The International Arts Series will kick off with a concert from Costa Rican musician Humberto Vargas at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 27, at the Cole Concert Hall on the Stephen F. Austin State University campus.
The series, hosted by the Department of Languages, Cultures and Communications, brings well-known foreign artists to campus each semester. The artists are from areas and cultures that represent the languages taught in the department: Spanish, French, German and Portuguese.
The program allows the SFA and Nacogdoches communities to experience authentic, foreign cultures that are found typically in larger U.S. cities.
Dr. Jeana Paul-Ureña, chair of the department, believes that exposing students and the community to different cultures is important.
“Since we don’t have access to many foreign foods, films or international artistic production like bigger cities do, we bring foreign culture to Nacogdoches,” she said.
Each time the department brings different artists to campus, they stay for one week. The artists perform one night and also visit classes throughout the week to talk with students, which gives students a chance to meet them and discuss their cultures and art.
“The students get to meet someone who is a representative of the cultures we study,” Paul-Ureña said. “It is a unique opportunity for students who may not be able to travel to get exposure to a different part of the world.”
The series will feature three performing artists, two visiting scholars and an International Poetry night, where SFA students and professors will read international poetry this semester.
Vargas is a well-known pop musician from Latin America who has been performing for over 30 years. He has won awards for his songs “Dilo de una vez” and “Piedra, Papel, Tijera,” which translate to “Say it all at once” and “Stone, Paper, Scissors” respectively. Vargas won the top award at the Viña del Mar International Song Festival in 2006.
Nicaraguan folk musician Luís Enrique Mejía Godoy will perform a concert at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 26 in Liberal Arts North 142. Godoy is known for his protest songs throughout the Spanish speaking world and has inspired revolutions against dictatorships. He has worked with many U.S. icons as well, such as Pete Seeger.
The last performance will be Los Llaneros, a folklore group from Venezuela. Los Llaneros will perform at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 2 in Dugas Liberal Arts North, Room 142. They will perform again at the Day of the Dead Festival on the square in downtown Nacogdoches the evening of Nov. 4.
International Poetry Night will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. in the Cole Arts Center Nov. 8. International scholars include Rogério de Souza Sergio Ferreira from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; and Clara Ramos from Salvador Bahia, Brazil.
The series is free to the public. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
By Emily Brown, marketing communications specialist at Stephen F. Austin State University.