See Amherst Students' Award-Winning Experimental Films

March 18, 2015
By Rachel Rogol

Dershimer

Presentiments
by Miranda Dershimer ’15E

Rodriguez

Exposure (Thoughts Occasioned By)
by Jose Rodriguez 15E

 

 

 

 

 

 

  


At this year’s Five College Student Film and Video Festival, hosted by Hampshire College, Amherst students Miranda Dershimer ’15E and Jose Rodriguez ’15E won awards for short films they wrote, directed, filmed and edited. 

Dershimer won in the Best Experimental category for her visually evocative film Presentiments, and Rodriguez’s Exposure (Thoughts Occasioned By) was named the best submission from Amherst College. Both films were awarded in the “experimental” category, a category previously dominated by Hampshire College students’ films since the festival’s inception in 2007.

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Amherst Play Poses Tough Questions About Sexual Respect on College Campuses

March 12, 2015

Performance of Probably.jpg Five College students Aine Hegarty ’15 (UMass), Isaiah Holloway 17, Noelle Micarelli 14 (Hampshire), Lilly Mommens 18, Rob Thoma 17 and Denzel Wood 18 present a staged reading at Amherst’s Powerhouse.

Sexual assault. Denial. The truth. These and other topics are at the heart of Probably, an original play by Amherst graduate Owen Davis 14 that is as captivating as its subject matter is difficult. 

Focusing on a fictional character named Katie as she tries to cope with the memory of a traumatic evening, its a story fraught with complexities that are front and center in todays national debates. And it poses tough questions: How do we broach the subjects of sexual violence and sexual respect on college campuses? How do students talk about these matters with each other? Where does personal responsibility begin and end?

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Senior Thesis: From Being Homeless to Graduating Amherst

March 4, 2015
By Rachel Rogol

Graduation scene from "Destiny" Lola Fadulu ’17 rehearses a scene from Destiny. See more photos via Flickr.

Daejione Jones ’15 is writer and director of a one-act play titled Destiny, set at Amherst College. The play centers on an Amherst student named Destiny, who, when not on campus, experiences chronic homelessness and must live on the street.

Jones, a theater and dance major and pre-med student from Oakland, Calif., describes the character as “a cipher to the members of her community back home and at her new school.” Destiny is somewhat in limbo between two disparate worlds: the academic institution she attends and the underprivileged neighborhood she calls home. “She’s a member of both communities without being or feeling a part of either," says Jones. "For her hometown, she’s Amherst. For Amherst, she’s her hometown.”

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Student Life Takes Center Stage in Thesis Play

February 20, 2015
By Rachel Rogol

Grow Up
Four student actors embrace during a rehearsal for "Grow Up, Already!"

Living with roommates, choosing classes, forming new friendships, studying for exams—these are things you might expect to see in a play about student life in a college setting. But Grow Up, Already!—a senior honors project by Valerie Rodriguez ’15—dives deeper, tackling harder themes, including mental health, issues of identity, suicide and more.

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“The Whole World Just Stopped to Listen”: Amherst Senior Succeeds at Local Story Slam

Submitted on Friday, 2/6/2015, at 12:57 PM

“The last thing on my mind was that my own mother would pour olive oil on me, and for me to scream, ‘Anny, Anny! I’m burning! I’m burning! Please help me!’”

That was part of the phone message Saúl Grullón ’15 left to catch the attention of the organizers of New England Public Radio’s Valley Voices story slam. Out of about 70 local residents who pitched stories, Grullón was chosen as one of 10 to take the stage on Sept. 14, 2014.

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Theater & Dance Spring Season Kicks Off with Original Musical by Pepper Dee ’15

Submitted on Tuesday, 2/3/2015, at 3:36 PM


In February, March and April, four Amherst seniors—Pepper Dee, Valerie Rodriguez, Daejione Jones and Bryce Monroe—are bringing four distinctively original productions to the stage as part of their final projects in theater and dance.

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EXPO-losion: A Performance of Culture and Style

December 4, 2014

By Rob Mattson

EXPO-losion: A Performance of Culture and Style.JPG See a Flickr set of photos from EXPO-losion.

If our motto, Terras Irradient, were inverted, the world would bring its light to students, right here at Amherst College. On Nov. 15, that's exactly what happend. EXPO-losion, held at the Powerhouse, was hosted by the African & Caribbean Students' Union and sought to creatively convey the diversity, culture and flavor of Amherst College through song, dance, spoken word and cuisine. Proceeds benefitted Charity: Water, a campaign to bring clean drinking water to developing countries.

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New Black-Box Studio Space Creates Exciting Opportunities for Students Studying Film

Submitted on Monday, 12/8/2014, at 10:00 AM

By William Harvey ’18

Black Box
See a Flickr set of photos of the students using the new black-box studio.

A newly constructed “black-box” studio in Fayerweather Hall is specially equipped to provide students with hands-on experience in directing, filming and performing. 

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Student Ensemble Takes on Rarely Produced Shakespeare Drama

Submitted on Thursday, 11/20/2014, at 4:45 PM

Cymbeline

See a Flickr set of more photos from Cymbeline.

Three nights in a row in Amherst's Holden Experimental Theater, the Department of Theater and Dance presented Shakespeare's rarely produced play Cymbeline. Written around 1610, Cymbeline is a tale of royal intrigue, strange coincidences, romantic betrayal, war and divine guidance. (Hollywood has recently taken notice of the story: it's coming to a theater near you in 2015, as a major motion picture starring Ethan Hawke and Ed Harris).

Ron Bashford, a professional director of Shakespeare and a faculty member at Amherst, knew Morgan Ashly Brown '15 was looking for a challenging acting role for her senior project in theater and dance. He suggested the complex part-tragedy part-comedy Cymbeline, and Brown took on the leading role of Imogen, an exiled princess whose harrowing journey uncovers the secret to renewed peace and harmony. Bashford directed the Holden Theater production, which featured a large cast of student actors in contemporary dress.

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