Arts Initiative

The Arts Initiative, a partnership with the Humanities Institute and the six campus arts departments, inaugurated an Arts faculty lecture series in 2011-2012 that featured recently hired faculty in Music, Theatre & Dance, and Art Studio. Laurie San Martin, associate professor of music and Arts Initiative faculty assistant, spearheaded the lecture series as a way for the campus community to get a peek into the research, thought, and creative processes of UC Davis’s arts faculty. San Martin also recruited a talented pool of arts graduate students as an Arts Story Corps to write a series of features about the arts on campus. The stories can be accessed here in the News Archives. “The faculty lecture series and the story corps are two examples of the ways that we are reaching out and highlighting the people, ideas, and activities that make up the arts departments at UC Davis,” said San Martin.

In 2012-2013, San Martin will continue the work of the story corps in addition to helping coordinate a week-long music and arts festival on the theme of migration. With the support of the Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts, the division of Humanities, Arts, and Cultural Studies, and the campus’s arts departments, the February 2013 festival will showcase the work of UC Davis graduate students and faculty alongside those of visiting artists, performers, and musicians. Stay tuned for updates on festival planning and events on the DHI web site this Fall.

The Humanities Institute, with the support of the UC Davis Dean of Humanities, Arts, and Cultural Studies, created the Arts Initiative in 2010-2011 to promote and support the creative work of the six campus arts departments and programs: Theater and Dance, Music, Art Studio, Creative Writing, Technocultural Studies, and Design. An archives of Arts Initiative feature stories since 2010 can be found under the Archives tab on the DHI web site.

Arts Initiative Story Corps, 2011-2012

Michael Accinno (Music)

Accinno is a second year doctoral student in the Musicology program.  Before coming to UC Davis, he earned a bachelor’s degree in Vocal Performance from Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music, and an M.A. in Musicology from the University of Iowa. Accinno’s current research explores the reception of street musicians, particularly organ grinders, in urban centers of the United States during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.  His other research interests include Italian immigrant culture, and the relationship of geography and music. Currently employed as a teaching assistant in the music department, Accinno particularly enjoys working with undergraduates to improve their writing skills and techniques.  In addition, he tries to maintain an active performing schedule as a singer.  In February, he will make his opera chorus debut in Sacramento Opera’s production of Rigoletto.

Josy Miller (Theatre & Dance)

Miller is currently pursuing a PhD in Performance Studies at UC Davis and recently received an award from the Creative Capacity Fund’s Emerging Arts Leader Initiative.  She was Founding Artistic Director of the Hapgood Theatre Company in Antioch, California, prior to which she held the position of Theatre Department Chair at the Oakland School for the Arts.  Ms. Miller earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Theatre and Women’s Studies at Barnard College.