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This is my museum of forgotten things.

Been awhile for an article, hasn’t it? For those of you who forgot how this works, I post the unedited version of my story on the blog and you can read it without having to be on a campus computer.

Ta da!

Theater students take the stage for KCACTF awards
By Sydney Sheltz

The Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival (KCACTF) awards lasted from Monday, January 5, 2015 to Sunday, January 11, 2015 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

The KCACTF is a national theater program committed to improving the quality of theater and showcasing student work from various colleges across America. Of the 18,000 college students that participate, 22 were from Bethel College.

The KCACTF awards are given every January or February in order to honor outstanding regional productions. Eight students from Bethel accepted their nomination for Outstanding Performance for the Irene Ryan National Acting Competition.

After each nomination, the students prepared 2 separate scenes and a monologue of their choice. The students were coached for their performances by the director of the traveling theater group, Genesians, and adjunct professor of theater at Bethel, Deb Swerman.

Six additional students presented designs at the KCACTF award such as sophomore April Reed’s scenic design for “Elektra,” senior Tim Becze’s lighting design in “Waiting for Godot” and “39 Steps” and (year?) Hiram Park’s makeup design for “Elektra.”

Other competing students included sophomore Erin Cluckie with stage management for “39 Steps,” senior A.J. Reynolds for dramaturgy with “Elektra” and senior Moa Son’s constume designs for the KCACTF regional contest “A Long Day’s Journey into the Night.”

Both Reynolds and Becze advanced to the final round in their category. Son took first place with her costume design as part of the Design Storm Team competition in the finals also.

Furthermore, 6 other students were awarded certificates of merit for Outstanding Achievement in productions over the past year.

Associate theatre designer at Bethel College, Johan Godwaldt was also selected by the KCACTF for the Lighting Design Intensive for his work. He also received the Faculty Service Award for the state of Indiana.

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Faith makes things possible, not easy.

One of my dear friends and, dare I say it, my unintentional mentor wrote this post on a blog that she has contributed to for some time now.

Hannah is an intern at the BioLogos Foundation (check them out here) and she is a very close friend. She may not know it because I don’t say it too often, but I appreciate her friendship more than she knows.**

Also, someday I wish to look just as good in lab goggles as this gem does.

Follow the link below to read her post:

http://biologos.org/blog/how-science-led-me-to-a-deeper-faith

**It may be weird for you guys reading this, but I’m not one to readily volunteer emotional responses to anything. It’s even more weird because I’m willing to share things on this very public blog. In a manner of speaking, this blog doesn’t seem that vulnerable to me simply because I’m offering up my own thoughts and not intense emotions that I’ve buried for awhile because I tend to ignore pain. That last sentence right there is about as far as I’m willing to delve into that.

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How many is this now?

Another Beacon article. It’s all I’ve written these days.

Artist showcases the fruit of her labor
by Sydney Sheltz

Bethel College hosted an art gallery on Friday, November 21, 2014 in the Fine Arts Building in the Rotunda featuring the works of local artist Beth Mathes.

The gallery was open from 11 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. during the day and again at night from 5-7 p.m. Entitled “First Fruits,” the show was open to students and to the public.

Mathes showcased two main collections at the show: “Experience the Rescue” and the “RockWater.”

The title of the show was inspired by Mathes’ most recent work, also called “First Fruits.”

The idea for the piece came when Mathes was admiring a vineyard on a sunny day. A cluster of green grapes on a sun-warmed rock, the piece also has the signature Bible verse text etched into the rock.

Over 20 pieces were featured at the show. Although most were part of the three collections, some pieces, like “Reckless Abandon” and “Solitude,” were solitary works.

“Reckless Abandon” was inspired by news that a family member was diagnosed with cancer while “Solitude” is the picture of a woman walking on a beach.

According to the biography provided at the show, Mathes has a passion “to help people connect with one another and with God in real and unpretentious ways through artistic expression.”

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Impatience wastes time in repetition and redundancy, in reiteration and repeating ones’ self.

Cranked out this one in one day. Be jealous.

Call me maybe, or maybe not
by Sydney Sheltz

The Bethel College Theatre Department completed one day of auditions for the spring musical, “Seussical.” However, on the final day of auditions, director Richard Young announced that there would be no callbacks.

“It was like a jig-saw puzzle and it just went together,” said Young when asked the reasoning behind the decision. “It went together really well and we just said ‘Yeah, this works! We don’t need to call anybody back.’”

There are 28 roles in the show but the leads include multiple characters from Dr. Suess’s books like Horton, Gertrude McFuzz, The Cat, Jojo, Mayzie LaBird, and the Sour Kangaroo.

When asked about the workload involved Young said, “There were a lot of people and there are a lot of fun roles in the show. Because there are so many roles, we have a crazy rehearsal schedule.”

Since there are so many roles, this musical will require more work and time than the previous shows from 2014 like “The 39 Steps” and “Electra.”

“We looked at it the other day and figured out that we have over 100 hours of rehearsal scheduled,” said Young. “There’s 92 pages of script and it’s a musical so there’s a lot on each page.”

The workload isn’t what is freaking out the students, though.

Amy Liston, a junior majoring in American Sign Language (ASL), auditioned for her first show at Bethel. Liston previously held the role of Gertrude McFuzz in the Suessical performed at Lawrence School in Sagamore Hills, Ohio.

According to Liston, callbacks are a regular part of auditions.

“It definitely threw me off a little bit,” said Liston. “It’s very strange. I mean, usually there are always callbacks. Even on Broadway, there’s always callbacks. I guess they knew what they were looking for and they must’ve found it.”

Liston wasn’t the only one who was surprised by the lack of callbacks.

“Yes, there were no callbacks,” said freshman Joel Lininger, piano performance major. “My only thought about it was that I guess I was a bit surprised, but it must have been pretty decisive. I’m trying not to worry about it too much. I’ll find out tomorrow whether I made it or not.”

The cast list will be released at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, Nov. 20, 2014. The opening night for the show is on Thursday, March 26, 2014.

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For lack of creativity, this is a title.

Gotcha another one. I’m sure you were dying from lack of an article.

Do it yourself with online registration
by Sydney Sheltz

Bethel College is entertaining the possibility of allowing students to register for classes online instead of requiring that everyone meet with an advisor in order to select classes for the next semester.

Before introducing the program to the entire campus, a few departments would experiment with this option. This would allow students in majors within those departments to register for classes.

There are mixed feelings about allowing online registration.

“I think it’s a good idea for students to sign up for classes themselves, but at the same time I think professors should be available to help if needed,” said Jennifer Ochstein, assistant professor of writing.

It has been suggested in faculty meetings that this option would be more effective in some departments than in others.

Some courses within the science majors have up to six pre-requisite classes and those pre-requisites are only scheduled one semester, every other year. If the students knew exactly what they needed to take, this type of specific schedule wouldn’t be a problem. Students in other rigorous majors like nursing or American Sign Language (ASL) also have this concern.

“The advisors know best because they’ve been doing it longer but it would be nice for the students have a list of requirements to do it themselves. Of course, then we would need a list of requirements to know what courses we need to take and when. There’s plusses and minuses to both sides,” said Sophie Sexton, sophomore ASL major.

Ryan Bollier, a senior philosophy major, wasn’t sure if he would use the option if it had been available to him.

When asked about the idea of online registration, Bollier said “I mean, yeah it’s convenient but are students responsible enough to know what to take?”

The departments that will experiment with the option of online registration haven’t been selected yet. Although it was suggested that students could sign up for their own classes as early as the spring 2015 semester, this plan has not yet been implemented. It is still up in the air as to whether this option will be available by the 2015-2016 school year.

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Better a good journalist than a poor assassin.

Here’s yet another one! I feel like this is all I’ve been writing lately.

Students abuzz with preparations for Electra
by Sydney Sheltz

The Bethel College Theater Department is in the middle of preparations for the fall drama, Electra. A genre different than most plays performed at Bethel, the tragedy premieres on Thursday, November 14, 2014 at 7:30 PM.

The play is especially unique this year because the leading role of Electra is played by a newcomer to the theater department. Moa Son, a fifth senior and elementary education major, was cast in her first production as the leading female role.

“There was this connection with Electra as soon as I read the script. I knew that even if I didn’t get cast, I wouldn’t regret auditioning,” said Son.

Son has no previous acting experience although she was the costume designer for the leading female role in 39 Steps.

“The whole thing is a great learning experience and a big challenge for me. I have almost 600 lines and it can be very overwhelming because it’s a complex script. I want to understand it but it can be difficult, especially because English is my second language,” said Son when asked about the strain of the play.

Son is accompanied on stage by Wesley Lantz, a freshman who plays Electra’s brother Orestes.

“I originally wasn’t that excited at the audition because it was a tragedy, but now I’m super excited to experience something so different than what I’ve done before,” said Lantz.

Lantz has also performed with Bethel’s theater department in Anne Frank and Then There Were None.

“I participated in the theater department as a REACH student but it’s really nice to actually be a part of the group now,” said Lantz when asked about the differences between this show and ones he’s done before.

The play isn’t just unique because of the cast, but also because of the technical work. Caitlin Halstead, junior cast as Chrysothemis, commented how this play was unlike the others she has worked on.

“Everything is coming together so fast. We also have to work with a small stage, which is something that I’m not used to,” said Halstead.

Sophomore set designer April Reed knows all about that. This play is distinctive also because it’s the first time Reed has designed a set on her own.

“It’s been an interesting collaboration as the director and I have been working together. Some people play it really safe and others like to take a bunch of risks and hope they pay off. Risk-taking is something you’re supposed to do as an artist,” said Reed.

Electra has a non-traditional set and metaphors play a key role in the design. Because it is her first solo design and it isn’t a typical set, Reed admitted that she was nervous for opening night.

“I’m just hoping it won’t fail. I want to be a set designer when I graduate. I think that in the end, I’ll be happy by taking the biggest risk,” said Reed.

Son feels the same way.

“If my professors and friends weren’t encouraging me and supporting me, I wouldn’t never made it this far. On opening night, when I’m on the stage, I’ll know that God provided me with this opportunity and He will be faithful,” said Son.

Electra will premiere Thursday, November 13, 2014 at 7:30 PM. There will also be two other shows Friday and Saturday, November 14 and 15, 2014 at 7:30 PM.