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Arts & Entertainment

Music

West African Ensemble electrifies with eclectic beats

Hip-Hop, rhythm and blues, jazz, reggae—many kinds of popular music have roots in Africa. Last night, the West African Music Ensemble brought to life the connection between drumming, dancing and singing during their performance “The Path and the River.” Distinct at Bowdoin in its non-Western approach to music, the ensemble is directed by Adjunct Lecturer in Music Jordan Benissan—a master drummer of Ewe people of West Africa, esteemed for complex cross-rhythms.

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Miscellania shines on stage at Radio City Music Hall

While the majority of students spent their Friday evening hanging out with friends or procrastinating on finishing work, one particular group of Polar Bears embarked on a road trip. Bowdoin’s all-female a cappella group, Miscellania, was on its way to perform at the glamorous Radio City Music Hall in New York City.

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‘Unsilenced:’ confronting the weight of language

In order to fully understand a person, you need to dig—a theme that Arah Kang ’19 explores, in the exhibition “Unsilenced,” located in Lamarche Gallery in David Saul Smith Union. The show visually explores the complexities of personhood by juxtaposing the weight of biased phrases with pictures of students expressing what makes them whole and happy.

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Books

Sergio Chejfec comments on social unrest through postcards

Alternating between English and Spanish, past and present, reality and fiction, Sergio Chejfec came to Bowdoin on Monday to read and discuss his essay “The Revenge of the Idyllic.” A Guggenheim Fellow and distinguished writer in residence at NYU’s MFA in Spanish program, Chejfec has published a number of short stories, essays and books which have since been translated into various languages.

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Books

Author Chang-rae Lee tells tale of dystopian society in latest book

The story of a community of people raising fish in small, pristine glass tanks in dystopian America might seem far removed from reality. Chang-rae Lee revealed the story’s real-life origins as part of the Alpha Delta Phi Society visiting writer series, in a Tuesday night reading of his most recent book “On Such a Full Sea.” Lee is an English professor at Stanford University and has published numerous short stories and novels, including “Native Speaker,” “A Gesture Life,”  “Aloft,” “The Surrendered” and “On Such a Full Sea,” which was published in 2014.

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Visual Arts

Challenging confines of the frame with Sascha Braunig

Coiling forms, spatial fantasies and abstracted bodies—boundaries between the real and the imagined become indistinguishable in the vibrant canvases and eerie motifs of Sascha Braunig’s work. Originally from Canada, the Portland-based artist came to Edwards Center for Art and Dance on Tuesday afternoon, decoding her pictorial puzzles through a glimpse into her creative evolution.

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Theater

Snapshots of intimate encounters in ‘Heart of the City’

The hustle and bustle of New York City comes alive on stage to the familiar sound of a subway announcement. Complete with towering skyscrapers, dreamers and cynics, hurrying high-heels along congested sidewalk, the city was reimagined on stage at Pickard Theater last weekend in Masque and Gown’s fall production, “Heart of the City,” written by Eric Lane.

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Visual Arts

Frank Mauceri: playing with perspectives in art

Black and white lines converge and juxtapose to form patterns—chaotic, dynamic and full of movement; the artwork of Frank Mauceri, senior lecturer in music, presents a touch of novelty and surprise. Viewers would never guess that behind the complex mark-making of Mauceri’s artwork lie algorithms generated by careful computer programming.

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Live Music

MisterWives rolls into Bowdoin with flare

The grand finale of the suite of events celebrating the opening of the Roux Center will be a concert by indie pop band MisterWives in Morrell Gymnasium tonight. As an email from President Clayton Rose noted, the concert was suggested by David and Barbara Roux as a fun way to close out the week’s celebrations.

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The Aux Cord

Noname finds her own space

Noname doesn’t need your labels. In the years since her breakout mixtape Telefone, she’s been called “the anti-Cardi B” and “the female Kendrick” by fans eagerly awaiting a second project. While her soft spokenness suggests the former and her lyricial knack the latter, she detests both of these backhanded compliments, telling the Fader, “I’m just Fatimah.” Some already know Fatimah (better known by her stage name Noname) from her stand out features on Chance the Rapper’s early material, or her solo work as Noname on Telefone, a brilliantly warm tape about love, loss and joy in her home Chicago.

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The Aux Cord

On Brockhampton’s ‘Iridescence’

My 17th birthday was on a Friday. I woke up to some lovely cards from my family, happy birthday messages from friends and a couple posts on Facebook. I went to school. Around early afternoon, an hour or so before classes let out, I received a text from a friend of mine: “Dude listen to this shit now, it’s insane.” I went into the bathroom, turned my earbuds up, and listened to “HEAT” by Brockhampton (which I soon discovered had no relationship to the Hamptons), off of an album called SATURATION.

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Museum

Line and sound converge in immersive installation

Like undulating ripples of water swept by a lingering breeze, swirls of black lines converge and disperse in linn meyers’ site-specific drawing “Let’s Get Lost.” Complemented by an interactive sound installation “Listening Glass” by Rebecca Bray, James Bigbee Garver and Josh Knowles, the piece transforms the Walker Gallery at the Bowdoin College Museum of Art into a multi-sensory metaphor for artistic process, ephemerality and time.

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Museum

‘In the Round:’ a new angle for approaching ancient art

When we think of art museums, an image of lonesome paintings hanging on pristine, white walls often comes to mind. However, Associate Professor of Classics and Curator for the Ancient Collection James Higginbotham challenges this conventional approach in the new exhibit on display at the Bowdoin College Museum of Art, “In the Round.” “We have a tendency in the modern era to relegate art to the walls.

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The Aux Cord

Four songs to celebrate the lasting legacy of Mac Miller

To read more about Mac Miller’s personal journey, click here.  We’ve grown up with Mac Miller. From his first mixtapes in 2009 until just last week, late teens and 20-somethings have watched Mac grow from a middle school frat rap sensation into a dedicated connoisseur of hip-hop with a passion for experimentation, jazz and introspection.

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Museum

Looking through the lens of Winslow Homer

For the last 27 years of his career, the 19th-century artist Winslow Homer lived and worked amongst the jagged outcrops and tempestuous tides of Prouts Neck, Maine. The new exhibition at the Bowdoin College Museum of Art, “Winslow Homer and the Camera: Photography and the Art of Painting,” reshapes visitors’ understanding of the iconic American painter.

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Writing

Bolster ’19 writes subversive animations for the screen

Callye Bolster ’19 spent her summer following four young recent college graduates as they travel in a van across the country—from Maine to Los Angeles—through the vehicle of her imagination. In her eight-episode animated series, “Vanity,” Bolster brings to life four protagonists who are traveling to a Hollywood audition, engaging with themes of fame, politics and gender.

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Film

‘Call Me by Your Name:’ deconstructing the universal utopia

Fruit always ripe, gentle chords on the guitar, dancing to The Psychedelic Furs and teenage bodies glistening under the Mediterranean sun—vivid colors and ’80s music set the scene for the sensual gay romance of “Call Me by Your Name.” However, in his Monday night lecture, Associate Professor of Italian and Cinema Studies at University of Oregon Sergio Rigoletto unearthed the hidden symbolism beneath the film’s beautiful imagery, haunting the picture-perfect love story.

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Alumni

Alums’ original musical to open in New York

Olivia Atwood ’17 and Maggie Seymour ’16 learned plenty at Bowdoin, but they never nailed down the details of what happened during the Watergate scandal. That absence of knowledge is exactly the premise of the alums’ original musical, “Dickie in the House,” which premieres at the Peoples Improv Theater (PIT) in New York on Thursday.

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Dance

Queer choreography takes center stage in Spring Dance Concert

In preparation for the Spring Dance Concert, the Department of Theater and Dance enlisted change agent Katy Pyle as guest choreographer. Though the annual concert typically only showcases the work of the department’s students and faculty, this year, Pyle collaborated on the performance with faculty choreographers Aretha Aoki, Gwyneth Jones and Vanessa Anspaugh.

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Music

A strong start: Gingersnap to open Ivies

Although the student band Gingersnap is relatively new to the Bowdoin music scene, it is already leaving its mark on campus. Last week, the group won first place for its performance at Battle of the Bands—only its second performance together—and earned the spot as the opening act for D.R.A.M.

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Theater

Senior studio projects reimagine theater

Beginning this week, the Department of Theater and Dance will present a selection of senior studio projects in Memorial Hall’s Wish Theater and in other spaces across campus. Featuring original works, improvisation and new arrangements, the series will highlight the talents of each student in the culmination of their theatrical careers at Bowdoin.

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The Aux Cord

Coming soon to Ivies: D.R.A.M.

Ah, yes. It is finally spring, when flowers begin to rise from the frozen earth and the temperature reaches a mildly comfortable 55 degrees at least once a week. But even more exciting than the return of life to the region is the arrival of Ivies weekend, when solo cups litter the quad and the music world’s best grace the stage of Farley Field House.

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Poetry

‘Book of Delights:’ Gay’s poetry is in the details

World-renowned poet Ross Gay is delighted by public restrooms and bobbleheads. The plastic figures remind him of roughhousing with his brother and a stern scolding from his grandmother, while public restrooms are an overlooked necessity that he calls “a deprivation of a deprivation.” While to some these may seem like strange delights, Gay is inclined to focus on details that are often forgotten in the fast pace of life in order to embody themes of community, family and gratitude.

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On PolarFlix

On PolarFlix: ‘The Social Network’

Welcome to the third week of On PolarFlix, a column meant to do exactly what it sounds like: review films on Bowdoin Student Government (BSG)’s movie streaming service, PolarFlix. This week, in keeping with the news, we are looking back at David Fincher’s “The Social Network” (2010).

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Poetry

Amal Kassir: activist, empathist, poet

There are activists, there are storytellers and there’s Amal Kassir. Unapologetic in her poignant dissections of humanity, the Denver-born, Syrian-American spoken-word poet calls herself an “empathist.” Her Thursday night performance in Kresge Auditorium, sponsored by the Muslim Students Association, presented personal recounts on war, race and religion.

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Comedy

Activist turned comic: Yang subverts the status quo

Award-winning comic Jenny Yang was an organizer for over 85,000 labor union members when she decided to try her hand at professional joke-making. The Los Angeles-based comedian had made a career out of political activism when she took a risk and devoted herself to what she had always been good at: making people laugh.

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Writing

Author Michael Paterniti talks process, travel and journalism

Michael Paterniti’s work combines storytelling in its multiplicity of forms, blurring the lines between creative writing, journalism and creative nonfiction. On Wednesday evening Paterniti visited campus to speak about his writing experience and to read from his recent collection of longform essays, “Love and Other Ways of Dying.” Paterniti doesn’t see his work as strictly falling into any one category.

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The Aux Cord

Sylvan Esso: a duo of unlikely grace and brilliant balance

Amelia Meath opened Sylvan Esso’s set at the Portland State Theater with a song about songs. “Sound,” the stripped-back opener of the duo’s 2017 album “What Now,” hears Meath at a near whisper, “All you’ll hear is sound, and / All you’ll feel is sound, and / All you’ll be is sound.” The lines aim to unify the natural and the artificial, as Meath sings note for note beside a lone synthesizer.

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Film

On PolarFlix: ‘Almost Famous’

Welcome to On PolarFlix, a column that will review a movie a week that can be found on Bowdoin’s very own, BSG-sponsored “PolarFlix” network. We are starting with Cameron Crowe’s cult classic “Almost Famous” (2000). Plot summary (no spoilers!): “Almost Famous” is a contained movie about colossal subjects: coming of age, the changing nature of rock ’n’ roll, first love and the ultimate disappointment of meeting one’s heroes.

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Museum

Please touch: interactive ‘Reading Room’ opens in museum

The newest exhibit at the Bowdoin College Museum of Art (BCMA) consists of one room with couches, chairs, bookshelves, two iPads and a chalkboard. “Reading Room: Experiments in Collaborative Dialogue and Archival Practice in the Arts” is a social practice art exhibit, part of an art discipline that views the creation of a social situation as art in its own right.

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Poetry

Acevedo performs poetry with power

Rats, Cardi B and Catholic iconography each have a home in Elizabeth Acevedo’s award-winning slam poetry. Sponsored by the Center for Multicultural Life, Acevedo’s performance on Tuesday night at Jack Magee’s Pub probed into issues of politics, race, culture and womanhood.

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Museum

‘Second Sight’ explores vision and accessibility

Both the visual and nonvisual are on display in the Bowdoin College Museum of Art’s newest exhibition, “Second Sight: The Paradox of Vision in Contemporary Art.” Alongside its array of diverse and often abstract works—from beaded curtains hanging from doorways to auditory works of art—the gallery contains a series of “audible labels” played through an innovative device developed specifically for this show.

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Theater

‘Love and Information’ is a play for the modern age

Watching “Love and Information” feels a lot like scrolling through your Twitter feed—which you might be, if you happen to sit in the “Tweet Seat” section. Based on the award-winning play by Caryl Churchill, the interactive play tackled what it means to be alive right now—to be constantly inundated by digital media.

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Visual Arts

‘The Spaceship’ settles in Portland

Inside a well-lit warehouse somewhere between Portland’s East and West ends, five friends create. They make gestures on canvas, develop film, produce sound and cut video content. Sometimes they lie on the couch and scroll through Instagram, at others they gather around to critique one another’s art, like they did in college.

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Theater

Green Day meets modern day in ‘American Idiot’

This weekend in Wish Theater, Masque and Gown will present ‘‘American Idiot,” a rock opera brimming with youthful angst and frustration. Based on the Green Day concept album of the same name, the show includes several of the band’s most beloved songs—including the title track “American Idiot,” as well as “Boulevard of Broken Dreams” and “21 Guns”—and weaves them into a story in which three central characters confront relationships, drug use and their own social and political disillusionment in a bleak, post-September 11 American landscape.

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Theater

‘The Poets and the Assassin’ spotlights Iranian women

Despite their centuries-long battle for human rights, the stories of Iranian and Muslim women have traditionally been overlooked in American society. Thursday night’s performance of the play “The Poets and the Assassin—Daughters of Iran” in Kresge Auditorium attempted to portray their stories and address the myth of the submissive, passive Middle Eastern woman.

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The Aux Cord

Hippo Campus to bring ‘college rock’ to Portland

In an industry where artists are usually discovered on a streaming platform rather than onstage, building a live show or even having stage presence seems no longer necessary to “make it.” But for this series showcasing artists with upcoming concerts in the Portland area, we are lucky to have Hippo Campus, a Minnesota indie band that rose to fame mainly due to a knack for electrifying live performances.

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Comedy

Ashley Gavin: comedy and social commentary

New York City-based Ashley Gavin has a range of talents: she’s primarily a comedian, but is also a writer and an actor, delving into topics like feminism and homophobia. She tours at colleges, hosts open mic nights, acts in the web series “Gay Girl Straight Girl (GGSG)” and has starred in television shows and movies.

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Brunswick

Campus and community unite for Longfellow Days

This month, poet and co-owner of Gulf of Maine Books Gary Lawless will once again don his Henry Wadsworth Longfellow costume and roam the town reciting poetry to passersby. This tradition is just one aspect of Longfellow Days, a series of events now in its 14th year, which spans Longfellow’s birth month and involves members of both the Brunswick and Bowdoin communities.

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Art exhibit illustrates varied forms of protest

Seeking to highlight the role of protest in the 21st century, seniors Eliza Goodpasture and Jenny Ibsen unveiled an art show entitled “PROTEST” in the Lamarche Gallery of David Saul Smith Union on Wednesday night. The exhibit features physical and digital forms of protest collected from members of the Bowdoin community.

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The Aux Cord

On ‘DAMN.,’ Lamar sidesteps expectations, spews self-doubt

Kendrick Lamar’s first mistake was releasing “DAMN.” on Good Friday. Fan theories blew up. The first about Easter Sunday, predicting a “second coming” and a second album on Easter Sunday. Then Lamar’s producer Sounwave tweeted “But what if I told you … that’s not the official version …” with a picture of Morpheus from “The Matrix.” A new theory, this one involving red pills and blue pills emerged, again predicting a second album.

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Theater

‘The Threepenny Opera’ is a beggar’s play, modernized

This weekend, the Pickard Theater stage will be filled with gangsters, prostitutes and the unusual sounds of Kurt Weill’s music in Bertolt Brecht’s “The Threepenny Opera.” From the plot to casting to music, this rendition of Brecht’s most well-known opera challenges perceptions of gender and class, particularly when viewed in a modern context.

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