Archive for September, 2009

Hello to all the loyal Montgazette readers out there.  Allow me to introduce myself; my name is Renee Bergandino. I am a nursing student here at the college and will be the new Editor of the paper.

This is a bittersweet moment for me.  I was lucky enough to be the managing editor of the paper with a wonderful person named Jan Dominik Kargulewicz, who was last year’s editor-and-chief.  I describe the moment as being bitter sweet since that I am more of a follower, and when Jan had approached me about being the editor, my initial response was no.

After weeks of consideration I was on the verge of saying yes, and after considering the pros and cons, I decided that becoming editor was something that I needed to do for myself and for the school.

Returning from last year will be Dennis Verbo, the paper’s amazing photography editor. With a new year and semester beginning, I look back on the end of the wonderful partnership between Jan and I, and have been truly blessed with an amazing experience.  I know for a fact that without Jan’s guidance I wouldn’t have taken the position of editor.

Looking to the future and the start of the new semester I encourage you as the reader to become part of the success of The Montgazette.  I look forward to working with my staff and to making the paper just as amazing as it has been.  I also look forward to meeting new people–so I say to all of you writers out there, come and take the challenge and become part of The Montgazette family.

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Album Review

Thursday: ‘Common Existence’

By Dennis Verbo , Montco Radio

In 2001, Thursday emerged out of the New Jersey hardcore scene and has changed music ever since. SPIN magazine named them “The Next Big Thing” with the release of “Full Collapse” eight years ago. Now Thursday is doing it again. They have changed record labels twice since 2001, and most recently they have joined Epitaph to pursue a more organic sound.

“Common Existence” is a harmonious explosion of aggressive guitar riffs and morose lyrics that bring me back for more after every listen. Thursday has achieved something great with this album by combining the messages of songs like “Friends In The Armed Forces” or “War All The Time,” with underlining angst and screams of “Paris In Flames” from their 2001 release, “Full Collapse.” As lyrics go, I believe this is Thursday’s most mature album. There is something eerily truthful when Geoff Rickly sings, “Another folded flag to a mourning mother.  He was an army of one but they’ll find another one” from  “Friends In Armed Forces.”  The band and Rickly have somehow managed to raise the bar just a little bit higher for every other band out there today. All while discovering a new sound and not giving up on their convictions within music. If there is one album to buy this year, “Common Existence” is it.

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By Kerri Hughes, Staff Writer

Montgomery County Community College could possibly become the latest institution for cutting edge arts.

A recent example for this claim is the “Chair Pillow Dance,” which took place last spring. The dance instructor for this piece, Dr. Melinda Copel, graciously allowed me to interview her on this event.

The Chair Pillow Dance was created in 1969 by the avante-garde choreographer, Yvonne Rainer, along with the Judson Dancers dance troupe. The dance was part of a bigger piece called the Continuous Project-Altered Daily. The dance developed new ways of dancing, and the message it sought out to send was that any movement could be made into a dance, and that anyone could dance. Any student, whether the individual had dance experience or not, could participate in the project. The dance certainly was not exactly easy at times. Dr. Melinda Copel assured me that the practices were exhausting at times, but the benefits were well worth all of the practices.

Together, Dr. Melinda Copel and Montgomery County Community College acquired a $10,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts American Masterpieces program. Montgomery County Community College is the only community college to receive the grant this year.

The first performance on included a pre-performance lecture, panel discussion, and question and answer forum with the performers. This project also included “Happenings,” a movement workshop created by MCCC Theatre students along with students from Eisenhower Middle School in Norristown. The performances were free to attend and staged by Leslie Rotman from the Labanotation score notated by Barbara Katz and revised by Valerie Williams Mockabee. The artistic coach for these performances was Pat Catterson.

This project was a great way to prove that, even with little to no dance training, anyone can dance.

chair pillow dance

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By Kerri Hughes, Staff Writer

The Communications students were up to their old tricks again with the 2009 Spring Semester Communicating Arts and Production Groups final screening. At the end of each semester, all the communications majors, whether they are audio, video, gaming, etc. must attend the final screening showcasing the work of themselves and their peers. This semester’s theme was “Backstage Pass.”

The bumper videos introducing the projects were in the form of a “mockumentary” of how the screening comes to be. Some highlights of the screening included The Allan Song (with Morgan), You’re So Funny Too, and Tech Service superstar, RC Cameron Hall’s Completely Damaged Footage.

Thanks to the screening, the mystery of stolen and missing equipment was solved (it was Bigfoot), and Slumpaul Millionaire made his debut. The CAPG Screening could not have happened without the help of all of the CAPG members, professors, advisors, and all of the Communications majors. It was a lot of work, but this semesters screening was a success. See you all at the fall 2009 CAPG Screening!

If you would like to see some of the CAPG videos, simply go to youtube.com and search for “MCCC Humanities.” Many of the videos are up for your viewing pleasure.

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By Brian Nichols, Online Editor

Students from Montgomery County Community College’s Short

Filmmaking course invite the community to the world premiere of “The Stranger,” an urban western set in Philadelphia.  The premiere will take place on Wednesday, Sept. 16 at 7 p.m. at The Ambler Theater, 108 E. Butler Ave., Ambler.  The screening cost $5 general admission or $4.75 for MCCC students with valid ID. The event is open to the public.

The 40-minute film revolves around a “Man with No Name” who walks into town and tries to save a working girl from her pimp. The plot leads down a dark path involving gang fights, shoot outs, betrayals and, ultimately, redemption. Written and directed by MCCC Communications student Brendan Joyce, the film stars Jeremy Beitler as The Stranger, Sami Cojocariu as Elle, Frank Fierle as Christian, and Steven Kane as The Mick.

The class met under the direction of Adjunct Communication Instructor Mike Wagner. The crew consisted of Joyce as writer and director; Harry Yanoshak as producer/first assistant director; Leslie Kobzina as unit production manager; Yani Payne as director of photography; Jerry Collom as production designer/colorist; Paul Vidas as sound designer; Kyle Pasquino as editor/gaffer; Matthew McClanahan as composer/first assistant camera: Michael Liberatore as composer/boom operator; Kerri Hughes as art director; and Heather Massey as script supervisor/assistant video editor.

The Short Filmmaking course was a pilot project made possible by a grant from the Montgomery County Community College Foundation. Deemed a success, the course will become part of the College’s regular course offerings beginning spring 2010.

In addition to “The Stranger,” other short works from MCCC students and alumni will be shown at the screening on Sept. 16.

2008 Five Day Film Festival entry “neuRomance” is a five-minute horror film about a young man looking for his lost girlfriend. The film won the Best Sound Award in the festival, with MCCC student Shawn Vela as sound designer. The striking visuals are provided Director of Photography Brett Williams, one of the most talented up-and-coming filmmakers in the region.

MCCC’s own music sensation Shawn Vela, aka Shawn V, will make his big-screen debut with the showing of his fourth music video. He teams up with Tres to give his fans something new, both visually and lyrically, with his new hit single “Invisible.”

Rounding out the evening, Writer/Director Kyle Pasquino will debut the trailer for his upcoming short film “Devotion to the Kill 2,” which is due out this winter. The film is a sequel to his hit short horror film from last spring, “Devotion to the Kill.”

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MCCC Athletics Report

Former Montgomery County Community College baseball standout Andrew Miller had a career game April 29 against Johns Hopkins.  The former 2006-2007 Mustangs’ MVP catcher went 4-for-6, blasting three home runs, scoring five times, driving in five RBIs, and stealing two bases. Miller had a two-run home run in the second inning, a three-run blast in the seventh, and a solo home run in the ninth.  The two stolen bases during the Johns Hopkins game gave Miller twenty-six stolen bases on the year.

Miller has played in 38 games for the Sea Gulls this season, batting .343 with nine home runs, forty-four RBIs, and a perfect 26-for-26 in stolen bases.  Alex is also ranked second on the team in both OBP with a .539 average and fielding with a .988 average.

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