Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Southern Miss, School of Music Symphony

Southern Miss's School of Music, will be performing the world premiere of a new piece of music. An American Requiem was composed in recent years by Edwin Penhorwood, as a memorial for those affected by Hurricane Katrina. Penhorwood will be present at the premiere of his work, and as a collaboration between the Hattiesburg Choral Union (composed of community singers as well as members of the school's chorale and concert choirs) and the Symphony Orchestra of Southern, this will be a major event of the year for the School of Music. The performance is to be directed by Gregory Fuller, the Director of Choral Activities.

The performance will be held, Thursday, April 8th, at Main Street Baptist Church on Hardy Street. Information for the tickets and performance can be found on School of Music webpage

Centennial Celebration

Courtesy of http://usm.edu/
Southern Miss celebrates its 100th year anniversary! March 30th officially marked the university's 100th year of existing. The week was filled with a number of celebratory events on campus, including the opening of the Centennial Exhibit, Founder's Day Celebration, and the all important, Centennial "100" Formation, which is pictured above. I, personally, did not attend any of the events do to having two tests scheduled and this grand day. But, I did attend the Centennial Celebration and Picnic on the field in front of the Walker Science Building. USM's Gulf Coast is also celebrating with its own string of events. Both campuses are continuing their celebratory events through November, with the Gulf Coast finishing off in December with a chorale.

Information on the remaining events for both campuses can be found at http://www.usm.edu/centennial

Friday, February 19, 2010

The Special Collection at McCain Library

McCain Library & Archives at Southern Miss sponsors its own Special Collections Exhibit which contains a multitude of displays from different themes. My visit to the Special Collections room focused on the items related to "Media Tie-Ins." Tie-ins are a very common thing in America, but you might only know that if you happened to hear this exact term somewhere. They are the infamous Twilight book series which are made into major box selling movies or Knight Rider television series which is made into its own activity book.

In the U.S. we find that numerous books are made into movies, and vice-versa. These conversions are known as tie-ins. They are the result of a hit book (or movie) being made into a movie (or book). This is seen the most with books which were major sellers as a text. The most recent forms of this are Alice in Wonderland, Twilight, and The Lightning Thief. These titles turn out many movie-goers in their premiers, with a central attraction in children and teenagers. Amongst many other titles, tie-ins can, and do, draw many of us into the original works of the novels so many hit movies are based off of.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Southern Miss Golden Eagle Rugby

The Southern Miss Collegiate Men's Rugby Football Club is a long standing tradition at the university. Having started in 1973, it is the oldest running club sport here. They are members of the Deep South Rugby Union, which encompasses men's clubs and collegiate men's clubs from the states of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, and Tennessee. Currently, teams from all of these states are competing in what is called the "matrix," or regular, season for Deep South Rugby. As with any other collegiate sport, this regular season leads up to playoffs, and finally, contention between two teams for the national championship (though rugby is not a part of the NCAA, it is formatted as an official collegiate competition).

To give a bit of insight about rugby, it involves a mass of fifteen players from each team on the field, at a time. Typically, these many players are spread across the field, and in not so many instances, you will find more than ten of them bunched together. These many players are divided into two categories: forwards and backs. The forwards are the main muscle of the team, similar to the offensive and defensive lines of football; the backs are the skill players of the team who run most of the organized plays. Only backwards passing is involved and the game only stops for a halftime break during its 80-minute run. These are just a few of the laws rugby players are made to follow. The game takes time and skill to learn.

The Southern Miss men's team is working with a relatively new set of players who are taking some of their first steps into the game. The team now stands at a 0-2 record with a home and away match remaining, and a chance to still make it into the playoffs. Team President and Captain, Josh Neely, seeks to develop this team into a strong force in and out of the Deep South Rugby Union--but he is first getting the core concepts of the game into the minds of newcomers to the sport.

The team website discloses a bit more background on the current players, officers, schedules, and more at SouthernMissRugby.com. One can catch the team practicing at The Rock on Tuesday and Thursday evenings during the week, watching international rugby matches on the big screen at Buffalo Wild Wings on the weekend, or playing a match somewhere in the south on Saturdays...because, "Saturday, is a rugby day!"

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The de Grummond Exhibit

I recently made use of one of the resources of our undergraduate library and payed a visit to the "de Grummond" children's literature exhibit. De Grummond is known to be the largest collection of children's literature in the world, with works ranging from the United States all the way to China. It is named after its creator, Lena de Grummond, who came to the University of Southern Mississippi as a teacher off children's literature--later beginning this collection to expand on the learning experience for children and students. This vast archive of works could satisfy the taste of any child, as well as whatever preference adults would have for literature to satisfy their personal desires with over 100,000 compositions in children's literature.

The most locally focused piece of de Grummond, is shown in the first case one sees upon entering this exhibit. The Dolls' House possesses its own display which lays out the history of its founders, Emilie and Marie Stapp, who moved from Iowa down to Wiggins, Mississippi. This house began as a planned to be home with a complementing pecan farm to be known as, Friendship Farm. Later on, this house turned into the home for over 400 dolls, earned its coined name as, "The Dolls' House." These many dolls were given to the Stapp sisters by sisters and friends, locally and international, to be held in their collection so be shared with, "all adults with memories and all children with hope."

Moving along with the exhibit, you will come across one of the most notable parts of the exhibit which features stories of the famous Curious George within the, H.A. and Margret Rey Collection. This display tells of the origin of Curious George--the real-life experiences of H.A. and Margret Rey. In response to de Grummond's request for a piece of the Reys' literary work, a special catalog of Curious George was created, "Curious George Comes to Hattiesburg: The Life and Work of H. A. and Margret Rey." Depicted on the cover of this catalog is Curious George himself, moving to Hattiesburg, Mississippi. The Reys continued to provide the de Grummond exhibit with works or literature until Margret Rey's death, when their collection in its entirety was willed to Ms. Grummond.

To accompany the success of the de Grummond Collection, the University of Southern Mississippi began its own award linked to the program. The first Special Children's Collection Medallion was first awarded in March of 1969, and is now known as the University of Southern Mississippi Medallion Award. These medallions are made with the face of the author and their names on them, labeled to denote the author and year in which they were presented the award. Presently, up to 2009, this medallion has been presented to 40 authors.

These are just a few of the thing one can see upon visiting the de Grummond exhibit at Southern Miss. At various points of the year, the works on display are changed which can always leave more for you to see. If you stay long enough, you can relax in a seat next to Curious George in his casual dress with a Southern Miss bow tie.

For more on the exhibit, visit the de Grummond webpage