International Women’s Day

by PJ Heath

Troy University’s College of Communication and Fine Arts joined forces with the John M. Long School of Music to present poems and songs during the Evening of Music and Poetry on March 7, followed by a panel discussion on March 8.

The event, meant to commemorate  International Women’s Day and Women’s History Month, was a celebration of women’s contributions to the arts. All of the performances were by women.. 

The International Arts Center lobby was filled with people to hear the welcoming remarks delivered by Mrs. Janice Hawkins.

Several poems were recited by professors at Troy University, many of which were presented in their native languages.

Dr. Johanna Alberich, a professor in the Department of World Languages and Cultures, recited a powerful poem by a Puerto Rican woman, Julia de Burgos, in Spanish. 

Alberich has traveled all over the world and says she is glad to see the beginning of women’s empowerment, especially in Latino and Spanish cultures.

“I say to any woman out there, young or old, follow your dreams, do not let anything stop you,” Alberich said. “There will be obstacles, but if you put your mind to it, you can do anything.”

Additionally,songs were both sung and performed by instrumentalists.

Dr. Jillian Camwell, an assistant professor of oboe in the music department, performed several pieces, playing some with an oboe and others with an English horn.

“It is so important for women to lift one another up and to look for those who need that lifting,” Camwell said. “We need to take each other by the hand because we are stronger together.”

Dr. Sarah Wee, an assistant professor in the music department, sang a soprano piece, “To Gather Lilies,” written by a colleague, Traci Mendel.

“The song is about love and beauty, which I felt fit well with the theme of the evening –  Women’s History Month,” Wee said. “This event is to promote and encourage women in the arts, and it is important for people to see women supporting women, both in and out of the art world.”

Dr. Shari Hoppin, a professor in the Hall School of Journalism and Communication, recited an emotive poem inspired by her native roots.

 “I am Canadian, so I selected a piece written by a Canadian woman named Lucy Maud Montgomery,” Hoppin said.

The poem Hoppin delivered, “Come, Rest Awhile,” touched on the hustle and bustle of life, reminding the audience that it is alright to unwind and reconnect with themselves.

Following this event, on March 8, International Women’s Day, the International Arts Center continued the second portion of the Beauty of the Mind event with A Discussion of Perceptions of Beauty.

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