By Stephania Romaniuk
February always seems to end with the words “Where did it go?” My fifth year in this city has been no different that way, especially since I added a few more activities to my plate this semester. In addition to my classes:
- Introduction to Digital Media: reading articles, watching films, trying out digital artifacts that all chronicle the rise of the digital world we know today
- Film as Object: attending lectures and taking tours at the George Eastman House, screening films, and learning about film preservation techniques and their importance
- English Diction (my only Eastman course this semester): you guessed it, transcribing English poetry into the International Phonetic Alphabet, learning how to form the vowels and consonants of the English language for lyric diction (classical singing) purposes, and singing in class
- PR & Marketing Internship: working at the Todd Theatre (of the River Campus’s theatre department), where I’ve learned how to write a press release, contacted high school teachers about a student matinee for our upcoming production of The Winter’s Tale, come up with a personal brand, drafted “teasers” for the show (small paper handouts that hint at what’s to come before the posters are put up), and much, much, more
- Modern Art: Manet, Seurat, Cassatt, Cézanne, Picasso, Braque, Van Gogh, the Italian Futurists, the German Expressionists…. In addition to analyzing works of these artists (and lots of others that were brought up in the readings or in class), we discussed historical, cultural, social, political, and technological influences of the times that played a role in the development of the artists’ work.
…In addition to these classes, I got the part of “Lisa Wallace” in the upcoming One-Act Play Festival. For a month now, I’ve been in rehearsals for this new musical, written and directed by River Campus students. So essentially, we’re all staging a world premiere! Is that not cool or what? There are three other one-act plays going up at the same time, all written and directed by UR students.
I’m also getting ready to record a CD at the end of March, featuring songs by the Ukrainian composer Bohdan Wesolowsky—my favorite. His style is in the 1950s ballroom genre—waltzes, foxtrots, tangos, rhumbas—and I’ve got some stellar Eastman musicians lined up to play on the CD.
Of course, there are also all of those little projects or concerts or jam sessions that come up along the way that I decided at the beginning of this semester I would not let slip away. If you’re reading this, don’t worry—academics still come first, but not to the degree that they take away from the fun I should be having this semester. Heck, from the fun that we should all ALWAYS be having!
Granted, every day’s not going to be a walk in the park, but work, play, and rest can all be equally balanced if you make that choice for yourself. At least that’s what I read recently! Here, at least, it seems like you have the freedom to set the pace for yourself. And with nearly 250 student-run clubs and groups on campus (a particularly remarkable number given our population of just 5,000 undergrads), there are so many ways to get involved.
So, wishing you all good luck as you begin hearing back from schools, making your decisions, figuring out which place is right for you…. Visualize what you’d like, and dive in!
Thanks for reading and until next time.