Missouri State University
Arts & Letters Expressions
An online publication for the alumni and friends of the College of Arts and Letters

Students learn about storytelling in media intersession course

Students who want to analyze contemporary movies and TV shows for credit this summer should check out the summer summer intersession course, MED 300: Storytelling Across All Media.

Rich Amberg, assistant professor in media, journalism and film, will teach the class, which runs from May 16 to June 3.


Learn how story models work across media

Rich-AmbergAmberg said students will learn to apply the fundamentals of storytelling to film, TV, web content, new media, and includes both scripted and unscripted content. To do that, they will watch many films and shows, from “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” to “Kill Bill” to “The People v. O.J. Simpson.”

“We’ll pull them apart to see how they work in different story models. We’ll then be applying those storytelling skills to all forms of media — news stories, videogames, advertising, social media, documentaries, etc.”

Amberg noted that strong storytelling skills are in high demand in the workforce, but often difficult to find.

Sign up for the class

MED 300: Storytelling Across All Media

May 16 to June 3
Monday-Friday, 1-5 p.m.

Interested students should contact Amberg by email.

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Students compete in Vicki Stanton showcase on May 2

Students in the Fundamentals of Communication classes will compete in this semester’s Vicki Stanton Public Speaking Showcase on May 2 at the Plaster Student Union Theater.

Finalists in the spring 2015 showcase included Lauren Clausen, Tabitha Carroll, Caitlyn Wicks, Emma Hackett and Kalissa Pitts.
Finalists in the spring 2015 showcase included Lauren Clausen, Tabitha Carroll, Caitlyn Wicks, Emma Hackett and Kalissa Pitts.

What is the Public Speaking Showcase?

Communication faculty choose about 60 participants each semester to present a persuasive speech in front of a panel of judges in two preliminary rounds, competing against up to five other students for the top rankings in the round. The overall top five speakers then compete in the final round, scheduled to begin at 5:30 p.m.

Winning speech criteria

Students are judged based on speech organization, creation of sound arguments, proving evidential support, creativity, delivery and connection with the audience.

Preliminary judges are communication department instructors and teaching assistants. The final judging panel is comprised of University faculty and community members.

For more information, contact Jerri Lynn Kyle by email or at 417-836-4423.

Want to attend?

Vicki Stanton Public Speaking Showcase

When: May 2, 5:30-7 p.m.
Where: Plaster Student Union Theater
Admission: Free and open to the public
Connect online: #VSPSS16 @VickiStantonPSS

Posted in Announcement, Communication, News, Student Accomplishments | Leave a comment

MFA students explore theme of consumption in exhibit

Students in the Master of Fine Arts, visual studies program is showcasing their work at the Drury on C-Street Gallery on April 29 in an exhibition titled “Consumption.” The reception will be from 6-9 p.m. on April 29.


Who are the artists?

The students include:

  • Judge Bockman
  • Emily Budd
  • Tawn Dickison
  • Maria Gerasimchuk-Djordjevic
  • Shen Hsieh
  • My Luu
  • Todd Reynolds
  • Carla Stine

What can you expect?

The Master of Fıne Arts Program in Visual Studies at Missouri State University currently has eight students, from different backgrounds, countries, and cultures.

As diverse as the students are in their backgrounds, so is their use of media. The vısual studies program encourages different types of approaches and media in the students’ practices and so there is a variety of media in the exhibition including drawing, painting, ceramics, printmaking, photography, digital, and collage.

The creative process, and materials involved in each medium, interacts with the concept of “Consumption” in varied ways. The interplay between media processes and the idea of consumption also expands meaning in this exhibition.

Want to see it?

Springfield Exhibition

April 29
6-9 p.m.
Drury on C-Street Gallery
233 E. Commercial Street

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BFA seniors showcase work at Brick City Gallery

Nineteen seniors majoring in studio art will exhibit their work at Brick City Gallery April 27-May 10.


Whose work is in the exhibit?

Students include:

Renee Alston, Dylan Sands, Eleanor Melton, Jessica Ball and Jacob Derryberry

Rebekah Bliss and Seth Hair

Rachael Ramsey, Jennifer Richardson and James Derryberry

Emily Holly

Jessica Holt

Shae Henderson, Rachael Holcomb and Calvin Todd

Samantha Hostler, Shauna Smith, Corey Weiland and Ricky Briggenhorst

Want to see it?


April 27-May 10


May 6, 6 p.m.

Gallery hours

  • Monday – Friday: 11 a.m. – 6 p.m.
  • Saturday: Noon – 5 p.m.

Closed Sundays and University holidays

Posted in Art + Design, Brick City Gallery, News | Leave a comment

COM faculty, alumna and student offer advice to first-generation students

A faculty member, an alumna and a student from the communication department will participate in a first-generation informational panel on April 28.


Panelists to share their experiences as first-generation students

The discussion is designed to help first-generation freshmen and sophomore college students have productive conversations with family and friends when they return home for the summer.

The panelists are also first-generation college students or graduates. They include:

  • Dr. Kelly Wood – Professor of communication and provost fellow for student success
  • Trysta Herzog – Alumna, MA in communication and strategic communications specialist for the College of Arts and Letters
  • Desmond Warren – Senior public relations major

First-generation student group organized event

The event is hosted by the newly formed student organization, MSU: I’m First, a group dedicated to helping first-generation college students succeed.

For more information about the group or to join, visit their website.

Want to attend?

Panel: Home for the Summer: Communicating Effectively with Family & Friends
When: April 28, 6:30 – 8 p.m.
Where: Karls Hall Room 101
Host: MSU: I’m First
Admission: Free and open to the public

Posted in Communication, Faculty & Staff Accomplishments, News, Student Accomplishments, Student News | Leave a comment

Spring concert a study of motion inspired by famed photographer

danceconcertThis year’s spring dance concert, “Images in Motion,” will feature new faculty-choreographed works that explore the fleeting nature of human activities in space and time. Each moment frames a never-to-be-repeated, multi-dimensional composition of form, light, color, texture, sound and feeling.

Alumnus helps bring vision to stage

The concert is inspired by photographer Eadweard Muybridge’s ground-breaking studies in motion during the late 1800s — particularly his study of a ballet dancer that captured the seamless, fluid motion and presented a frame-by-frame deconstruction.

Alumnus Mark Santillano also helped choreograph the concert while he was here in January.

Santillano is an assistant professor of dance at Mercyhurst Univeristy in Erie, Pennsylvania, where he teaches modern, tap, jazz, musical theatre dance and choreography. He has performed in national theatre tours and has choreographed works for numerous dance companies. He is also founder and co-director of SoMar Dance Works.

Any Given Child program to bring eighth graders to the concert

Any Given Child

Eighth graders from Springfield Public Schools will have the opportunity to watch the concert for free as part of the local Any Given Child program. There will be two special performances on April 29 — at 9:30 a.m. and then again at 12:30 p.m.

Ensuring the Arts for Any Given Child is sponsored by The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. In 2010, Springfield was the second city in the U.S., after Sacramento, Calif., be selected for the program. Any Given Child is also part of Arts in Action, an effort funded by the Community Foundation of the Ozarks and the Springfield Regional Arts Council.

Want to go to the concert?

Showtimes: 7:30 p.m., April 28-30; 2:30 p.m., May 1
Location: Craig Hall Coger Theatre
Tickets: $14 Adults; $12 Students/Seniors; $8 in advance with MSU ID

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Student video illustrates the MSU experience

Taking inspiration from the “Draw My Life” video trend, a group of students in Lucie Amberg’s course MED 130, Fundamentals of Media Convergence, used a class assignment to share their Missouri State stories.

Collaboration, multimedia skills lead to dynamic video

The six students — Alec Gura, Carter Williams, Collin O’Hara, Megan Burke, Hill Zhang and Ryan Chaney — created the video for their final group project that punctuated the skills they’ve learned this semester in collaboration and multimedia  — audio, video, web and social media, Amberg said.

“(The course) introduces the foundational skills to start thinking collaboratively … and understanding how you fit into a larger team as a media professional, the roles you’ll play and the media you’ll be working with.”

The course is required for all media, journalism and film students.

Students’ stories resonate with university

Lucie Amberg

Lucie Amberg

Amberg said all her students produced noteworthy work, but this video particularly hits on something that resonates with the department: Why is Missouri State and the media, journalism and film department a great place for students?

The topic is also close to Amberg’s heart. In addition to teaching courses, she works for the for the university as a new media specialist, often responsible for developing recruitment materials.

She did not, however, influence the content of the video. Instead, she offered broad instructions for the assignment — everyone has to contribute to a timed multimedia project that incorporates storytelling techniques — and let them go to work.

“I saw them at the whiteboard, doing their thing, and I asked them if they wanted me to know what they were doing or just see the end product. They wanted me to wait,” she said. “It came together beautifully. And it turned out to be a great recruitment piece for MSU.”

What is your MSU story?

Find the College of Arts and Letters on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to share your MSU experiences.

Posted in Media Journalism & Film, News | Leave a comment

Top 3 reasons to see the President’s Concert this year

With two performances scheduled later this month, the Missouri State President’s Concert is shaping up to be one of the top university events of the year.


The concert will be hosted for free at 7:30 p.m. on April 30 at Juanita K. Hammons Hall for the Performing Arts.

An encore performance will be held at 6 p.m. the following evening at the prestigious Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts in Kansas City. Tickets range between $15 and $35.

Here are three reasons to attend at least one of the concerts.

We are bringing the talent

Missouri State Chorale

PresidentsConcert_soloists-250x641The university’s Grand Chorus and Symphony Orchestra — more than 275 students! — will perform at this year’s event.

They will be joined by two accomplished guest soloists, Brandon Nase and MSU alumna Sarah Tannehill Anderson, along with several of MSU’s finest faculty musicians: Dr. Carol Chapman, soprano, Dr. Ann Marie Daehn, mezzo-soprano, and Dr. Chris Thompson, baritone.

The concerts will feature Francis Poulenc’s “Gloria” and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s “Requiem Mass in D Minor.”

Dr. Cameron LaBarr, director of choral studies and the concert’s conductor, said the works each offer something different for audiences.

“With these two contrasting works, the audience will experience freshness and modern musical ideas in the ‘Gloria’ — a gem of the 20th century — paired with the historical and dramatic, yet classical setting of the ‘Requiem,’ which is one of the most well-known works of the entire choral-orchestral canon.”

Director of Orchestral Studies Dr. Christopher Kelts will prepare the orchestra for the concerts.

Dinner and reception with the Alumni Association

Story_MarooNation_KC_620If you’re worried about being hungry before or after the Kansas City for the May 1 concert, don’t be! The Alumni Association has you covered.

You can join other concert-goers for dinner at Kansas City’s premiere Italian restaurant, Lidia’s when you register with MarooNation.

In addition, there will be a reception at the Kauffman following the concert. Concert tickets should be purchased separately online.


Two words: Helzberg Hall


The Kauffman Center is a beautifully designed arts center in downtown Kansas City. Since celebrating its grand opened in 2011, it has hosted hundreds of performances and thousands of guests. 

The prestigious venue’s 1,600-seat Helzberg Hall hosts a variety of local, regional, national and international artists and performance groups, including serving as the performance home of the Kansas City Symphony.

The Hall’s visual centerpiece of is the Julia Irene Kauffman Casavant Organ, Opus 3875,  one of the finest concert hall organs in the country.

Are you convinced yet?

The concert schedule is as follows:

Springfield performance

Date: April 30
Time: 7:30 p.m.
Location: Juanita K. Hammons Hall for the Performing Arts
Admission: Free and open to the public, tickets not required

Kansas City performance

Date: May 1
 6 p.m.
Location: Helzberg Hall, Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts (Kansas City, Missouri)
Admission: Tickets available online ($15-$35); The dinner registration is available on the MarooNation website.

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