Spring 2013 Issue 3
this issue: Dance Concert Fashion at Menlo Writersâ€™ Week - Looking Back New Sounds - Beau Baldwin
Issue theme: Collage
Editor in Chief: Maya Singhal Photo Editor: Katelyn Weingart Layout Editor: Kyle Vaidyanathan Public Relations Director: Hunter Brown Chief Reporter: Pooja Kathail Teacher Advisor: Carla Pugliese Staff Reporters: Tara Saha Polly Golikova Helena Ong
Letter from the Editor
New Sound 6
Although senior Beau Baldwin just recently started writing music, his sound is making waves.
Fashion at Menlo
Looking Back at Writersâ€™ Week
Standing out in the Crowd
From his hobbies to his fashion sense, senior Andrew Hurlbut is anything but average.
By incorporating films into their curriculums, many Menlo English electives are getting updated for a new generation.
First Look: Dance Concert
Senior Beau Baldwin has always had a knack for music and songwriting, but only recently has he started sharing his talent with others. Baldwin started playing the drums when he was little, and has since picked up guitar and piano as well. He has also been singing since a young age. “When I was little I used to sing all the time while I was just by myself, which is kind of weird,” Baldwin said. Impressively, Baldwin has never taken a music lesson, but instead has developed his musical talents on his own. Baldwin’s songwriting is a more recent development. He started writing songs his soph-
by Pooja Kathail omore year, just because he “[liked] to write, especially poetry.” His writing process is unique and spontaneous. “I’ll hear something or I’ll read a word, it can just be a single word, and no matter where I am I’ll just start writing,” Baldwin said. “When I start writing something, I can’t stop doing it. I’ll do it during class. I’ll sneak it. I literally just can’t [stop,] or else I’m worried I’ll forget about it.” Because of this method, Baldwin has written over a hundred songs. This collection continues to grow rapidly as he writes about five new songs every week.
Although Baldwin has not broadcasted his music much in the past, recently he has been trying to perform more, and he has posted two videos of his original songs on Facebook. The first, “Nickels & Dimes,” is a solo acoustic performance, while the second, “Appropriate Doses,” features fellow senior Linh Nguyen on cello. Baldwin is also collaborating with Nguyen for their senior project, where they plan to record an album. Baldwin is also excited to explore the music scene in Nashville, where he will be attending Vanderbilt next year. “Hopefully by the time I go [to Nashville] I will have expanded my comfort zone in regards to performing. […] I could perform some there which would be really cool,” Baldwin said.
Menlo is known for being intellectually diverse. Students
and teachers come from many backgrounds, participate in a wealth of arts and sports, and devise rigorous and varied schedules to maximize their time at school. But there is a uniting factor: a love of fashion. From Hunter wellies to North Face jackets to Longchamp bags, the high standard of style at Menlo is almost unanimous.
“Casual most part of the time, ying and yang. I adore wearing jeans, men’s outfits or bohemian style skirts. I like mixing different styles of fabric, peasant style shirts and big boots.”
Secondhand stores, garage sales, eBay
People on the street
“My style changes with my mood most of the time. I love to dress in all different styles from preppy and put together to a more sloppy and edgy look. I sometimes follow the trends but those are hard to keep up with.”
J. Crew, Neiman Marcus, Urban Outfitters, Secondhand stores Valentino, Nasty Gal, Wildfox Instagram bloggers such as Leandra Medine and Chiara Ferragni, high fashion magazines, and people on the street “…my favorite item of clothing right now would be my coral J Brand skinnies. They are the most comfortable pants ever and the color is so much fun to play with.”
“Basic pieces with a slight edge if I can manage it - dresses, boots, and black jackets.”
Yohji Yamamoto, Haider Ackermann, Ann Demeulemeester, Rick Owens, Dries van Noten
Tilda Swinton “Probably a black jacket I bought in Finland - it represents really good memories, and it’s angular and cool.”
The week that Menlo’s wordsmiths annually await has come and gone. For the 10th anniversary of Writer’s Week, Menlo once again welcomed a group of remarkably talented people who have made careers out of doing what they love. Each day of the week, a different writer held a lunchtime presentation of their background and their works. Even some of Menlo’s own brave souls took the stage with commendable courage to share their writing with their peers. Robin Sloan, a writer and San Francisco-based media inventor, spoke Monday about his book Mr. Penumbra’s 24 Hour Bookstore. Investigative reporter Rita Williams spoke about her experiences on Tuesday. Williams is notable for being one of the first women to break the glass ceiling and enter the patriarchal world of investigative broadcast journalism. On Wednesday, Menlo was visited by representatives from Youth Speaks, a nonprofit literary organization founded in San Francisco that aims to eradicate “illiteracy, alienation, and silence” through spoken word poetry. Marilyn Yalom spoke on Thursday. She is a senior scholar at the Clayman Institute for Gender Studies at Stanford and author of How the French Invented Love and A History of the Breast among others. On Friday, Nils Peterson, the Poet Laureate of the Santa Clara County, performed his original poetry with accompaniment from classical pianist Margaret Draper. Maura Sincoff, the director of the writing center hoped that these speakers encouraged students to think of writing as a field of opportunity. Sincoff said that she “think[s] Menlo students[…]are afraid to come out of the closet about being[…] writer[s].” She elaborated, saying that “everyone seems to associate writing with academic – and in their minds, boring – writing.” The goal of Writer’s Week is to shake this misconception. Sincoff hopes to “draw an even more dynamic and lively group of speakers for next year,” she said, in order to excite and attract a broader range of students.
Looking back at Writersâ€™ Week By Polly Golikova
Photo credit: Menlo Flickr
by Maya Singhal
trepreneurs. However, Hurlbut is much
“These musicians are also trying to find their path to success. I really appreciate that and I learn from their struggles”
Outside of the visual arts, Hurlbut also
slightest, so it’s a terrible metaphor,” he
find new, no name bands. “I know it
enthusiasm about the sport because they’re
same reason that people watch college
these musicians are also trying to find their
know, I don’t watch sports at all in the
I learn from their struggles.”
Even on paper, senior Andrew Hurlbut
is a novelty. He is a graphic artist (not a “painter or a drawer, which [he] abso-
lutely [abhors],” he said). He sews some
of his own clothing, including a few pairs of pants and a couple skirts (for himself). And, as the co-founder of Cones Clothing, a skate apparel brand, and Ibiza
Sails, a company that makes nautical-
themed embroidered shorts, Hurlbut is
one of a very limited group of young enmore than that.
loves music, staying up late at night to
said, “but the college players have more
sounds hipster, but I like doing it for the
trying to make it in the big world; whereas,
basketball or college football. I don’t
path to success. I really appreciate that and
Struggles and trial and error seem to con-
use to describe him—different, artsy
himself. His fashion career has many dark
fashion sense as “this weird, contorted
sweatshirt that he debated burning, his
which] could be misconstrued,” he said.
always strived to be different and to step
tation] has been an issue because I’m
stitute much of Hurlbut’s path to finding
and obnoxious. Hurlbut describes his
spots in his memory: his old, blue tie-dye
Italian preppy,” even “metrosexual [,
airplane buckle belt. But, throughout, he
“I don’t want to say [my sexual orien-
out of his comfort zone.
not homophobic, but being a straight
In Menlo’s sea of Lululemon yoga pants
and Vineyard Vines button-downs, Hurlbut stands out. Known for his infamous
seashell shorts and even the occasional
skirt with leather pants, Hurlbut is undeniably different. “Different” is even the first word that Hurlbut said his friends would
male dressing a little differently from any
Menlo jock-y boy […] has been a challenge.”
Hurlbut seems to feel his distinctiveness at Menlo strongly. “It’s tiring to be my-
self around this crowd who wouldn’t like me for who I am,” he said. “[But] I think that’s what real friendships should be
based off of: people being individuals.” Throughout his life, he seeks out new
people, people who are different from
him to give him new perspectives. “I get so tired of the same people,” Hurlbut
said. And inevitably, Hurlbut will continue to branch out through the rest of his life, as he goes on to follow his dreams
“It’s tiring to be myself around this crowd who wouldn’t like me for who I am” to major in graphic design and business, study fashion in graduate school, and
start his own graphic design company.
by Hunter Brown Senior English classes are known for offering interesting and exciting reading lists, but their curriculums also include great films as well. While students watch films in freshman, sophomore, and junior English classes, film really takes center stage in senior English electives. The Bard spoke with Cara Plamondon, the teacher of the senior elective Dystopian Fiction and Film, who felt that film was an essential part of her class. “Both academically and in personal lives, we watch a lot of movies,” Plamondon said. “It is important that we not only have the skills to analyze books and plays, but movies as well.” In the class students watch Blade Runner, Children of Men, and Minority Report. She felt that these films, while fitting the theme of dystopian fiction, are important for students to see due to their cult classic status. Erik Wessler teaches Myth, Archetypes, and Literature, another senior English class which incorporates film into the curriculum. In this class, students watch scenes from The Wizard of Oz and Star Wars, and then watch The Matrix in its entirety. Similarly to Plamondon’s class, the students also do their own film project where they watch films of their choosing and do an analysis of the film based around what they learned in the class. In the class, students also read the screenplay of Inception before watching the film, as well. Wessler reflected that “the screenplay/film juxtaposition is enlightening,” he said. Junior Caroline Wheeler agreed. “Reading the screenplay of Inception before watching the movie was helpful because we were able to analyze the characters and plot and apply the concepts we learned,” she said. Wheeler emphasized how helpful it was to see the archetypes they had learned about on display, and said that “it’s impossible to have this class without watching films.” Clearly, film plays a very important part in senior English electives and allows students to learn from a new medium.
First Look: Dance Concert by Helena Ong
The lights rise, and on a five, six, seven, eight- In only a few days, Menlo dancers will be on stage for the Dance Concert, the culmination of their work since the beginning of the second semester, hours of choreography and preparation. “We have been preparing by really polishing up [the] dance classes [...] and making sure everyone knows the steps without thinking,” junior Matt Myers, who will be in two routines in his second year dancing at Menlo, said. Sophomore Donia Soheili who has been dancing for ten years and will be in eight routines this year, has been preparing after schoo,l while senior Max Parker has been “dancing [his] heart out in class every day,” he said. “Not everyone performing the show is a highly trained dancer,” sophomore Idalys Nava-Monje said, “but every performer is dedicated.” Jan Chandler, the Menlo dance teacher, has been preparing her classes for the two-hour performance, which is divided between two acts with an intermission between. “You need
to see it from start to finish because you just don’t know what you’re going to miss,” Chandler said. The performance will showcase upper and middle school dancers featuring a variety of dances from Bollywood to Grease. “You got a little Broadway in there, you got tap, you got contemporary, you got jazz, and you got cultural dances, it’s a mixed bag,” Chandler said. Junior Nicole Crisci agreed. “It’s, as Jan would say, ‘everything but the kitchen sink’,” Crisci, who will be performing in eleven routines as a Midnight and Knight Life dancer, said. Since many of the seniors will never dance on stage again, Chandler hopes the experience will teach the students “to become a great audience [...] realizing how much work goes into the backstage,” she said. With all the preparations and the enthusiasm of the dancers, “Buckle up your seat belts,” Parker said, as the Dance Concert promises to be an exciting performance.
Photo credit: Menlo Flickr
Menlo School's online arts and lifestyle magazine, Issue 3: Spring 2013