Live music returns to Pellissippi State this fall

Eric Reed headshot
Eric Reed Trio, featuring the jazz composer-pianist, will kick off live music events at Pellissippi State with a concert at 7 p.m. Sept. 9.

Pellissippi State Community College welcomes back live music to its Clayton Performing Arts Center this fall after a year of virtual concerts. 

Knoxville Jazz Orchestra Presents: Eric Reed Trio in Concert will kick off The Arts at Pellissippi State for 2021-2022. The free concert will be held at 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 9, on the college’s Hardin Valley Campus, 10915 Hardin Valley Road. 

Reed is an influential fixture in music as a pianist, composer, arranger, bandleader and champion of young musicians. He will be joined at Pellissippi State with Rob Linton on bass and Jack Roben on guitar. 

Next up is Knoxville Opera, which will present select previews from its upcoming 2021-2022 season and offer a master class to those who attend at 11:50 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 15.  

All concerts at Pellissippi State are free and open to the public. The college recommends wearing masks in indoor spaces regardless of vaccination status. 

The Arts at Pellissippi State is an annual arts series that includes music and theatre performances and fine arts exhibits. For more information about The Arts at Pellissippi State this season, visit www.pstcc.edu/arts or call 865-694-6400. 

To request accommodations for a disability at any campus event, call 865-539-7401 or email accommodations@pstcc.edu. 

### 

Pellissippi State art exhibit features black-and-white prints made with mezzotint technique

A mezzotint print by artist Jacob Crook
Artist Jacob Crook uses the mezzotint technique to create haunting images of vacant interiors and nocturnal landscapes.

Mezzotint prints created by artist Jacob Crook are on display at Pellissippi State Community College through Sept. 24, and the public is invited to enjoy the show. 

The free exhibit is open 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday through Friday in the Bagwell Center for Media and Art Gallery on the college’s Hardin Valley Campus, 10915 Hardin Valley Road. Pellissippi State encourages the wearing of masks in indoor spaces. 

Crook, assistant professor of art and printmaking coordinator at Mississippi State University, works primarily in the intaglio printmaking technique of mezzotint, invented in 1642. This process achieves tonality – a range of tones in a work of visual art – by roughening a metal plate with a metal tool called a rocker. The rocker has a beveled, serrated, curved edge with many tiny teeth that create innumerable tiny indentations and burrs that hold ink during the printing process. Ink is rubbed into the varieties of textures and the excess wiped away, gradually revealing the image. 

“The fully rocked areas that are left alone produce a rich, velvety blank print, and areas that are scraped and burnished to varying degrees of smoothness will hold less ink, producing lighter value,” Crook explained. “Essentially the image is created in a reductive manner by ‘erasing’ the roughened areas to create areas of light.” 

Mezzotint of an empty alley
Nightrise IV is just one of the mezzontint prints by Jacob Crook on display at Pellissippi State through Sept. 24.

Crook’s works have been exhibited nationally and internationally at the Yekaterinburg Museum of Fine Arts in Russia, the Fort Wayne Museum of Art and the Museum of Fine Arts Boston, among others. His works also are displayed in academic institutions and private collections. 

“The quality of light cast into a space has the potential to bring poetry to the prosaic, magic to the mundane and beauty to the banal,” Crook said. “The light spilling through these nocturnal landscapes and vacant interiors serves as a sort of spotlight, transforming the scenes into empty stage sets, either soon to be entered or perhaps long abandoned, suggesting the possibility of untold narratives that are just out of reach.  

“My intent is not to tell a story directly, but to set the stage in such a way that viewers are compelled to consider the moments before and after the one presented based on their own associations with the imagery,” he added. 

To request accommodations for a disability for this event or any Pellissippi State event, call 865-539-7401 or email accommodations@pstcc.edu. 

### 

Pellissippi State opens gallery for student art show

Student paintings on display
Painting: Methods and Materials focuses on oil and acrylic painting on canvas with an emphasis on personal content through expanded methods and mediums.

Pellissippi State Community College is ushering back art exhibits with the work of students who took Painting: Methods and Materials in June. 

The show is on display until Aug. 6 in the Bagwell Center for Media and Art Gallery on the college’s Hardin Valley Campus, 10915 Hardin Valley Road. Everyone is invited to view the exhibit for free 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday. 

Painting: Methods and Materials focuses on oil and acrylic painting on canvas with an emphasis on personal content through expanded methods and mediums. 

Student work in gallery

“This is a very creative and eclectic group, ranging from realist still-life to broken glass and gold leaf abstractions to strange and wonderful painting/sculptural explorations,” said Associate Professor Herb Rieth, who taught the class. 

Pellissippi State’s Hardin Valley Campus is fully open, with no COVID-19 screenings or masks required. The college does encourage those who are not vaccinated to continue to wear masks to protect themselves and others. 

For more information about Pellissippi State, visit www.pstcc.edu or call 865-694-6400. 

### 

Pellissippi State moves annual student art exhibition online, faculty featured in downtown gallery 

Charcoal drawing of skeleton
Pellissippi State student Rebeca Ortiz‘s charcoal drawing Macabre Royalty is Best in Show at this year’s Juried Student Art Exhibition.

Those who never have made it out to Pellissippi State Community College for an art exhibition have a unique opportunity to view a variety of works from the comfort of their own home this year. 

Due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, Pellissippi State is offering its Annual Juried Student Art Exhibition online through May 3. This is the first time the exhibition has been held virtually. 

Art Professor Jennifer Brickey built the exhibition in Microsoft Sway, which allows viewers to see the student works as a slideshow, with the ability to choose whether the works stay on screen anywhere between 3 and 60 seconds. Viewers also can take the exhibit off loop and click through the works manually. 

The options are visible to viewers by moving the computer’s cursor or mouse to the lower righthand corner of the screen. 

“This annual exhibition exemplifies the hard work of both the students and the Art faculty,” Brickey said. “This exhibition is even more unique because it demonstrates the hard work and perseverance of both our Art faculty and students during one of the most trying years. I am very proud of this exhibition. It is truly a testament to the strength of the Art department. 

Any Pellissippi State student who had an Art class during the last two years was welcome to apply for the exhibition. The works were chosen this year by Pellissippi State’s Art faculty: Professor Brickey, Professor Jeff Lockett, Associate Professor Caroline Covington and Professor Herb Rieth. 

Thirty-one works were selected for this year’s exhibition. Rebeca Ortiz was awarded Best in Show and $500 for her charcoal drawing Macabre Royalty. As is the tradition, the winning artwork was purchased by Pellissippi State for its permanent collection that is displayed on campus. 

While Pellissippi State Art students have their works displayed online this year, all four Pellissippi State Art faculty have works on exhibit at the UT Downtown Gallery through April 30. 

Lockett, Covington, Rieth and Brickey are featured in Community of Eight with full-time Art faculty from Roane State and Walters State community colleges. 

“Pellissippi State and University of Tennessee Art faculty have always had a strong partnership, and both institutions play a significant role in cultivating the next generation of artists in our region,” said Covington, who serves as the Art program coordinator for Pellissippi State. “The Community of Eight exhibition demonstrates that we’re not just faculty — we’re also working artists. The skills we teach are integral to our own artistic practices, and I am so grateful to be a part of a show that showcases all of those skills in one place.” 

The UT Downtown Gallery is a contemporary art gallery exhibiting professional work through funding and support from the University of Tennessee. The gallery is located at 106 S. Gay Street, and all events are free and open to the public. Hours are 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Wednesdays-Fridays and 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturdays. 

###  

Pellissippi State presents play ‘Love and Information,’ streaming online this weekend

A graphic promoting Love and Information, a streaming play
Fifteen Pellissippi State students will portray more than 100 characters in “Love and Information” online this weekend. The play will be streaming April 16-18 on the College’s YouTube channel.

See Pellissippi State Community College Theatre students stretch themselves to new lengths this weekend, as a cast of 15 actors plays more than 100 different characters in Caryl Churchill‘s “Love and Information.” 

The play will be streamed on Pellissippi State’s YouTube channel Friday-Sunday, April 16-18. 

Although the play is free to enjoy, you must obtain a ticket on this website to receive a link via email. 

Love and Information” is a play of many moments — fragments — of peoples’ lives as they pursue the desire for love and the subsequent need for information often connected to that love.  

In a series of seven segments of seven scenes, plus more than a score of random moments, we see characters searching to make sense of the world and their place in it. They struggle with what they know, what they wish they knew, what they don’t know and what they wish they didn’t know.  

“Love and Information” takes the audience on a nonlinear journey of the fears, hopes and desires we experience as we go about our daily lives in this crazy world. 

“Love and Information” is directed by Associate Professor Grechen Lynne Wingerter and stage managed by Katie Campbell DollarEthan Turbyfill is assistant director while Savannah Avignone, Christian Perryman and Lindsey Strange are assistant stage managers. 

Cast members include Catherine Blevins, Tony Cedeño, Tarrin Chambers, Ariana Dotson, Aaron Fuchs, Tonya Fulmer, Steven McBride, Darien McKee, Rylee Norling, Daniel Rickman, Sidney Scarlett, Hannah Sloas, Derrick Washington Jr., Wingerter and Derrik Wright. 

###

 

Annual holiday concert shifts online during pandemic

Dakota Loo on marimba, Jacob Mincke on bells and Jennifer Vargo on vibraphone perform in the pre-recorded Holiday Spectacular in 2020
Pellissippi State students Dakota Loo on marimba, Jacob Mincke on bells and Jennifer Vargo on vibraphone perform in the pre-recorded Holiday Spectacular concert that will premiere at 7 p.m. Dec. 3 on Facebook and YouTube.

The talented musicians and singers at Pellissippi State Community College know that “the show must go on.” That’s why the College will present its annual Holiday Spectacular concert online this year. 

“Home for the Holidays … Again!” will premiere at 7 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 3, on Pellissippi State’s Facebook page and YouTube channel. 

Those who want to enjoy the concert will not need social media accounts to view the concert, as privacy will be set to “public.”  

Our annual Holiday Spectacular is one of the most well-loved events of the year, so we traditionally perform the show twice in the same night,” said Assistant Professor Meagan Humphreys, music program coordinator for Pellissippi State. “With so many of us working and learning from home this year due to the pandemic, we thought, ‘Why not bring the concert into people’s homes?’ It’s a very 2020 way to kick off the holiday season!” 

This year’s concert will feature Pellissippi State’s jazz band, studio orchestra, percussion ensemble, bluegrass ensemble, guitar ensemble and brass ensemble as well as pieces by the College’s two choirs: Concert Chorale and Variations. 

The eight songs will be a mix of sacred and secular holiday music, from “Away in a Manger” to “Jingle Bell Rock.” 

There is no cost to view the concert, which will feature more than 70 Pellissippi State students. 

For more information about Pellissippi State, visit www.pstcc.edu or call 865.694.6400. 

### 

Pellissippi State Theatre students perform radio plays, broadcast live, in lieu of in-person performances this fall

Poster for the double feature radio plays
Support Pellissippi State’s Theatre and Audio Production Engineering students by tuning in to live broadcasts of two radio plays later this month.

Theatre companies across the country have had to get creative during the coronavirus pandemic, performing plays over video communication platforms or in open outdoor spaces. 

But when brainstorming how Pellissippi State Community College could give its Theatre students the experience they need while still adhering to social distancing protocolsProfessor Charles R. Miller didn’t look to the future of theatre. 

He looked to the past. 

“Why reinvent the wheel?” asked Miller, who serves as Theatre program coordinator for the College. “Radio drama has been around for 100 years.” 

Pellissippi State will present a double feature of two short radio plays — “The Lone Ranger Redux” and the science fiction piece “Think Like a Dinosaur” — at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 17, and 2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 18. 

The plays will be performed back-to-back by Pellissippi State students, broadcast live on the College’s YouTube channel and recorded for later listening by Pellissippi State’s Audio Production Engineering faculty and students. 

There is no fee to listen. 

“In the past six months, we have seen a lot of Zoom theatre, and sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t,” Miller said. “But radio dramas use the power of imagination. 

“The Lone Ranger Redux” is one of the original radio broadcasts of “The Lone Ranger” from 1933, with some updating by Miller and his Theatre students. 

“There will be some socially aware commentary in it, in that the characters will step out of the play to remark on current events, but in a humorous way,” Miller explained. 

For example, the character of Tonto, the Native American companion of the Lone Ranger, will react to outdated stereotypes and racial slurs in the script. Miller described the updated Tonto as “quietly, morally outraged in a way that’s also funny.” 

The second radio play, “Think Like a Dinosaur,” is based on the award-winning science fiction novelette by James Patrick Kelly. Set in the far future and centering on alien technology and alien races, the play resembles “an episode of a scifi series, but self-contained,” Miller said. 

“This play is a little more dramatic and thought provoking,” he added. 

It’s the first time Pellissippi State has produced radio plays, Miller noted, and they are challenging the College’s Theatre students in new and different ways. 

“You don’t have the distractions of the set, the costumes and the facial expressions, so everything you’re doing with your voice, your breath – that’s what the audience is getting,” he said. “It’s all you.” 

Because of restrictions on having guests on campus during the coronavirus pandemic, Miller limited participation in the radio plays to Pellissippi State students instead of opening them up to the community. Twelve students will be acting in the plays, two will be providing sound effects and two will be working on the audio recording. 

During technical rehearsals and performances, actors will be spaced 15 to 20 feet from each other around the perimeter of the Clayton Performing Arts Center on the College’s Hardin Valley Campus, Miller stressed. The additional distance between students addresses that actors and musicians can spread respiratory droplets farther than those who talk without projecting their voices, he said. 

“Doing it live creates the kind of energy that is important to actors, but we will record it so that it can be enjoyed later by those who are not available to listen to it live,” Miller added. 

To tune in to “The Lone Ranger Redux” and “Think Like a Dinosaur” live, visit youtube.com/PellissippiState at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 17, or 2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 18. 

### 

Pellissippi State exhibit features 12 regional artists

Painting of a mom and child by a boat
Virginia Derryberry’s “The Voyage” is one of the works featured this month in The Figurative Impulse at Pellissippi State.

A new art exhibit at Pellissippi State Community College focuses on the human figure and celebrates that which makes us human.

The Figurative Impulse, the first offering in The Arts at Pellissippi State for spring 2020, is showing in the college’s Bagwell Center for Media and Art Gallery on the Hardin Valley Campus until Friday, Jan. 31, with a closing reception 3-5 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 30.

The Gallery, located at 10915 Hardin Valley Road, is open 9 a.m.-9 p.m. Monday through Friday.

This regional survey of contemporary paintings and drawings includes 12 artists from Tennessee, North Carolina, Alabama, Louisiana and Georgia.

“There is a diversity of mediums, messages and outlooks embedded within the work and quite a bit to take in within such a small format,” said Associate Professor Herb Rieth, who curated the exhibit. “The artists come from diverse backgrounds, generations, impetuses and are at many different points in their careers, yet they hold in common their concern for their fellow humans. That lens can be sympathetic, ironic or sardonic, but is used to focus on the motivations and machinations of other people, which in turn can act as a mirror of our own selves.”

Rieth, who has work included in the exhibit, had the idea for the Figurative Impulse two years ago, he said, as a reaction to the increasingly shrill and acrimonious debate between people on social media and in person.

“My thoughts at the time balanced between, first, ‘We are all human and, thus, why can’t we just get along?’ and second, ‘The human condition is endlessly fascinating in its attempt to plumb our own and other’s motivations,’” Rieth explained. “As the Technological Revolution has started to eclipse our humanness, I believe that we should redouble our efforts to celebrate that which makes us human.”

Artists who have works included in the Figurative Impulse include Randy Arnold, Tamie Beldue, Aaron Carroll, Virginia Derryberry, Samuel Dunson, Mira Girard, Jed Jackson, Vitus Shell, Denise Stewart-Sanabria, Jason Stout, Tom Wegrzynowski and Herb Rieth.

The Figurative Impulse is part of The Arts at Pellissippi State series. For more information on upcoming visual arts, theatre and music events, visit www.pstcc.edu/arts.

To request accommodations for a disability for this event or any Pellissippi State event, call 865.539.7401 or email accommodations@pstcc.edu.

###

Enter a ‘Winter Wonderland’ at Pellissippi State’s annual holiday concert

Group of students singing with Santa Claus in middle
Pellissippi State students, faculty and staff perform with Santa Claus during the 2018 Holiday Spectacular.

Pellissippi State Community College will wrap up its fall 2019 Arts at Pellissippi State series with its annual concert featuring all of the college’s instrumental ensembles and choirs.

The hugely popular Holiday Spectacular is a perfect time to catch performances of the musicians you may have missed earlier in the season.

There will be two performances of the Holiday Spectacular, which is themed “Winter Wonderland” this year: 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 5.

Both performances will be held in the Clayton Performing Arts Center on the college’s Hardin Valley Campus, 10915 Hardin Valley Road.

Tickets are free and available at the door on a first come, first served basis.

The Holiday Spectacular will feature religious and secular selections performed by

  • Variations, Pellissippi State’s audition choir;
  • Concert Chorale, the college’s non-audition choir;
  • Faculty/Staff Choir;
  • Jazz Band and Bluegrass Ensemble, both audition groups;
  • Brass, Guitar and Percussion Ensembles; and
  • Studio Orchestra.

Among the selections this year will be familiar Christmas carols such as “What Child Is This?” and “God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen” as well as pop culture classics like “Christmas Time is Here” from “A Charlie Brown Christmas” and “The Grinch.” And not only will audiences hear “Snow” from “White Christmas,” but the concert will end with falling snow, a perfect way to get into the holiday spirit.

Plan to arrive early to the performance of your choice to get a complimentary ticket, as seating is limited to the first 495 guests per show. While the performance is free, donations are accepted at the door for the Pellissippi State Foundation on behalf of the Music Scholarship fund.

The Holiday Spectacular is part of The Arts at Pellissippi State series. For more information on upcoming visual arts, theatre and music events, visit www.pstcc.edu/arts.

To request accommodations for a disability for this event or any Pellissippi State event, call 865.539.7401 or email accommodations@pstcc.edu.

###

Pellissippi State Jazz Band takes the stage this Thursday

Jazz band on stage, playing instruments
The Pellissippi State Jazz Band performs last November. You can catch them again this Thursday, in the Clayton Performing Arts Center.

Works by jazz greats Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock and others will be performed at Pellissippi State Community College’s Fall Jazz Concert this Thursday.

The concert, part of The Arts at Pellissippi State, will be held at 7 p.m. Nov. 21 in the Clayton Performing Arts Center on the college’s Hardin Valley Campus, 10915 Hardin Valley Road.

The Pellissippi State Jazz Band, under the direction of Tom Johnson, also will feature music by Broadway composer Richard Rodgers and a well-known bolero by Mexican composer Consuelo Velazquez.

Many different musicians in the 15-piece ensemble will have solos, Johnson noted.

The Arts at Pellissippi State is an annual arts series that includes music, theatre performances and fine arts exhibits. For more information, visit www.pstcc.edu/arts or call 865.694.6400.

To request accommodations for a disability at this event or any campus event, call 865.539.7401 or email accommodations@pstcc.edu.

###