Queen's Gazette | Queen's University

Search form

Arts and Culture

Rock icons honoured

  • Members of The Tragically Hip are "hooded," as part of the ceremony to award them honorary Doctorates of Law. (Bernard Clark)
  • Jim Leech, 14th Chancellor of Queen's University formally awards honorary Doctorates of Law to the members of The Tragically Hip. (Bernard Clark)
  • Gord Sinclair, ArtSci’86, bassist for The Tragically Hip, delivered the Convocation Address to the School of Medicine graduating class of 2016. (Bernard Clark)
  • Gord Sinclair, ArtSci’86, delivers the Convocation Address on behalf of the band. (Bernard Clark)
  • From L-R: Rector Cam Yung, Chancellor Jim Leech, Principal Daniel Woolf, Gord Sinclair, ArtSci’86, Rob Baker, BFA’86, Johnny Fay and Paul Langlois. (Bernard Clark)
  • From L-R: Dr. Richard Reznick, Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences, Gord Sinclair, ArtSci’86, Rob Baker, BFA’86, Johnny Fay and Paul Langlois. (Bernard Clark)

The Tragically Hip took the stage in Grant Hall on May 19 to receive an honorary degree during the commencement ceremony for the 2016 School of Medicine graduating class. The event was a homecoming of sorts for The Hip, with even the location of the ceremony holding special significance for the band.

“Twenty-five years ago this July, we stood up right here on this very stage and wrote the bulk of our second album, Road Apples,” said bassist Gord Sinclair, Artsci’86, who delivered the convocation address on behalf of the band. “This place shaped who and what we’ve become. We learned how to perform in front of students and locals alike in campus pubs and local dives. We saw early on how music has the power to move people and bring them together. “

In his address, Mr. Sinclair discussed the changes in the music industry that he and his bandmates have experienced in their careers. He pointed to the role collaboration played in the band’s success, whether they were on world tours or “playing to an empty bar in Hoboken, New Jersey.” He drew parallels between the changing nature of the music industry and the changes faced by the graduating class, while encouraging them to learn from the experiences of others.

“You have the ability, opportunity, and power to effect real positive change,” says Mr. Sinclair. “This is, after all, about the people you touch, and there is as much artistry in medicine as there is in music… Build on the foundation of the education you have received here. The knowledge, skills, ethics, compassion, empathy and intuition necessary to be the best health-care professionals you can be.”

Formed in 1984, The Tragically Hip are amongst the most well-known Canadian rock bands. Over its 32-year career, the band – consisting of Gord Downie, Artsci’86, Gord Sinclair, Artsci’86, Rob Baker, BFA’86, Paul Langlois and Johnny Fay – has released 12 studio albums, two live albums, one EP and 54 singles. The group has won 14 Juno awards and nine of its albums have reached No. 1 in Canada.

The 11 recipients of honorary degrees at the 2016 Spring Convocations are all Queen’s alumni, in honour of the 175th anniversary of the university. For more information on convocations or the upcoming honorary degree recipients, please visit the website.

Paying tribute to provost in song

  • [Alan Harrison speaks with a guest]
    Alan Harrison was appointed Queen's provost and vice-principal (academic) in 2011. He is stepping down from the position on July 31, 2016. (Photo by Bernard Clark)
  • [Alan and Jan Harrison]
    Alan Harrison and his wife Jan at the world premiere performance of Tafelmusik’s “Tales of Two Cities: The Leipzig-Damascus Coffee House." (Photo by Bernard Clark)
  • [Alan Harrison speaks with Aboriginal Council co-chair Marlene Brant Castellano]
    Alan Harrison speaks with Marlene Brant Castellano, co-chair of the Aboriginal Council of Queen's University. (Photo by Bernard Clark)
  • [Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra in performance]
    Tafelmusik performs "The Tales of Two Cities: The Leipzig-Damascus Coffee House" at The Isabel on May 17. (Photo by Bruce Zinger)
  • [Alan Harrison shares a laugh with Tricia Baldwin]
    Alan Harrison and Tricia Baldwin, Director of the Isabel, share a laugh during the event on May 17. (Photo by Bernard Clark)

The Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts dedicated the May 17 world premiere performance of Tafelmusik’s “Tales of Two Cities: The Leipzig-Damascus Coffee House” to Alan Harrison, in recognition of his contributions to Queen’s University as provost and vice-principal (academic).

Harrison was appointed Queen’s provost and vice-principal (academic) in 2011. He is stepping down from the position on July 31, 2016.

The musicians of Tafelmusik – recognized as one of the top baroque orchestras in the world – were in residence at the Isabel as they rehearsed the new program, which explores the common love and appreciation of coffee and music found in the German city Leipzig and the Syrian capital Damascus, particularly during the 18th century.

Creating space for art

  • Kristyn Watterworth, artist-in-residence for educational technology firm Desire2Learn (D2L), talks about her art piece after it was unveiled at Duncan McArthur Hall. The three-panel piece was created specifically for the Faculty of Education following a request from Dean Rebecca Luce-Kapler and Don Klinger, Associate Dean Graduate Studies and Research.
    Kristyn Watterworth, artist-in-residence for educational technology firm Desire2Learn (D2L), talks about her art piece after it was unveiled at Duncan McArthur Hall.
  • Dean Rebecca Luce-Kapler speaks during the unveiling of the piece of art created for the Faculty of Education following a request Dean Luce-Kapler and Don Klinger, Associate Dean Graduate Studies and Research.
    Dean Rebecca Luce-Kapler speaks after unveiling the piece of art created for the Faculty of Education following a request Dean Luce-Kapler and Don Klinger, Associate Dean Graduate Studies and Research.
  • Desire2Learn (D2L) CEO John Baker speaks at Duncan McArthur Hall after donating an art piece by artist-in-residence Kristyn Watterworth.
    Desire2Learn (D2L) CEO John Baker speaks at Duncan McArthur Hall after donating an art piece by artist-in-residence Kristyn Watterworth.
  • A three-panel artwork, created for the Faculty of Education following a request from Dean Rebecca Luce-Kapler and Don Klinger, Associate Dean Graduate Studies and Research, is unveiled at Duncan McArthur hall.
    A three-panel artwork, created for the Faculty of Education following a request from Dean Rebecca Luce-Kapler and Don Klinger, Associate Dean Graduate Studies and Research, is unveiled at Duncan McArthur Hall.

When a post-secondary institution and company work together it doesn’t always have to only be about business.

There is room for conversation, for sharing and, clearly, for art.

The Faculty of Education recently unveiled a new piece of art that was created specifically for it by educational technology firm Desire2Learn (D2L). The three-panel painting, created by D2L’s artist-in-residence Kristyn Watterworth, is now mounted prominently at the centre of Duncan McArthur Hall where it can be viewed by practically anyone who enters the building.

As Rebecca Luce-Kapler, Dean of the Faculty of Education, explains, the art piece got its start when Don Klinger, Associate Dean Graduate Studies and Research, found out about Ms. Watterworth. He then pitched the idea to D2L CEO John Baker who was happy to comply.

“Don Klinger and I brought him down and showed him the space, and at that time our Aboriginal garden was in full growth,” Dr. Luce-Kapler explains adding that Mr. Baker took photos of the garden as well as the proposed wall space. “You could see there was that sense of different kinds of education – that old brick wall and here’s this garden growing outside. So I think this piece captures that sense of all the dimensions of education.”

Once she saw the space she would be working with, Ms. Watterworth says she realized that she could create a large three-panel piece. The theme of past, present and future lined up well and she started creating the paintings, which draw on influences of abstract expressionism and futurism.

With the first panel she says she tried to create the dynamic of what education looked like in the past, where “knowledge was passed between people, always one-on-one, very central.” The image is dark and has a circular feel to it but remains static.

For the present, Ms. Watterworth says there’s still a darkness, and “it’s very structured, very compartmentalized. While there is movement it remains distinctive.” 

The last panel presents a more hopeful vision, incorporating the shift in technology where “learning will be global” and more far-reaching.

“I tried to create that movement within that piece,” she says. “It’s really lit up and there are different changes in perspective and lighting. It feels more like glass than the others. They are very tactile and the last one is more smooth, flat and easy – and enlightened.”

Located on Student Street within Duncan McArthur Hall, the painting also highlights the role that art can play in a working and learning environment, says Alan Wilkinson, Assistant to the Associate Dean Undergraduate Studies, who has played a role in arranging many of the art pieces in the building.

“I think that art in institutions offers the people who work in that environment opportunities for reflection. They improve the work environment. They improve the learning environment by giving you moments to pause and look into something and draw meaning out,” he says. “That creates a dialogue and it can recur over and over. In addition, certain works of art speak to people very individually and very powerfully and that work of art can be a touchstone from one day to another, one week to another and it can provide a valuable support for what a student is doing within the building and what faculty members do as well.

Pedalling into video game future

Queen’s researchers explore process and benefits of modifying video games to include physical activity.

Nicholas Graham (Computing) and his team of researchers in the EQUIS Laboratory have developed a new way to get video game players moving - by turning pedal power from a stationary bike into in-game powerups for players.

“There are a lot of people who are intimidated by exercise, who don’t think they would enjoy exercise, who don’t know where to begin with exercise or have trouble fitting it into their day, but who are passionate about games,” says Dr. Graham. “Being able to take the enjoyment of games and map them over to include a physical activity component could be a gateway to doing exercise for many people.”

By pedalling on the exercise bike, users are able to gain in-game powerups. Dr. Nicholas Graham (Computing) and his team in the EQUIS Laboratory developed a means of modifying off-the-shelf video games to accept pedal input as a means of encouraging physical activity.

In their latest paper, titled Thighrim and Calf-Life: A Study of the Conversion of Off-the-Shelf Video Games into Exergames, Dr. Graham and students Mallory Ketcheson (MSc’16) and Luke Walker (Cmp’15) explore the process and benefits of converting mainstream commercial game titles into video games with an exercise component.

The team compared two approaches for converting off-the shelf games: black-box conversion (where pedalling on a stationary bike is mapped to movement of the player’s avatar in the game), and deeper integration of exercise into the game through modding (using a programming interface provided by the game manufacturer).

In each method, users controlled their game avatars using a standard game controller in addition to a stationary bicycle. In various tests, players either controlled their avatar’s movement by cycling, or were able to score power-ups – such as stronger weapons or faster healing – by cycling at a more rapid pace.

The paper also discusses how pacing of various games can affect their utility as exergames. Many popular titles consist of numerous stops-and-starts during play, which makes elevating and maintaining the player’s heart rate challenging. The researchers found greater success in using heart rate and pedalling input as the key to an in-game power-up, encouraging the player to keep active.

The results showed that the simple black-box conversions led to low levels of exercise, while the deeper conversions using mods and power-ups brought player heart rates close to recommended levels for moderately vigorous cardiovascular exercise. As a result, Dr. Graham and his colleagues determined the approach shows promise as an anti-sedentary activity. Of note, the researchers also found that games with less precise control requirements were better suited for conversion, as pedalling often made fine control more challenging.

Ms. Ketcheson will formally introduce their paper on exergame conversion at the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI) Conference in San Jose, Calif. on May 10.

 

Celebrating a historic decade of philanthropy

Funds donated during the Initiative Campaign have furthered the university’s top priorities in teaching, research and athletics and recreation.

Queen’s University is celebrating the success of the Initiative Campaign, the most ambitious fundraising campaign in its 175-year history, which concluded on April 30, 2016. Thanks to the collective dedication and generosity of volunteers and donors, more than $640 million has been donated to Queen’s University during the 10-year Initiative Campaign, surpassing the $500 million goal set at the beginning of the campaign in 2006.

Queen's Bands enter during the Initiative Campaign launch event held inside Grant Hall in October 2012. Queen's is celebrating the successful conclusion of the Initiative Campaign, the most ambitious fundraising campaign in the university's 175-year history. (University Communications) 

“This is a proud moment in Queen’s history. The university is enormously grateful to all of our volunteers and donors who recognize the value of a Queen’s education, and have invested in making one of Canada’s top universities even better,” says Daniel Woolf, Queen’s Principal and Vice Chancellor.  

More than 60,000 individual donors, including 35,000 alumni, contributed to the campaign since it was launched in 2006. Funds donated during the Initiative Campaign have furthered the university’s top priorities in teaching, research and athletics and recreation.

Over $85 million has been used to support student assistance programs, including the creation of 473 new student awards and 22 new chairs and professorships. Campuses and facilities at Queen’s have already improved greatly as a result of donations during the Initiative Campaign with further investments to be made in a number of priority areas.

“I would like to extend my most sincere gratitude to the volunteers, donors, alumni and supporters who have contributed to the Initiative Campaign over the past 10 years,” says Gord Nixon, Chair of the Initiative Campaign. “Their efforts have contributed greatly to the campaign, and the excitement and momentum that inspires others to make the same commitment to Queen’s.”

Campuses and facilities at Queen’s have improved greatly as a result of donations during the Initiative Campaign. These investments support the university’s programs and its people, including experiences beyond the classroom that enable the Queen’s community to make a significant impact on society as an informed citizenry, nationally and internationally.

In addition to the funds raised, support from the three levels of government provided an additional $94 million that was not included in the Initiative Campaign total. Queen’s partnered with the federal and provincial governments to build Queen’s School of Medicine, and received support from the federal, provincial and municipal governments to bring the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts to fruition. This support was essential in making these projects possible and the university is enormously grateful for these investments.

More than $115 million has been committed in future estate gifts against the university’s parallel goal of $100 million, which is counted outside of the Initiative Campaign total.

Hundreds flock to Agnes spring launch

  • [Jan Allen talks with visitors to the gallery]
    Agnes Director Jan Allen discusses Head of a Man in a Turban, one of three Rembrandt paintings in the art gallery's Bader Collection. (Photo by Garrett Elliott)
  • [Principal Woolf speaks with visitors]
    Queen's Principal Daniel Woolf chats with guests at the Agnes spring launch held on April 29. (Photo by Garrett Elliott)
  • [Mayor Bryan Paterson examines Rembrandt]
    Kingston Mayor Bryan Paterson (middle) learns more about Portrait of a Man with Arms Akimbo, the latest Rembrandt painting acquired by the Agnes. (Photo by Garrett Elliott)
  • [Atrium of Agnes]
    Several hundred people gathered at the Agnes on April 29 for the first chance to see Rembrandt's Portrait of a Man with Arms Akimbo and view four new exhibitions currently on display at the art gallery. (Photo by Garrett Elliott)
  • [Single guest at Agnes]
    Portrait of a Man with Arms Akimbo (middle) is presented alongside two smaller studies by Rembrandt. (Photo by Garrett Elliott)

More than 300 people packed the Agnes Etherington Art Centre on April 29 for the first chance to see Rembrandt’s Portrait of a Man with Arms Akimbo. During the season launch event, visitors also had the opportunity to view four new exhibitions that draw on Kingston artists and communities. The Agnes also announced a new policy of free admission to the gallery. More information about the current exhibitions is available online. 

Rembrandt masterpiece goes live

Since acquiring Rembrandt’s Portrait of a Man with Arms Akimbo late last year, the Agnes Etherington Art Centre could only share digital images of the Dutch masterpiece as staff prepared for the installation.

[Jan Allen and Jacquelyn Coutre introduce the new Rembrandt]
Jan Allen (left), Director, Agnes Etherington Art Centre, and Jacquelyn N. Coutré, Bader Curator and Researcher of European Art at the Agnes, introduce Rembrandt's Portrait of a Man with Arms Akimbo during a special media preview on April 28. (Photo by Bernard Clark)

Now the time has come to unveil the painting, and Jacquelyn N. Coutré, Bader Curator and Researcher of European Art at the Agnes, couldn’t be more excited.

“As reproductions don’t fully capture the richness of this portrait, it is exhilarating to finally share it with the public,” Dr. Coutré says. “The life-size format, authoritative pose and powerful gaze all contribute to the subject’s impressive presence, and the nuances of colour are splendid.”

Alfred and Isabel Bader gave Portrait of a Man with Arms Akimbo to the Agnes in November 2015. The late-career painting by Rembrandt, signed and dated 1658, will be presented alongside two smaller studies by the Dutch master that the Baders also previously donated to the art gallery. In addition to the Rembrandt paintings, The Bader Collection at the Agnes includes more than 200 works focused on Dutch and Flemish paintings of the Baroque period.

Dr. Coutré says a close inspection of the masterpiece reveals the artist’s signature ruwe, or rough, style that art historians identify as a trademark of Rembrandt’s brilliant late work.

“When you get up close to the painting in person, you can see that the brushstrokes have such materiality to them, and you can actually trace the movement of the artist's hand as he dragged the thick paint across the canvas with his brush,” she says. “In the humanity and the splendour of this painting, The Bader Collection truly reaches new heights.”

[Portrait of a Man with Arms Akimbo]
Rembrandt van Rijn, Portrait of a Man with Arms Akimbo, 1658, oil on canvas, 107.4 x 87.0 cm, Gift of Alfred and Isabel Bader, 2015 (58-008) (Photo by Bernard Clark)

A mysterious masterpiece

While the subject of the painting is unknown, art historians have speculated he could be a sailor, military figure, merchant or artist.

The earliest documented owner of the painting, Daniel Daulby, was a renowned collector of Old Masters, and authored the first catalogue of Rembrandt etchings in English. Throughout the 19th and 20th centuries, the painting was primarily held in private collections including those of George Huntington Hartford II, John Seward Johnson and Barbara Piasecka Johnson.

By giving the masterpiece to the art gallery at Queen’s, the Baders have ensured that scholars and the public will have access to the portrait for their research and enjoyment.

“This first presentation in Kingston of Rembrandt’s Portrait of a Man with Arms Akimbo — an artistic treasure long out of public view — marks a turning point for the gallery, and signals a wider burgeoning of the arts at Queen’s University,” says Jan Allen, Director, Agnes Etherington Art Centre.

This inspiring new installation at the Agnes is joined by four new exhibitions of works showcasing Kingston artists and drawing upon contributions by members of the African and diasporic communities at Queen’s as well as in Kingston and the surrounding region. The general public's first chance to see the painting will come at the season launch event on Friday, April 29 from 6:30-8 pm. The Agnes also recently announced a new policy of free admission to the gallery.

Visit the Agnes to learn more about its exhibitions, collections and programs.

[logo for AEAC]

“Our generous benefactors Alfred and Isabel Bader have shared their collection with us,” Ms. Allen says. “In turn, we want to ensure The Bader Collection and our entire holdings are accessible for all.”

Alfred Bader (Sc’45, Arts’46, MSc’47, LLD’86) and Isabel Bader (LLD’07) are among Queen’s most generous benefactors, supporting the university for seven decades. They have given back to Queen’s in countless ways: transforming the campus, enriching the student experience, supporting scholarship, and helping to enhance the university’s reputation as a top-tier educational institution.

Inspiring students through art

The Bader Collection at the Agnes is a resource for all Queen’s students and faculty members.

A healthy infusion of colour

[H'art Centre Paintings]
Dr. Karen Schultz receives a collection of paintings created by H'art Centre artists, including Laura Q, left, and Paul S, right, at the offices of the Queen's Family Health Team (QFHT) in downtown Kingston. (University Communications) 

A collection of paintings by students from H’art Centre is bringing some welcome colour and creativity to the offices of the Queen's Family Health Team (QFHT) in downtown Kingston.

QFHT commissioned the H’art Centre artists and the participants painted a variety of works using the theme “Healthy Living and Active Lifestyles.”

The artists studied basic concepts about how to maintain and improve physical and mental health for several months before putting brush to canvas. The colourful paintings, displayed in the QFHT’s six patient waiting areas, reflect topics including nutrition, exercise, staying in touch with friends, reading, trying new things, enjoying the outdoors and getting your flu shot.

Dr. Karen Schultz, who worked with H’art Centre Executive Director Katherine Porter in facilitating the initiative, said the partnership is “one of those lovely win-win situations."

“The artists from H’art have had the experience of creatively displaying their ideas about how to live a healthy life,” she says. “For us at Queen’s Family Medicine, this is another way to get this message to our patients, and the art itself is so bright and cheerful that it can’t help but bring a smile to your face. The paintings are a joy.”

H'art Centre is a non-profit charitable organization dedicated to providing people with disabilities and those facing barriers with opportunities to study, enjoy and produce works in the arts. For more information, visit hartschool.ca.

Students on the move

Tips for a successful end of term move-out. 

With final exams underway, the next items on many student to-do lists will be cleaning, packing and preparing to move. 

To make this often-stressful process easier, Queen’s University, the AMS and the city offer several moving-related resources. On April 30 and May 1, MacGillivray-Brown Hall will host the annual Drop & Shop event. Students will be able to bring their unwanted items to the event during these two days, and purchase any items they may need.

“The Drop & Shop program is a great way for students to drop off unneeded household items, saving the hassle of moving them, while allowing others to pick up necessities at low cost,” says Nirali Patel, Student Life Centre Managing Director, “all while benefiting local charities.” 

Drop & Shop will run both days from 8 am-7 pm in MacGillivray-Brown Hall. Students can donate their gently-used clothing, linens, books, sports equipment and unopened food and personal hygiene products. Faculty, staff and community members are welcome to buy items. Proceeds from the sale will support local youth charities. 

Students will also be able to get rid of unneeded items by taking part in the city’s Giveaway Day this coming Saturday, April 16. Label the items as “free” and place them by the curb. At the end of the day, remaining items can be donated to charity, as the city will not collect unclaimed items left at the curb.

If you need packing supplies, moving boxes and tape are available for sale at the Student Life Centre in the JDUC. Students will also be able to purchase city garbage tags ($2 each) from the JDUC, City Hall, the AMS office or the DrugSmart pharmacy in the Queen’s Centre. 

The City of Kingston has also created a student resource page, providing information on waste disposal, Utilities Kingston accounts closure and property standards.

 

Queen’s takes centre stage

Queen’s University announces naming of the Dan School of Drama and Music.

  • Aubrey Dan speaks after it was announced that he and his wife, Marla Dan, had donated $5 million to Queen's University. In honour of the donation, the university announced the naming of the Dan School of Drama and Music. (Photo by Bernard Clark)
    Aubrey Dan speaks after it was announced that he and his wife, Marla Dan, had donated $5 million to Queen's University. In honour of the donation, the university announced the naming of the Dan School of Drama and Music. (Photo by Bernard Clark)
  • Aubrey and Marla Dan stand in front of the donor wall at the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts where it was announced that they had donated $5 million to Queen's University. (Photo by Bernard Clark)
    Aubrey and Marla Dan stand in front of the donor wall at the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts where it was announced that they had donated $5 million to Queen's University. (Photo by Bernard Clark)
  • Provost Alan Harrison announces the naming of the Dan School of Drama and Music in honour of Aubrey and Marla Dan and their donation of $5 million to the school. (Photo by Bernard Clark)
    Provost Alan Harrison announces the naming of the Dan School of Drama and Music in honour of Aubrey and Marla Dan and their donation of $5 million to the school. (Photo by Bernard Clark)
  • Queen's University announced the naming of the Dan School of Drama and Music, in honour of Aubrey and Marla Dan and their donation of $5 million to the school. From left: Ireneus Zuk, Interim Associate Director, Dan School of Drama and Music; Provost Alan Harrison; Marla and Aubrey Dan; and Craig Walker, Head of the Dan School of Drama and Music. (Photo by Bernard Clark)
    Queen's University announced the naming of the Dan School of Drama and Music, in honour of Aubrey and Marla Dan and their donation of $5 million to the school. From left: Ireneus Zuk, Interim Associate Director, Dan School of Drama and Music; Provost Alan Harrison; Marla and Aubrey Dan; and Craig Walker, Head of the Dan School of Drama and Music. (Photo by Bernard Clark)
  • Aubrey and Marla Dan joke around with Greg Wanless (Drama) and Tim Fort (Drama) following a special concert that featured a short performance involving Aubrey Dan along with a group of faculty, alumni and current students. (Photo by Bernard Clark)
    Aubrey and Marla Dan joke around with Greg Wanless (Drama) and Tim Fort (Drama) following a special concert that featured a short performance involving Aubrey Dan along with a group of faculty, alumni and current students. (Photo by Bernard Clark)
  • To celebrate the naming of the Dan School of Drama and Music a special concert was held at the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts, followed by a reception in the lobby area that brought together members of the Queen's and Kingston communities. (Photo by Bernard Clark)
    To celebrate the naming of the Dan School of Drama and Music a special concert was held at the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts, followed by a reception in the lobby area that brought together members of the Queen's and Kingston communities. (Photo by Bernard Clark)
  • Aubrey Dan speaks with Craig Walker, Head of the Dan School of Drama and Music, during a special concert event that was held at the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts, marking the naming of the school. (Photo by Bernard Clark)
    Aubrey Dan speaks with Craig Walker, Head of the Dan School of Drama and Music, during a special concert event that was held at the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts, marking the naming of the school. (Photo by Bernard Clark)

Queen’s University announced the naming of the Dan School of Drama and Music, in honour of Aubrey and Marla Dan and their donation of $5 million to the school Thursday.

“Queen’s is delighted to receive this remarkable gift from such a distinguished supporter of the performing arts in Canada,” says Daniel Woolf, Principal and Vice-Chancellor of Queen’s University. “On behalf of Queen’s, I would like to express our deepest gratitude to Aubrey and Marla Dan for their vision and generosity. This gift will help accelerate the momentum within the school and strengthen Queen’s position as a leading university for study in the performing arts.”

The donation will be endowed to allow investments in visiting professional instructors, scholarships and research. It also builds on the momentum within the Dan School of Drama and Music, following the opening of the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts and the ongoing development of exciting new programs since the merger of the Department of Drama and School of Music last year.

The benefactors, Marla and Aubrey Dan, are Queen’s parents whose daughter is a graduate of the drama program. Mr. Dan is a highly-accomplished Canadian businessman and philanthropist, with a passion for the performing arts. He is also the founder of Dancap Productions Inc., a Tony Award-winning commercial theatre company with international and Broadway production and investment credits, including Jersey Boys, The Drowsy Chaperone, West Side Story and A Streetcar Named Desire.

“As the father of a Queen’s Drama graduate, I saw first-hand the value of the education my daughter received at Queen’s,” says Mr. Dan. “More importantly, I saw that there’s tremendous potential in the School of Drama and Music. It is my hope that this donation will allow the school to reach new levels and become the pre-eminent school for performance arts education in Canada.”

In celebration of the naming, a special concert was held at the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts. Distinguished Queen’s Drama and Music alumni took the stage to perform works from South Pacific, Smash, and The Drowsy Chaperone.

“Our plan is to create the pre-eminent School of Drama and Music in Canada and one of the leading such schools in the world,” says Craig Walker, Head of the Dan School of Drama and Music. “Moreover, we hope to lay down new paths for scholarship in the field of music theatre. This generous donation by the Dan family will help enrich the learning and research environments for students in drama and music at Queen’s and help our students reach new heights.”

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - Arts and Culture