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Shakespeare to Seuss: Ethington shows its range

June 18, 2015 / by / 0 Comment

Claude Pensis, dean of the College of Fine Arts and Productions, Bill Symington, assistant dean and stage designer, and Michael Kary, assistant professor and play director, have put GCU on the map for collegiate theatre in the West Valley, but Pensis et. al. may have outdone themselves with this year’s Ethington Theatre lineup, which has something everyone can enjoy. From Shakespeare to Dr. Seuss, every play in the 2015-16 series is a must-see according to Pensis. And with a stage and costume design plan that is expected to be one of the biggest in University history, we couldn’t agree more. “We’re going to have fun with the plays. It’s going to be an adventure for the actors, directors and the audiences,” Pensis said.

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Antelope Intros: Stefan Winkel and Emily Pitt

June 12, 2015 / by / 0 Comment

This week’s Antelope Intros features two GCU graduates with diverse backgrounds. One was born overseas and loves the sports teams from another West Coast city, the other loves sci-fi and showed it with the skill she taught her little sister.

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From fish flop to flamenco, dance camp appeals to teens

June 05, 2015 / by / 0 Comment

Teenagers from California and Arizona are enjoying GCU’s first “Summer Dance Intensive,” a residential camp that imparts knowledge and training in a variety of genres and gives students a peek at campus life. Studio time, pool time and pizza time, so far, have not disappointed, and spots remain in next week’s camp. GCU Today has the story.

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GCU dance duo earns scholarships for major summer program at Duke

June 04, 2015 / by / 0 Comment

Dance education majors Monique Streety and Nicole Mayes are packing their bags for Durham, N.C., where they will spend most of the summer at the American Dance Festival’s Six Week School on the campus of Duke University. Founded in 1934 in Vermont, the ADF has been called “one of the nation’s most important institutions” by The New York Times. Streety and Mayes, who were encouraged to apply by dance faculty member Leanne Schmidt, say in this GCU Today story that they will soak up all they can and bring it home to share with their classmates.

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GCU dancers perform for sixth graders at St. Francis Xavier Elementary in Phoenix.
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GCU dance piece all adds up for young students

May 04, 2015 / by / 0 Comment

Story by Janie Magruder Photos by Tyler McDonald GCU News Bureau Every time Khaila Matthews stepped onto a gym floor in a local school this spring to perform with other Grand Canyon University dance students, the emotional seesaw of her own adolescence teetered in her memory. The GCU sophomore wondered whether she and the dozens of sixth-graders seated cross-legged in front of her had more in common than they might imagine. “I was bullied at their age,” Matthews said recently after the final performance of the College of Fine Arts and Production’s Elementary and Middle School Dance Tour. “I had darker skin, a fuller figure, I was really different. Now, being able to go to these schools and show these kids that there’s nothing wrong with being different, it makes me feel really good.” The GCU sophomore was among 16 students who spent the fall and spring semesters conceptualizing, writing and choreographing the Dance Department’s fourth annual tour. Through the school visits, COFAP aims to spark young audience members’ impulse for self-expression by offering creative tools that will help them explore drama, music and, in this case, drama. The culmination of the dance students’ efforts was being able to perform […]

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Commencement Day 2: Non-traditional students

April 25, 2015 / by / 0 Comment

By Darryl Webb GCU News Bureau  

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Colorful mortarboards have become a GCU commencement tradition. (Photo by Darryl Webb)
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Commencement offers poignant tribute amid pomp

April 23, 2015 / by / 0 Comment

By GCU News Bureau Thursday morning’s commencement, the first of six to be held this week for the Grand Canyon University’s Class of 2015 in the Arena, had all the usual pomp — grinning parents using cellphones and Canons, elaborately decorated mortarboards balanced on graduates’ heads and purple in every corner of the Arena, on flowers, stoles and drapes. (Click here to see a slideshow.) But the 80-minute ceremony attended by 528 undergraduates in five colleges — Theology, Fine Arts and Production, Education, Humanities and Social Sciences and Science, Engineering and Technology — also was punctuated by poignant circumstances. For one, several graduates in the first CSET class adorned their mortarboards in ways unique to their career paths, such as outlines of bodies and crime scene tape. And there was not one but two student speakers, identical twin sisters Joy and Claire Flatz, who earned degrees in theatre from the College of Fine Arts and Production. The duo, who are as close to America’s sweethearts as you can get, did a lovely tag-team bit about how the University’s campus has changed in four years. (Then: no lines, no Chick-fil-A and the worst parking spot was behind Hegel Hall next to […]

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Flatz twins doubled their impact on performing arts

April 22, 2015 / by / 0 Comment

Story by Cooper Nelson Photos by Darryl Webb GCU Today Magazine Twin theatre majors Claire and Joy Flatz are identical in appearance, but their interests, personalities and individual contributions to Grand Canyon University’s theatre program are distinctive. The 22-year-old seniors burst onto the College of Fine Arts and Production scene by playing the lead roles in the “The Boy Friend” as freshmen and have performed in 23 combined productions, often as leading ladies. Their costumes might as well hang from the ceiling of GCU’s Ethington Theatre, like retired jerseys in a sports arena, to commemorate their dazzling performances over four years. Notably, Joy played Cinderella in “Into the Woods,” the daughter of Capulet in “Romeo and Juliet” and Irene Adler in “Sherlock Holmes.” Claire played the baker’s wife in “Into the Woods” and the lead female role, Belle, in “A Christmas Carol.” The freedom to perform as freshmen allowed them to find their individual strengths in film and theatre. “There is inherently a safety net that comes with performing at college and failing, which has allowed us to grow,” Joy said. Said Claire, “Being able to perform as freshmen helped us gain confidence to pursue opportunities outside campus.” Their impressive […]

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A year to remember: GCU’s Top 10 stories of 2014-15

April 22, 2015 / by / 1 Comment

GCU Today Magazine  Photos by Darryl Webb There was no shortage of news at Grand Canyon University during the 2014-15 academic year. And it was no easy decision picking the Top 10 stories from the dozens that were produced by GCU Today. But those that emphasized community, growth and reputation quickly rose to the top. Here they are: 1. GCU revs economic engine in west Phoenix The University announced a five-point plan to revitalize the neighborhood, continued expanding its campus along the Canyon Corridor, agreed to operate and began renovating Maryvale Golf Course, and opened a hotel to train students in hospitality management and employ local residents. A study credited GCU with an annual economic impact of $1.1 billion that generates 10,490 jobs, with wages approaching $500 million per year. 2. What’s in a name? A lot, when it’s Colangelo GCU’s business school was renamed for Phoenix icon Jerry Colangelo, whose principles of servant leadership, ethics and entrepreneurship became as ingrained into campus life as he did in just a few short months. As part of the hospitality curriculum, the college also announced plans for golf course and tennis management programs. 3. It’s full STEM ahead as 8th college opens Determined to fill high-tech […]

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Brain gain: Growing tutor program reaches more students than ever

April 22, 2015 / by / 0 Comment

By Janie Magruder GCU Today Magazine As a student at Canby High in northwestern Oregon, Bryce Beatty filled his days with chemistry, honors biology, advanced placement physics and playing shortstop for the baseball team. But when he came to Grand Canyon University in 2012, Beatty traded his mitt and jersey for latex gloves and an apron. For the then freshman, focusing on his major — biology with an emphasis in pre-med — required protection for his hands and clothing in GCU’s cadaver lab. Despite his considerable high school science background, Beatty knew he would need some help in chemistry as he pursued a career in spine surgery. As soon as he arrived on campus, he requested tutoring help from the Center for Learning & Advancement (CLA). Now a junior in the College of Science, Engineering and Technology, Beatty is one of GCU’s top science tutors. He helped inspire University leaders to restructure the tutoring system and is assisting with its success. There’s extra credit, of course: “If you can teach it, you know it,” he said. Narrowing the focus Tutoring has evolved over the past 18 months during a perfect storm of change at GCU. The administration wanted to boost […]

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