Beja Shrine Circus enters Green Bay ring

Come one, come all to the Beja Shrine Circus where elephants will amaze you, lions and tigers will stun you and a human cannonball will fly 150 feet across the sky.

The Beja Shrine Circus performed March 1 to 3 at Green Bay Brown County Veterans Memorial Center.

The Beja Shrine Circus is sponsored by the Beja Shriners of Green Bay. Beja Shriners is a fraternity based on fun, fellowship and Masonic principles of brotherly love, relief and truth. There are more than 500 Beja Shriner members in Green Bay. The Beja Shriner’s No. 1 fundraiser is the Beja Shrine Circus.

Beja helps support 22 Shriners Children Hospitals. The hospitals specialize in care for orthopedic conditions, burns, spinal cord injuries, cleft lip or palate and more. Regardless of ability to pay, they will be treated.

Fundraising activities are abundant for the Shriners, and the circus is another way they give back to the Green Bay community. Each year, thousands of children are given free tickets to attend the circus.

Many people put in time, effort and practice to make sure the circus runs smoothly.

The Ring mistress Michelle Audrey started the circus.

Audrey is one of the only women ring-masters in the current circus world. She worked to create an atmosphere to excite the audience from the start.

Other circus performers included elephants weighing around six tons and standing between 10 and 13 feet tall. The elephants are no strangers to the circus world and their tricks were unrestricted by their size. The elephants created pyramids, stood on one foot while standing on a table and other maneuvers in the ring.

The star of the Beja Shrine Circus, Mighty Bo, is the largest performing elephant on Earth. Elephant jokes claim they have a brain the size of a peanut, but his more-than-60-trick roster proved the misconceptions to be worth peanuts. Mighty Bo amazed the audience with his graceful and talented moves. No animal likes to complete a trick without reward, and Mighty Bo’s favorite rewards are red apples and sweet grain.

Bruno Blaszak is the lion and tiger trainer, whom some claim is wilder than the animals he trains. Blaszak grew up in Poland in a family of animal trainers. His family was part of the traveling circus Ringling Bros. Barnum and Bailey. The tigers and lions jumped through hoops, laid down, rolled over and for the finale walked on tight wire.

Blaszak currently lives in Florida with his eight big cats that require a total of 150 pounds of meat every day.

“Lions and tigers are basically a house cat, but they’re a supercharged version,” Blaszak said. “They’ve got bigger claws and bigger teeth and out of playful behavior they can leave you with pretty bad scratches and bites. I don’t recommend them for home use.”

The rest of the circus acts contained the Georgettes Magic Extravaganza, Cavorting Clowns, Aerialists and daredevil bikers.

“I liked the clowns, especially the one with the little dog that was dressed up like an elephant,” said Jordyn, the 5-year-old daughter of Jimena Duquaine of Green Bay.

The Georgettes Magic Extravaganza and the Cavorting Clowns kept the audience entertained while the circus crew changed scenery between acts. The Georgettes do high-flying leg kicks and dance to fast-paced music. The clowns provided side-splitting laughter as they completed silly acts.

The high-flying Aerialists climbed ropes to the top of the arena and twisted and twirled by their hair, one arm and one leg while holding another aerialists. For their second act, they juggled fire while being suspended in the air.

The daredevil bikers were a favorite of the crowd.

“I loved the dirt bikers,” said Brennan Vanwychen, a 14-year-old from Howard. “They were daring and kept me intrigued.”

These bikers showed no fear when they were caged in the sphere. They started the act with only three bikes and continued by adding two more bikers. They ended with five bikers weaving winding, and circling in the cage. The audience applauded and cheered as they completed this unthinkable feat. While the bikers were in the cage, a motocross rider performed aerial stunts, including backflips.

The final act of the night was Dave “The Bullet” Smith. He has been a human cannonball for more than 11 years. The audience went completely silent when The Bullet was loaded into the cannon and the countdown began.

“You can’t see the landing net just a little piece of sky, listening to a countdown to my blast-off,” Smith said. “After all these years and all these shows I know I’ve got one show and every time it could be fatal. That does cross my mind.”

The circus concluded after its March 3 show, but the Beja Shriners will continue to be active in the community.

Hawaiian pop/hip-hop artist stops at UWGB

Energetic stage presence and island influence attracts fans from all demographics including Good Times Programming. GTP brought rising Hawaiian pop/hip-hop artist Corey Pieper to campus March 14.

Also known as C-Piepz, the 22-year-old artist continues to gain followers outside his Milwaukee base, and his Phoenix Club performance solidified some new fans.

Erin Sunisa, senior vocal and theater performance major, played a role in booking Pieper for GTP. Sunisa thought having Pieper perform on campus would be a good change of pace.

“GTP always tries to bring a variety of acts to the campus, and rap/hip hop was something that hasn’t been done recently,” Sunisa said. “Corey Pieper is an up-and-coming artist, and we wanted UWGB to get a different taste of music.”

“From Milwaukee 2 the Islands,” a slogan often used by Pieper, represents his Hawaiian roots and Milwaukee where he was born and raised, both greatly influencing his lyrics. A friendly competition during his freshmen year in high school triggered Pieper to pursue a career in music. The competition was between rap group Global Warming and one Pieper started with a friend called UniQness. Pieper said there was not only a following of the two groups at their own school but surrounding schools showed interest as well. The two groups had a rap battle at the school talent show that year, setting an attendance record with the number of fans. The moment the set was finished, the crowd exploded with screams and applause.

“I remember thinking to myself while looking out at everyone, ‘Man, I could really picture myself doing this for a living,’” Pieper said.

Family, friends and fans’ demand for music, t-shirts and other merchandise pushed Pieper to the next level of his career.

“The more I started to pursue music, the more people started noticing and recognizing me at parties and public places,” Pieper said. “It was a good feeling, so I decided to stick with it.”

As a young, rising artist, Pieper faces challenges that require him to stay focused. His family, friends and girlfriend have been his support system since day one.

“Even when they don’t necessarily agree with certain things, they always stand behind me and are there if I ever need anything,” Pieper said.

Pieper appreciated the love and support Green Bay fans showed.

“I had a blast performing at UWGB,” Pieper said. “Everyone was extremely nice from the moment we got there until the moment we left.”

As his career continues to grow, new material is in the works. Not only does he hope to return to UWGB, but he also wants to bring in a bigger crowd the next time around.

Alex Drath, future UWGB student, attended the show and was beyond impressed with Pieper. Drath said Pieper’s communication with the audience and his energy made the show a success.

“Corey Pieper is a positive and inspirational artist and person,” Drath said. “He has such an amazing talent.”

Overall, attendance showed that the Hawaiian rap artist was well received at UWGB.

“A lot of people came and danced and stayed to chat with Corey. It was a lot of fun,” Sunisa said.

Music gives attention to environment issues

UW-Green Bay students and faculty joined in efforts to enforce daily environmentally friendly practices. Compartmentalized garbage bins, hydration stations and a charge for plastic bags at the Corner Store are just a couple of things being done to promote a green campus.

At the Weidner Center for the Performing Arts March 1, the UWGB Symphonic Band and Wind Ensemble showed their support for the environmentally conscious curriculum. UWGB Director of Bands, Kevin Collins, conducted a performance that not only displayed musical talent, but it embodied the concept of keeping the environment unpolluted.

The creative theme for the concert was “Reuse, Repurpose, Recycle.” It made connections with the university’s environmental viewpoints and recycled old music to new.

Stephanie Sension, senior education major, believes the creative effort the band made to create awareness for the environment is an approach that should be utilized by others in the future.

“I think this was a good choice for the first concert of the spring semester,” Sension said. “Any attempt to better the environment is very respectable, but I truly think that using creativity when coming up with a strategy attracts more people to create awareness.”

The Symphonic Band performed compositions from notable composers, fitting within the theme “reused, repurposed and recycled.” These older songs were reused and performed in new ways. Some of the songs from the chosen composers were “Joy Revisited” by Frank Ticheli, “Highland Echoes” by Larry Daehn, and a collection of hymns by Giovanni P. da Palestrina arranged by John Moss.

The Wind Ensemble recycled arrangements from two works including “Suite from the Dansyre” by Tilman Susato, arranged by Larry Dunnigan, and “Giles Farnaby Suite” by Gordon Jacob. All performed pieces highlighted the theme of the concert.

Senior Psychology major Haley Oelke applauds the efforts the Symphonic Band and Wind Ensemble have made to keep this campus aware of environmental concerns.

“Seeing an organization take their talents and utilize them for this cause is inspirational,” Oelke said. “I hope to see more groups on campus following in the bands’ footsteps, and I believe it will make a positive impact on the environment and well-being of our community.”

The concert differed from those the band has performed in the past, setting it apart in a positive way. The innovative theme made an interesting show that many related to.

The band itself and the department both played a role in the success of the environmentally friendly concert. Collins experience pushed the Music Program here at UWGB to new levels since he took over as Director of Bands in 1995. At the beginning of his time as director, Collins led the remodeling of music practice and instructional facilities at UWGB.

Collins has conducted honor bands throughout Wisconsin and the Midwest, and many other professional and other ensembles as well.

The “reused, repurposed, recycled” theme is not only catchy, but creats awareness of the environment through something new—the sound of music.

Radium Girls light up Weidner

Catherine Donahue was an ordinary woman of the 1920s. She had a husband and two children. Her daily duties included laundry, dinner and bedtime stories. But times were tough. Rather than let her husband work himself to death, she decided to find a job. U.S. Radium Company was her salvation and ultimately her end.

Presented by UW-Green Bay Theatre and written by Melanie Marnich, “These Shining Lives” recounts the heroic tale of four women who lost their lives at the hands of their employer. Showcased Feb. 28, March 1, 2 and 6 through 9 at the Weidner Center for the Performing Arts, “These Shining Lives” whisks audience members back to the roaring ‘20s, a time of empowerment and change for women. They could vote, smoke and drink. For the first time in U.S. history, daughters had a chance to better themselves and wives could contribute financially to their households.

While the pay was decent, no amount of money could justify the pain suffered by the workers of U.S. Radium Company.

Their job was relatively simple- paint glow-in-the-dark numbers on watch and clock faces. To make the paint glow, the company used radium, common in the 20s. Many believed radium had healing effects, and it was used in elixirs and pills.

“Some people even bathed in radium-infused water,” said John Mariano, play director and associate professor of theatre.

As time went on, it became apparent these assumptions were false. Radium causes necrosis, localized decaying of tissue.

Because the paint brushes lost their shape easily, painters were instructed to shape the bristles with their tongue and lips. After a prolonged amount of time workers began to experience body aches and pains. Some women lost their teeth and jaw bones. Overall, the bones of the women deteriorated.

The Radium Girls chose to stand, hand in hand, and take on the company. After six appeals, Catherine, one of the workers, won, not just for herself, but for workers across the U.S.

“The relationships they made while working together really gave them the strength to take the company on,” Mariano said.

The play focuses on these relationships. Catherine, Charlotte, Frances and Pearl sat next to each other for eight hours a day, five days a week for six years. They grew to respect and love one another. These women stood together in happy times and sad, drawing strength from their friendship when they could not find it within themselves.

The six-member cast played multiple roles and accounted for 17 characters total. Stephanie Frank played the resilient Catherine. Frances, the quiet member of the Radium Girls, was portrayed by Abigail Lee. The sassy Charlotte was played by Chelsea Crevcoure. Erin Sunisa was Pearl, the not-so-great joke teller of the group. Andrew Delaurelle was Catherine’s supportive husband Tom, and Randall J. Tranowski filled the role of the evil Mr. Reed, supervisor at U.S. Radium.

“These Shining Lives” is a heartfelt story. During some scenes ,audience members laughed and at others sniffles could be heard throughout the Weidner Center.

“There were so many moments that got to me,” said Cody Van Ruden, freshman theatre major. “The part where Catherine and Charlotte sat down together and talked of their friendship, their strength and their problems really struck me.”

The Radium Girls were the first women in the U.S. to publicly stand up and fight. They showed people that just because they were women didn’t mean they were disposable.

“We’re very proud to be able to do this play,” Mariano said. “It’s educational and based on a true story. We’re telling a story that doesn’t usually get told and putting a human face on it. It allows students to walk in their shoes.”

Catherine said her biggest fear is to be invisible, to die and be forgotten. Through “These Shining Lives,” the bravery of the Radium Girls shines on.

‘A Concert of Dance’ displays student moves

The combination of a rigorous practice schedule and a passion for dance paid off for the UW-Green Bay Theatre and Dance program as members put another successful DanceWorks production together for April 5 and 6. The shows will be free and open to the public to highlight talent and entertainment at the University Theater.

DanceWorks was added as one of the main stage productions after the reconstruction of the theatre and dance program. The show “A Concert of Dance” premiers each year by students in the theater program along with DanceWorks and Alternate Theatre student organizations. This organization gives students an opportunity to showcase their creativity and abilities while doing something they love — dancing.

This year’s DanceWorks production presented a more modern twist than past shows.  While still performing traditional styles of contemporary, jazz and tap dance, there were jazz funk pieces similar to the style of hip-hop dance.

All members assisted with choreography because of the different styles of dance involved. The majority was done by artistic director Denise Carlson-Gardner and instructor Marc Kotz, but the student’s put together several of the pieces on their own.  Carlson-Gardner believes the performance opportunity DanceWorks gives to students is important for their education as it allows them to take what they have learned in dance classes and apply it.

“The most rewarding part of a production like this is the opportunity to create through choreography and then watch the pieces come to life through our dance students as they grow, learn and perform,” Carlson-Gardner said.

The opportunity to be part of the DanceWorks production involves an audition, but the dance classes are available for any student to take — no experience necessary. With a wide range of courses offered on campus, students have the option to explore different styles of dance while getting credits toward graduation at the same time.

Claire DuPont, 2009 UWGB graduate with a bachelor of arts in English, remains involved with the DanceWorks productions and had a positive experience taking intro dance classes at UWGB.

DuPont said the most enjoyable part was the level of encouragement and challenge each dancer passed on to one another.

“We all wanted the other to succeed, open up and be the best dancer they could be,” DuPont said, “and the varying levels of talent in each class made for great learning opportunities for all.”

DanceWorks strives to put on productions that will provide an exciting evening of entertainment for anyone who enjoys dance and music. The student involvement in “A Concert of Dance,” alongside the support of directors, instructors and other individuals involved, showcases the unity of UWGB in a unique and powerful way.

“My favorite aspect of the show is the creativity and inspiration that everyone brings with them,” DuPont said. “Each dancer has a different vision and style, and when they all collaborate, great things happen.”

Kick back with Wisconsin’s Largest Office Party

Lose that stuffy work suit. The workday is over and it’s time to have some fun. Wisconsin’s Largest Office Party, hosted by PMI Entertainment Group and Cumulus Radio, could be an ideal diversion from a grueling job or overloaded class schedule.

The Brown County Veterans Memorial Arena will be jam-packed with drinks, games, live music, prize giveaways and more April 11 from 5-11 p.m. WLOP is a 21-and-over, interactive event featuring five lounges, each unique to its hosting radio station.

103.1 WOGB will be showing retro videos and arcade games. Participants can also go for gold in the office Olympics. Before moving on to the next attraction, visitors can shake it in Margaritaville or purchase a Meyer Brother’s Old Fashioned.

For the women in attendance, Star 98 will be offering fashion and makeup tips. Guests get a chance to channel their inner material girl with a complete ‘80s makeover. For those looking to relax, Star 98 will also have massage chairs and onsite spa treatments. Star 98’s special guest Jorianne the Coffee Psychic will also be lending her insight to whatever mysteries the future may hold.

For the more refined partygoer, cheese and wine tasting will be available in the 106.7 KRUZ lounge. Visitors can talk music with DJ Max, participate in cooking demos or simply take a load off and play a board game or two. Attendees are also invited  to flaunt their skills on Nintendo Wii.

104.9 The Wolf reveals poker faces in a hand of DJs Texas Hold ‘Em or Black Jack with Rob and Louise. Other lounge games include corn hole, ladder golf and a milk bottle toss.

Over by 107.5 The Fan, it’s tee-time. Here partygoers can get information on local golf courses or putt to win prizes. For those feeling nostalgic, they can sit back, kick up their feet and relive favorite moments of Packers history. Throwback games will be playing on the flat screens all night.

Of course, a party isn’t possible without music. WLOP will have three Wisconsin bands offering hit music from past and present. Headlining the event is arena rock band Hairball, for its second office party. With a fan base of more than 60,000, Hairball brings the ‘80s to the 21st century. The six-member band is overloaded with big hair, tons of makeup and KISS-style attire. Audience members can sing along to old-school favorites such as Guns N’ Roses’ “Sweet Child of Mine,” Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believing” and AC/DC’s “Shook Me All Night.”

Band X, the official opening band for the Boogie Men, is a cover band that plays music from a melting pot of genres. Its song list includes hits from Van Halen, Christina Aguilera, Run DMC, Red Hot Chili Peppers.

Disco babies can don bell bottoms and platform shoes and feel the groove with the Boogie Men. The electric guitar, afros and cover songs will transport visitors back to the days of disco balls and Saturday night fever.

In addition to games, drinks and live music, WLOP will be offering lots of giveaway prizes. Sign up in the lounges for a chance to win a Bud Light guitar, Adirondack chair, Shock Top barrel display or one of the many other prizes.

Tickets are on sale and can be purchased at General admission is $15. For a spot at the private area in front of the stage, executive tickets can be purchased for $35. Upgraded tickets also include all-you-can-drink beer, wine, rail drinks and soda.

So forget about the paper that’s due soon or the demands of that 9 to 5, and hightail it to Wisconsin’s Largest Office Party. After all, it’s 5 o’clock somewhere.

‘Hardest working woman’ gives lecture

Joan Rivers is a force of nature in the world of celebrities. Arguably one of the most accomplished celebrities of her time, Rivers works as an actress, comedian, businesswomen and more.

Rivers appeared at the Weidner Center for the Performing Arts with her traveling showcase “My Life in Show Business: 135 Years and Counting,” March 30, 2013.

During her lecture performance, Rivers talked about her many accomplishments as a comedian, TV host, bestselling author, Emmy Award-winning talk-show host, Tony-nominated actress, Celebrity Apprentice winner, writer, director and savvy businesswoman.

Her lecture tour has sparked interest and inspiration across the nation.

“I love her ability to take the comedic critiques she dishes out,” said Kenzie Carroll, freshman undeclared major. “Many people can talk about others but hate when they are talked about. She can do it all and that to me is incredible.”

More than just a celebrity, Rivers is a pioneer. She created her own brand of irreverent, unconventional comedy and forged her own remarkable rise to stardom in the entertainment world.

Rivers praises celebrities when she thinks they have done well, but isn’t shy to tell them exactly what she thinks is wrong. Her raspy voice adds uniqueness to her shows.

During her live comedy sketches, Rivers has been known to bash other celebrities’ style, weight, looks and their dating patterns. Those who attended “My Life in Show Business: 135 Years and Counting” got a taste of what her comedy is like. Although blunt at times, Rivers puts a spin on what it is like to be herself.

Rivers has dedicated 50 years to show business and her life has been anything but ordinary.   Rivers is an international sensation and her popularity continually grows. She has more than 1.5 million followers on twitter and more than 1 million likes on her Facebook page.

“In Spain we love her because she is brutally honest and sometimes mean when talking about others,” said Maria Bustamante, senior high school student from Bilbao Spain.

Rivers has many accomplishments. Rivers created and hosted “Live from the Red Carpet with E!” in 1996 and the show continues to air today. Rivers also dominates the world of reality TV with her daughter, Melissa Rivers on their weekly WE TV hit series “Joan and Melissa: Joan Knows Best?” She wrote her 11th book and New York Times Bestseller in 2012, “I Hate Everyone…Starting With Me.”

As demonstrated in her book and television series, Rivers not only dishes the comedy but takes it as well. Rivers is a self-confessed cosmetic surgery junkie and veteran of the comedy trenches. She has been on the receiving end of both Johnny Carson’s good graces and unforgiving wrath and her changes in appearance have made her a target for his comedy shows as well.

Even though she has been criticized for her cosmetic surgery, she stands by her decisions.

She has made jokes about how she and her two best friends, Cher and comedian Kathy Griffin, hang out together with no make-up and no hair and look like the three witches from the opening caldron scene in “Macbeth.”

Rivers has transformed herself from supporting actress to a television mogul and comedian.

Rivers was booked as a lecturer in the “UMASS Medical School Distinguished Speakers Series,” as the undisputed “Queen of the Barbed One-liners.”

Although Rivers often targets others in her jokes, her favorite target is herself. Rivers jokes about her age, surgery and about being an ugly baby, but also opens up about her shaken life. Rivers spoke about how her husband, Edgar Rosenberg, killed himself and how that affected her. This showed the audience a side of her they had never seen before.

Recollecting her life, Rivers told the crowd she always dreamed of being a star but settled for stand-up when she learned she could make $8 a night.

Her first act was in the late ‘50s in a play called “Driftwood.” Rivers played a lesbian smitten by a then-unknown Barbra Streisand.

Rivers got her big break on “The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson.” This was just the start of what was to come.

After finding out from a leaked NBC memo that she was not in consideration as Carson’s replacement, Rivers signed with the soon-to-launch FOX Television Network for her own talk show, “The Late Show Starring Joan Rivers.”

The world of Rivers is extensive and elaborate. From designing jewelry, performing comedy, acting, lecturing and writing books, Rivers describes herself as the luckiest woman on the planet.

Art Agency bridges students, community

Art Agency is a student organization that connects art students and networks with visiting artists to engage them in related community service projects. The agency is open to students outside of the art community, and members encourage students to check out upcoming events.

Empty Bowls

Students and community members of Green Bay visited the University Union April 3 to purchase an empty bowl but left with stomachs full of soup.
The Art Agency, a student organization at UW-Green Bay, hosted its annual charity event, Empty Bowls. Proceeds were donated to Kingdom Come, an Oconto Falls food bank.
The empty bowls are handmade ceramic bowls that UWGB students and faculty crafted.
“This year, we had about 240 different bowls from faculty, staff and students,” said Billy Wenner, senior studio arts major.
Attendees paid a $10 donation and chose a handmade bowl, which was theirs to keep when they finished eating.
Soup and chili was donated by local restaurants, including Kavarna, Titletown Brewing Co., Regatta 220, Kroll’s East and Hagemeister Park.
“Regatta 220 white chicken chili was one of the favorites and sold out pretty fast,” Wenner said.
The bowls sold out around 12:30 p.m., almost two hours before the scheduled ending for the event.
“This year’s grand total for Empty Bowls was $2,813,” said Cristian Andersson, senior fine arts and design arts major and president of Art Agency.
This year’s sales were roughly $600 more than last year’s event’s proceeds.
Empty Bowls is an international effort aimed at putting an end to hunger. The Imagine Render Group, a nonprofit organization, created this event with a basic principle behind it. The handcrafted bowls serve as a reminder of the presence of hunger throughout the globe. The empty bowls symbolize all the empty bowls in the world. The money raised is then donated to an organization working to end hunger and food insecurity.
“I love everything this stands for,” said Rebecca Nelson, senior education major. “Not enough people think about making a difference, but every little bit helps.”

Art Sale

There are many talented students at UWGB, and each year the student art sale puts their work on display for purchase.
The Art Agency will sponsor the student art sale April 16 and 17 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in Phoenix Room B.
The art sale will be comprised of pieces from different students and recent alumni.
However, the sale isn’t strictly limited to art majors. Some included pieces are jewelry, scarves, prints, photographs, paintings, T-shirts, shoes and more.
“There is no fee for table space,” said Lauren Sinner, senior art major. “All they need to do is drop off their work with an inventory sheet and pick up whatever doesn’t sell afterwards.”
Students can sign up for the art sale on the first floor in the Studio Arts building. There will be a posting next to the first floor elevator where students can write their name and products to be sold.
Buyers can expect prices between $10 and $100.
“Even though the more expensive pieces don’t sell quite as well, it’s still nice to provide an opportunity for students to display their work without having to pay for space,” Sinner said.
The Art Agency hosts an art sale near the end of the fall semester annually for the holidays, but this year is the first time for the spring sale.
George Ferrandi

Art Agency will present visiting performance artist Ferrandi April 18 at UWGB. She will be holding a discussion from 12:30-1:30 p.m. in Studio Arts 411. Her performances are scheduled for Thursday from 1:45-3:30 p.m. in Studio Arts 117  and   4:30-6:30 in Leona Cloud Commons.
Ferrandi is a performance and installation artist from Brooklyn, New York. She currently teaches sculpture and performance art at the Rhode Island School of Design. She also periodically teaches at Virginia Commonwealth University. Outside of her teaching career, she runs a small business that specializes in restoring statues of saints for churches.
Ferrandi studied sculpture at Virginia Commonwealth University, Ohio State University and Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture. She was the founding member of the touring performance project “Cloud Seeding: Circus of the Performative Object.”
The touring project was produced collaboratively by 10 visual artists. Viewers experienced all the magic and mystery of a traditional circus. This collection toured from 1999 until 2002. Collaborating artists included Mindy Abovitz, Jesse James Arnold, Kelie Bowman, Alan Calpe, Brody Condon, Leslie Harding, Will Heath, Dave Herman, Stephanie Hutin, Christy Gast, David McQueen and John Orth.
“As a performance artist and amazing individual, she really could inspire a lot of people,” said Cristian Andersson, senior fine arts and design arts major.
Since her start, Ferrandi’s work has made its way around the U.S. Her performances and sculptures have been displayed at Columbia University in New York, the Kitchen in New York, Cinders Gallery in Brooklyn, the Museo Italo-Americano in San Francisco, Fleisher Art Memorial in Philadelphia and many more.
“Ferrandi is quietly rethinking what art looks like or does,” said Holland Cotter of the New York Times.
Students who attend Ferrandi’s lecture can expect a unique experience from a well-established artist as well as inspiration to re-experience their own art.

Coffeehouse offer grounds, Peoples to students

The Common Grounds Coffeehouse is an oasis for many UW-Green Bay students. Tucked away in a quiet corner of the University Union, it offers a peaceful place to study during the day and unwind when night falls. Common Grounds showcases many up-and-coming artists, giving students a chance to experience new music.

Singer/songwriter Curtis Peoples serenaded Common Grounds Coffeehouse visitors April 5 with his acoustic guitar and smooth melodies. Peoples recently released his new album, “The Fight,” which features tracks co-written by American songwriter Busbee, who has worked with artists including Pink, Lady Antebellum and Keith Urban. Grammy Award-winner Nathan Chapman, who worked closely with Taylor Swift, also lent his lyrical skills to “The Fight.”

Born and raised in California, Peoples discovered his love for music at a young age. He began singing at 9 years old, and by the age of 12, he had started 3 Simple Words, his first band.

“I just woke up with a crazy fire inside me,” Peoples said. “Maybe it was always there, but that day came when I just said, ‘Yeah, this is for me.’”

As a young performer, Peoples ran into many obstacles on his fight to fame. The Internet is changing the industry. According to Peoples, although it created opportunity, it also made things incredibly competitive.

Despite these challenges, Peoples’ dream is to hear his music on the radio. Peoples hopes to write music that appeals to the whole family rather than just one age group. According to his website,, Peoples has a defined understanding of how to create dynamic, yet radio-friendly music, that fans of both pop and rock can enjoy.

Peoples made respected accomplishments stemming from his musical career. Peoples co-wrote his first single for “Pierce the Veil,” which debuted at No. 10 on the Billboard Charts in 2012. In the past, he toured with the blond brother trio Hanson, as well as Tyler Hilton, Josh Kelly and Tony Lucca. Peoples has also been featured on NBC’s “Last Call With Carson Daly” twice.

“As someone who grew up watching Carson Daly on TRL, it was crazy to see him talking about me,” Peoples said. “This was my first network appearance, and it was awesome.”

Peoples performed on the Carson Daly show April 10 which can be watched on NBC Carson Daly website.

Along with the triumphs of his career, Peoples experienced frustration as an acoustic artist.

“It can be lonely working solo,” Peoples said. “I tried to find the same intimacy with my guitar onstage as I would with band members.”

As an artist trying to set himself apart in a world of copycats, Peoples recommends patience, patience and more patience to other young performers trying to break into the music scene.

Helping young performers make the break, the coffeehouse offers grounds for new performers to gain recognition among students. Ken Corry, business major, frequents Common Grounds.

“I like that the coffeehouse has a relaxing atmosphere with light shining in from all the windows,” Corry said. “I also like the people that go there.”

Corry enjoyed past performances, and says he would like to attend more of the shows Common Grounds offers.

“I love how cozy and warm it is at Common Grounds,” said Jacqueline Stevens, sophomore and art education major.

Stevens visits the coffeehouse a few times a week to study and hang out with friends. While she hasn’t seen any performances as of yet, she intends on attending shows as well as Open Mic Night.

Open Mic Night is hosted every other Tuesday at 7 p.m. Students are welcome to share their skills in music, poetry and artistic ranting or to relax and indulge in a good beverage and some local talent.

For more information about Common Grounds and Peoples, check out the coffeehouse’s Facebook page. For more information on Peoples’ musical journey and upcoming tour dates, visit his website at or follow him on Twitter.

Senior Show displays scholarly artwork

As the year draws to a close, UW-Green Bay students found ways to leave their mark on campus. Arts and visual design seniors will present the Senior Show I until April 25 in the Lawton Gallery.

During opening day, April 14, the senior artists displayed their statements and pieces to the public and were in attendance to answer questions. Traditionally, the Senior Show is limited to art majors or graphic design majors.

“Everyone was very talented and displayed a lot of good and detailed art,” said Chad White, gallery visitor. “It was very well laid out, very well organized and cool to see work from people not in the professional field yet.”

The first round of graduating seniors in the show Amber Bennett, Maggie Cuff, Elyese Doeren, Jennifer Fletcher, Andrea Oldenburg, Ryan Stewart and Kerstin Torgersen.

Each student created and installed his or her pieces in the gallery. This gave the students the opportunity to work as curators for their own pieces and to learn the importance of layout.

“The importance of this show is it allows the graduating art students can curate and put together their pieces in a exhibit with a variety of media,” said Stephen Perkins curator. “We started meeting in September of last year to work on their invested body of work. Putting together the work is one thing, but learning about all the different facets of an expedition is important.”

The Lawton presents six exhibitions every year and dedicates three of them for displaying works of art by students and faculty.

“With this particular show, we want the artists to become comfortable with hanging their own projects, so I just stand back and wait if they need help,” said Laura Egilsson, assistant curator and UWGB alumni. “This show has a large variety of works from photography, painting, textiles and graphic design. It shows all of the hard work the seniors have done throughout the years and what their final product was.”

Through their preparation, students learned valuable lessons that will carry onto their careers.

“My work is surreal portraits, so they are portraits of people but what their personalities would represent in a surrealistic way,” said Kerstin Torgersen artist. “Each individual piece in the series took 160 to 200 hours to create and finish. For the Senior Show, I started working in January. It helped me realize the value of time management.”

Ryan Stewart, senior design arts major, found his involvement to be very rewarding and a great learning tool.

“I received a lot of complements on my campaign, which allows me to feel like I am entering the right field,” Stewart said. “I can’t wait to use some of the techniques I have learned from this project.”

Other UWGB students respect the Senior Show and the hard work the artists put into their pieces. Leah Poel, junior business major, was impressed with the dedication and talent of her fellow students.

“It’s encouraging to see these seniors combining all of their learning experiences to create something that ties it all together,” Poel said.

The Senior Show presents art pieces that students have put years of learning and hard work to achieve. The event gives graduating seniors the opportunity to showcase how they have grown as an artist throughout their years on campus.

“I’m excited to make my mark in the world,” Stewart said. “I’m not sure what that mark will be or when it will happen, but I’m excited.”

Another featured artist, Andrea Oldenburg, plans to attend graduate school this fall and hopes to eventually teach photography. Until then, Oldenburg plans to continue to create her artwork on the side.

“My submitted pieces are supposed to represent the ridiculousness of how we act toward the environment and our control over natural resources,” Oldenburg said. “So I just overly dramatized it by putting a light switch on a tree or using giant sheers to destroy flowers or whatever. Throughout the process, I had hours and hours and sleepless nights with lots of learning from mistakes until the final product was done.”

The Lawton Gallery is located in Theatre Hall building and is open to the public Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The second Senior Show will be displayed in the Lawton Gallery May 5 to May 16.