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According to Dr. Xela Batchelder, assistant professor of arts administration, learning outside of the classroom is just as important for students.

Not only is Batchelder involved with the largest arts festival in the world, the Edinburgh Fringe; she also helps students break into the industry through her own company, Fringe University.

Recently, Batchelder led two different workshops at a Rochester, New York, festival in September. Her workshops helped performers learn to take their show to Edinburgh Fringe and to other fringe festivals throughout the United States and Canada. She said she loves to help performers live up to their full potential.

“Performers are realizing that they don’t have to rely on the curatorial establishment to make a living as paid performers, but rather there is a circuit of very accepting festivals that they can tour and make a living doing what they are good at and what they love,” said Batchelder. “I enjoy helping performers find their own audiences through fringe festivals.”

As executive director of Fringe University, Batchelder helps undergraduate and graduate professors form curriculum, produce shows and attend Fringe shows and events. She helps organize guest speakers and lectures and has also been a lecturer herself.

Batchelder said through her connections, students have been able to join her in Edinburgh to work, gaining real-world experience. Her work in the academic community outside of Waynesburg has allowed students to make connections with important arts managers across the globe.

“Everything I do is focused on benefiting my students,” Batchelder said. “By my being in the field, my students have real-life opportunities, as well as contacts around the world working currently in the field.”

Founded in 1849 by the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, Waynesburg University is located on a traditional campus in the hills of southwestern Pennsylvania, with three additional sites located in the Pittsburgh region. The University is one of only 22 Bonner Scholar schools in the country, offering local, regional and international opportunities to touch the lives of others through service.

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Ashley Wise, Director of University Relations

724-852-7675 or awise@waynesburg.edu

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Waynesburg University’s Department of Fine Arts will showcase a collection of student artwork Monday, Nov. 27, through Friday, Dec. 8. The art show will be held in the Benedum Fine Arts Gallery and opens with a reception on Nov. 27 from 6 to 8 p.m.

The exhibit and reception are free, and the public is cordially invited to attend.

“The goal of this exhibit is to show the best work made within each art class [from the semester],” said Andrew Heisey, assistant professor of art and chair of the Fine Arts Department. “It is always exciting to see these students discover a hidden talent that they did not know they possessed.”

The art show will include the following types of work: drawings, functional ceramic pieces, jewelry, prints and sculptures, among other types of art.

“When students make artwork in the classroom, they are used to seeing art in the process,” said Heisey. “When their work hangs in the gallery, it changes. What looked like an ordinary drawing, sculpture or painting now appears to be a masterpiece.”

The Benedum Fine Arts Gallery is open Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information, contact the gallery at 724-852-3247.

Founded in 1849 by the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, Waynesburg University is located on a traditional campus in the hills of southwestern Pennsylvania, with three additional sites located in the Pittsburgh region. The University is one of only 22 Bonner Scholar schools in the country, offering local, regional and international opportunities to touch the lives of others through service.

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Ashley Wise, Director of University Relations

724-852-7675 or awise@waynesburg.edu

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The Lamplighters Touring Choir will be presenting their Fall Concert Sunday, Nov. 19, at 3 p.m. in Roberts Chapel. The event is free, and the public is cordially invited to attend.

Melanie Catana, assistant professor of music, directs the choir, which is made of 18 students from a variety of majors and classes. At the Fall Concert, the students will sing pieces from GLAD’s A Capella Project—a Christian rock group—and will also collaborate with the South Hills Children’s Choir.

“I am really looking forward to seeing and hearing the children’s choir and the Lamplighters perform together,” said Catana. “I am also excited for the Lamplighters to perform the GLAD songs that we are preparing.”

Catana said that in their rehearsals, the choir students work extensively to combine vocal skill with faith and Biblical learning.

“One of the most important elements to our choir is that we spend time talking about our faith in Jesus, together and in small groups,” she said. “Our choir wants to be able to share the Good News of Christ by maintaining active and healthy individual relationships with the Lord. Prayer and devotions on Biblical passages are what keep us focused on our calling as a group: to be a choir that ministers God’s message of salvation and love through meaningful and beautiful music.”

For more information, contact Catana at 724-852-7639 or email mcatana@waynesburg.edu.

Founded in 1849 by the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, Waynesburg University is located on a traditional campus in the hills of southwestern Pennsylvania, with three additional sites located in the Pittsburgh region. The University is one of only 21 Bonner Scholar schools in the country, offering local, regional and international opportunities to touch the lives of others through service.

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Ashley Wise, Director of University Relations

724-852-7675 or awise@waynesburg.edu

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The Waynesburg University Music Program will present a special performance Friday, Nov. 17, featuring the Chamber Orchestra and Jazz Ensemble. The concert, “Out of This World,” will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the Marsh Center, and the public is cordially invited to attend.

Dr. Ronda DePriest, professor of instrumental music and director of the Music Program, said this performance is distinctive as the students will be able to showcase a more complete arrangement of music.

“The Chamber Orchestra and Jazz Ensemble Concert will feature full sets of music, rather than one or two pieces as they would on a Chamber Works concert,” said DePriest. “So, the music for the event will be half orchestra and half jazz.”

The performance will include themes from “Star Wars,” “Star Trek,” “Halo,” “Doctor Who” and other selections related to space and space travel. Space-inspired music from movies and composers will be featured at the concert, such as “Rocket Man” by Elton John and “Jupiter” from The Planets.

For more information about the event, contact the Benedum Fine Arts Center at 724-852-3420 or email rdepries@waynesburg.edu.

Founded in 1849 by the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, Waynesburg University is located on a traditional campus in the hills of southwestern Pennsylvania, with three additional sites located in the Pittsburgh region. The University is one of only 21 Bonner Scholar schools in the country, offering local, regional and international opportunities to touch the lives of others through service.

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Ashley Wise, Director of University Relations

724-852-7675 or awise@waynesburg.edu

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The Waynesburg University Players will present Shakespeare’s “Hamlet” Wednesday, Nov. 8, through Saturday, Nov. 11, at 7:30 p.m. each evening in the Goodwin Performing Arts Center on the Waynesburg University campus.

“This production is an opportunity to see one of the greatest plays of all time on a local stage,” said Edward L. Powers, professor of theatre. “Seeing the Shakespearean characters and hearing their words, instead of merely reading them, can be an exciting opportunity.”

“Hamlet” first premiered around 1600, and is a story of family turmoil and revenge. Powers stated it is a 400-year-old story that can still relate to a present-day audience.

The story is set in Denmark, where Hamlet, who has been away to school, has learned that his father has died and that he is next in line for the crown. However, upon returning home he finds that his Uncle Claudius has assumed the throne and even married Gertrude, Hamlet's mother. After a night-time encounter with the spirit of his dead father, young Hamlet learns that it was Claudius who killed the old man, which emboldens Hamlet to seek revenge.

Tickets cost $5 for the general public and $3 for Waynesburg University students. To purchase tickets, visit waynesburg.ticketleap.com/hamlet.

Available tickets will also be sold at the door.

The cast and crew include:

  • Hamlet - Shawn White, senior English (creative writing) major from Amity, Pennsylvania (Trinity High School)
  • King - Ronald Loebker, senior computer science major from Ripley, Ohio (Home School Clearing House)
  • QueenSara Lesher, senior criminal justice administration major from Masontown, Pennsylvania (Albert Gallatin High School)
  • PoloniusChristian Wilson, junior digital design major from Waynesburg, Pennsylvania (Jefferson-Morgan High School)
  • OpheliaTessa Masula, junior English (secondary education) major from Grand Rapids, Michigan (Wellspring Preparatory High School)
  • LaertesSteven Caumo, junior English (creative writing) major from Meadow Lands, Pennsylvania (Chartiers-Houston High School)
  • Rosencrantz/GravediggerMichelle Frye, senior advertising major from Carmichaels, Pennsylvania (Carmichaels High School)
  • GuildensternHolly Hendershot, sophomore communication (journalism) major from Manheim, Pennsylvania (home schooled)
  • Francisco/OsricRachael Crosbie, junior English (literature) major from Washington, Pennsylvania (Trinity High School)
  • Ghost/Player King/PriestMatthew Colaluca, senior environmental science major from Monaca, Pennsylvania (Central Valley High School)
  • Marcellus/Player KingEdward DiOrio, freshman communication (sports broadcasting/information) major from Hunker, Pennsylvania (Hempfield High School)
  • BernardoCory Tretinik, freshman communication (electronic media) major from Clarksville, Pennsylvania (Jefferson-Morgan High School)
  • Player Queen/ServantVeronica Kayona, freshman criminal justice administration major from Bridgeville, Pennsylvania (South Fayette High School)
  • A Maid/SailorGabrielle Urschel, freshman criminal justice administration major from Ashburn, Virginia (Briar Woods High School)
  • Stage ManagerKathryn Kondrick, senior history major from Cheswick, Pennsylvania (Fox Chapel High School)
  • Assistant Stage ManagerSamantha Morad, freshman English (creative writing) major from Glassboro, New Jersey (Washington Township Board of Education)
  • Assistant Stage Manager - Victoria Rossignol, sophomore sociology (urban studies) major from Norridgewock, Maine (Temple Academy Christian School)

For more information, contact Powers at 724-852-3226 or epowers@waynesburg.edu.

Founded in 1849 by the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, Waynesburg University is located on a traditional campus in the hills of southwestern Pennsylvania, with three additional sites located in the Pittsburgh region. The University is one of only 21 Bonner Scholar schools in the country, offering local, regional and international opportunities to touch the lives of others through service.

# # #

Ashley Wise, Director of University Relations

724-852-7675 or awise@waynesburg.edu

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