News - 11/29/12

Hunt sculpture to be unveiled outside Brauer

When internationally renowned artist Richard Hunt learned that his friend Josephine Ferguson had purchased a 7-foot stainless steel sculpture of his with the intent of displaying it as an outdoor piece at Valparaiso University, Hunt had a better idea. Hunt, a Chicago native, offered to create a larger outdoor piece for Ferguson and the University.

Both Ferguson, a 1946 Valpo graduate, and Gregg Hertzlieb, director of the Brauer Museum of Art, were thrilled.

Hunt's work was unveiled Saturday, Nov. 10, during a ceremony at the Valparaiso University Center for the Arts. The 17-foot-tall piece made of welded stainless steel will be on permanent display outside the west entrance of the Center for the Arts, in view of the Chapel of the Resurrection and the Harre Union.

After a contribution from Ferguson, Hunt donated his time, materials, and creativity to construct the large piece.

"Richard said that this donation was in honor of Jo and Valparaiso University for the support they have shown him and his artwork over the years," Hertzlieb said.

Hunt Sculpture

Hunt is represented by numerous pieces in the Brauer Museum of Art's collection, mainly due to the generosity of Ferguson. A longtime admirer of his work, Ferguson has brought the sculpture of Hunt to the community of Valparaiso through not only her donations to the Brauer but also her commissions of Hunt's work for Immanuel Lutheran Church.

Hunt's work appears in major museum collections worldwide, including the National Gallery in Washington, D.C., the Museum of Modern Art in New York, New York, and the Museum of the Twentieth Century in Vienna, Austria. His sweeping abstract creations inspire viewers with their strength and inventiveness, and reward repeated viewings from various vantage points.

The sculpture Hunt created for the unveiling is, as yet, untitled. An abstract work of art, the organic forms may suggest a variety of things to the various viewers.

"That's a delightful aspect of the sculpture," Hertzlieb said. "The sculpture to me, the artist, and many viewers of Hunt's other pieces similar in configuration represents a reach upward, an uplifting sense, an elevation of spirit and confidence. For us, the sculpture and its presence on campus reflect spiritual, educational, and professional goals that are realized through ongoing striving.

"We are committed to bringing the finest art to our students. Hunt's piece is a wonderful addition to our current holdings, a piece that raises the bar and communicates to visitors and the community the kind of quality sculptural work we will be able to offer here."

The list of speakers at the unveiling ceremony included Hertzlieb, Richard AmRhein, chief of staff for the Office of the President, Ferguson, and Hunt. The Rev. Jim Wetzstein, University pastor, offered a blessing of the sculpture.

Variety of music events celebrate Christmas at Valpo

This year Valparaiso University will celebrate the Christmas season with a wide variety of musical events that appeal to widespread audiences. The five concerts begin Nov. 30 and continue through Dec. 15, including the premiere event of the holiday season, the annual Valparaiso University Christmas Concert.

The community favorite will return this year and kick-off the season's offerings with A Carol Festival: The Valparaiso University Christmas Concert at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 30 and 5 p.m. Dec. 1. The concert will be held in the Chapel of the Resurrection and will feature the Valparaiso University Chorale, Men's Choir, Women's Choir, Chamber Concert Band, and Symphony Orchestra. The unique collaboration of voices and instruments offer the perfect way to begin the holiday season as they perform the audiences' most beloved Christmas Carols. Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for senior citizens and non-Valpo students. Admission is free for Valpo students, faculty, and staff with ID card.

TUBACHRISTMAS will continue the celebration at 2:30 p.m. Dec. 2, in the Chapel of the Resurrection. TUBACHRISTMAS gatherings take place all over the world, and feature dozens of tubas and baritones playing Christmas Carols, and the audience is invited to sing along. This international tradition honors the late tuba virtuoso William Bell, and supports the Harvey Phillips Foundation. The concert is free and open to the public.

Julefest will also take place at 4 p.m. Dec. 2. in the Chapel of the Resurrection and will feature Valparaiso University Luce Concert Band and the Community & University Concert Band, conducted by Jeffrey Scott Doebler, with special guests the Southlake Children's Choir. The groups with perform light, informal, Christmas pop songs including an audience sing-along at the end. The concert is free and open to the public.

Christ remains the center for Christmas celebration with the service of Advent-Christmas Vespers. The service is at 7 p.m. and 10 p.m. Dec. 7 in the Chapel of the Resurrection. Valparaiso University Kantorei joins the Handbell Choirs of the Chapel of the Resurrection for the traditional candlelight service. They will also be joined by the Jubilate Children's Choir of Immanuel Lutheran Church and displaying photographs by Aimee Tomasek, Assistant Professor of Art. The service tells the advent story through Biblical passages and song. Core 5th hour approved. The service is free and open to the public; however, reserved seating cards are available at the Chapel of the Resurrection. 

Finally, the Bach Institute at Valparaiso University brings you a performance of George Frideric Handel's masterpiece Messiah and Johann Sebastian Bach's Christmas Oratorio. The concert will be held at 5 p.m. Dec. 15 in the Chapel of the Resurrection. The concert features the Bach Choir and Orchestra, conducted by Christopher M. Cock. This event gives the audience the rare opportunity to hear an elegant and stylish performance of some of the greatest Christmas music of all time. Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for senior citizens and non-Valpo students. Admission is free for Valpo students, faculty, and staff with ID card.

Visit or call 219-464-5162 for more information.

Dance Marathon raises more than $10,000 for Riley Children's Hospital

On Sunday Nov. 11, Valparaiso University Greek life hosted the inaugural Dance Marathon. Student organizations from across campus registered their members to come and remain on their feet for the entire six-hour event, which raised $10,417.07 for Riley Children's Hospital.

The event included choreographed dances taught and led by Valpo's ballroom, cheer, and dance teams, as well as open dance where music was played for the participants to dance as they pleased. Each group of students represented a different child from Riley Children's Hospital.

Riley Children's Hospital has served Indiana's children for 87 years with more than 350,000 inpatients and outpatient visits each year. Riley treats more than 80 percent of Indiana's children diagnosed with cancer. At Riley, no child is turned away regardless of their ability to pay; therefore, they must rely on philanthropies, such as the Dance Marathon, in order to serve all the children they do.

In addition to staying on their feet for the entire six hours, participants had the opportunity to hear speakers touched by the Children's Miracle Network and Riley Children's Hospital.

Dance Marathon

"I don't think the participants in this year's Dance Marathon can even fathom the number of lives they have changed," said speaker and Valpo student Hayden O'Shaughnessy.

O'Shaughnessy was diagnosed with acute lympholastic leukemia at 23 months and was treated at Riley Children's Hospital. With the help of Riley, she was in remission 26 months later.

"I walked into the ballrooms on Sunday and immediately started tearing up," O'Shaughnessy said. "Riley is the reason why I am alive today. I am eternally grateful for each and every person that participated and donated to such an amazing cause."

Dance Marathons are a nationwide event whose mission statement is simple: "We dance for those who can't." One hundred percent of the proceeds go to benefit Children's Miracle Network and local children's hospitals. Last year, college dance marathons alone raised more than $8 million. Valpo organized the event in order to hopefully make that number even higher this year.

The Dance Marathon Executive Board included Katie Dayman, Tori Brewton, Olivia Findley, James Lockridge, Brian Borth, Lindsey Dever, and Brittany Gaffney. They worked hard every day to bring the event to life. The Valparaiso University community came together, forming a sea of brightly colored shirts and balloons, to dance the afternoon away for all the children who are unable to do so.