Student Scholars Day features two SoC students

SSDStudent Scholars Day (SSD) is an annual event that celebrates the hard work and creative work by GVSU students. Each student presents their faculty-mentored research and projects through oral presentations, discussion and panel sessions, or fine arts exhibits. This year, the event will take place on Wednesday, April 9, 2014 from 9 am to 5:30 pm. The locations include Henry Hall, The Center, and Mary Idema Pew Library.

This year two SoC students, Amanda Furstenberg and Natalie Phillips, will be presenting their work during SSD. Furstenberg is a senior Theatre and Creative Writing double-major. She worked with Professor of Theatre Karen Libman and Associate Professor of Theatre Dr. James Bell to develop her project, “Dramaturgical Study of Diane Samuels’ Kindertransport.” Phillips, a senior Film and Video major, worked with Associate Professor of Communication Studies Dr. Danielle Leek to create, “Bound.”

Furstenberg will present in Kirkhof Center room 2259 from 4:00 on April 9.

Dramaturgical Study of Diane Samuels’s Kindertransport

Abstract: During the Fall 2013 semester as part of her Senior Honors Project, Theatre major Amanda Furstenberg served as the student dramaturg for the department’s Main Stage production of Diane Samuels’s Kindertransport. Samuels’s work is based on Great Britain’s rescue operation termed “Kindertransport” that saved nearly 10,000 Jewish children from the Holocaust. For a theatrical production, the dramaturg is responsible for historical research and education of the cast, production team and, ultimately, the audience. This presentation will cover Furstenberg’s process, her findings and the manner in which she synthesized the information.

“Professor Bell had been telling me for quite some time that I should try my hand at dramaturgy as he believed I would excel at it. After deciding upon the production of Kindertransport as the focus of my Honors project, I approached Professor Bell about serving as the show’s dramaturg, a position that would require me to essentially become a historical expert on both the topic and the script itself. Kindertransport drew me in primarily because of its historical significance so it only made sense to further my historical knowledge as the production’s dramaturg,” Furstenburg said.

Phillips will present in the Mary Idema Pew Library Multipurpose room at 3:30 on April 9. 


Abstract: “Bound” is an interactive light-based piece that detects motion to control its light source. Movement causes light to dim; stillness creates light and visibility. The piece is a simulation of one aspect of epilepsy. While seizing, persons with epilepsy lose consciousness and visibility. Only when the body stops moving, and shifts to partial paralysis (stillness,) is visibility regained. This perspective piece is designed to create a connection between body movement and visibility, and the frustration that can result.

“As a communication major, I attempt to create art and video pieces that creates opportunities for people to attempt to understand others perspective. Since any experience one has is multifaceted I think it’s important to create pieces that are extremely specific, so as not to generalize and create inaccuracies. For this piece I wanted to express one very specific aspect of epilepsy which is the notion of visibility and body movement. In the piece, viewers are able to become frustrated when they realize they must remain perfectly still to see. Allowing viewers body movements to create that frustration aligned with my experiences of having a seizure, even though what is happen when I seize is very different that what the viewers are doing,” Phillips said.

You can see the documentation of the piece at: