TCU Daily Skiff Tuesday, March 30, 2004
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Month-long festival will teach culture
The inter-department celebration will expose students to different cultures through concerts, art and plays.

By Lauren Lea
Staff Reporter

A colorful celebration of Latin American heritage begins Thursday as TCU hosts a month-long Latin American Arts Festival.

Six departments on campus collaborated to feature different varieties of art created by Latin American artists. Scheduled events include concerts, plays, dance recitals and a month-long art exhibit featuring pre-Columbian sculpture and ceramics, recently donated to TCU.

Scott Sullivan, dean of the college of fine arts, said TCU hosts the festival to expose students to the arts of Latin American countries.

“This gives students a chance to learn about other cultures through art, which is an important part of education,” he said. “It exposes students and the Fort Worth community to art forms that they probably know very little about.”

The festival began in 1998 originally as only a music festival and other art forms were incorporated in 2002. Each department organizes and plans its aspect of the festival, and tries to include as many different art forms as possible. He also said they try to include many different types of cultures.

“Hopefully it will be broader and deeper than the Mexican culture that we are used to,” Sullivan said.

A new addition to this year’s festival is literature, which will be discussed in the lecture about Argentine literature. “The Labyrinth, the Ring and the Spaceship” will be at 7 p.m. on April 12 in Moudy Building North, Room 141.

Sullivan said students go to area schools and perform concerts and plays for children. He said they also try to appeal to the Hispanic community through advertisements in the Spanish newspaper “La Estrella” and on Spanish television and radio stations.

One of the first events is the play “Burning Patience” by Chilean author Antonio Skarmeta. Harry Parker, the theater department chairman, said it’s the true story of Pablo Neruda, the Nobel Prize winning poet. This year they made sure to select a play written by someone from Latin America, he said.

“I think the festival is a great program,” Parker said. “The students are very excited and we’re glad to be a part of it.”

Lori Diel, assistant professor of art history, said the art department was very excited to receive the collection of pre-Columbian sculptures from William Runyon. The pieces are from various cultures in Central America, but most are from western Mexico, she said. They will be on display all month in the lobby of the Walsh Center for the Performing Arts.

The festival culminates April 24 with the “Fiesta Latina” party in the Student Center. There will be free food, live music and salsa dancing for students.
TCU Daily Skiff ©2004
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