Press Release: April Public Programs

The City University of New York Graduate Center announces the following public programs to be held during the month of April at the Graduate Center, 365 Fifth Avenue at 34th Street.  For further information about the Graduate Center, visit

Through Sunday, April 5:

“Walk-By Movies”
(exhibition) starting at 5:00 PM, James Gallery (outside windows)

The James Gallery's "Walk-By Movies," visible and audible only from the street, presents an urban, pedestrian version of the drive-in theater.  On the heavily trafficked corner of Fifth Avenue and 35th Street, a curated series of films and video programs will be projected onto the gallery wall nightly starting at 5:00 p.m.  Building on the audience of street viewers attracted to the exhibition People “Weekly,” the new series further explores the windowed, street-level location of the gallery.  By selecting works that lend themselves to delimited viewing, while embracing the distinctly urban habits of window shopping and strolling, “Walk-By Movies” provides both a novel method of exhibiting contemporary film and video, and a unique public art experience.  Films change weekly and are to be announced; free, for more information call 212-817-7138; visit for screening schedule.  
Wednesday, April 1:

Turnstyle Reading Series: Mark Mirsky, Mac Wellman, and Others
(literary reading) 6:30 PM, Martin E. Segal Theatre

Join faculty readers Mark Mirsky and Mac Wellman and MFA students Anna Marrian, Kerry Carnahan, Diana Redman, Tejas Desai, Michelle Brule, Wythe Marschall, JP Howard, and Laurel Kallen for an evening of cross-campus, cross-genre readings. In this series, writers and graduating students from the four CUNY MFA Programs in Creative Writing (City College, Brooklyn College, Hunter College, and Queens College) come together for readings of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction at the Graduate Center.  Presented by the Center for the Humanities; free, for information call 212-817-2005.
Thursday, April 2:

Music In Midtown -- Mari Kimura, Violin
(concert) 1:00 PM, Elebash Recital Hall

Using both acoustic and electronic/MIDI violin, Mari Kimura pushes the boundaries of the instrument, playing both her own works and those of other contemporary composers, including Steve Antosca, Steve Everett, Tolga Yayalar, and Alice Shields. This special concert will feature works for violin and recorded sounds or interactive electronics as part of the New York City Electroacoustic Music Festival.  Hailed by the New York Times as "a virtuoso playing at the edge," Kimura is admired for her revolutionary extended technique of "Subharmonics" and for including interactive computer music in her performances.  She recently released the highly acclaimed solo album Polytopia (Bridge Records).  Free, but seating is limited and reservations are required.  Reservations can be made at, or by calling 212-817-8215.
Monday, April 6:

Gotham Center History Forum -- The Role of Public History in NYC's Cultural Life
(discussion) 6:30 PM

This forum will look at the role public history plays in the cultural life of New York City. Speakers include: Ruth Sergel, film maker and artist, creator of CHALK, an annual commemoration of the 1911 Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire; Dave Herman, fire fighter and founder, The City Reliquary; Ron Grele, Professor Emeritus, Columbia University; Brian Purnell, historian, Fordham University, and research director, Bronx African American History Project; and Madhulika Khandelwal, director, Asian/American Center, Queens College.  Free, but seating is limited and reservations are required.  Reservations can be made at, or by calling 212-817-8215.
The Great Issues Forum -- Power and Law: Immigration Reform
(discussion) 7:00 PM, Martin E. Segal Theatre

Immigration laws have increasingly been used to disempower immigrants.  How should the Obama administration use the power of the law to restore the civil rights of non-citizens in the face of organized labor's sensitivity to the expansion of guest worker programs, conflicting local and national laws, and a generally repressive climate for the civil rights of non-citizens?  Join a select group of scholars and activists including Judy Rabinovitz, Deputy Director of the ACLU's Immigrants Rights Project; Mallika Dutt, Executive Director of Breakthrough; and others as they explore these and related questions. Moderated by John Mollenkopf, Professor of Political Science, the Graduate Center.  Presented by the Center for the Humanities; free, for information call 212-917-2005.
Tuesday, April 7:

Adina Hoffman: My Happiness Bears No Resemblance to Happiness
(discussion) 7:00 PM

A celebration of the Yale University Press publication of Adina Hoffman's biography of poet Taha Muhammad Ali, My Happiness Bears No Resemblance to Happiness.  Presented by the Leon Levy Center for Biography; free, for information call 212-817-2005.
Wednesday, April 8:

Helena Modjeska: Commemorating a 19th-Century American Theatre Icon
(discussion) 6:30 PM  

Join us on the 100th anniversary of the death of notorious Polish-American actress Helena Modjeska.  Scholars and specialists including Daniel Gerould of the Graduate Center, Andrzej Zurowski of the Pomeranian Academy in Slupsk, Poland, and Beth Holmgren of Duke University discuss her life and work. As a celebrity figure, a great beauty, a role model for young American women, and a political activist, Modjeska's fame and impact extended well beyond her status as a Shakespearean actress and partner to Edwin Booth in Macbeth and Othello.  Presented by the Martin E. Segal Theatre Center; free, for information call 212-817-1860.
Thursday, April 9:

Is This a Secular Age?: Simon Critchley, Bill Connolly, and Hent de Vries
(discussion) 6:30 PM, Elebash Recital Hall

Do we live in a secular age? What does it mean to say that we do, and what are the benefits, and liabilities, to figuring public space as strictly secular?  Bill Connolly, Krieger-Eisenhower Professor of Political Science at Johns Hopkins University, Simon Critchley, Professor of Philosophy at the New School University, and Hent de Vries, Professor of Philosophy at Johns Hopkins University, will discuss these and related themes. Moderated by Jill Stauffer, Resident Mellon Fellow at the Center for the Humanities.  Presented by the Center for the Humanities; free, for information call 212-817-2005.
Monday, April 13:

The Great Issues Forum -- Cultural Power: Music
(discussion) 7:00 PM  Elebash Recital Hall

Acclaimed jazz pianist and composer Vijay Iyer is joined by music sensation DJ Rekha for a discussion about music, power, and art in this third cultural power conversation.  Moderated by Greg Tate and introduced by Gary Giddins.  Vijay Iyer's music draws from a range of Western and non-Western traditions, and his recordings include Reimagining (2005) and Tragicomic (2008), among many others.  DJ Rekha's debut album DJ Rekha Presents Basement Bhangra features the same blend of South Asia's traditional Bhangra music and Hip-Hop that made her monthly dance party, Basement Bhangra, famous.  Presented by the Center for the Humanities; free, for information call 212-817-2005.
Wednesday, April 15:

Old York Readings and Reflections -- Some Time in the Sun (work in progress)
A Sneak Peek Reading with John Sayles
(reading) 6:30 PM, Elebash Recital Hall

Join award-winning film maker, screenwriter, actor and novelist John Sayles for a sneak preview reading of his forthcoming novel, tentatively titled Some Time in the Sun.  The historical novel is set between 1898-1901, during the last gasp of Reconstruction and the onset of American Imperialism. It includes material set in the New York of that period— Hell's Kitchen, Newspaper Row, the Lower East Side, Brooklyn just after it was annexed, Barren Island, and Coney Island.  Free, but seating is limited and reservations are required.  Reservations can be made at, or by calling 212-817-8215.
Thursday, April 16:

Women in the Grotowski Diaspora: Training, Transmission, Creativity
(discussion & demonstration) 6:30 PM, Martin E. Segal Theatre

The Martin E. Segal Theatre Center presents a conversation and demonstration featuring three former Grotowski collaborators: Rene Mirecka, Stefania Gardecka, and Ang Gey Pin.  Although the strenuous physical training emblematic of Grotowski's approach is not gender specific, it has historically been associated with a masculine conception of the performer because of the central position occupied by Grotowski's male collaborators in most of his theatrical work and paratheatrical experiments.  However, several generations of women from different cultures and traditions have actively participated in all phases of Grotowski's research, and continue to play a pivotal role in today's Grotowski diaspora.  Moderated by Virginie Magnat.  Free, for information call 212-817-1860.
Friday, April 17:

James Gallery Spring Series: Everybody Loves the Sunshine
(screening & performance) 7:30 PM, James Gallery

The James Gallery invites Thomas Torres Cordova back for an encore screening of his film Everybody Loves the Sunshine -- a DVD projection with narration by Cordova and live sound by Woody "Uncle Woody" Sullender.  Free, for information call 212-817-7138.
Monday, April 20:

Esther K. Chae/Otherland
(performance & discussion) 6:30 PM, Martin E. Segal Theatre

The Martin E. Segal Theatre Center celebrates NYC Immigrants Heritage Week with featured performances and a discussion surrounding the work of actress and playwright Esther K. Chae.  Chae's work deals with immigrant characters and "thrives within the bibimbap culture," an all-in-one meal concept used by the late multi-media artist Nam June Paik.  Various characters, languages, images, and stories mix together in one dish to be served as a nutritious and thought-provoking experiment.  Chae will present excerpts from three of her plays: Ae-ri in Otherland, Ddan Da Ddan!!!, & So the Arrow Flies. In collaboration with Kenn Watt and Michi Barall; moderated by Erin B. Mee.  Free, for information call 212-817-1860.
City of the World: Korean Traditional Music and “Change”
(concert) 7:30 PM, Elebash Recital Hall

This rare concert, featuring Sounds of Korea, will focus on some of the most exciting Korean contemporary repertoire.  The highlight of the evening will be new compositions that combine traditional elements and instruments with stylistic influences from the Western classical and jazz traditions.  Sounds of Korea is the performing group of the New York-based Korean Traditional Performing Arts Association.  Under the direction of composer-ethnomusicologist Ju-Yong Ha, the group has performed at major concert venues around the Northeast, including Lincoln Center, as well as numerous national festivals.  Presented by the Ph.D./D.M.A Programs in Music; free, for information call 212-817-8607.
Tuesday, April 21:

Radio Diaries Retrospective, 1999-2009
(discussion) 7:00 PM, Martin E. Segal Theatre

Radio Diaries works with people to document their own lives for presentation on National Public Radio's This American Life.  Their subjects include teenagers, seniors, prison inmates and others whose voices are rarely heard.  The producers and a diarist will join journalist Mary Anne Weaver, 2008-9 Biography Fellow, to explore the radio documentaries that they have created over the past decade.  Presented by the Leon Levy Center for Biography; free, for information call 212-817-2005.
Thursday, April 23:

The Celebration of the Chapbook
(conference) 10:00 AM–6:00 PM

The Celebration of the Chapbook festival calls attention to the rich history of the chapbook and highlights its essential place in poetry publishing today as a vehicle for alternative poetry projects and for emerging authors and editors to gain entry into the literary marketplace.  The festival will forge a new platform for the study of the chapbook, inside and outside the academy, and celebrate the importance of chapbooks to America’s cultural heritage and future.  For a complete schedule, visit  Presented by the Center for the Humanities; free, for information call 212-817-2005.
Towards a Sustainable Green Theatre in New York
(discussion & performance) 6:30 PM, Martin E. Segal Theatre

Join the Martin E. Segal Theatre Center during Earth Week 2009 to explore how theatre artists and production staff are affected or inspired by climate change. The event will feature a discussion with theatre artists and administrators, and an excerpt of Sheila Callaghan's Water, a multimedia piece shaped through consultations with the Deptartment of Environmental Conservation.  Panelists include Gideon Banner, Bob Usdin, Benno Van Noort, Daniella Topol, Marda Kirn, Ben Todd, and Seema Sueko.  The discussion will explore building performance and renewable energy, facilities management, closed loop set design and construction, and intelligent recycling. Free, for information call 212-817-1860.
Writing in the Dark: David Antin, Charles Bernstein, and Lynee Tillman
(reading & performance) 7:30 PM, James Gallery

The last in the Writing in the Dark series, which opens the gallery for conversation, screenings, and performance.  David Antin, returning to New York from San Diego, will improvise a talk-poem (a home-grown medium in which he has worked for more than three decades); Charles Bernstein will read pieces from a forthcoming book of criticism; and Lynne Tillman will present old, middle, and new work, mixing reflections on art with a story or two.  Presented by the James Gallery; free, for information call 212-817-7138.
Monday, April 27:

(Re)Writing History
(discussion) 6:30 PM, Martin E. Segal Theatre

What do artists and historians owe to history? Two playwright/librettists and a historian meet to dispute the nature of the debt the living owe the dead.  Participants will include the playwright David Henry Hwang, whose work includes M. Butterfly, Golden Child, and Golden Gate, and an adaptation of Flower Drum Song; Michael Korie, librettist of Grey Gardens, The Grapes of Wrath, and Harvey Milk; and David Nasaw, Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr. Professor of History, the Graduate Center.  Moderated by playwright William Hoffman, author of As Is and The Ghosts of Versailles and professor of theatre at Lehman College.  Presented by the Center for the Humanities; free, for more information call 212-817-2005.
Tuesday, April 28:

Great Issues Forum -- Education and Power
(discussion) 7:00 PM, Proshansky Auditorium

Is public higher education still a powerful force for shaping society? This program will bring together scholars and practitioners from around the world to talk about the impact of public higher education on social mobilization and economic development in the 21st century.  What can American educators learn from models of higher education in countries such as China, South Africa, and Mexico?  Can the U.S. system of public education provide a useful model for the rest of the world?  Featuring James Duderstadt, Deborah Davis, Enrique Dussel Peters, Yu Lizhong.  Moderated by William Kelly, President of the Graduate Center.  Free, but seating is limited and reservations are required.  Reservations can be made at, or by calling 212-817-8215.
Wednesday, April 29:

Jewish Intellectuals and the Writing Life
(discussion) 6:30 PM

Join prominent critics and intellectuals as they discuss the relationship between literary reputation, intellectualism, and Jewish life, now and over the course of the last half century.  Participants include Morris Dickstein, Distinguished Professor at the Graduate Center; Ruth Franklin, journalist for New Republic; literary critic, essayist, and novelist Daphne Merkin, author of Dreaming of Hitler; Edward Rothstein, cultural critic-at-large for the New York Times; and Steven Zipperstein, Daniel E. Koshland Professor in Jewish Culture and History at Stanford University and author of Rosenfeld's Lives: Fame, Oblivion, and the Furies of Writing.  Co-sponsored by the Center for Jewish Studies, the Ph.D. program in English, and the Leon Levy Center for Biography.  Free, for information call 212-817-2005.
Evolution: Darwin Live & in Concert
(performance) 6:30 PM, Elebash Recital Hall

Celebrate Charles Darwin's 200th birthday and the 150th anniversary of the publication of On the Origin of Species with a performance of Richard Milner's solo musical Charles Darwin: Live & In Concert.  Milner is a songwriter, anthropologist, historian of science, and author of Encyclopedia of Evolution: Humanity's Search for its Origins and the forthcoming Darwin's Universe. The performance takes you on the voyage of the HMS Beagle, introduces Darwin's friends and enemies, and continues into the evolution controversies after Darwin's death, such as the Scopes Monkey Trial of 1925.  Milner has appeared on the A&E Biography of Charles Darwin, BBC science specials, History Channel programs about evolution, and was recently profiled in the New York Times. Presented by Science & the Arts; free, for information call 212-817-8215.
Thursday, April 30:

Music In Midtown -- Orion String Quartet
(concert) 1:00 PM, Elebash Recital Hall

Since its inception, the Orion String Quartet has been consistently praised for the fresh perspective and individuality it brings to performances, offering diverse programs that juxtapose classic works of the standard quartet literature with masterworks by living composers.  This program will include Hugo Wolf's Italian Serenade, the Astral Quartet (2008) by David Dzubay, and Felix Mendelssohn's Quartet in D Major op. 44, no.1. Members of the group are Daniel Phillips, violin; Todd Phillips, violin; Steven Tenenbom, viola; and Timothy Eddy, cello.  Free, but seating is limited and reservations are required.  Reservations can be made at, or by calling 212-817-8215.

Submitted on: MAR 1, 2009

Category: Press Room