Arts Notes

Sunday, April 6, 2003

Losses of war focus of Washburn talk

Topeka -- The lifelong impact of war will be discussed by documentary producer, writer and director Barbara Sonneborn during the Georgia Neese Gray Distinguished Women Lecture Series presentation.

The talk will be at 7:30 p.m. Thursday in the Andrew J. and Georgia Neese Gray Theatre in the Garvey Fine Arts Center at Washburn University campus.

The free event is open to the public.

Sonneborn's husband was killed in 1968 by a mortar in Vietnam. Twenty years later, Sonneborn, a photographer and visual artist, embarked on a journey in search of the truth about war and its legacy, which she chronicled in her debut documentary, "Regret to Inform."

The film received an Academy Award nomination in 1999 for best feature documentary and won the best director and best cinematography awards for documentary at the 1999 Sundance Film Festival.

Congolese-American sculptor to discuss work

Kansas City, Mo. -- Congolese-American sculptor Augie N'Kele will give a free talk about his work at 2 p.m. Saturday at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, 4525 Oak St.

The lecture is in conjunction with the museum's current special exhibition, "Art of the Lega: Meaning and Metaphor in Central Africa," on view through May 4.

N'Kele will discuss his Congolese heritage and how his sculptural style evolved. He also will contrast his work chronicling 400 years of African-American history with more traditional works in the exhibition, which explores how the Lega use art to transmit deep moral values and cultural lessons.

Topeka Symphony presents season finale

Topeka -- The Topeka Symphony Orchestra will present its final concert of the season at 8 p.m. Saturday in White Concert Hall at Washburn University.

John Strickler will direct the program, which features a single work, Symphony No. 7, "Leningrad," by Dmitri Shostakovich. Written in 1941 while the city was under siege by the German army, the symphony is dedicated to the composer's home city and its resistance to Nazi invasion.

Today, Leningrad is known as St. Petersburg and is celebrating its 300th anniversary in 2003.

William Everett of the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory of Music will present a free concert preview at 7 p.m. in the choral room adjacent to the concert hall.

Tickets are $27, $21 and $17 and can be purchased by calling (785) 232-2032.

KC radio program features Poet Laureate

Kansas City, Mo. -- To celebrate the start of National Poetry Month, "New Letters on the Air" will feature U.S. Poet Laureate Billy Collins today.

Collins, who is serving his second term as Poet Laureate since being named in the fall of 2001, will share his philosophy of poetry and read several selections from his bestselling and award-winning collections, "Nine Horses," "Questions About Angles," and "The Apple That Astonished Paris."

Collins' honors include fellowships from the New York Foundation for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts and the Guggenheim Foundation. He is distinguished professor of English at Lehman College, City University of New York, where he has taught for the 30 years.