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Emeritus Center Celebrates Fourth Year with Series on Plays and Playwrights

September 28, 2009



Miss Julie (Anita Björk) dances with Jean (Ulf Palme), her father’s valet, in a film based on August Strindberg’s play Miss Julie (1888).

Miss Julie (Anita Bjork) dances with Jean (Ulf Palme), her father's valet, in a film based on August Strindberg's play "Miss Julie" (1888).

The play's the thing, according to Shakespeare's Hamlet, and it's also the way to celebrate the beginning of the University at Albany Emeritus Center's fourth year.

As part of its Presentation and Discussion Series, the Center is offering free classes on “Modern Plays and Playwrights” this fall. The next class is August Strindberg's Miss Julie on Oct. 5, taught by Professor of Theatre Eszter Szalczer.

The series offers two-hour sessions by both current faculty and University at Albany emeriti who are experts in their fields.

Classes are offered on the following Mondays from 2 to 4 p.m. They include:

• Oct. 26, Professor of English and Collins Fellow Martha Rozett on Major Barbara by George Bernard Shaw.

• Nov. 2, Professor of English Emerita Judith Barlow on The Little Foxes by Lillian Hellman, and Long Day's Journey into Night by Eugene O'Neill.

• Nov. 16, Professor of French Emeritus Ray Ortali, also Emeritus Center program director, and Grayce Burian, Emeritus Center hospitality director, will conclude the series with a staged reading of No Exit by Jean-Paul Sartre.

"We are helping our volunteer instructors – who include renowned University at Albany current and retired faculty – to become more familiar with technology. They are very excited about using this technology in the classroom," said Program and Communications Director Ortali. The technology might include a judicious use of PowerPoint, as well as a more recent and fruitful approach in text and image integration: Embedding excerpts from a DVD in a PowerPoint presentation, for example, to discuss how the director of the film Miss Julie has visually transposed some aspects of Strindberg text.

Professor of Slavic Studies Emerita Toby Clyman, also Emeritus Center Vice President and Treasurer, taught the first class on Chekhov's Three Sisters.

There are only a few seats left, but those who have not registered yet (or who want a copy of the Emeritus Center Fall 2009 Program) are asked to do so by sending a message to Ray Ortali at .

Professor of Theatre Szalczer pointing out a key theme of Miss Julie

Professor of Theatre Eszter Szalczer pointing out a key theme of Miss Julie

The Emeritus Center will also play a role in an SUNY-wide conference on Nov. 12: Re-Imagining SUNY Retirement: Strategies for Designing Campus-Based Organizations that Serve Retirees and Offer Opportunities for Public Services. Founding President William Reese has been invited to be among the panelists who will discuss emeritus status and privileges.

Later this fall, Reese will be stepping down as President. He will be succeeded by Professor Emeritus of English George Hastings.

Emeritus Center events are free and open to the public. Some take place in Room 433, others in Room 134 of the University Administration Building, 1215 Western Ave. Easy parking is available at the SUNY Plaza close by.

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