october 2011. Volume Xxv. Issue II
A Higher Power
Seeking the way forward for the King's chaplaincy FYP tutor Dr. Matthew Furlong on King's spiritual centre 1
Cover Photo by Alex Estey The University of Kin’gs College | 6350 Coburg Road | Halifax NS | B3H 2A1 | email@example.com | Twitter @KingsWatch 2
Table of Contents october 2011. Volume Xxv. Issue II
Editors’ Note Letters to the Editor King’s Briefs No such thing as a free lunch Niko Bell High Score Siobhan Fleury Changing of the Guard James Jenkinson A Future for Faith? Rachel Ward Drumming up success Frances Dorenbaum A passion for the planet Alex Estey Occupation Courtney Greenburg Haunted Hall Daniel Boltinsky Installation Sensation Open Season Seana Stevenson Worth Saving Dr. Matthew Furlong Editors-In- Chief Evelyn Hornbeck Charlotte Harrison
general manager Bethany Hindmarsh
3 4 6 7 8 10 12 16 17 18 18 19 20 22
Board of Publishers
James Shields, Dave Etherington, Paul Pritchard, Nick Gall, Alex Boutilier, Fred Vallance-Jones
Online Editor Jon Finn
But if the watchman see the sword come, and sound not the trumpet, and the people not be warned; if the sword come, and take any person from among them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at the watchman’s hand - Ezekiel 33:6
Editors’ Note money’s tight everywhere Occupy movements across North America have proven that there’s a growing concern for how money is being spent by the guys who drive big wooden desks (p.18), but cash is a cause for concern around campus, too. The King’s chapel is being squeezed and forced to prove its relevancy in the face of cuts from the Dicocese. Rachel Ward investigates (p.12), while FYP tutor Dr. Matthew Furlong contemplates whether this relic of King’s past has a place in a materialistic present (p.22). Finances are foggy for the newly student-owned KSU canteen, as well. The union is working towards a sustainable business model while facing an up-front cost that’s hard to swallow (p.7). Plus, they’re juggling hefty funding requests from the larger King’s societies (p.6) , while the orchestra is trying to continue putting on concerts with less than they need (p.8). Even here at The Watch, we’ve had a money conundrum. Wondering why you didn’t see the September issue around campus until mid-October? We got tied up in some invoices from last year and our printer was less than pleased...but you should expect timely copies from now on! If all this talk of money leaves you craving a big fat cheque, consider writing for The Watch next month—that’s right, we’ll pay you! (Although ‘big’ and ‘fat’ may not be an entirely accurate representation of our rumination.) Hit us up at firstname.lastname@example.org, or come by our contributors’ meetings at no extra cost! Feedback and pitches are always encouraged. Fiscally yours, Evelyn Hornbeck and Charlotte Harrison
Letters to the editor ON KING’S FINANCIAL FUTURE
Dear students and fellow kingspeople, We are in threatening fiscal straits. Currently, a group called the Financial Sustainability Committee (FSC), put together by President Leavitt, is tasked with navigating King’s into calmer waters. Soon, they will be hosting town hall meetings and consultations, with the goal of making recommendations to the Board of Governors by the new year. KSU President Hoogers will sit on the committee as a student representative, and you can be sure that he will put your interests first. But in solving our problems, we shouldn’t forget how they came to be in the first place. A lack of a long-term vision for King’s over the past decade has cost us dearly; we have deferred until we can defer no longer. In order to act responsibly now, we must consider how our short-term actions fit into a broader long-term vision. President Leavitt will no doubt speak of shared sacrifice in the coming months, and justifiably so; we can find a way forward only if we accommodate our interests with those of faculty and staff, and find common ground. One such instance should be lobbying the provincial government, which in the face of cuts to education posted a surplus last year. I trust that President Leavitt will not take umbrage with this course of action, if she truly places the future of King’s first and foremost. However, such an action is only one of the many ways King’s can go in order to achieve lasting financial security— and that shall only be accomplished when we as a school have a coherent vision of our broader future. We BoG Reps know that you have your own such vision of how King’s can continue on, and we want to hear it. From the shortest suggestion to the richest proposal, send your ideas to email@example.com. We will present the best to the committee, and map out the destination that the students of King’s desire. Yours forever faithfully, Daniel Brown Nick Stark
ON THE CHAPLAINCY’S FUTURE
I am a King’s alumna writing to express my sincere concern for and support of the University of King’s College chapel. The University of King’s College chapel follows a model that makes it accessible and beloved to the community it serves. Easter midnight mass was always a particular highlight for me, as well as my peers. I remember being filled with a sense of solidarity and community each time I, a Catholic, would sit nestled between Anglicans and Anabaptists, Buddhists, Jews and Pagans to experience this annual celebration of renewal and regeneration. It was the High Anglican nature
of these services that had brought all of us into the chapel to celebrate. Had the Easter midnight mass been one bit less ritualistic, one bit less sensual or culturally specific, I am confident many of us would have chosen not to attend. We would have gone to our own celebrations with our own faith communities. We would have missed out. As a queer woman, I’m also unimpressed with what I perceive to be a lack of understanding of the importance of the Chapel’s spiritual services to queer people and allies at King’s. Does she think that will I only feel comfortable in church if God uses feminine pronouns? Because some of us who go to King’s are gay/bi/genderqueer/women/whatever do we need our hands held and our books made more alternative? This attempt to be ‘hip to the new generation’ is actually gross pandering, and makes me feel disrespected. What I needed—and received—during my studies at King’s was not a trendy new method of service but a place for spiritual reflection, one that saw me as more than just ‘a gay’ or ‘a woman’ or ‘a youth’ who needs the Bishop’s condescension. I found some of my greatest friends and community connections, directly or indirectly, through the Chapel. It was a space for philosophical, and theological thought, but it was also a place for hot apple cider, storytelling, songs and community. Rather than trying to “unantiquate” the traditions we love, I would suggest that King’s chapel community be celebrated for its diversity and pride in the services we cherish the way they are. Katie Toth
on the canteen’s future
Over the last month, a group of eight students and the KSU’s Internal Coordinator John Adams have been working full steam ahead, towards creating a business plan for the potential student run canteen in the Wardroom. We are writing this letter to reassure you that our proposal will have the interest you expressed during the Sodexo boycott at its heart. By the time this letter is released we will have already held one town hall to get your input on how this new space will serve you, we encourage you to continue to engage with the development of the canteen to ensure it represents the needs of all students and community members. The needs we are putting at the forefront of our plan include: that it be accountable to and democratically controllable by its members, that it have an equitable business practice, that it ensure autonomy from corporate profit-making structures, that is possess a fair and healthy work environment, that it engages students on environmental and social justice issues through food, that it serve as a model for a healthy and honest working relationship with the College Administration, and that it abides by ethical practices.
Letters to the editor Of course those six points will govern the sales of our canteen; but we will never forget that above and beyond we must serve affordable, nourishing and tasty food. In closing we would just like to thank all those in the community who have stood in solidarity with the Students’ Union during this exciting project. We look forward to the possibility of serving you your morning muffins and coffee in the New Year. Yours truly, Anna Dubinski, David Etherington, Omri Haven, Gabe Hoogers, Lyon Lay, Juliana Lufkin, Kai Miller and Noah White
ON Fact Checking
I am writing to clarify several misleading and erroneous claims in the article "Presidential Priorities" by Rachel Ward (Sept. 30, 2011). Among the many errors, the most egregious is that the President of King's "sits as the chair of the Carnegie Trust." Had the reporter done some basic research, she would have discovered there is no "chair" of the Carnegie Trust. King's indeed has Carnegie professors who teach at Dalhousie. Income from the Trust subsidizes their salaries. President Leavitt does not teach at Dalhousie and is not a Carnegie professor. She is a King's associate professor of humanities in keeping with her background and qualifications. As for the pension claim that "school contributions will jump to 30 per cent from the current 22 per cent", this is unsubstantiated speculation and would not happen until a fulsome discussion and ratification of staff and faculty. Again, some basic research and informed questions would have revealed this. Such sloppy reporting does not reflect well on the credibility of the publication and its hard-working volunteer reporters. I would urge editors of The Watch to embrace the foundations of journalism - thoroughness, fairness, accuracy and transparency (D. Gillmor, 2005) and check those facts. Sincerely, Kim Kierans Vice President Dear Editors of the King’s Watch, Last spring I was interviewed by Whitney Cant for a brief on fire safety issues in the Pit, which appeared in the April issue of your newspaper. I feel as if I must publish a clarification to the piece which could otherwise have serious financial and legal implications for the King’s Theatrical Society. On asking me, the Treasurer of the King’s Theatrical Society, what role we would play financially in renovations to ensure the
Pit meets fire code, Cant records me answering as follows“Etherington is quick to point out that the KTS is fully committed to doing their part to assist the university in addressing the fire regulations. He says that it is a joint responsibility between King’s and the KTS to make the Pit a safe performance and spectator space.” I’m sorry to say that this is not what I said. On the first I would like to say that it is neither the opinion of me nor of the King’s Theatrical Society that the responsibility of bringing the Pit up to fire code is a joint one. That responsibility rests solely with our senior administration and the board of governors. The King’s Theatrical Society will do its best to assist, but out of a duty to the space we love and the thespians that will follow us, not because we are liable to do so. This error by Ms. Cant is serious, and the claim she has me falsely making come with serious potential financial and legal liabilities. I would encourage her in the future to stick to what her interviewees said when writing on such a serious topic. Dave Etherington
ON HPX PHOTOGRAPHERS
Just writing to air my grievances about the lack of professionalism displayed by the photographers at this year’s Halifax Pop Explosion. Halifax has seen as lot of independent news sources popping up in the past few years and, although I think that these initiatives are good, they seem to have created a niche for mediocre event coverage. At every show I have been to this year, the photographers and cameramen have been front row centre, cameras high in the air, blocking off the vision and standing room of the actual paying concert-goers. At one show a cameraman was literally standing in the middle of a sweaty dance party stock-still, filming the show. Not only are these people taking the best spots to get their coverage, often they are staying there for three-quarters of the set. It is distracting, rude and irritating. These photographers should be trying their best to be invisible. During one slow and soulful performance at the St. Matthew’s church, a ghostly figure popped up from behind the stage in order to get a shot of the crowd; I literally jumped out of my seat! In another at Reflections Cabaret, photographers made up two-thirds of the front row. So my message to all the journalists or future journalist at our school: your press pass is not simply a way to watch a free show in the front row, it signifies a job which you should be doing professionally. Journalists should not be affecting the success of an event they are covering. Veronica Curran 5
King’s Briefs Society Funding
The KSU has approved two large society funding requests already this year. The King’s College Orchestra received $3,500 and the King’s Theatrical Society got $3,400 of the $24,150 society funding budget for the year. The orchestra applied for $5,000 in funding, which would make up over 20 per cent of the society budget, but the council cut the request over what was considered an unreasonable $1,200 for a timpani purchase and out of concern for stretching the budget, especially so early in the year. “We need to be careful in allocating this massive amount of funding,” said Nick Gall, union financial vice-president, adding, “We cannot justify spending 21 per cent” of society funding on one society. Artistic Director Faye Bontje said the orchestra plays down how much funding it gets from the student union since they know that other societies don’t get as much. The King’s Theatrical Society’s $3,400 will be used to purchase rolls of stage flooring to make the Red Room a viable performance space. They will also buy a paint storage locker to come up to fire code. The KTS received the same amount last year. According to Gall, 30-35 per cent of the society funding budget for the year has been allocated already. “Generally speaking, societies with a large number of participating students, as well as events consistently well-attended by a wide student demographic, like the KTS and the KCO, will receive more funding,” said Stefanie Bliss, member-at-large on the union council. She’s not concerned about the spending. “While the KSU would not be able to continue allocating funding at its current rate, the rate at which funding is requested will likely drop naturally over the next month or so,” she said.
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The King’s College Chapel was vandalised on the night of Monday, October 3, between 11:00 p.m. and 1:30 a.m. Vandals used fire extinguishers to cover the inside of the chapel with white, powdery residue. It covered many worship items, including holy icons. Students arriving for the 8 a.m. morning prayer discovered the mess. Clean-up costs were estimated at $7,000-$10,000 dollars. Police were on campus investigating the incident on October 4. The space was closed for cleaning for 13 days. Services continued in the day bay, a tent set up outside the chapel, and the Pit, offered by the King’s Theatrical Society. In an email circulated to the school on October 5, King’s Chaplain Father Dr. Gary Thorne wrote, “There is no indication that the assault was motivated by misguided religious fervor, but rather by a more general attempt to destroy and vandalize.”
No such thing as aKSU writes freeCanteenlunch business plan
By Niko Bell
Since the success of the boycott, he KSU’s food advisory committee has been rushing to table a business plan for the new King’s canteen on Halloween. It will list more inevitabilities than choices. They must create a model that satisfies the competing demands of feasibility, bureaucracy, and their own mission of ethical and sustainable food. In a meeting on October 18, at which the speakers only barely outnumbered the audience, the KSU canteen committee explained what would have to be done. Before opening the doors on the new canteen, the KSU must buy or rent it from the administration. The administration has asked the KSU for $75,000 up front, plus $5,000 a year for maintenance. KSU Student Life VP Anna Dubinski said that the maintenance fee was reasonable, but that the initial cost was “fairly ridiculous.” The KSU will make a counter offer along with their business plan. Bizarrely, Dubinski joked later in the meeting how convenient it was that the canteen space had “just appeared.” Either way, starting up the canteen will take money, and lots of it. On top of the cost of the space, Noah White and Lyon Lay estimated that start up and initial food costs will be over $40,000. While nobody would confirm a student levy, loans or KSU funds won’t cover start-up costs. A new canteen will almost certainly mean students pitching in. As for the food, the options are equally limited. The KSU lacks the money, infrastructure and organization to make their own food at King’s. That means prepared food will come through Local Source, the only food provider that satisfies the KSU’s limited budget and ethical standards. While getting food from the farmer’s market would be nice, committee member Kai Miller said, “that would mean juggling a dozen contracts at a time.” While the KSU hopes to make their own food for the canteen in the future, that is unlikely to happen soon. The organization of the canteen, said KSU External VP Omri Haiven, will be a “cooperative within a business within a union.” Simply put, that means that King’s students will likely pay for the canteen through the student union, and be rewarded with discounts and the right to vote on the canteen’s activities. It also means that the KSU could be on the hook if the canteen loses money. Internal Coordinator John Adams, who has done much of the heavy lifting on the business plan, points to the Wardroom as an example of how the canteen could succeed. The Wardroom’s advantage is that it does not have to make money. “Even with minimal margins, It’s still turning a profit,” he
said. “I don’t know why we couldn’t do that at the other side of the room.” The KSU committee will meet with the administration’s committee later this week. Next, the KSU plans to ask students for their input on the business plan. It is difficult to see, however, many major decisions that are still open to serious change. The largest fork in the road that was presented at the meeting was the choice between Just Us and Java Blend as a coffee provider. Once the canteen committee’s mandate is finished, however, it will be up to students to keep the canteen running. “We are going to get this started, but then we are going to hand it over to you,” Adams said. “Good luck.”
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The King's College Orchestra combines classical and indie music By Siobhan Fleury The air was abuzz with excitement at St. Andrew’s United Church on the evening of Monday, October 17, where the King’s College Orchestra joined forces with local indie musicians Nick Everett and Willie Stratton. The concert, Inventions, captivated its audience, earning an enthusiastic standing ovation. The concert consisted of ten songs, ranging from mellow to upbeat. The first five pieces were performed by Nick Everett on vocals and guitar, while Willie Stratton took center stage for the second half of the performance. Stratton was backed up by Everett, as well as Grace Stratton and Magnus von Tiesenhausen, his sister and cousin. The KCO provided accompaniment that transitioned fluidly between haunting and energetic. The orchestra included string, brass, woodwind and percussive instruments, and the students occasionally joined in on vocals for an uplifting effect. John Bogardus, the orchestra’s Artistic Director, animatedly conducted the entire ensemble. Inventions was initially envisioned by Faye Bontje, the executive director of the KCO, who hoped to add a performance with an intimate feel to this year’s concert series. She called on local musician Everett to help realize her idea. Everett suggested contacting Stratton as another contributor, and in collaboration with orchestra conductor John Bogardus, the two musicians transformed ten original pieces into complete orchestral scores. According to Bontje, roadblocks such as computer malfunctions meant that Bogardus was on three occasions required to reproduce months’ worth of work under extremely tight time limits. But in the end, each song came together beautifully. Over the course of roughly nine hours of rehearsal, the 70-odd members of the King’s College Orchestra learned and practiced the modified pieces. When he introduced the orchestra prior to the performance, John Bogardus predicted that Inventions would be “unlike any pop concert you have ever been to.” “The contemporary style of music is something you can get a lot more involved with and something you want to move to,” 8
said Hannah Ehler, a first-year student and violinist with the orchestra. Ehler has been playing the violin for three years, but the KCO is her first orchestra. “Because I’ve never played with a group before at all, it’s a great way to get into it,” Ehler commented. “It was just really great music.” The orchestra practices two hours each week, along with additional hour-long sectional rehearsals. According to Ehler, conductor John Bogardus does a formidable job of running the practices. “He gets so into the music,” she explained. “He just feels it, and it’s impossible not to feel it yourself.” Aiding with rehearsals are upper strings coach Jeff Komar, lower strings coach Dan Wheeler, and brass coach Rod MacGillivray. The KCO was founded by Bontje and Bogardus in the fall of 2010. As the orchestra’s executive director and manager, Bontje does most of the administrative work and organization. According to Bontje, keeping an orchestra on its feet is both time-consuming and costly. The KCO receives significant financial support from the King’s Student Union; however, projections show that they may have a shortfall this year. Much of the funds are put towards coaching. This includes paying for guest instructors, as well as private lessons for some students. The orchestra must also cover the costs of their various concerts, as well as a camp that Seana Stevensonwill be launched during the summer of 2012. The orchestra receives its revenue primarily through ticket sales, as well as from various grants, donations, the KSU and fund-raising activities. Inventions left audience members impressed with the talent and versatility of the KCO. “It was really original, a breath of fresh air,” said Alexandra Cooke. “I’m really looking forward to seeing more shows in the future.” The KCO’s next performance is Monday, Nov. 28 at St. Andrew’s United Church. The concert, entitled Landscapes, will feature the work of Beethoven and Borodin. The King’s Symphonic Wind Ensemble, a group new to King’s this year, will also be performing. Visit the KCO online at kcohalifax.com
Changing of the Guard Five fresh faces on the KSU council By James Jenkinson. Photos By Alex Estey. Full Name: Emily Novaczek Title: Science Representative Major: Biology and Sustainability Political Idol: Evo Morales Campaign Platform: “I want to represent science students at council and create a space for people who enjoy science or who are taking science. I think creating the discussion on science is important at King’s. I felt sort of excluded in my first year as a science student at King’s. For example, there was nobody else who was ever studying for the same chemistry mid-term. I know it can feel like you’re disconnected from the school’s resources, and I want to provide support for the science students who feel that way.” Relevant Experience: “I feel the connections I have to the science community at Dalhousie and in Halifax qualify me for this position. I work with a group called Supernova through Dalhousie where I design and deliver science curriculum for grades one through 12. In the winter, I am curriculum director for a group called ITS (Industry Technology Science) For Girls, and what we do is set up workshops for young girls with women working in science so they can get to see really cool presentations and do hands-on activities.” Words to Students: “If you want to be involved in the Science Society, I’ll be in the KSU on Wednesday afternoons and you should definitely come see me. Also my greatest fear is having something stuck in my teeth. I am terrified of that moment when someone tells you about it and you realize you haven’t had a meal in an hour.”
Full Name: Dylan Anderson Title: Arts Representative Major: Political Science Political Idol: Jack Layton Campaign Platform: “The main thing I was advocating in my campaign was getting students to voice their opinions on the school. I would like to get Contemporary Studies and Early Modern Studies recognized as good programs. As the year goes on, I want to find out what the issues with these students are and try to fix them.” Relevant Experience: “My credentials range from being a team participant in King’s rugby to the executive society at Dalhousie. I’m also a member of Repair Our World (ROW) and in high school I managed three societies, so I know how to get things done. I’ve never had any student body experience, but I know how to get people’s voices out there and I am dedicated to the cause. I haven’t missed a class or a rugby practice this year.” Words to Students: “I try and get involved in everything at King’s and I’m always on campus. So if anybody ever sees me around campus they should just say ‘Hi,’ and if you ever want anything done at the school, just find me. I’m there for all students and my main goal is to get the word across.”
Full Name: Micheala Sam Title: First-year representative Program: FYP Political Idol: Napolean
Relevant Experience: “I was lucky to be really involved in high school. I was spirit committee head of student council. I have the organizational skills to plan events. I’m interested in making res life better.”
Campaign Platform: “I think serving our year and making sure our voice isn’t forgotten in everything is my main goal in the coming months. When a lot of upper-years move out of residence, I feel they forget about problems among first-years. I want to make sure issues regarding the internet, meal hall hours and recycling are dealt with accordingly.”
Words to Students: “I am a very approachable person and people shouldn’t feel uncomfortable about coming to talk to me.”
Full Name: Stefanie Bliss Title: Member-at-Large Program: BSC, combined honours in Biology and HOST Political Idol: Winston Churchill Campaign Platform: “I think that one of the elements of the member-at-large position that hasn’t been taken advantage of by previous representatives is that you’re there, to a certain extent, to act as a watch dog of the executive. I want to make sure the executive is practicing things according to the will of the union. It’s not that I want to be antagonising the executive all year; I just want to be there to remind them. Also, we’ve been talking a lot on council this past year about different marginalized groups on campus. Considering the number of females at King’s, the ratio of women to men who are involved with committees is quite surprisingly male-heavy. It is my hope that during the course of the year I can have a positive impact on the way women are able to interact with the Union, and also how King’s integrates people with mental health issues.” Relevant Experience: “I have a lot of familiarity with the procedural handbook and the constitution, which I think is really important, in this position especially, in order to interact with the executive in a positive way, an understanding of these guidelines is important. I also have some familiarity with mental health issues, as I suffered from disordered eating when I was younger, and can relate to people who have trouble talking about these things. I feel this makes me more accessible. I really want to focus this year on making people realize that lots of people go through these things.” Words to Students: “I just really hope that students can see me as a sounding board and someone who’s available to talk. I love to talk and everything that students say to me will have weight.”
Full Name: Jennifer Graham Title: Journalism Representative Program: One-year Bachelor of Journalism Political Idol: My grandmother
Campaign Platform: “I really feel like the journalism students are a cohesive unit, and it’s all really intense for everybody. I wanted to be that person who brought everyone together and relieved stress. Because journalists spend a lot of time working on their own, asking questions, interviewing people, I feel like they don’t get together enough. I would like to have more group gatherings and events like a yoga class or a ski trip to bring journalists together.” Relevant Experience: “In terms of people, I’m bubbly and outgoing. I have a number of training certifications such as my yoga certification. These things aren’t necessarily political tools, but they’re things where I had to hold my own to do them. If we’re talking about being yourself and being empowered, I learned that through yoga. I don’t have a lot of fear, and I learned that through CrossFit. I truly believe that everything you want is just outside your comfort zone. You have to show up and suck before you can show up and shine.” Words to Students: “I really hope that people come and talk to me about things. I really hope that people come to see me, whether it’s an issue inside or outside the school, or even if they just need a hug. It would be great to get to know a lot of the journalism students, and I really look forward to that. And please, if you’re a journalism student, come to the office and introduce yourself because if you’re not in the one-year program, there’s a good chance that I will now know you.”
A Future For Faith? A funding cut threatens a foundational institution at King's By Rachel Ward. Father Dr. Gary Thorne stands at the door of the King’s chapel as students leave after the nighttime compline service. After singing and holding candles in the dark, everyone is quiet. Thorne reaches out for each person’s hand and grasps tightly, letting go as they leave. Some stay behind for silent prayer. It’s these students, along with many King’s staff and community members, who have been upset since a letter was sent on September 8 to Dr. Anne Leavitt, president of King’s. Thorne’s boss, Bishop Sue Moxley of the Anglican Dioceses of Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island, sent the letter after a meeting she had with Leavitt to discuss the chaplaincy. On behalf of the Diocesan Council, the managing committee, Moxley asked Leavitt to strike a Board of Governors committee to reconsider the value of the chapel, and decide how King’s could start paying half of Thorne’s salary. The letter’s contents leaked to the students within the month. “These people are making a decision without really realizing who’s being affected,” said Jordan Draper, a chapel member since his first year and now the Sacristan, in charge of preparing for the services. “For myself as well as for most people I know, you go through some kind of crisis during these years, whether it has to do with your family, or your health, or whatever, and chances are, you don’t have someone you can talk to,” he said after the compline service. “I’ve certainly relied on Father Thorne. There are things I’ve shared with him that I hadn’t had anyone else that I could talk to about that way. I’m not unusual in this because he’s the chaplain and there’s that supportive place.”
The Chaplaincy and King’s
Thorne holds two separate positions, one as the Anglican Chaplain at the Dalhousie/King’s Multi-faith Centre, and the other as the King’s Chaplain and chapel priest-in-charge. “When we’ve had appointments to chaplaincy, there are always two hiring committees, and they get coordinated,” said Dr. Neil Robertson, a King’s professor. “In the past, I’ve been on both committees to ensure that we actually wind up with the same person getting the two jobs.” The Dioceses pays the university chaplaincy position, as each denomination or religion pays for the centre’s other three full-time chaplains and the ten part-time ones. King’s pays a small honorarium for the King’s job, said Robertson. The Watch has filed a Freedom of Information request to the President’s Office for the details of that arrangement. “The issue that King’s is facing is that the Dioceses is saying, “We are not able to fully fund a university chaplaincy,” which in a certain way, we have been getting benefit from because that has allowed somebody to also be chaplain at King’s. Now, obviously, we’re also providing a benefit to that chaplaincy because we’re making accessible and paying the upkeep for and funding the chapel and its work,” said Robertson, referring to the $30,000 budgeted by King’s in support of the chapel. As part of his job, Thorne runs faith services, organizes and participates in group projects and campus activities, offers counseling and promotes social justice and volunteering to students and faculty. King’s has long had a chaplain on campus, and for many years, Anglican clergy were trained at King’s. This changed in 1971, when the Atlantic School of Theology was formed by Anglican, United and Roman Catholic ministry training schools. King’s represented the Anglican Church of Canada in that partnership.
Continued on Page 14
The first Save the King's Chaplaincy Facebook Group formed
2008 Dioceses budgets for $35,400 towards King's/ Dal Chaplain, but ends up paying full amount of $70,546
Sept 8 Oct 3
Bishop Sue Moxley writes a letter to Dr. Anne Leavitt, UKC President Moxley asks for a committee to consider the Chapel’s value to the university and look at how King’s could contribute half of Chaplain’s salary, ($78,860, including benefits)
Chaple vandalized. Damage est. $7,000$10,000, paid for from Chapel budget ($30,000/year)
Oct 16 KSU Board Meeting Gabe says a committee had been formed to discuss funding possibilities for chaplain position
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Jolanta writes a letter to the President, which she also posts on Facebook.
Leavitt writes an open letter responding to Jolanta's, in which she states support for the Chapel
Oct 19 Thorne writes letter to students, correcting and addressing Jolanta's letter and thanking students for their support
Thorne meets with Chapel community members.
Chapel Wardens write a letter to Facebook group, mentions a "tentative solution"
Oct 21 Bishop met with Dalhousie, said by email that she plans to ask Dalhousie for financial help for the Chaplain job.
Dal/Kingâ€™s Multifaith Centre
President's Instillation. Facebook group encourages students go in order to support the President
Chapel Fall Retreat
End of full funding by Dioceses, according to the bishop's Sept. 8 letter 13
since then, he’s watched it grow. King’s still receives some funding each year from an exter“I think that where the chapel is now, which is not where nally held trust fund called the Forrester Foundation, dating back it’s always been, but where it is now, it’s in an extraordinary to when clergy were trained at King’s. It must be given directly place, in terms of the life of college and the kind of striving for to the Dioceses, which then uses the donation to help AST. The Bishop still sits on the King’s Board of Governors as the “visitor”, excellence in music and intellectual and spiritual development. It’s in a golden age. It would be tragic to undercut all of that a role common in British institutions to give counsel or advice. At King’s, the Visitor also administers the Visitor’s fund, and Ger- because, you know, we can’t get our financial house in order ry Smith, the school bursar, said all details of which are held by to support it.” the Dioceses. The other institutional ties remaining between the schools is that a King’s faculty member sits on AST’s board of governors, a position Robertson currently holds, and that King’s The Bishop’s letter outlines six points of “background” inforhas a chaplain. mation regarding the chaplaincy, including reasons behind the The chapel now is designed as a multi-faith chapel, hosting funding cut. These reasons don’t appear to echo the sentiment worship of many religions including Judasim and Islam, and is expressed by Robertson. meant to include the entire King’s community. “There have been suggestions that this model of chaplaincy Since 2009, the Diocesan Council has rated the university is no longer appropriate, that the style of worship is antiquated chaplaincy as low-priority, and it cut the position’s funding in and the chapel maintains a male-dominated clergy,” reads the half, said Moxley in an interview with The Watch on Oct. 13. letter. Her letter says a fundraising drive called the Bishops’ Action Moxley said these suggestions come from members of the Appeal has provided the other half. Diocesan Council, not herself. In the interview, she said only $15,000 was raised the first “I think he’s doing what we asked him to do, but the quesyear of the drive, and nothing the next, so the Dioceses ended tion is the perception of people who up paying the rest of the amount. aren’t on campus,” she said, citing the “It is not a thing that has had appeal school’s choral program based in the for people to contribute to,” she said. chapel, and the new orchestra and wind “So, for two years, we absorbed the ensemble, started by chapel members. other half, which meant we were very She preaches on campus at least once a close to being in a deficit position.” year, she said. The total yearly salary and benefits for “And I don’t know if students look the Chaplaincy position costs $78,860, carefully at what the words… of the said Moxley. She declined to provide prayers that they say and what the words documentation. The Dioceses budget of the prayers say about the society shows that it budgeted for $35,400 in around them,” she said. For her, theology 2008, but actually spent $70,546 on should fit with where you live. the Multifaith Centre position. “One of the glaring bits for me one Moxley said by email that she did year was King’s graduation and singing plan to ask Dalhousie for funding as well, this song that had in it about doing things but in a later email, she said her meeting for your country and not asking any queswith administration had been cancelled. tions… and I thought, ‘Good heavens, Dalhousie does not pay for clergy of these parents just paid four years’ worth any religion and only provides the Multiof tuition for these people to learn how to Father Dr. Gary Thorne faces an uncertain future at King’s faith Centre infrastructure. ask the right questions and we’re singing “It isn’t Dalhousie saying we have to have this person; it’s a song that says, “Don’t ever ask any questions; just do it.”‘“ the King’s connection,” said Moxley. Thorne sat down for an interview on Oct. 18, and at that time, he had not seen the letter. He has worked in the Diocese for 32 years. “The first I heard about this letter… I happened to be away, The Board of Governors committee has been formed, followdoing college business… I happened to be in Quebec City. ing the request of Moxley, but not to reconsider the value of the chaplaincy. Instead, the committee takes up the second request, I got a telephone call, telling me about this. Wow. Telling me about this, about this letter, telling me about the things the to present to her a funding arrangement by the end of 2011. bishop said about me,” he said. “We’ve been asked simply, ‘Can we find the means to He paused and his voice dropped as he started to explain ensure the continued funding of the arrangement we presently one part that stung: the charge that the clergy is male-dominathave?’” said Robertson, who sits on the committee with King’s Student Union President Gabe Hoogers and fellow board mem- ed. “You can imagine. I was devastated. I mean, what do you ber Mary Martin. think when false accusations are made about you and you “I don’t see any need to establish an overarching question can’t respond? Why can’t you respond? Because it’s all over about, ‘Should this be?’ I’m rather of the view that, ‘It is good. Why don’t we try a way to allow it to be a continuing good?’” campus. What do I do? Go around to every room and knock on every door and say, ‘Look, I want you to know I’m not a Robertson has been involved in the chapel since he was a bigot, even though the Bishop has suggested this?’” King’s student in “the dark ages of the 1980s,” he said, and Alex Estey
The Board’s response
Bishop Moxley had not called Thorne first to discuss writing the letter, nor about the funding request. By the time of the interview with Thorne, she had offered to meet with him to discuss it. Thorne would later write a letter to the chapel community. In it, he wrote that women priests run holy communion services weekly, participate in solemn eucharist as liturgical deacons and sub deacons, they preach, perform priestly function at morning and evening prayer, and that he has sought out female theological students studying for priesthood to do her placement at Dal/ King’s. “The chapel does not maintain a maledominated clergy. Indeed, some students find the very use of the language of ‘maledomination’ offensive. The notion that there is no gender equality in the chapel has distressed students, not only because it is false but because others in the university who do not attend chapel are given the impression of a systemic oppression in a part of the university.” Students, such as Veronica Curran, a former chapel warden, have written in opposition to this suggestion in the Bishop’s letter on a recently formed Facebook group, “Save the Chapel”. “The idea that the chapel is ‘male-dominated’ is an insult to all of us who have played a major role in its life and growth. Is the diocese trying to say that my contribution is inadequate?” Curran wrote. ”For the four years that I have been here we have had two female wardens out of three every year.” One alternative Moxley presents in her letter is a part-time Anglican chaplain position, such as that at Acadia University in Wolfville. The job is done by a local parish priest who spends some days each week on campus. Thorne said it wouldn’t be true to the nature of a college chapel, and that the same amount of work would simply not get done. He said the serious, intellectual worship offered by college chapels attracts students and creates the King’s community, of which he says his colleagues at Dal are envious. The suggestion of “antiquated worship” was central to his letter as well. He told students that while many consider the chapel services beautiful and inspiring, the bishop passed along his suggestion so they can be aware of the perception and perhaps revise their worship, advice in line with her role as the spiritual leader. “We must consider her counsel sincerely,” Thorne wrote.
"It’s in a golden age. It would be tragic to undercut all of that"
The “Save the Chapel” Facebook group had more than 500 people by the end of its first day. Many have sent letters to Bishop Moxley and to the president. Jolanta Lorenc, chapel member, sent a letter, criticizing the administration for not openly supporting the chapel. It sparked a response from President Leavitt, who said she supports the chapel, Thorne, and will support the committee’s decision on how to fund the chaplaincy. Thorne wrote in his letter that he credits Lorenc’s letter and the activity online with starting a dialogue between the King’s community and those involved in this decision. Gabe Hoogers said the funding committee has several options and now is finalizing details. They’ll hold a town hall by mid-November to present the ideas to the community and get feedback. “If they need to make cuts, they need to make cuts. I hope they allow young people to look them in the eye and tell them how they’ve come to know God through this place. At least, that’s what I would hope,” said Thorne, who says he has six or seven students who are considering priesthood. “We do use compline service that basically comes from the sixth century, but we do that in a chapel in a university where the first texts that they read in Foundation Year come from the third millennium before Christ, Samarians, and all the way through.” He jumps out of his seat, gesturing at a painting on his wall, all of blues and whites, starkly contrasting orange fire on a frozen lake: early morning prayer. “Is this an antiquated worship? This is, an artist painted this on our retreat last winter, right. There I am, just outside of Keji, on a frozen lake at 7 o’clock in the morning, the sun just coming up, with students there. Is that antiquated worship? Is that old fashioned?”
Drumming up success King’s grad makes his way at the Pop Explosion By Frances Dorenbaum
Photo Curtesy of Tynan Dunfield Dunfield has come a long way since he began his musical career in elementary school playing the piano and the drums (because the xylophone wasn’t an option). At 22, he is already the drummer in two bands, a sound engineer, and most recently, he is the Assistant Technical Director of the Halifax Pop Explosion. The creative and musical environment of King’s, coupled with Halifax’s vibrant music scene, provided the ground for Tynan’s musical lift-off. “My first year (at King’s) was when I got the biggest exposure to the Halifax scene. I’m from New Brunswick, so I knew about a lot of bands, but I didn’t really understand how independent music worked until I got into it,” says Dunfield. The self-taught artist knew he eventually wanted to have a career in music, but wasn’t ready to formalize his training in university. “I was really into English and sociology in high school,” says Dunfield, “I never had the drive to do composition at Dalhousie. I kind of just like to play in bands and play drum kit.” So Dunfield came to King’s in 2007. With his interest in recording, he brought all of his gear to res, and quickly got to work. He played several open mics in the Wardroom, and met many friends who shared his passion for music. “In first and second year, I was really into recording over playing instruments for a while,” he says. “After first year, I knew that was what I wanted to do.” Along with one of his friends, Ian Gibb, Dunfield has been recording Take Away Shows since his time at King’s. The two did a series of recordings and videos called “Roof Top Ses-
sions.” Now, the duo makes them for Codapop, a recording studio on Quinpool, and for HPX promotions. Now a member of the indie scene because of his contributions to festivals like FollyFest, Evolve, and Long Live the Queen, his numerous recording gigs, and his membership in Dance Movie, an indie pop group, and Writers’ Strike, an indie rock group, Dunfield is a pro at juggling projects. Writers’ Strike has been working on a new album for the past year and a half. The EP is set to be released soon, and the LP in 2012. The album is a collaborative effort with “substantial producing,” and is being recorded in Sonic Temple, adding Writers’ Strike to the list of Canadian favourites such as Joel Plaskett and Matt Mays, who have recorded there, too. Dance Movie, fronted by Tara Thorne, released an EP in September called Ladycops. It includes four tracks, which Thorne taught the band in four hours the day before recording. Even more impressively, it was recorded in just three hours. On top of playing in two bands, Dunfield continues to pursue his main musical interest: recording. With a job at Codapop, a studio that supports emerging artists, and with a living room full of equipment, he continues to diversify his skills. Dunfield’s approach to recording, of creating a comfortable environment for the musician, displays his maturity and perception as an artist himself. “When I’m recording and someone is taking a long time, I have so much sympathy. In the studio, you’re under the microscope,” he says. He has recorded many of his friends because he feels that in terms of working with an audio engineer, “it’s nice to have someone you know.” This allows the group to the group deliver an honest performance because they don’t feel like they’re working with strangers. Dunfield has truly found his place in the Halifax scene, so much so that even when Dance Movie was playing North By North East in Toronto, Dunfield says, “It was like Halifax in a bar... As soon as we got to the show that we were playing, it was a bunch of other bands we know, and it was neat to see a big room full of people from Halifax.” Although Dunfield was only at King’s for a year, he has not forgotten the lively musical community. He has returned to the Wardroom, recently played at Dal’s Grawood, and has worked at CKDU. Although Writers’ Strike canceled their Frosh Week performance due to a member’s work conflict, he warmly states “We really want to come back to King’s soon.”
“After first year, I knew (recording) was what I wanted to do.”
Passion for the planet Emilie Novaczek is going to change the world By Alexandra Estey When Emilie Novacezk was in the first grade, “and maybe 45 pounds”, her family moved from Prince Edward Island to Indonesia while her Mom worked on a marine biology research project. They lived near a river where the neighbourhood kids often met to splash around. One afternoon, a group of children huddled at the edge of the water—they had caught an unlucky little turtle, and there was a great debate taking place. Was this little critter a plaything or food? Neither, in Emilie’s six-year-old opinion. She marched down to the river, elbows out (as her parents tell it), and demanded that the older kids hand it over. “Mom has a picture of me, furious, marching back towards our house with this little bucket...elbows still out,” she laughed, “I took the poor guy back down to the river later that night and let him go.” Two things are immediately clear when listening to Emilie speak about her work. First, that she is one busy lady. Second, that she loves what she does. It is not Emilie’s physical presence, but her enthusiasm that fills any room she enters. Though she’s only 5”, being small has clearly never held this girl back from anything. And her fascination with nature hasn’t faded with time. A fourth-year student about to complete her combined honours in Sustainability and Biology, Novaczek’s textbooks have seen some interesting landscapes. Last winter she had the privilege of representing Canada at COP 16, the United Nations Climate Conference in Cancun, Mexico. Emilie spent three weeks there as a Canadian youth delegate, alternating between workshops with other international youth and posing questions at briefings. Days inside the conference centre were also spent presenting intervention speeches— critiques prepared by the youth on the progress of the meetings and negotiations. “Being there as a Canadian representative was just really, really frustrating,” she explained. “It was a huge realization of Canada’s international status. We’re not leaders. We’re hardly taken seriously, especially when we’re talking about climate change.” While Novaczek doesn’t hesitate to point out the weaknesses in our country’s approach to climate change, she continues to push for progress. She’ll be attending those meetings again this winter in Durban, South Africa. Six of the 28 Canadian youth delegates are from the Halifax, including King’s own James Hutt. In her characteristically non-stop fashion, Novaczek returned from Cancun in December 2010 and then spent the following semester abroad, studying marine biology and climatology at
Photo Curtesy of Emilie Novaczek the University of the West Indies in Barbados. Most of her work focused on the effects of global temperature increases on the El Niño/El Niña oscillation, and its links to the hurricane and monsoon season. Back in Halifax this year, Novaczek works as a media rep and strategist for the Canadian Youth Climate Coalition, organizing conference calls, workshops and press releases. She’s also working as a curriculum coordinator for ITS For Girls, a science club that familiarizes young girls with industry, technology and science, and connects them with female mentors. “Basically, I get to plan really sick field trips,” says Emilie. “This coming weekend I’m taking two groups of girls whale watching in Lunenburg. It’s going to be so much fun.” On top of these two positions, classes and planning for COP 17 in Durban, Emilie is also this year’s science rep for the KSU. This coming July, Emilie is set to spend a few months in the San Andres Archipelago, off the coast of Colombia. She’ll be doing work for her honours thesis at the Seaflower Biosphere Reserve, on the subject of marine-protected governance. Although she’s technically ready to graduate this Spring, she is committed to completing her honours thesis. “I want to graduate and feel like I did more than fill out a bunch of Scantron sheets,” she says, laughing.
"being small has clearly never held this girl back from anything”
occupation By Courtney Greenburg
On October 15, people of all ages gathered at Grand Parade Square in downtown Halifax to kick off the Occupy Nova Scotia rally. They join protests around the world, which started on Wall Street in New York. The movement wants to reform the financial system that they say benefits only the richest 1 per cent of people in the world. “A lot of people are saying that this is more about complaining than it is about real change, but for me it’s about wanting a better country,” said Robin Young, a student, “and since it’s our country, we need to demand it.”
Haunted Hall The ghost of the girls' dorm rises again
On September 23rd, Erin Way awoke to the sound of her roommate’s screams. Inside their Alexandra Hall dorm room, her roommate said she witnessed a woman standing in front of their mirror who, upon being confronted, vanished. After visiting the university archives, Way was shocked to discover a spate of reported hauntings, eerily similar, coming from residents of Room 304 of Alex Hall. Reports have been frequent enough that the King’s library archivist has been building a collection of them for over 10 years. However, sightings are not limited to Alex Hall. Another spot oft-frequented by King’s undead is the Pit. Kate Connolly, a fourth-year student, describes her unusual experience while on Patrol last year. Walking from one tunnel to another through the Pit, she overheard a conversation. Upon eavesdropping, and not being able to discern what was said, she called out. In reply, she heard a “distant voice”, but after looking around, found no one. Connolly, while “not a huge believer in ghosts,” says that “at 4:30 in the morning walking alone it can be quite creepy.” “It is natural to be frightened.” says Nick Hatt, Dean of Residences. “If we’ve learned anything from FYP, it’s that spiritual realities are ever-present and alive, and we live and move within them at every stage of our being.” Hatt says despite not encountering any ghosts himself, he has spoken with many
By Daniel Boltinsky
people who have. Although these spirits are quite regular at King’s, neither patrol nor facilities workers carry any means of self-defense. Hatt is unfazed, though, and insists that if you find yourself face-to-face with such a spirit, you should “be as polite as possible and offer the ghost cookies...Chocolate chip.” King’s resident ghost expert John Adams concurs: “I imagine ghosts don’t get cookies very often. They’re probably just craving a cookie.” While this strategy has not been employed in the past, a ghost-hunting team did investigate The Pit and Angel’s Roost with infrared cameras and sound recorders last year. They evidence was not transparent, however, and the hunt was inconclusive. Nevertheless, Adams sees the ghosts as “fun parts” of the school’s history, and particularly enjoys “watching people twisting and squirming as they tell their ghost stories.” Many of the sightings have their supposed origin in actual events. For example, one may witness what looks like a man jumping off the roof of the bays to his death. Legend says that this is the ghost of a student who jumped off the building many years ago. Others, such as in Room 304, have no known reason. Dr. Neil Robertson, who has always maintained his lack of knowledge about the hauntings, admitted, under questioning: “I am hiding something.”
Installation Sensation Kash Fida
Keeping with the tradition of the ceremony, President Anne Leavitt gave a speech in Latin. Steph Douchan, a fourth-year student, acted as the mace-bearer.
The celebratory Installation Dance took place in Prince Hall, with an ‘awkward middle-school dance’ theme. Swing Dance lessons were offered, followed by upbeat retro tunes from DJ Yellow Fever (King’s alum Adrian Lee). Students and faculty rocked out to the Cha-Cha Slide until midnight.
Photos By Alex Estey
The Presidential Installation ceremony was held at the First Baptist Church at 1300 Oxford Street, on Friday, October 21, with a reception in the NAB afterwards.
King's Theatrical Society's first season brings big changes By Seana Stevenson The King’s Theatrical Society decided to take a different route with their 81st year. The executive choose a smaller season of five strong plays, where directors have more than beautiful dialogue but intricate sets, techniques and costumes. This season offers more comedies, and different approaches to stories King’s students know well. Dave Etherington, KTS vice president, explained the rationale behind this year’s decision to switch up the format of the KTS seasons. “The reason we did that is that Chloe (Hung, director of Noises Off) came to us with a pitch that required an immense build, and this is a show that everyone wanted to do.” Choosing Noises Off for Second Season meant that Hung would have three weeks undisturbed in the Pit to build her set. “We were trying just to think outside the box,” Etherington said. Thinking outside the box seems to be the theme this year. With a smaller season, they’ve allowed more elaborate productions and longer production weeks. Another update to the KTS is the KSU-funded, and King’s Dance Collective co-ownership of the floor for the Red Room. The Mylar flooring is also portable and can be used in other rooms as well as the Pit. “The King’s Student Union just gave us $2,400 to purchase three rolls of Mylar flooring.” Said Etherington. This floor will help to transform the Red Room from a classroom into a more viable performance space. “This flooring we got for three main reasons. One is a dark surface that can be applied and than taken off the red room floor. The second is the floor is very slippery, so if you are doing a show with a lot of movement, it is very dangerous for the actors. And the third reason we went with Mylar is it’s springy, which is an ideal dance surface,” said Etherington. While the Red Room is opening up its doors for more use, the Pit will be lowering its capacity in 2012. “We are waiting for a decision from the Property, Grounds and Safety committee as to whether or not they are going to put the fire capacity on immediately,” said Etherington. That capacity is 60 people.
Luckily, the capacity issues will not be affecting the first show of the year, Art directed by two first-year students, Laura Gallagher-Doucette and Miranda Jones. The two were thrilled to be able to discuss their show, and when asked what the show meant to them, they looked at each other with giant smiles on their faces and replied “So much!” Gallagher-Doucette describes the show as a “three-hander. It’s a dark comedy and it revolves around a work of art. It’s about three friends. One of them buys a modern art painting that is completely white.” “For 200,000 Franks,” Jones chimes in. “Right, and the three friends get into an argument about whether or not that’s a valid expression of art and what art is. That leads them to question their friendship and what they have in common,” continued Doucette. Having first-years direct is also a point of pride with Etherington and the KTS. “We think one of the best things about the King’s Theatrical Society, unlike other theatrical groups, is that you don’t have to wait until your third or fourth year to get some of the top jobs. Directing is a thrilling experience and you don’t have to wait.” Art runs in the Pit, Wednesday, November 9th through Saturday, November 12th.
Want to review plays for the Watch? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org 20
“I’m incredibly thrilled for that show. It’s got an all female cast, which I think is excellent because…we have so many women actors here, and they are always struggling, generally, for a smaller number of parts… That was very exciting for us. Ideally we would like to see that ratio continue in a direction where we have more female roles than male to reflect the people who come out and audition,” Etherington said. The Penelopiad is directed by fourth-year student Shannon Ireland and will take place Tuesday, November 15th through Saturday November 19th. This show not only shows off the immense talent of the female population at King’s but it also gives a female viewpoint to a tale written by a man. As Ireland explained, “the play starts off with Penelope standing up in the underworld, she’s been dead for years and year by now and says, ‘Odysseus has been telling this story, and everyone knows that version. Now it’s time for me to tell my version of the story.’ So it’s sort of about giving a voice back to women. It’s written by a current living Canadian woman (Margaret Atwood) but it’s about getting us to start thinking about examining women’s voices at the time.”
[TITLE OF THE SHOW]
“It’s going to be different in that it is a much smaller musical than before; it’s only four parts. We’re doing it in the Red Room. Before we’ve done these giant chorus-filled pieces, so this is definitely going to be a different look,” said Etherington. “[title of show] is about two guys writing a musical about two guys writing a musical,” said director Jasmine Hare. “The catch is that they are the characters in their own show. The show chronicles its own creation from its humble beginnings to its opening night on Broadway.” “I think it will resonate with King’s students because it’s about writing and creating, and I think we have a very creative community here. It’s very funny and heartfelt, and also has a lot of swearing and jokes about masturbating. Who doesn’t love that?” [title of show] is taking place Monday November 21st through Saturday November 26th.
AN IDEAL HUSBAND
Third-year student Laura Vingoe-Cram is directing the first play of second semester, An Ideal Husband. “It means an exploration of different interactions and really getting at the heart of personal and public interactions. That I think is fascinating because I think we all go through it all the time. Who we are comfortable with and who we have to put on a mask for.” Vingoe-Cram is taking the play and is experimenting with a variety of techniques, acting, directing, and costumes, in order to achieve a more stylized look. “I’m basically taking that idea of the public and private sphere that is represented in the play and am playing with it with different acting techniques. So I want to make the public sphere very stylized…just cobbling together a certain directing technique to sort of work through the play. Also in the costumes and the set…they are going to be very representational of the time period, using a lot of found materials…but also trying to get to the underpinnings of the characters and their histories.” An Ideal Husband takes place in the Pit Wednesday, January 11th through Saturday January 14th.
MOUTHFUL OF BIRDS
The last full show of the first season is fourth year student Brendan Sangster’s Mouthful of Birds. This piece is a dance drama, which deals with very intense subject matter. “How the plot works is its seven individual vignettes and seven individual characters totally separate from each other and it’s all connected through the story of Euipides’ ‘Bacchae’. Each of the characters shows a different side of possession, or depression or violence within their lives,” said Sangster. Sangster hopes that working closely with his cast and crew will bring out an organic, original piece. “I’m really hoping to bring something new to it with the cast and with Julia Hutt, who is the choreographer and basically assistant director. I’m hoping just to bring a new light to something we don’t know. It’s so different; it itself and the script are so ultimately different that hopefully people will walk away feeling something.” Mouthful of Birds takes place in the Pit Tuesday, January 24th through Saturday January 28th.
FYP Tutor and Don Dr. Matthew Furlong believes in the chapel
Alex Estey I want to begin with two disclaimers: This is not a polemic. I write only on my own behalf.
King’s faces many challenges, the most immediately visible of which right now is our chaplaincy’s uncertain future. The Diocese of Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island has informed the College that it can no longer fully fund the chaplaincy. Moreover, in a letter that has now been circulated in the public domain, Bishop Moxley has passed on opinions from persons unknown that, besides fiscal considerations, the chaplaincy itself is questionable. Apparently its “model of chaplaincy is no longer appropriate,” and its “style of worship is antiquated.” Father Thorne has circulated a letter emphasizing that the bishop speaks officially, i.e. disinterestedly, and that it’s inappropriate to attribute these opinions to her personally. I think that’s good sense, and only fair; besides, the source of these opinions is ultimately irrelevant. Their content is relevant, though. I think they provide an opportunity to consider the chaplaincy’s role in and relation to the College. We should use this opportunity and, in doing so, we can clarify our collegial vocation. That clarification may help steady and orient us in
these difficult times. After all, if the chaplaincy’s uncertain status is a function of economic hardship, this should only intensify our attention to the present state of the world, its dominant rationality, and our place in it. Calling to mind our mission as a college and our place in the world as a community of individuals can only be a good thing. So here goes. I don’t subscribe to a religious creed; I belong to no faith community, at least not as that notion is normally construed. I participate in no liturgy. I doubt I ever will. So I think I have all the right I need to argue that our chaplaincy as administered by Father Thorne is absolutely immanent to, and essential to, our vocation. That vocation, which is pedagogically and philosophically anchored in the Foundation Year Programme, finds its essential notion in the thinking of Father Robert Crouse. In his 2007 Encaenia address, Father Crouse invoked the idea
"a community grounded on a particularly philosophical spirituality"
that the university is “the beloved community of memory and hope”. This idea is key: at its core lies the Augustinian intervention in the field of memory as the milieu in which we discover the truth. In conversation with me, Father Thorne said that here we find an essential connection between truth and love: you can only love as much as you know, and you can only know as much as you love. From the educational perspective, the memory-work carried out in the Foundation Year Programme complicates and intensifies our relation to the world and to truth. From the perspective of the mission of faith, we seek to enable a contemplative reunion with the One. Here we can begin to see how the chapel and the College feed into and sustain one another. I’ll return to this issue shortly. Father Crouse conceived of Christianity as a blending, a combination of Judaism and Hellenic philosophy. The Anglican faith community that populates the chapel continues to observe this insight, which to me constitutes something very special: a community grounded on a particularly philosophical spirituality. To recognize in historical accident the absolute foundation of a necessary truth is to embrace a real groundlessness in the style of Plotinus or Pseudo-Dionysius, as far as I can see. And it also seems to me that to relate to faith in this way is to experience it as a mobilizing perplexity, an ever-deepening problem that propels philosophical eros and spiritual amor. I find this profoundly respectable, in my own heathenish and perhaps overly Greek way. Attending to Father Crouse’s idea elucidates why this chaplaincy and this faith community have an essential function in relation to our educational mission at the College: it offers an exemplary instance of philosophy as a way of life. This, combined with the chaplaincy’s concrete, practical commitment to an ethics, I would even say a radical ethics, of service and of community—recall the credo: for those of all faiths and for those of none—in light of the contemplative life, permits King’s to be a bulwark against the pervasive logic of economic utility that impoverishes us all and whose contestation nurtures the growing movement emanating from the streets of New York City today. Our chaplaincy therefore helps us fulfill one of the University’s highest possible missions, which is also one of the highest possible missions of faith: resisting over-entanglement in the world of external things, commodified experiences, fleeting pleasures, consumer goods; the dissolution of experience into accidental collisions of alienated subjects and objects, with no room for thinking and living a world. So, to reply to the opinions passed on to us through Bishop Moxley’s letter, I could not disagree more that our model of chaplaincy is antiquated. To echo my friend and former colleague Michelle Wilband, this model of chaplaincy is truly the
"there is ever less preventing our absorption into the dark night of ‘utility’”
cutting edge—that is, it enables those touched by its liturgical and ethical practice to slice through the dense mass of modern materialism; through the narrow way of thinking that has reduced so many post-secondary institutions to betraying the university’s vocation by justifying their existence in terms of economic utility and market value. David Suzuki said recently that universities used to be “places where people could explore ideas at the cutting edge of human thought.” Today, that’s in doubt. But if universities aren’t about that exploration, then they’re not about anything. King’s College, luckily, remains a place where we can still try to pursue that mission, which strikes at the heart of the present. To understand why that’s so we have to understand the chaplaincy. The chaplaincy enables my pedagogy. Looking back, I see now that it underpinned the transformative time that I spent here as a student. I’m reminded a little of Augustine’s discovery in his Confessions: that God was there, that God had always been there. That makes me smile to myself, since I’ve discovered that the chaplaincy, with its inspiration in Father Crouse’s thinking, was always already there in my education, no matter how heterodox I may be in relation to it. And here I return to the Augustinian mode of recollection that Father Crouse thought so important. How does this work in my teaching? How should we understand this education? To retrieve my point above about the mutuality of our educational mission and our chaplaincy, I’ll turn to the Dionysian logic that our FYP students encounter in the pseudo-Areopagite’s Mystical Theology. The movement is essentially the same in the pedagogical and liturgical-theurgical registers. It consists in simultaneously affirming and denying that the truth lies in what we observe: “Neither this, nor this, nor this, nor this ...” but also and at the same time “this, and this, and this, and this ...”! In other words, reality is not the correlate or designate of a proposition or even a catalogue of propositions: “Utility” is not the truth, “Marxism” is not the truth, “Liberalism” is not the truth, “Conservatism” is not the truth, “Science” is not the truth, “Religion” is not the truth, “x”, “y”, and “z” are not the truth no matter how much truth there is in them. And, necessarily in conjunction, there is so much truth in them! And that’s the truth which engenders the tricky, endless navigation and negotiation of the subject matter that appears to us in the ever-becoming world we call, and seek to make, our home. I submit that this is the fundamental, sometimes overwhelming, insight that the Foundation Year Programme works toward in its particular historical recitation and that we hope our students learn to love. The University of King’s College cannot, in my view, completely fulfill its educational mission without the chaplaincy. Without it, there is ever less preventing our absorption into the dark night of “utility” and servitude to the imperatives of economic rationality. The chaplaincy and the College stand together for the possibility of a real way of life. Today, such possibilities are more valuable than ever. I offer these thoughts in the hope that others might find them encouraging or helpful and, although there’s always more that could be said, I’d like to close by reiterating Father Thorne’s recent wish that we bear one another’s burdens, as becometh friends. 23