I do try to stay optimistic that there will some day be a truly proper balance between collegiate academic and athletic programs, at least as far as public support goes. Thankfully, the University of Tennessee seems to be trying with their Pregame Showcase, a campus gameday program supported by WUOT 91.9 FM, the Office of Alumni Affairs, and UT Athletics.
The program begins this Saturday prior to the home opener against Georgia State at 2 p.m. in the Carolyn P. Brown University Center Ballroom (Room 213).
Of somewhat timely importance, this first program will feature Cal MacLean, professor and head of the Department of Theatre, in a presentation entitled "Supreme Synergy on Stage: Presenting Sweeney Todd". Sweeney Todd, directed by MacLean, is currently playing at the Clarence Brown Theatre on campus. MacLean will be joined in the discussion by Maestro Lucas Richman of the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra. Richman is the musical director for Sweeney Todd.
"This week's presentation is about artistic collaboration, the strategies a director employs to encourage it, the pitfalls successful collaborations avoid and the thrill that comes when the sum of the art is greater than its parts."
Free and open to the public, each showcase features a 30-minute presentation followed by a 15-minute question-and-answer session. Presentations begin two hours before kickoff. A brief reception will be held immediately following each program. Door prizes will be awarded.