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Things to Do, March 10-17, 2017

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Rebecca Valli

‘A new form of intimacy’

The Cornell Chamber Orchestra’s winter concert, March 11 at 3 p.m. at the Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, will feature a special collaboration for the Cornell Council for the Arts Biennial “Abject/Object Empathies.”

Free and open to the public, the program includes “Empathetic Resonance” by doctoral composer Barry Sharp, a new piece for strings designed for improvisation, as part of the installation “Hear Me.” The collaborative project was conceived by Min Keun Park, B.Arch. ’17.

“Redefining space and atmosphere between musicians and their audience,” Park writes, the project “addresses the clear boundary in classical music that imposes an uncomfortable distance between the musician and the audience, preventing dialogue and empathy towards the subtlety and expression that truly makes the music come alive. Musically and spatially, the project breaks down the barrier and brings about a new form of intimacy.”

Conducted by Chris Younghoon Kim, the orchestra also will perform Elgar’s “Serenade for Strings” and Mozart’s Piano Concerto in F Major, with fortepiano soloist Roger Moseley. An assistant professor of music, Moseley’s current research and recent book/multimedia project “Keys to Play: Music as a Ludic Medium from Apollo to Nintendo” explores how the concept of play informs keyboard music.

CARE benefit concert

Sixteen Cornell a cappella groups will perform in a benefit concert March 11, 6 to 8 p.m. in Call Alumni Auditorium, Kennedy Hall. Proceeds from ticket sales will go directly to the campus Emergency CARE Fund.

The CARE (Cornellians Aiding and Responding to Employees) Fund is supported through donations from faculty, staff and others interested in assisting fellow employees who are experiencing financial need due to a crisis or unplanned circumstance.

Tickets are available at and cost $10 for adults, $8 for students and $4 for children under age 12. Pizza and concessions will be available at the concert.

“Unbound” plays sought

The 2017 10 Minute Play Festival at Cornell is accepting submissions of short plays by undergraduate and graduate students through March 13. Selected plays will be developed and staged in the Schwartz Center’s Black Box Theatre in the fall.

The fifth annual festival is presented by the Association for Graduates in Theater and the Department of Performing and Media Arts. Submissions on the theme “Unbound” – plays that consider and probe physical, spatial, temporal, metaphysical or other boundaries – are encouraged, as are submissions from traditionally underrepresented voices.

The festival welcomes narrative plays as well as work experimenting with sound, movement, language and imagery. Visit the link above for more details and submission guidelines. Send submissions and questions to

“Annihilation” author

A reading by acclaimed “weird fiction” writer Jeff VanderMeer is Thursday, March 16, at 4:30 p.m. in Rhodes-Rawlings Auditorium, Klarman Hall. Free and open to the public, the reading is part of the Department of English Creative Writing Program’s Spring 2017 Barbara & David Zalaznick Reading Series. A reception in the English Department Lounge, 258 Goldwin Smith Hall, will follow the reading.

VanderMeer is the 2016-17 Trias Writer in Residence at Hobart and William Smith Colleges in Geneva, New York. His next novel, “Borne,” will be published in May by Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

His 2014 “Southern Reach” trilogy of novels, exploring the limits of ecology and human understanding, has been translated into 35 languages. A movie based on the trilogy’s first book, the Nebula and Shirley Jackson award-winner “Annihilation,” will be released this year.

Activism in Chile

Raymond B. Craib discusses what drew people to anarchist ideas and activism in early 20th-century Chile in a Chats in the Stacks book talk, March 15 at 4:30 p.m. in 107 Olin Library.

Craib’s new book, “The Cry of the Renegade: Politics and Poetry in Interwar Chile,” describes a time when radicalized university students, workers and intellectuals gathered together to talk, read and find common cause. Craib is a professor of history and director of the Latin American Studies Program, and the author of “Cartographic Mexico: A History of State Fixations and Fugitive Landscapes.”

Free and open to the public, the talk includes refreshments and Buffalo Street Books will have books available for purchase and signing.

Also: Mann Library and the College of Human Ecology present a lecture by Jonathan E. Robins, 2016 Fellow in the History of Home Economics, “As Good as Butter: Home Economics and the New Fats, 1890-1990,” March 16 at 4:30 p.m. in 160 Mann Library.

Dada and Denis

A new digital restoration of “Tampopo,” an absurdist 1986 “ramen Western,” screens March 16-18 at Cornell Cinema.

A new digital restoration of “Tampopo,” Japanese director Juzo Itami’s absurdist 1986 “ramen Western,” is showing March 16 at 9:15 p.m. and March 17-18 at 7 p.m. in Willard Straight Theatre. Influenced by genre masters like Sergio Leone, the film is “a visual, culinary cornucopia of food, life, death and sex,” simmering into one singular broth.

Cornell Cinema also shows 35mm prints of two works by visionary filmmaker Claire Denis this month. “Chocolat,” her feature debut based on her childhood in colonial Cameroon, screens March 15; and “Beau Travail,” March 29 and 31, is a retelling of Herman Melville’s “Billy Budd, The Sailor” set in the African desert. It is widely considered her masterpiece.

Doppelgangers and heartbreak

Elements of heartbreak, fantasy, magic, comedy and gothic doppelganger mythology, as well as questions of trans/queer visibility and desire, fill a new play by Joshua Bastian Cole, “Two Truths and Allie,” March 16-18 in the Schwartz Center for the Performing Arts’ Black Box Theatre.

Cole, a transgender playwright, drew inspiration from literary sources including ‘The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde” by Robert Louis Stevenson and “The Double” by Fyodor Dostoyevsky.

Co-directed by Cole and fellow doctoral student in performing and media arts Samuel Nelson Williamson Blake, also the play’s dramaturg, the production features both trans and cisgender actors from Cornell and the Ithaca community.

Performances are March 16 at 7:30 p.m., March 17 at 5 p.m. and March 18 at 2 and 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $5, available from or the Schwartz Center box office (open Tuesday-Saturday, 2:30-8 p.m.), 430 College Ave.

The play is presented by the Department of Performing and Media Arts’ Black Box Exploration Series and Association of Graduates in Theatre.

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