Category: Arts and Music

A Good Tune – SummerFest 2014

8232In past seasons the SummerFest programs aired on UCSD-TV tended to the eclectic, mixing different styles, eras and composers broadly representative of the chamber music genre. This year, we’re focusing on four great masters of the Classical style: Franz Joseph Haydn, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Franz Schubert, and Johannes Brahms.

Some definitions are useful here. We use the term classical music (note the small “c”) colloquially to include all Western “art music” (or “serious music”) from roughly the ninth century to the present, and especially the seventeenth century to the nineteenth. In fact, the loose term classical music encompasses a broad variety of forms, styles, genres, schools, movements, historical periods, and composers. The Classical period (note the capital “C”) highlighted in our programs was predominant from the mid-18th to the mid-19th centuries, and was largely developed in Germany and Austria. It derived from the Baroque period and lead to the Romantic period. The hallmarks of the Classical style include a rejection of the ornamentation of the Baroque in favor of a cleaner, simpler style, one with a lighter texture and concerned with logical development, structural balance, adherence to form, proportion, and “rightness” of phrasing. It was highly organized and melodic music, well suited to the Age of Reason. As is always the case when attempting to strictly define historical periods there was considerable overlap between the different styles, and several well-known composers are considered transitional figures – Haydn, Beethoven, and Schubert, for example (though it’s been argued that Beethoven is a genre unto himself).

Each of the four composers whose works are performed in our programs made contributions to the development of Classical style. Haydn is considered the key transitional figure from Baroque to Classical; indeed, more than any other composer he may be said to have invented Classical style, and has been called the “Father of Sonata Form.” Mozart, who was a contemporary of Haydn and greatly admired the older man, worked within Classical forms and brought them to an unsurpassed degree of perfection. Schubert, an admirer of Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven, brought his own innovations to the style and paved the way for the Romantic era that followed. Brahms was a late Classical composer, a Keeper of the Faith who resisted the siren call of Romanticism, fighting a rearguard action against the onslaught of Richard Wagner and his acolytes.

Alas for Brahms, history was on the side of Wagner. Romanticism was followed by modernism, serialism, minimalism, aleatroricism, primitivism, Neoclassicism, New Romanticism, post-modernism, etc., etc. ad nauseam. For a time Classical style fell out of favor – with composers, that is; it never lost its allure for audiences, and by the 1970s younger composers and performers were re-discovering its charms, once again immersing themselves in study of the period and its leading figures. Perhaps they were looking for order amidst the chaos of seventy-plus years of experimentation; or perhaps the older forms were seen as a tonic against the extremely subjective and drily academic nature of much modern music, and a way to reconnect with audiences.

Or perhaps, as SummerFest Music Director Cho-Liang (Jimmy) Lin notes, it’s as simple as “a good tune is always a good tune – there’s no substitute,” and the Classical masters offered good tunes in abundance.

Watch La Jolla Music Society’s SummerFest 2014 Season.

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Jazz Camp 2014 – Finale Concert Highlights

8232What is jazz? The late great Stan Getz described jazz thusly:

“It’s like a language. You learn the alphabet, which are the scales. You learn sentences, which are the chords. And then you talk extemporaneously with the horn. It’s a wonderful thing to speak extemporaneously, which is something I’ve never gotten the hang of. But musically I love to talk just off the top of my head. And that’s what jazz music is all about.”

UC San Diego Jazz Camp exemplifies Getz’s definition. In its twelfth year, Jazz Camp transports its students through a one week, one-of-a-kind journey into the world of jazz. Combining the expertise of more than a dozen nationally- and internationally-known musicians and jazz educators, this extraordinary faculty brings students of jazz together to explore a full spectrum of approaches to jazz improvisation.

At the end of the week, UC San Diego Jazz Camp culminates in a finale concert, featuring student ensembles performing standards and original compositions with the participation and under the direction of faculty members.

Watch the latest season of Jazz Camp and browse past performances.

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Script to Screen Welcomes Oscar-Nominated Screenwriters, Bob Nelson and John Ridley

The Script to Screen series was granted an amazing opportunity to connect recent Oscar nominees with UCSB students, the Santa Barbara community, and Los Angeles based Academy members through a live stream.

28118Paramount Pictures graciously provided a screening of Nebraska followed by Q&A with Oscar-nominated screenwriter Bob Nelson. “The ending of this movie is really wish fulfillment on my part all these years later. My dad’s been gone a long time, but this is me getting my dad his truck and his compressor back finally.” Bob Nelson’s Q&A touched upon the very important lesson that you have to draw from personal experience when developing a script. Bruce Dern’s character was based on Nelson’s own father, and the setting and large extended family also came directly from Nelson’s personal life.

Watch Script to Screen: Nebraska with Bob Nelson

28119One week before the Oscars, Fox Searchlight sent future Oscar-winning screenwriter John Ridley with his film 12 Years a Slave in the hopes of helping to secure a victory in the Best Picture and Best Adapted Screenplay categories. While the studio’s main goal was to reach Oscar voters, Script to Screen wanted to connect our patrons with this inspirational screenwriter.

“The thing that was really powerful to me was that this person (Solomon Northup) had an education, had a life, had stature, had circumstances, and just could not see how precious they were – and could not understand how easily those things could slip away from all of us. I don’t even mean the bigger picture of our freedom and our liberty but the things that we hold really precious to us,” said John Ridley during the interview.

Ridley’s script forced people to closely examine their own lives, and it demonstrated how a writer can emotionally connect people of today with the people of history. Throughout the Q&A, questions regarding the slaves and the slave owners moved Ridley to tears.

Watch Script to Screen: 12 Years a Slave with John Ridley

Script to Screen is looking forward to our Season 4 launch in October of 2014, which will include many of the upcoming Oscar contenders for the 2015 Academy Awards.

Watch all of the Script to Screen episodes!

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Contributed by Matthew Ryan, director of the Pollock Theater at the Carsey-Wolf Center and host of the Script to Screen series.

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Malcom McDowell — An Actor’s perspective on “A Clockwork Orange”

27695It’s been more than forty years since Stanley Kubrick released “A Clockwork Orange,” the dystopian satire that introduced many people to its star Malcolm McDowell. McDowell has a rather diverse resume – “Caligula,” “O Lucky Man,” two “Halloween” films and “Star Trek: Generations” along with appearances in television programs and recently commercials. But it is the character of Alex in “Clockwork” that resonates with the most people, even now.

McDowell recently attended a screening of the 1971 film at the Carsey-Wolf Center at UC Santa Barbara then sat down with Matt Ryan for Script to Screen. McDowell is quite candid as he thinks back on the process of making the film – including Kubrick shutting the set down for five days while they worked out a critical scene. Hearing his perspective on a film and director that have been analyzed for decades is fascinating. He ends by advising young screenwriters on their craft, cautioning them to write about something they emotionally know if they want to attract actors of his caliber.

Watch Script to Screen with Malcom McDowell.

For more of the inside scoop on the screenwriting process and how it gets translated into film, browse the Script to Screen archives.

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UCTV’s Most Watched Programs of 2013

It’s been another fantastic year of enlightening content. Here’s a recap of UCTV’s most watched programs of 2013:

24549Brain Fitness: Social Aspects of Dementia and Mild Cognitive Impairment

Mario D. Garrett, PhD discusses the scientific revolution currently happening in dementia studies, dementia errors that impact research, and the importance of social interaction for patients with dementia.

25329 Concussions and Sports

 Clinical neuropsychologist Eric Freitag of Sport Concussion Program explains the risks and medical implications of concussions. Learn how to spot a concussion, when to see a doctor, and how treatment should progress.

24975 Is the Human Mind Unique?

Cognitive abilities often regarded as unique to humans include humor, morality, symbolism, creativity, and preoccupation with the minds of others. In these compelling talks, emphasis is placed on the functional uniqueness of these attributes, as opposed to the anatomical uniqueness.

25788 Brain Mapping:  Pushing the Frontiers of Neurology — Atlantic Meets the Pacific 2013

UC San Diego neuroscientists Ralph Greenspan and Nicholas Spitzer join Kris Famm of GlaxoSmithKline and James Fallows of The Atlantic for a look into the future of brain research. This program is part of The Atlantic Meets the Pacific 2013 series presented by The Atlantic and UCSD.

25193 Big Bang – UC Davis Business Plan Competition 2013

Big Bang! is the annual UC Davis Business Plan Competition, hosted by the UC Davis Child Family Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and organized by MBA students of the Graduate School of Management. Find out the winners of this year’s competition.

25130 Immunology 101: The Basics and Introduction to our Patient

Katherine Gundling, MD, Associate Clinical Professor of Allergy and Immunology at UCSF, and Practice Chief of the Allergy/Immunology clinic at Moffitt Hospital examines the essential purpose of the immune system and how living with a primary disorder of immunity can affect daily life.

24925 The Age of Amazon with Marc Onetto

Marc Onetto, senior vice president of worldwide operations and customer service at Amazon.com, shares Amazon’s secrets to success. Hosted by the UC Davis Graduate School of Management’s Dean’s Distinguished Speaker Series.


25202The Future of Human Space Exploration

Charles Kennel, Former Scripps Institution of Oceanography director and chair of the National Academy’s Space Science Board, reviews what NASA’s space program has accomplished, what it is doing now, and what the future holds for human space exploration.

25319 Bike Fit: It’s All About the Bike

Curtis Cramblett, PT, CFMT, CSCS has been an avid cyclist and racer for more than 20 years and has spent thousands of hours on his bike. He shares his expertise on proper bike fit including what a good bike fit feels like, your biomechanical needs, and adjusting your bike to your body.

24900 Tracy DiNunzio, Co-Founder and CEO of Tradesy

Tracy DiNunzio, Founder and CEO of Tradesy a fashion resale website, talks about what it took to get her company off the ground. She is also the CEO and founder of Recycled Bride, the Web’s largest wedding resale marketplace, which launched in 2009.

24972 An Evening of Sacred Music and Dances from Japan Kagura Ensemble of Chichibu Shrine

Enjoy this unique opportunity to experience Kagura (sacred music and ritual dances) from Chichibu, in the first and only US performance of the shrine’s Kagura troupe. Chichibu Kagura, dating back to approximately the seventeenth century, with a repertory based on ancient myths, has been designated by the government as an Important Formless Folkloric Cultural Property.

24923 Is Beer In Your Career?

What opportunities are in the burgeoning craft brewing industry? In this Career Channel presentation, you’ll learn the answers from a panel of experts that includes Stone Brewing founder Greg Koch, Lost Abbey brewer Tomme Arthur, Ballast Point brewer and co-founder Yuseff Cherney, and the founder of White Labs Inc. Pure Yeast and Fermentation, Chris White.

25125 HIV: A Primer

Dr. Jay Levyan, an AIDS and cancer researcher at UCSF, discusses the discovery of HIV and its basic science. Then, Dr. C. Bradley Hare, Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine and Medical Director, UCSF HIV/AIDS Division at San Francisco General Hospital, explores HIV and its diseases through case presentations from the clinic.

25071 Intellectual Journey with Gary Becker  – Conversations with History

Harry Kreisler welcomes Nobel Laureate Gary S. Becker for a discussion of his intellectual journey. Topics include: Milton Friedman, his early work on discrimination, the skills and temperament required for work in economics, applying economic analysis to social problems, the Chicago school of economics, creativity, rational choice theory, markets vs. government, the impact of ideas on policy, the communications revolution, and the lessons of the 2008 economic collapse.

24920 Farming in the 21st Century: A Woman’s Perspective from South Africa

Brylyne Chitsunge is an internationally acclaimed expert and facilitator of the Nigeria-South Africa Group on Agriculture and a tireless advocate for farmers in her native South Africa. Chitsunge counts herself among the 70 percent of farmers who are women in South Africa. Despite the challenges,  she was able to buy her own land and works as a farmer and breeder of Kalahari Red goats, Nguni cattle, free range poultry, indigenous pigs and most recently Tilapia fish.

25297 UCSB 2013 Summit on Energy Efficiency – Steven Chu

Opening Keynote by Steven Chu, Secretary of Energy ’09-’13 and Professor at Stanford University, titled Materials Science Innovations in Energy Efficiency and Generation. Conference hosted in May, 2013 by the UCSB Institute for Energy Efficiency. 

25641Fat Chance: Fructose 2.0

Dr. Robert Lustig, UCSF Division of Pediatric Endocrinology, updates his very popular video Sugar: The Bitter Truth. He argues that sugar and processed foods are driving the obesity epidemic, which in turn affects our endocrine system. In UCTV’s documentary, The Skinny on Obesity, Dr. Lustig and his colleagues discuss the root causes of the obesity epidemic.

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