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Linfield kicks off Lacroute Arts Series

Three award-winning artists will speak on The Arts and Social Change during a three-day symposium and mini-residency, the inaugural event of the Linfield Lacroute Arts Series at Linfield College. Over the course of three days, the artists will participate in a panel discussion, present lectures and work with students in the classroom.

The symposium will include an interdisciplinary panel discussion on Monday, May 7, at 7 p.m. in the Delkin Recital Hall in the Vivian A. Bull Music Center at Linfield. Panelists include musician Thomas Lauderdale, photo historian Corey Dzenko and playwright Rob Urbinati, who will participate in a discussion dedicated to the arts and social change. The talk will be moderated by Susan Agre-Kippenhan, vice president for academic affairs and dean of faculty at Linfield.

In addition to the panel discussion, the three artists will each give a lecture:

• Lauderdale will present “Singer-Songwriter: Learn Your Craft” on Monday, May 7, at 5 p.m. in Delkin Recital Hall.

• Dzenko will present “The ‘Cruel Optimism’ of Gregory Crewdson’s Suburbs and Suzanne Opton’s Soldiers” on Tuesday, May 8, at 4 p.m. in the Nicholson Library Media Viewing Room.

• Urbinati will present two talks on Wednesday, May 9, in the lobby of Ford Hall − “Creating a Play: From Idea to Page to Stage, Part One” at 4 p.m. and “Rebel Voices and Necessary Dialogues” at 7 p.m.

Lauderdale, the founder of Pink Martini, has appeared as a soloist with numerous orchestras and ensembles including the Oregon Symphony, the Seattle Symphony, the Portland Youth Philharmonic, Chamber Music Northwest and Oregon Ballet Theatre. Lauderdale has been active in Oregon politics, serving under Portland Mayor Bud Clark, Oregon Governor Neil Goldschmidt and Portland City Commissioner Gretchen Kafoury. He graduated with honors from Harvard University in 1992 with a degree in history and literature and founded the “little orchestra” Pink Martini to play political fundraisers for progressive causes such as civil rights, the environment, affordable housing and public broadcasting. In 2008, he completed his first film score for Chiara Clemente’s documentary, “Our City Dreams.” He currently serves on the boards of the Oregon Symphony and Pioneer Courthouse Square.

Dzenko is a photo historian who focuses her scholarship on contemporary U.S. photography. She has presented papers on topics including contemporary photography, whiteness and “post-postmodern” photo theory. She has also published essays in sources including “Afterimage: The Journal of Media Arts” and “Cultural Criticism, Hemisphere: Visual Cultures of the Americas,” and the forthcoming book “Gravity in Art: Essays on Weight and Weightlessness in Painting, Sculpture, and Photography.” Currently, she is completing her dissertation with funding from the Henry Luce Foundation American Art Dissertation Research Award. She teaches at the University of New Mexico and Central New Mexico Community College and she serves as a founding member of Spectre Arts, an emerging art space in Durham, N.C., that will support visual and performative artists.

Urbinati is a freelance director and playwright based in New York City and the director of “New Play Development” at Queens Theatre, where he curates the Immigrant Voices Project. He has directed at the Public Theatre, Culture Project, Abingdon Theatre, Classic Stage Company, Pearl Theatre and the New York City Theatre Festival, among others. Urbinati has adapted multiple plays including “Miss Julie in Hollywood,” “Cruel and Barbarous Treatment” and “Rebel Voices.” His plays “Karaoke Night at the Suicide Shock” and “West Moon Street” have premiered at Queens Theatre. Linfield also produced “West Moon Street” in 2011. He has developed various projects for Disney Creative Entertainment and contributed material for “Breaking the Silence, Beating the Drum,” the international day of remembrance of the victims of slavery at the United Nations. He received an M.A. from the University of Nebraska and a Ph.D. from the University of Oregon.

The Linfield Lacroute Arts Series, sponsored by the Lacroute Arts Fund, is dedicated to helping Linfield College present art events and activities for the campus and community. The series will provide four programs over the next two years featuring artists in the areas of music, art and visual culture, and theatre and communication arts.

The event is free and open to the public. For more information, call 503-883-2802.