This morning as I was preparing my class, I smiled as I heard yet another report on the impact of campaign spending on the primary elections. The ads in this election cycle, the NPR reporter stressed, have been among the most negative we have ever seen. So, why was I smiling? The analysis was based on reports from the Wesleyan Media Project. Erika Franklin Fowler and her colleagues and students have been busy coding and analyzing data from around the country, enabling us to better understand the impact of big spenders, especially from SuperPacs, on our civic discourse. I wonder if our guest Thursday night will speak to this topic, and to the role of the Citizens United decision in creating our current political climate.
Over the weekend I heard a radio report about Paul Weitz’s (’88) new film, About Flynn. Paul is a proud Wes alumnus who has remained very connected to alma mater. He made a splash not long after graduation with the comedy American Pie (and later Meet the Fockers), and he has worked on animation films (Antz), television (Fantasy Island), and now written and directed the drama About Flynn. Paul also has had a hand in independent movies, online shows, documentaries as well as theater. His play, Lonely, I’m Not, is currently being cast for a run in New York.
On campus the season for senior theses plays and recitals is picking up steam. Sophie and I enjoyed Mao The Musical recently, Alan Rodi’s (’12) opera. When we return from Spring Break there will be a great series of performances by our soon-to-be Wes grads.
On Thursday, March 8 at 3:15 and 4:15, Professor Neely Bruce will lead two performances of The Bill of Rights: Ten Amendments in Eight Motets for two performances in the Wesleyan’s Memorial Chapel. You can read an interview with Prof. Bruce about his music here.
And don’t forget about AuralWes, the website about student music events/concerts on campus. The website is looking for good listeners who are also good writers.