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From canceled shows to Zoom rehearsals and socially distanced performances, theatre students and faculty at Rice have spent the past year adapting to the shifting restrictions of the COVID-19 pandemic. When COVID-19 forced students back home during Cole Thompson’s freshman year, they had the chance to witness first-hand some of the initial attempts at remote theater at Rice. Thompson, a Martel College junior, said that the student-written show they were involved in got converted into a radio play, and that they continued to participate in remote theater productions the following year.
The Guest Meal Swipe Donation program will return to Rice this semester as a collaborative effort between the Student Association, Student Success Initiatives and Housing and Dining. The program allows undergraduates with a Type A meal plan, required for all on-campus students, to donate some or all of their five meal guest swipes to off-campus students facing food insecurity.
Rice Coffeehouse will revive its Espresso Yourself programming with a virtual artist spotlight series and an open mic event this Friday, Nov. 20 in front of the Moody Center for the Arts. The spotlight series will feature a Rice student’s artwork for one to two months via the Coffeehouse Instagram account, @eychaus — the first spotlighted artist is Sid Richardson College junior Sumin Hwang. This week’s open mic will also be the first of many which Espresso Yourself, led by Baker College junior Magdah Omer, plans to host once every semester.
Rice Theatre will premiere a livestreamed performance of Oscar Wilde’s “The Importance of Being Earnest” this Friday, Oct. 9 at 8 p.m. CST. The play, originally published in 1895 with the subtitle, “a trivial comedy for serious people,” narrates the double lives of two men, John Worthing and Algernon Moncrieff, who both pretend to be named “Ernest” and deceive their lovers in doing so. Directed by Christina Keefe, director of the Rice Theatre Program, the production will be available to view online as well as to a select live audience who must abide by Rice’s social distancing protocol. All actors will be wearing masks and remaining at least six feet apart on stage, painting a stark portrait of how the pandemic has changed performance art.
The Texas Commission on the Arts designated Houston’s Third and Fifth Wards as cultural districts on Sept. 3. Home to historical landmarks, cultural diversity and notable figures in education, music, politics and art, these neighborhoods have played an influential role both in Houston and the Black community at-large.