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Release: Immediate


OLD CAPITOL CENTER PUTS ON THE DOGS OCT. 7 -- The public and the media will have an opportunity to meet the Tap Dogs cast and sample their industrial-strength Australian version of tap dancing at 12:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 7, in the Old Capitol Mall in downtown Iowa City. (Please note that earlier publicity listed noon as the starting time.)

Hancher Auditorium will present eight Tap Dogs performances, Oct. 7-12.

The 12:30 p.m. event will include a drawing for free Tap Dogs tickets, Tap Dogs t-shirts and free meals at Jimmy's Bistro in Iowa City. The public can sign up for the drawing at the Tap Dogs construction-site display in the Old Capitol Mall.

The Old Capitol Mall demonstration will also feature two young people from Grant Wood Elementary School in Iowa City, who will be taught a brief Tap Dogs routine.

The MC for the event will be Dennis Green, an on-air personality at KDAT-FM, one of the corporate sponsors of Tap Dogs through the University of Iowa Foundation.

Following the Old Capitol Mall event the Tap Dogs will move across the street to Active Endeavors, an outlet for Blundstone boots, the Australian work boots worn in Tap Dogs performances.

Tickets for the Tap Dogs performances are available from the Hancher box office, 319-335-1160, or toll-free in Iowa and western Illinois, 1-800-HANCHER.

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WAGNER LECTURE OCT. 10 -- Berthold Hoeckner will present a free public lecture on "Wagner and Evil" at 1:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 10, in Room 1027 of the Voxman Music Building on the University of Iowa campus.

Hoeckner, who is an assistant professor at the University of Chicago, is a musicologist specializing in the music of the 19th century. In 1996 he was commissioned by the Chicago Lyric Opera to present a series of lectures preceding performances of Wagner's monumental "Ring" cycle. The Oct. 10 talk has been adapted from those lectures.

In his talk, Hoeckner will focus on the controversial issues of Wagner's anti-semitism and nationalism. He will examine issues of ethics and evil in Wagner's writings and the music itself, as well as the problematic reception and appropriation of Wagner's music over the years.

Hoeckner's talk will be presented by the Musicology Colloquium and Theory Seminar of the UI School of Music.

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IWP AND WRITERS' WORKSHOP READINGS SERIES OCT. 12 -- The University of Iowa International Writing Program (IWP) and the Iowa Writers' Workshop will present a joint reading by poet Lourdes Espinola of Paraguay and fiction writer Mark Baechtel at 5 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 12, in Prairie Lights Books, 15 S. Dubuque St. in downtown Iowa City. The reading is free and open to the public.

One of the major literary figures of Paraguay, Espinola has published eight collections of poetry. She is the author of numerous works of scholarship on literary subjects, in particular concerning women's literature in her country. The author's most recent collection of poems, "La Estrategia del Caracol," has been praised as "a sincere manifestation of the affectionate impulse, of sensual fire, decanted with precise intensity." Her work has been translated into English and French.

Mark Baechtel is a second-year graduate student in the fiction division of the UI's Writers' Workshop.

The IWP is a unique residency program, which each fall assembles a community of established writers from all parts of the globe. This fall 35 writers from 28 countries will spend three months at the UI.

(NOTE TO BROADCASTERS: Lourdes Espinola is pronounced LOOR-des/ ES-pee-NO-lah.)

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JOE HALDEMAN READING OCT. 12 -- The acclaimed novelist Joe Haldeman, known for his literary science fiction as well as realism, will read from his work at 8 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 12, in Prairie Lights Books, 15 S. Dubuque St. in downtown Iowa City. The reading, sponsored by the University of Iowa Writers' Workshop and Prairie Lights, is free and open to the public. The reading will be broadcast live on the "Live From Prairie Lights" series originating on WSUI radio, AM 910.

Haldeman, a Vietnam veteran and an alumnus of the Writers' Workshop, is the Hugo- and Nebula- award winning author of "Forever War," "1968" and, most recently, "Forever Peace," among other novels.

Of "1968" Peter Straub says: "With corrosive, unsentimental wit, dead-on observation and a hovering, unspoken sorrow, Joe Haldeman magically gives us the essence of the century's most traumatic year, when violence and madness asserted themselves as the real heart of the American experience."

The New York Times says Haldeman's "prose is as clear and engaging as his ideas."

The New York Review of Science Fiction calls Haldeman "an enormously talented author struggling with and reworking a series of interrelated themes: the nature of war and what it does to the human soul, the link between gender and violence, the need to find meaningful connections with others despite the dangers involved."

Haldeman currently is an adjunct professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he teaches writing.

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NEW MUSIC CONCERT OCT. 12 -- The Composers Workshop of the University of Iowa School of Music will present six works by graduate student composers in a free public concert at 8 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 12, in Clapp Recital Hall on the UI campus.

The Composers Workshop is a collaborative project between composers and performers in the UI School of Music. It is devoted to the performance of music written at the UI and aims to foster greater cooperation and interplay between composers and performers in the Iowa City area. The workshop is directed by Martin Jenni, professor of music in the theory and composition department of the School of Music.

Works on the Oct. 12 concert will be:

-- "Ceilings" for solo piano by Mark Chubb;

-- "Study" for digital tape by Jon Southwood;

-- "Now Here is Nowhere" for double bass and digital tape by Mark Halloran;

-- "Escapades" for piano by John Kramer;

-- "Pipeline" for trumpet and digital tape by doctoral student John Allemeier; and

-- "You Take My Hand And," a setting for mezzo-soprano and small ensemble of a poem of the same title by Margaret Atwood, composed by Andrew Hauschild.

Chubb's "Ceilings" is a musical illustration of an invisible, but real, ceiling, as in the current phrase "the glass ceiling." In the piece, piano arpeggios attempt to break through a barrier imposed by register. At the same time, the even note values of the arpeggio gradually become more irregular as they break through a rhythmic barrier.

Halloran described "Now Here is Nowhere," writing that the double bass emerges from "a low murk of electronic sounds." After a faster section, in which the bass jumps from one style to another, "The two parts work together, forming a friendly little competition between them. Eventually the bass returns to its initial state, sinking back into the depths."

In composing "Pileline," Allemeir has written, "there was a constant struggle for the foreground between the trumpet and tape. My intentions were to compose an electronic backdrop to a trumpet solo, but by creating the tape part first it was always pushing to the fore."

Jenni said of the workshop, "It provides a wonderful opportunity for composers and performers to work together, and both groups benefit. The performers can know exactly what the composer wants, because the composer is right there. On the other hand, the composer gets constant feedback from the performers, learning what does or doesn't work in a particular situation."

The Composers Workshop performance season is managed by a doctoral composition student, thus affording composers practical experience in organizing performances of new music.

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POETS STEVEN CRAMER AND THOMAS SWISS READING OCT. 13 -- Two young, highly praised poets, Steven Cramer and Thomas Swiss, will read from their work at 8 p.m. Monday, Oct. 13, in Prairie Lights Books, 15 S. Dubuque St. in downtown Iowa City. The reading, sponsored by the University of Iowa's Writers' Workshop and Prairie Lights, is free and open to the public. The reading will be broadcast live as part of the "Live From Prairie Lights" series on WSUI radio, AM 910.

Cramer, a graduate of the UI Writers' Workshop, is the author most recently of the collection "Dialogue for the Left and Right Hand." His work has appeared in periodicals including the Nation, the Atlantic Monthly, the Harvard Review, Agni, the Paris Review and the New Republic.

Of Cramer's work poet Mark Doty says: "This poet has made a pact with emotional life that goes like this: 'Nothing here will be inflated, everything will be confronted and whatever musical feeling will yield will be tuned to the heart's true pitch.' Thus, full as they are with the difficult stuff of the real, these poems also startle us with their plain and daily beauties."

Cramer currently teaches literature and poetry at Bennington College.

Swiss also is a graduate of the Writers' Workshop. A poet as well as widely published literary critic, Swiss is co-editor of the book "Mapping the Beat: Popular Music and Contemporary Theory." His most recent poetry collection is titled "Rough Cut."

Of "Rough Cut" author David Wojahn says: "Thomas Swiss has crafted a quietly ferocious poetry of deep psychological insight and great vernacular clarity. . . Swiss treats his characters with a kind of dignity and stubborn tenderness that makes the best of these poems nothing short of remarkable."

Swiss is a professor of English at Drake University. His poems have appeared in numerous publications including Agni, Boston Review, the Iowa Review, Blue Mesa Review, Outerbridge and the Nebraska Review.

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IWP PANEL OCT. 15 -- The University of Iowa International Writing Program (IWP) will present a free panel discussion on "The Writer as Translator" at 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 15, in Room 304 of the UI English Philosophy Building.

Participating in the discussion will be Zakaria Arrifin of Malaysia, Suchen Christine Lim of Singapore, Pal Bekes of Hungary and Guillermo Quintero Montano of Mexico.

Ariffin is the author of 10 plays, including "The Opera House," which received numerous national awards. He has written books for children and young adults as well as 20 scripts for video, 80 essays, reviews and criticism. Ariffin is research officer and language-planning officer at the Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka literary organization of Malaysia. He also teaches script-writing and drama at the National Art Academy in Kuala Lumpur and is a freelance writer-director for Malay television.

Bekes is a playwright, fiction writer and translator. A well-established playwright, Bekes is regularly commissioned to translate and stage plays written originally in English. He has published novels and collections of short stories in addition to works for theater. Bekes has been the recipient of a Fulbright Fellowship at Columbia University and is a member of the Hungarian Writers' Union and PEN. Bekes also works as chief editor of literature and theater for Hungarian Television.

In 1992 Lim was the first writer to receive the Singapore Literature Prize, which she won for her third novel, "Fistful of Colours." The author, who also specializes in applied linguistics, works as a curriculum advisor in the Singapore Ministry of Education. She is in Iowa City on a Fulbright grant through the Council for International Exchange of Scholars.

Quintero writes fiction and nonfiction and is a renowned scholar in his country, where he is senior professor of American and English literature at the National Autonomous University of Mexico. As mentor to several generations of students, Quintero has been instrumental in developing many of Mexico's current scholars, authors, translators and researchers of American and British literature.

The University of Iowa International Writing Program (IWP) has brought to the campus 31 prominent writers from 25 countries for three-month residencies, which end in November. The writers range in stature from those who are among the most well known literary figures in their countries and those with international impact, to promising young writers just emerging into prominence. The IWP panels will continue most Wednesdays through Nov. 12.

NOTE TO BROADCASTERS: Zakaria Arrifin is pronounced zah-KAR-yah/ ar-REE-feen; Pal Bekes -- PAHL/ BEH-kesh; Suchen Lim -- SOO-chen/ lim; Guillermo Quintero -- gi-YER-moh/ keen-TEH-ro.

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PLAY ABOUT GULF WAR ILLNESS PREMIERES OCT. 16-19 -- The University Theatres Gallery series will present "Raymond," a new play about Gulf War syndrome written by University of Iowa student Wesley Broulik and directed by Mark Swaner, at 8 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, Oct. 16-18, and at 3 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 19, in Theatre B of the UI Theatre Building.

The Saturday-night audience will be invited to remain after the show for a free discussion. A special guest at the discussion will be Cedar Rapids resident Sonny Bonafice, whose husband is a disabled veteran of the Gulf War.

"Raymond" tells the story of three veterans of the Persian Gulf War who get together on Thanksgiving weekend a year after the suicide of their friend, Raymond. The weekend's interactions reveal much about the ways that the war changed the men, including the fact that all three are suffering from Gulf War syndrome.

Broulik based his script on actual accounts by Gulf War veterans.

Admission to "Raymond" will be $6 ($4 for UI students, senior citizens and audience members 17 and younger) at the door.

This production contains material of an adult nature. Potential audience members who are concerned about whether it is appropriate for them should contact the UI Department of Theatre Arts at 319-335-2700.

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LECTURE ABOUT 'NEW' MOZART SCORE OCT. 17 -- David Buch, a professor of music at the University of Northern Iowa, will discuss some previously undiscovered music by Mozart that he found in a Viennese manuscript, in a free public lecture at 1:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 17, in Room 1027 of the Voxman Music Building on the University of Iowa campus.

In a Viennese archive, Buch discovered an 18th-century manuscript of "Der Stein der Weisen" (The philosopher's stone) that had clear attributions to Mozart for some portions of the score. A little-known opera, "Der Stein der Weisen" had been performed in Vienna during Mozart's lifetime. It was known to scholars that Mozart could have contributed to the score, but Buch's discovery was the first clear indication how much and what portions might be by Mozart.

Buch's discovery of the "new" music by Mozart was front page news in the New York Times last spring. Controversy has followed, with scholars taking sides on the likelihood of the music actually being by Mozart.

In his talk, Buch will consider the musical quality and the compositional style of the pieces, attempting to show whether analysis can be of help in the task of attribution.

Buch holds a doctorate from Northwestern University. His research specialty is the music of the 17th and 18th centuries, particularly opera. He has had articles published in leading musicological journals, including Acta Musicologica, Musical Quarterly, Opera Journal and Revue de musicologie. He is currently preparing a book on opera, ""Magic Flutes and Enchanted Forests: Music and the Supernatural in the 18th-Century Theatre."

As a performer, Buch has played with the Chicago Symphony, the Eckstein String Quartet and the period ensembles Basically Baroque and Measure for Measure, and he has presented solo recitals on lute, classical guitar and viola da gamba.

Buch's talk will be presented by the Musicology Colloquium and Theory Seminar of the UI School of Music.