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Princeton University’s Lewis Center for the Arts
Announces 2013-14 Season

The Lewis Center for the Arts at Princeton University will present over 100 events during its sixth season, running September 2013 through May 2014, including theater and dance performances, readings by internationally-known writers, exhibitions, film screenings and lectures.

“The Lewis Center looks forward to a uniquely exciting program this year,” noted Michael Cadden, Chair of the Center.  “We invite the entire community to experience the wide-ranging work we produce – work created by our students, our faculty, and the dozens of guest artists who visit our campus.  Artists need audiences, so most of our events are free or ticketed at no more than $15, making them accessible to just about anyone.  And most are family-friendly as well.  Come see what the Lewis Center is really about – making art happen!”

The Lewis Center offers undergraduate courses through Princeton University’s programs in creative writing, dance, theater, and the visual arts, as well as through the interdisciplinary Princeton Atelier.

Sunday in the park with georgeThe Program in Theater will present its annual fall show on November 8-16, a new interpretation of Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing directed by Princeton alumna Lileana Blain-Cruz.  Blain-Cruz recently received a New York Theatre Workshop 2050 Fellowship and is gaining a reputation for her innovative interpretations of classical works.  Other theater productions scheduled this season include Chekhov’s classic of the Russian stage, Uncle Vanya (October); a gender-bending interpretation of Ibsen’s Hedda Gabler (January); Neil Bartlett’s adaptation of the Dickens classic, Great Expectations (February); The Producers, the hit musical by Mel Brooks and Thomas Meehan (March); and Euripides’ ancient Greek tragedy Hippolytus with an original vocal score (March).   Also planned are premieres of two new student-written plays being developed by seniors in the Program in Theater.

The Lewis Center will again partner with the Department of French and Italian and L’Avant-Scène student theater group to present Seuls en Scène - Princeton French Theater Festival.  French actors and directors will present a nine-day series of classic and new plays in French on September 21 through 29 including a production of L’Épreuve by Marivaux directed by Clément Hervieu-Léger of Comedie-Française.

Princeton’s Music Theater Lab returns this season with “Fiddler at 50,” a symposium examining Fiddler on the Roof on the 50th anniversary of this beloved musical, cosponsored with the Lapidus Fund in American Jewish Studies of Princeton's Program in American Studies. An evening screening of the film version and talk back will be held on November 14 followed on November 15 with interviews with artists and lectures including lyricist Sheldon Harnick, director John Doyle, and scholar Alisa Solomon.  A symposium on the work of Stephen Sondheim is planned for the spring.

Spring dance festival's lapseThe Program in Dance brings its annual Spring Dance Festival to the community on February 21-23 presenting student-performed, new and repertory works choreographed by internationally renowned and emerging guest artists and faculty.  This year’s festival will include works by Bill T. Jones, Doug Varone, Rebecca Lazier, Tina Fehlandt and Pam Tanowitz.  New student choreography will be the focus of performances in January and April, and informal showings of works-in-progress will be presented at various points throughout the year.  Widely recognized guest choreographers and dancers will present a series of master classes, which will be open to the public to observe. 

The Performance Central series at the Lewis Center will present a range of events beginning on September 19-20 with theater professor Brian Herrera’s solo, multimedia autobiographical show, I Was the Voice of Democracy.   On November 4 the series will present “Pam Tanowitz/FLUX Quartet: An Informal Evening of Dance, Music and Discussion,” featuring Hodder Fellow and choreographer Pam Tanowitz.  In March, Shanghai’s Yue Opera Company is planning a stop in Princeton on its U.S. tour to present operatic interpretations of two Ibsen plays, Hedda Gabler and The Lady from the Sea

headshot of Richard BlancoPrinceton’s internationally acclaimed Program in Creative Writing will continue its presentation of world-renowned writers in the Althea Ward Clark W’21 Reading Series.  Authors scheduled to appear include:  novelist and essayist Geoff Dyer along with poet Richard Blanco (October 16); novelist Jamaica Kincaid and poet David Ferry (November 13); poet Denise Duhamel and fiction writer Teju Cole (February 12); poet Dana Levin and fiction writer Claire Vaye Watkins (March 12); and poet D.A. Powell with fiction writer Ann Beattie (April 16).  Readings will be held at 4:30 p.m. at the Berlind Theatre at McCarter Theatre Center.  In addition, students in the Creative Writing Program will read at the end of each semester from new work, and in May seniors earning a certificate in the program will present their poetry, fiction, screenwriting and translation.

Dobkin with his collectionsIn September the Program in Visual Arts will kick–off its exhibition series on September 19 with a unique show of work by computer scientist and exuberant, self-identified amateur artist David Dobkin, Princeton’s Dean of the Faculty.  This exhibition in the Lucas Gallery will feature sculptures, photo-collages, and site-specific installations by Dobkin, who collects and creatively repurposes a vast array of objects from daily life.  Later this fall Tino Sehgal’s performance installation, “This Situation,” which has been presented internationally, will be performed at Princeton.  Beginning in January and running through May, work by seniors completing a degree or certificate in visual arts will present individual exhibitions of work created as part of their senior thesis projects.  Each exhibition will open with a public reception in the gallery where guests can meet the artists. 

Elevator Repair Service performingServing as a unique incubator of interdisciplinary creativity, the Princeton Atelier will again bring guest artists to campus to team-teach several courses in the fall and spring.  In these intensive collaborations, professional artists work with one another and with students to create innovative work that often pushes the boundaries of given artistic forms. While specific events are yet to be imagined, audiences can expect to see a wide range of programming including original songs and scenes created in a course with best-selling author Meg Wolitzer and singer/songwriter Suzzy Roche of the music group The Roches; “Making Theater without a Script” led by John Collins and the innovative theater group Elevator Repair Service; a production of Fred Ho’s martial arts opera, The Further Adventures of Monkey, directed by faculty member Rebecca Lazier with fight choreography by Teake; and the return of the comedic musical theater improv group Baby Wants Candy, the hit of last year’s Performance Central series.

The Lewis Center will also cosponsor a number of events with other departments at the university including a screening and panel discussion on To You, the Birdie (Phèdre), a film by avant garde artists company The Wooster Group; a conversation with 2013 Pulitzer Prize-winner for Drama Ayad Akhtar; and a lecture on the critical importance of including the arts in education along with science, technology, engineering and math by John Maeda, president of Rhode Island School of Design. 

Expanding its programs nurturing emerging artists, Princeton’s inaugural Fellows in the Creative and Performing Arts, funded in part by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, will begin their two-year residencies of teaching, creating new work, and engaging with the university’s creative community.  Graphic designer Danielle Aubert and composer and percussion musician Jason Treuting will be featured in a number of upcoming events.  They will join the 2013-14 Hodder Fellows: poet Katy Didden and fiction writer Adam Ross will be featured in a reading on September 25, choreographer Pam Tanowitz will be working with students on a piece for the Spring Dance Festival; and plans are in the works for a screening by filmmaker Chinonye Chukwu.

Associated with the Lewis Center, Princeton’s Fund for Irish Studies will present its annual series of lectures by artists and scholars on a wide range of contemporary and historical topics related to Ireland and Irish culture.  On November 15, playwright Enda Walsh, who received the 2012 Tony Award for Best Book of a Musical for Once, will be “In Conversation with Lewis Center Chair and Senior Lecturer in Theater Michael Cadden.”  Other lectures scheduled include: Marilynn Richtark on “Stewart Parker: The Playwright in His Place” (September 20); Amy Martin on “The Origins of Irish Internationalism: Violence and Terror in Ireland, India and Jamaica, 1857-1870” (September 27); Kevin Barry, reading from his new short story collection, Dark Lies the Island (October 11); a performance by Irish jazz singer Christine Tobin of her award-winning settings of poems by W. B. Yeats, “Sailing to Byzantium” (October 18); and Philip King on “The Irish Song Lyric from Tom Moore to Christy Moore” (November 8).  These free lectures are held on Fridays at 4:30 p.m. at the James M. Stewart ’32 Theater at 185 Nassau Street.  In addition, the Fund for Irish Studies will recognize its 15th anniversary season by hosting a daylong symposium on Irish culture, politics, history, and life in April 2014.

Members of the community can receive weekly email updates on events at the Lewis Center by signing up for the Center’s newsletter:  

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Link to Photos:
Photo caption 1: Performance of the Lewis Center’s Program in Theater 2013 production of Sunday in the Park with George.
Photo credit 1: Photo by Frank Wojciechowski
Photo caption 2: Performance of Zvi Gotheiner’s Lapse at the Lewis Center’s Program in Dance 2013 Spring Dance Festival.
Photo credit 2: Photo by Bentley Drezner
Photo caption 3: Princeton Dean of Faculty David Dobkin with some of his eclectic collections of objects from everyday life, subject of an exhibition by the Lewis Center’s Program in Visual Arts in September.
Photo credit 3: Photo by Julian Germain
Photo caption 4: Elevator Repair Service, innovative theater company that will lead a fall 2013 Princeton Atelier course on “Making Theater without a Script,” the outcomes of which will be performed by students.
Photo credit 4: Photo by Rob Strong
Photo caption 5: Richard Blanco, award-winning poet, will be among the writers featured in the 2013-14 Althea Ward Clark W’21 Reading Series presented by the Lewis Center’s Program in Creative Writing.
Photo credit 5: Photo by Timothy Greenfield Sanders

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