, a short but sweet burst of Language Schools events fills the campus with music, lectures, and art—all in language, of course.

Here are the annual “Top Ten” suggestions from Michael Geisler, vice president for the Language Schools, Schools Abroad, and graduate programs. Be sure to check the campus calendar as well.

School of Hebrew
Sunday, July 1, 7:30 p.m.
Gitit Shoval and Ron Druyan concert
Mahaney Center for the Arts Concert Hall

Gitit Shoval, one of Israel’s singing treasures,  was discovered at the pre-Eurovision contest of 1979 when she was just 13 years old. Since then she has performed around the world, both solo  and with various musical ensembles. She has six solo albums and four holiday and children’s albums to her credit. Her seventh solo album complements her current show, “From Gershwin to Dylan: The Genius of Jewish Songwriters.”

Spanish School
Friday, July 20, 9:30 p.m.
Sarazino and Sergent Garcia
McCullough Social Space

Sarazino is the brainchild of Lamine Fellah, a musician, songwriter and producer whose nomadic life is reflected in the multicultural influences in his songs. Fellah is a child of a globalized world and Sarazino’s music draws on reggae, Latin and African grooves, Arabic music and catchy, international pop to create an upbeat celebration of the diverse world we all share. Sergent Garcia burst onto the French music scene in the late 1990s with a searing blend of Jamaican reggae and dancehall with Latin grooves that he dubbed “salsamuffin.” A veteran of French punk and indie rock, Sergent Garcia has explored his Spanish roots and passion for Caribbean and Latin music to create a popular sound that earned him fans across the globe and sales of hundreds of thousands of albums.

Chinese School
Saturday, July 21, 7 p.m.
Music From China
Mahaney Center for the Arts Concert Hall

Founded in 1984 by Director Susan Cheng and  under the artistic direction of erhu virtuoso Wang Guoweihe, the chamber ensemble performs a dual repertoire of traditional and contemporary Chinese music. What began as a mission to introduce audiences to the best of Chinese musical culture evolved into an affinity for the eclectic that embraces both traditional and new music.

French School
Saturday, July 21, 8 p.m.
Le Vent Du Nor
McCullough Social Space

Le Vent Du Nord is the top traditional music group from Québec performing melodies and stories exploring multiple cultural music traditions. Since its beginning in 2002, Le Vent du Nord has exploded onto the folk music scene. The group’s first recording, “Maudite moisson!,” was awarded a prize for traditional album of the year in 2004. Their second album, “Les amants du Saint-Laurent,” was  album of the year at the Canadian Folk Music Awards. Le Vent du Nord won the 2011 Juno for best Roots & Traditional Album, and was an official selection of the jury of WOMEX 2011, the biggest international music fair in the world.

Russian School
Wednesday, July 25, 7 p.m.
Leopold Erice Piano Concert
Mahaney Center for the Arts Concert Hall

Leopoldo Erice is a Spanish pianist born in Madrid in 1977. He studied music in his home country with José Ramón Martínez Reyero, Beata Monstavicius, and Joaquín Soriano; in Holland with Rian de Waal; as a fellow of the prestigious “la Caixa” Foundation Fellowship Program in Spain; and in the United States with Leonard Hokanson and Emile Naoumoff. He is Assistant Professor of Music at the American University of Sharjah and the founder and director of the Festival Internacional de Música Clásica de Ribadeo.

Portuguese School
Saturday, July 28, 9 p.m.
Richard Miller, with guests Stacey Kent and Jim Tomlinson
Mahaney Center for the Arts Concert Hall

Miller and his acoustic guitar bring us music in several rhythmic styles, including Xote and Bossa Nova. Accompanied by Vanderlei Pereira on percussion and Gigi McLaughlin on the accordion, Miller’s “Rhythms of Brazil” brings together a combination of styles whose origins span from southeastern to northern Brazil. Stacey Kent (vocals) and Jim Tomlinson (saxophone) will be joining Richard on stage.

Russian School
Friday, August 3, 8 p.m.
Zolotoj Plyos, a concert of Russian Music
Town Hall Theatre (Tickets are $15)

This prolific trio performs an astonishing variety of authentic Russian folk music, with instrumental accompaniment on over 20 authentic folk instruments. The three musicians—Alexander Solovov, Elena Sadina, and Sergeui Gratchev—met at the conservatory in Saratov.

German School
Friday, August 10, 8 p.m.
“The Marriage of Figaro”
Town Hall Theater (Language School students and staff free; limited number of $15 tickets available to the general public.)

Mozart’s opera, “The Marriage of Figaro,” will be performed by the German for Singers Program students. This innovative Language Schools program brings in classical singers from all over the country who want to master the German language—essential for anyone who wants to sing Mozart, Schubert, Strauss, or Wagner. This summer the program will stage Mozart’s classic comedy, under the direction of Bettina Matthias. Music Direction by Stefan Rütter.

German School
Sunday, August 12, 8 p.m.
“A Man Walks into a World” (Kommt ein Mann zur Welt)
Wright Memorial Theater

Martin Heckmanns’s “Kommt ein Mann zur Welt” has a core theme of identity. “Who am I?” is a question Heckmanns never finds himself able to answer, as it always tends to open an even deeper abyss instead of a congruent answer. Heckmanns manages to make this broad philosophical theme theatrically worthy by creating a linguistically witty play with action-oriented scenes. The main character Bruno Stamm is endowed with the common conviction that he is more special than the rest of mankind. During the course of the play, we witness him stumble into all the standard pitfalls of life that disappoint these convictions.

Italian School
Sunday, August 12, 9 p.m.
La Taranta
McCullough Social Space

La Taranta is a dance performance based on Tarantismo, a hysterical, convulsive dance manifestation attributed, according to popular belief, to the bite of the tarantula, a poisonous spider thriving in the area around Taranto (ancient Tarentum) from which it derives its name.


Around the World in 10 Events

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

Every summer, there’s a short but sweet burst of Language School-related events that fills the campus calendar with a weekly dose of all things cultural, from music to lectures to art—all in language, of course. Don’t miss your chance to travel abroad without leaving town!

Here are the annual “Top Ten” suggestions from Michael Geisler, vice president for the Language Schools, Schools Abroad, and graduate programs. Be sure to check the campus calendar as well.

 

 

 

 

 

School of Hebrew
Tuesday, June 28, 8 p.m.
Tzofim Friendship Caravan
McCullough Social Space

Tzofim Friendship Caravans travel throughout North America each summer as emissaries, sharing their lives in Israel through song, dance and stories representing the Israeli culture and spirit. Each Caravan consists of five male and five female Tzofim (Israel Scouts) who are entering their senior year of high school. Friendship Caravans have appeared on over twelve different TV shows and several news spots, reaching over 90,000 viewers worldwide.

Spanish School
Friday, July 1, 9 p.m.
Novalima  Concert
McCullough Social Space

“Peruvian music isn’t all Andean pan pipes. Novalima are a cosmopolitan cutting-edge troupe whose blurring of their country’s bitter racial divide, incorporating the music of ‘Afro-Peru,’ has created a stir.  Sinuous, compulsive rhythms are at their heart but Novalima stretches out into reggae and Afrobeat with a variety of vocalists, including a Cuban hip-hop duo.” The Observer, 01/18/09

Chinese School
Friday, July 8, 7:30 p.m.
Music from China Youth Orchestra
McCullough Social Space

Conducted by Mr. Guowei Wang, this 16-member youth ensemble will perform both traditional Chinese music and original compositions. The Music from China Youth Orchestra has performed all over the United States and has been featured at Carnegie Hall.

French School
Sunday, July 10th, 7 p.m.
Roundtable Discussion : Spring Revolution in the Arab World
Robert A. Jones ’59 House Conference Room

A roundtable discussion in French of recent developments in the Middle East and North Africa will be held on the Vermont campus, with the participation via videoconference of the French School at Mills and the Middlebury Arabic School. Guest speakers in Vermont will include Sami Aoun, Full Professor at the Université du Québec à Montréal and regular Middle East analyst for Radio-Canada and other media organizations; and Fady Fadel, Vice President for Academic Affairs and International Relations and Professor of Law and Political Science, Antonine University, Lebanon, who has devoted significant research to interreligious dialogue, the peaceful settlement of international disputes, and the legal and political analysis of UN Security Council peacekeeping resolutions.

French School
Monday, July 18, 7:30 p.m.
K’Koustik Quartet
McCullough Social Space

K’Koustik Quartet will present a sparkling blend of traditional rhythms from Guadeloupe. This performance is a tribute to the ka―a goat-skin tanbou which in its boula form (bass) provides the basic rhythms of Guadeloupean folk music and in its maké form (treble) supplies the fiery improvisational flourishes that distinguish the music of the West Indies.

German School
Thursday, July 21, 5 p.m.
Zernik Lecture by Professor Frank Trommler: “Wie das Ausland Deutschland sehen soll” (“How foreign countries should view Germany”)
McCardell Bicentennial Hall 220

Frank Trommler has been a member of the Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures at the University of Pennsylvania since 1970. A Guggenheim Fellow (1984–85), Trommler has also been President of the AATG’s Philadelphia chapter (1986–90), President of the German Studies Association (1991–92), and Director of the Humanities Program at the American Institute for Contemporary German Studies in Washington, DC (1995–2003). In 1994 he was awarded the Bundesverdienstkreuz by the President of the Federal Republic for his work in the field of American-German relations. The Zernik Lecture is an annual lecture sponsored by the Karl and Anna Zernik Memorial Fund.

Portuguese School
Friday, July 29, 9 p.m.
Richard Miller and Vanderlei Pereira
McCullough Social Space

Richard Miller and his acoustic guitar bring us music in several rhythmic styles, including Xote and Bossa Nova. Accompanied by Vanderlei Pereira on percussion and Gigi McLaughlin on the accordion, Miller’s “Rhythms of Brazil” brings together a combination of styles whose origins span from southeastern to northern Brazil.

School of Russian
Saturday, July 30, 8 p.m.
Zolotoi Plyos
Town Hall Theater

Zolotoi Plyos perform a wide range of Russian folk songs from various regions of Russia. Aleksandr, Elena, and Sergei preface each song with a description of its genre and content. They play over 30 musical instruments and introduce most of them in the course of the concert—truly a fun event for any lover of good music, regardless of age!

Italian School
Wednesday, August 3, 9 p.m.
Lecture and photo presentation by award-winning photojournalist Letizia Battaglia
Warner Hemicycle

Born in Palermo, Sicily, Letizia Battaglia took up photojournalism in 1971 and went on to discover in herself a burning passion for photography. Over the years she has documented the ferocious internal war of the Mafia and its assault on civil society, producing many of the iconic images that have come to represent Sicily and the Mafia throughout the world. She is also deeply involved in women’s rights, environmental issues and, most recently, prisoners’ rights.

German School
Friday, August 5, 8 p.m. at Town Hall Theater
Saturday, August 6, 8 p.m. at Vergennes Opera House
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s La Finta Giardiniera
Directed and conducted by Christoph Hagel

The German for Singers program of the Middlebury German School will perform Mozart’s La Finta Giardiniera under the direction of Christoph Hagel, recipient of the 2010 ECHO-Klassik-Sonderpreis, a German music award. Mozart wrote this compelling story of love, jealousy, betrayal, and revenge at the age of 18. In 1775 the opera debuted in Munich, where it was performed in Italian; five years later, Mozart converted it into a German Singspiel.