UMF presents annual Arts Nights Celebration, April 24-25

FARMINGTON, ME  (April 20, 2017)— The University of Maine at Farmington is excited to again present its annual Arts Nights celebration Monday, April 24 and Tuesday, April 25, 2017. Free and open to the public, this array of creative events by UMF students takes place throughout the Emery Community Arts Center.

For the ninth year, UMF’s popular Pixel Hunter Video and Animation Festival will provide students with an opportunity to design creative storytelling through video and animation and to exhibit their work to a wider audience. This annual screening includes a wide variety of techniques and themes and features UMF student works ranging from comic narrative to the experimental pieces that blend new and found footage. It takes place at 7 p.m., Monday, April 24, in the Performaance Space in the ECAC.

On Tuesday, April 25, UMF Visual and Performing Arts seniors will present their final projects in back-to-back artistic sound, cultural and theatrical presentations throughout the ECAC beginning at 5:30 p.m. and continuing into the evening. These include:

Abigail Parkinson, Monmoth
“Fandom Fortunes”
Exploring the spiritual and almost religious sides of fandom, Parkinson will be presenting a tarot deck of her own making in the form of a live card reading for volunteers. She has spent the last semester studying the symbolism of tarot in connection with recognizable figures in geek culture, and her deck features characters from Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter and more.

Danielle Lefebvre, Leominster, Mass.
“Players’ Market: A Farmington Music Blog”
Players’ Market is a local music blog set out to capture the culture of the live music scene in Farmington. He hopes to keep the community updated at least weekly with musical events they can see around town and how to find out more about their favorite local artists.

Zack Peercy, Farmington
“Writer at Work”
Based on the Philosophy and Performances of Harlan Ellison, Peercy will attempt to demonstrate that writing is a job, not an artistic whimsy. On April 24, from 9 a.m. to 5p.m., he will set up his work station comprised of a writing desk, typewriter and chair in the Olsen Student Center. His hope is to complete eight short pieces, based on sealed prompts from the community and abroad, before punching the time clock.

Keith Clark, Presque Isle
“2 Late: A Radio Talk Show”
Humanity has long wondered what seeing the afterlife could be like. This evening, the afterlife’s own talk radio show, 2 Late, will be broadcasting live, even though its ghostly host is not so lucky. Each living caller to this show gets a unique chance to ask questions about the afterlife. Infused with Clark’s unique brand of humor, this performance hopes to bring some light to a dark part of human existence.

Parker Chapin, Augusta
“The Fiddle in Celtic Music”
A talk that aims to draw a history and analysis of Celtic music with a focus on the fiddle, how it was invented and entered the Celtic musician’s toolkit, how it influenced composition of Celtic folk tunes, and how these tunes are intertwined with culture and history.

Devin Gilman, Farmington
“I Feel Powerful When I Am Naked: A Brief Examination of the Neo-Burlesque Scene”
For many decades both women and men have flocked to the stage, and have embraced the power of striptease to enhance the visual aesthetic of the burlesque performance. By examining the historical influences of the burlesque culture in the U.S., we can see the impacts it still upholds today to the performers reimagining the Neo-Burlesque scene.

Samuel Cobb, Randolph
“The War of Lost”
When a world has known nothing but war, and a time of peace finally falls across the land, will things finely begin to change? Or will a dark shadow fall over the land, which has all ready seen so much bloodshed? This is an effort to examine these questions and many other questions of our own fights.

Samuel Burnell, Windham
“signal decay”
Nostalgia has a quiet intensity. We attach it to present moments, old possessions and vague auras, manipulating its warmth to our benefit. Through it, we indirectly inform our feelings towards media of the past. This audiovisual performance is built from culturally decayed media, colored by instances of affection, epiphany and melancholy through destructive, additive processes. Bringing together analogue electronic synthesis, heavily-treated footage and sound improvisation, signal decay addresses the uncertain present by invoking the recent past.

UMF Arts Nights events are sponsored by the UMF Division of the Arts.

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UMF offers new flexible format May and Summer courses to the public

FARMINGTON, ME  (April 19, 2017)—University of Maine at Farmington 2017 May and Summer Term courses are now open for registration by members of the public not currently enrolled at UMF. Spaces are available in a wide variety of classroom and online courses in education, human services and arts and sciences.

Of special interest to college students home for the summer is the new UMF initiative that offers a selection of courses as either 3 or 4 credits. This new flexible format gives students the opportunity to catch up or move ahead in their curriculum while also providing options for any student who may be seeking to transfer May or Summer credits to a different institution.

“We have selected a number of exciting courses for this initial pilot–from online courses in game design, human rights, and world religions to a residential course in landscape drawing,” said Eric Brown, UMF provost and vice president of academic affairs.  “The versatility of this model should expand possibilities not only for our own students but for students across the state and region who may want to try a class at UMF but who do not need to follow UMF’s 4-credit curriculum.”

Course listings, including the number of credit hours, can be found online at Click on the May and Summer Classes link at the bottom of the page and again on the highlighted term to see course offerings. Then click on the specific course to see a course description and other information.

Members of the public can pre-register for any course online by adding it to the online book bag. They will then be contacted by a representative from the UMF Merrill Center.

Individuals may also register in person from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday thru Friday, at the Merrill Center in UMF’s Merrill Hall, 224 Main St.

May term courses generally begin mid-May and Summer courses begin early to late June. Courses meet four or five days a week and run for four or five weeks (the course description includes the specific dates).

The deadline for course registration is the first day of classes. Classes are available on a first-come, first-served basis.

For more information, contact the UMF Merrill Center at 778-7237 or, or Eric Brown, vice president for academic affairs and provost, at or 207-778-7457.

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UMF announces Louis Sell, former U.S. foreign service officer to Soviet Union, to deliver Commencement remarks

FARMINGTON, ME  (April 18, 2017)—The University of Maine at Farmington is proud to announce that Louis D. Sell, a retired Foreign Service officer with many years of experience in the former Soviet Union and Yugoslavia, will deliver the Commencement remarks to the UMF Class of 2017. Sell will also receive an honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters at this year’s ceremony, which will be held at 10:30 a.m., Saturday, May 13, on the UMF campus.

Chris Coyne, Maine entrepreneur, tech innovator and designer will also be receiving an honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters at this year’s UMF Commencement.

Louis Sell

Louis Sell

Passionate about public service, Sell served under six U.S. presidents from 1971 to 1998, beginning with Richard Nixon, a journey that took him to volatile parts of the world that look very different today.

He was present in Moscow at the time of the fall of the Soviet Union and served in Yugoslavia during the political crisis that split the country apart. From 1995-1996, he was political adviser to former Swedish Prime Minister Carl Bildt, the first high representative for Bosnian Peace Implementation, and participated in the Dayton Conference that brought peace to Bosnia and Herzegovina.

“Louis Sell is a policy historian and diplomat, a voice of calm during a time of great political turmoil in the world,” said Kathryn A. Foster, UMF president. “He has made a valuable contribution to international diplomacy and in the higher education classroom, and we are honored to have him address our Class of 2017.”

Sell served as U.S. representative to the Joint Consultative Group in Vienna, as director of the Office of Russian and Eurasian Analysis, director of the Office of U.S.-Soviet Bilateral Relations, and as special assistant and executive secretary of the U.S. delegation to the Strategic Arms Reduction Talks.

He was a principal founder of the American University in Kosovo that opened its doors in 2003 and served as executive director of the American University in Kosovo Foundation from 2003 to 2007.

He is the author of two books, “Slobodan Milosevic and the Destruction of Yugoslavia (Duke University Press, 2002) and “From Washington to Moscow: US-Soviet Relations and the Collapse of the USSR” (Duke University Press, 2016.)

Sell earned his bachelor’s from Franklin and Marshall College and his master’s from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies. He has been a part-time member of the UMF faculty since 2001.

Chris Coyne

Chris Coyne

A South Portland native, Coyne and his business partners created, a website acclaimed by Yahoo as “Best of the Web,” and SparkNotes, an online study guide, while attending Harvard University. The study guide and discussion forum proved to be an extremely popular online platform and was purchased by Barnes & Noble in 2001.

Following the success of SparkNotes, Coyne and his partners created OkCupid, an online dating, friendship and social networking website that focused on using mathematical algorithms to match people. Listed in Time magazine’s 2007 Top Dating Websites, the platform was acquired by in 2011.

Coyne is currently working on Keybase, an open source encryption application that offers online users tools to manage their identity, create secure chats and share files privately.

In 2012, he and his partners received the Harvard Humanist of the Year award.

“Since his college days, Chris Coyne has combined the best of math smarts, teamwork and entrepreneurship,” said UMF President Foster. “We are delighted to honor his past and ongoing inventiveness as inspiration for the Class of 2017 and assembled guests.”

Graduating senior Zack Peercy will give the student address. A gifted writer, Peercy is graduating with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Creative Writing and a B.A. in Theatre: Writing and Performance. His work has been published in online and campus literary journals and blogs, including: Slashfilm, Every Day Fiction, Toasted Cheese, The Sandy River Review, Eunoia Review and others. He was raised in northeastern Pennsylvania. After graduation, he will be moving to Chicago to continue his pursuit of playwriting and comedy.

Foster and Eric Brown, provost and vice president for academic affairs, will confer degrees to this year’s graduates. Mark R. Gardner, member of the UMS Board of Trustees, will deliver greetings to the graduates from the University of Maine System

Additional Event Details

The outdoor ceremony will be held behind the UMF Olsen Student Center and is free and open to the public. Guests of graduates are also welcome to watch the ceremony live in C131 in Roberts Learning Center. In case of inclement weather, the ceremony will be held inside the UMF Fitness & Recreation Center. Admission to the indoor ceremony will be limited to those who have already received “Fitness and Recreation Center” tickets. During the indoor ceremony, guests can watch the event live in C131 and C23 in Roberts Learning Center and in the classrooms and Bjorn Lobby in the UMF Theodora J. Kalikow Education Center. The UMF Commencement ceremony will be webcast live at and broadcast live on Mount Blue TV community access Channel 11 at, whether the ceremony is held indoors or outdoors.

DVDs of the ceremony will be available in early summer for a small fee from the UMF Ferro Alumni Center, which can be contacted at

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EDITOR’S NOTE: Photos can be found at:
Photo Credit: UMF photo
Photo Caption: Louis Sell
Photo Credit: Submitted photo
Photo Caption: Chris Coyne

UMF welcomes Bread and Puppet Theater to Emery Community Arts Center, April 30

FARMINGTON, ME  (April 13, 2017)—The University of Maine at Farmington Emery Community Arts Center, UMF Arts Division and Temple Stream Theater are excited to welcome the world-renowned Bread and Puppet Theater to campus for a performance of “Faust 3” at 7 p.m., Sunday, April 30, at the ECAC.

Bread and Puppet Theater performs Faust 3

Bread and Puppet Theater performs Faust 3

One of the longest-running, nonprofit, self-suporting theater companies in the U.S., the Bread and Puppet Theater uses performance to protest the most urgent political issues of our time.

The performance will begin with a musical greeting by the Bread and Puppet String Band and conclude with the serving of the company’s famous, free sourdough rye bread and aioli.

As thematically and formally diverse as Goethe’s Faust 1 and 2, Bread and Puppet’s Faust 3 draws the audience through a dreamlike succession of scenes from refugee migration, to the pervasivness of guns, the daily experience of factory workers, the rebellion of prisoners and the adoration of the sun.

The company is directed by Peter Schumann who founded the theater company in 1963 on New York City’s Lower East Side. In 1974 it moved to a farm in Glover in the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont, where a 140-year old hay barn was transformed into a museum for veteran puppets.

Admission is $15 for adults, $7 for students and seniors. Bread and Puppet’s “Cheap Art” including: books, posters, postcards, pamphlets and banners from the Bread and Puppet Press will be for sale at the performance.

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Media Contact: Gustavo Aguilar, UMF associate professor of experimental performance, at or 207-778-7896
link to photo.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Photo can be found at
Photo Credit: Submitted photo
Photo Caption: Bread and Puppet Theater performs Faust 3

UMF Collegium features works for orchestra and band, April 22

FARMINGTON, ME  (April 10, 2017)—The UMF Collegium, a collection of instrumental ensembles under the direction of conductor Eric Thomas, will present a program featuring performances by the orchestra and band at 3 p.m., Saturday, April 22, in Nordica Auditorium in Merrill Hall on the University of Maine at Farmington campus.

The orchestra will be performing Charles Gounod’s “Funeral March of the Marionette,” a piece known for its use as the theme music to the television series Alfred Hitchcock Presents, and “Che farò senza Euridice?” from Orpheus and Eurydice, by Christoph Willibald Gluck, arranged by Michel Rondeau and featuring UMF alumna Debbra Parent (‘16) singing soprano solo.

The band will perform “Satiric Dances” by Norman Dello Joio, “Danzón No. 2” by Arturo Márquez and “Doctor Who: Through Time and Space” by Murray Gold, arranged by Robert Buckley.

The Collegium Instrumental Ensemble is a musical model that includes band, orchestral, and other ensemble works under a single musical performance entity. It was launched at UMF in the Fall of 2015. This innovative group is led by Thomas, whose commitment to eclecticism is well suited to the adventurous spirit of music making at UMF and in the larger community.

Thomas was the assistant conductor and mentee of Sarah Caldwell who appointed him principal conductor of the Opera New England Orchestra. He has had posts as assistant conductor of the Phillips Exeter Orchestra, interim conductor of the Phillips Academy Andover Symphony Orchestra, principal guest conductor of the Longy School of Music Youth String Orchestra, guest conductor of the Bangor Symphony, the Colby College Symphony Orchestra and the University of Maine Faculty Cadenzato Chamber Ensemble.

A clarinetist, Thomas won the International Concert Artist Guild competition and performs with several groups and has toured Europe, South America and the U.S. As a composer he has had a handful of commissions including a work jointly commissioned by the Maine Music Teachers Association and the MTNA for premiere at its 2015 Quad-State Conference.

Admission is $8 for adults, $6 for seniors, and free for children and UMF students with student I.D.

This event is sponsored by the UMF Department of Visual and Performing Arts.

For further information, contact Matthew Houston at

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UMF student’s research on winningest baseball lineup featured on WCSH 6 “207”

UMF senior and Wilson Scholar Sean Cabaniss is working on a research project recently featured on WCSH 6 “207” that may attract the interest of Major League Baseball—how to create the optimal baseball lineup. According to Cabaniss’ project proposal, there are 362,880 unique ways to create a lineup with the same nine players. With the use of mathematical Game Theory, an advanced computer simulation and the support of his two faculty sponsors, he is hoping to help answer coaches’ burning question, how to make the winningest baseball lineup.

WCSH 6 “207”

UMF student Sean Cabaniss at bat.

UMF student directed One Act Play Festival, April 21–23

FARMINGTON, ME  (April 6, 2017)—The University of Maine at Farmington is proud to present its annual student-directed and produced One Act Play Festival at 7:30 p.m., Friday, April 21, and Saturday, April 22. A matinee will be held at 2 p.m., Sunday, April 23. A mix of comedy and drama, this festival is a vibrant representation of what UMF has to offer.

Performances will be held at the UMF Alumni Theater and are open to the public. Admission is $5 for adults, $3 for seniors and students with I.D. Box office opens one hour before the performance with tickets available.

A creative student collaboration, the UMF One Act Play Festival is directed and produced by the Theater 377 class. These student directors are aided by student volunteers both on stage and off.

Kaylee Pickering, from Belfast, and Madison Uliano, from Bar Harbor, serve as co-stage managers. Uliano also is costume designer for the productions.

Festival Schedule:

“Impromptu” by Tad Mosel
Directed by Steffon Gales (Roxbury, Mass.)
Production Assistant: Hope Lash (Waldoboro)
Cast: Astra Pierson (Farmington), Matthew Dotson (Boerne, Texas), Tucker Atwood (Embden), Chloe Hoecker (Boothbay Harbor)

“Home Free!” by Lanford Wilson
Directed by Jonas Maines (Portland)
Production Assistant: Sydney Gustafson (Rockland)
Cast: Julie Guerra (Falmouth) and Tucker T. Tardif (Gray)

Intermission with concessions provided by Student Theatre UMF

“The Boundary” by Tom Stoppard and Clive Exton
Directed by Konner Wilson (Dexter)
Production Assistant: Isabel Robertson (Cape Elizabeth)
Cast: Brock Bubar (Etna), Declan Attaway-Murphy (Portland), Izzy Bailey (Fairfield), Cody Campbell (Lisbon)

“Greetings from the Moon”
Written and Directed by Zack Peercy (Farmington)Production Assistant: Jaynee Goddard (Jefferson)
Cast: Hailey Craig (Trenton) and Kristine Sarasin (Plaistow, N.H.)

These productions are sponsored by Theatre UMF, the on campus student theater organization and the UMF Department of the Visual and Performing Arts.

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 Media Contact: Jayne Decker, UMF instructor of theater, at or 207-778-7319

UMF senior art students present thesis exhibition “Five to Nine,” April 13–May 13

FARMINGTON, ME  (April 6, 2017)—The University of Maine at Farmington is pleased to present “Five to Nine,” a thesis exhibition by UMF graduating senior art students. The show will run from April 13–May 13, 2017, at both the UMF Art Gallery and the Emery Community Arts Center.

An opening reception at both venues will take place from 5 to 7pm, April 13.  The exhibits are free and open to the public.

Both galleries will showcase the work of James Corcoran from Upton; D.T. Shane Cynewski from Shirley, Mass.; Laura E. Dickey from Searsport; Gabrielle Ganiere from Berwick; Tim Stokes from Auburn and Corey Wallace from Poland Spring.

"Five to Nine" exhibit poster

Five to Nine exhibits a collection of works that range conceptually through the humanization of strangers, deconstruction of nostalgia, the search for meaning, exploration of the uncanny, reflexivity of form and representation, and the exposure of consumption as an apathetic mechanism.

Mediums include photography; film; sculpture from found objects and fabrics; animation; and drawings that use charcoal, wood, paint, and string. Together, this work creates an immersive environment that reintroduces the audience to the world they thought they knew.

The 2017 senior art exhibit is sponsored by the UMF Division of the Arts.

The UMF Art Gallery is located at 246 Main Street in Farmington, behind the UMF Admission Office. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Sunday, 12 to 4 p.m. and by appointment. For more information or to make an appointment please contact Sarah Maline, UMF Art Gallery director, at or 207-778-1062

The Emery Community Arts Center is located on Academy Street, adjacent to UMF Merrill Hall.  The Emery Flex Space Gallery is open daily from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

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EDITOR’S NOTE: Photo can be found at
Photo Credit: Submitted photo

UMF Public Classroom talk asks how migration transforms people, April 18

FARMINGTON, ME  (April 5, 2017)—The University of Maine at Farmington welcomes the public to “Stories of People Moving Places,” the next presentation in the UMF Public Classroom Series by S. Olivia Donaldson, UMF assistant professor of French.

This talk takes place at 6:30 p.m. with refreshments at 6 p.m., Tuesday, April 18, in the UMF Emery Community Arts Center. It is free and open to the public.

This engaging presentation spans contemporary literature, comics, art, film and digital media as it asks how migration transforms individuals, families, communities and nations. Why do people move from one place to another? Where do they go and when? What are the risks and rewards of border crossings?

S. Olivia Donaldson

S. Olivia Donaldson

Donaldson’s research on migrant women writers has appeared in the journal, Reconstruction; is forthcoming in the journal, Contemporary Women’s Writing; and the anthology, “Where is Adaptation?”

She holds a doctorate in French from the University of Wisconsin-Madison where she was a fellow at the Institute for Research in the Humanities. Prior to her Ph.D., she earned an M.A. in History at Virginia Tech and served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Benin.

The UMF Public Classroom Series is sponsored by the UMF Office of the President.

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Media Contact: by S. Olivia Donaldson, UMF assistant professor of French, at 207-778-8154 or

EDITOR’S NOTE: Photo can be found at:
Photo Credit: Submitted photo
Photo Caption: S. Olivia Donaldson

UMF students hold “Addiction in Our Community” events, April 19

FARMINGTON, ME  (April 4, 2017)—With substance addiction a public health crisis according to a recent report by the U.S. Surgeon General, the University of Maine at Farmington is holding an “Addiction in Our Community” series of events, from 3:30 to 6 p.m., Wednesday, April 19, in the UMF Roberts Learning Center. These events are free and open to the public.

This series of events is hosted by students enrolled in UMF’s Rehabilitation and Families course that explores family response to adversities, including poverty, physical disability, addiction, mental illness and trauma and models family resilience and support.

The event will begin with an open forum, “Addiction Can’t Hide From Beaver Pride,” at 3:30 p.m., in room 023, to discuss topics related to addiction on campus and in the local community. Topics may include: the causes of addiction, warning signs, resources for families and individuals, how to combat substance addiction and more.

Simultaneously, a “Safe Space” session will be held starting at 3:45 p.m., in room 001B. This is an opportunity for anyone affected by addiction to share their feelings, experiences and thoughts. All are welcome.

The final session will offer a panel on “Addiction Advocacy and Education” where speakers will address the topic of addiction at 4:45 p.m., in Lincoln Auditorium. Panelists will include Ken Charles, detective with the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office; Kathryn Foster, UMF president; Joseph Massey, Waterville police chief; Jim Mello, director of First Light Counseling Services and  Jason Whitney, LADC and LSW at Riverview Psychiatric Center.

The presentation will be followed by a question and answer period.

Attendees will be requested to fill our a survey presented by students taking the Rehabilitation and Families course. Participation is optional.

More Information On Rehabilitation and Families Course

The UMF Rehabilitation and Families course is offered by the UMF Rehabilitation Services program and is one of a number of possible courses students can take when taking UMF’s Addiction Rehabilitation Certificate. This 22-credit certificate program first offered in fall 2015 is open to UMF students in any major. It allows students to prepare for a professional career in the addiction field while they are simultaneously pursuing their undergraduate college degree.

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Media Contact: Kim Lane, UMF instructor, at