Hello everyone, and welcome back to Mount St. James!
For those of you who are new to this blog, my name is Alison Christovich (Ali for short), and I’m a senior this year at Holy Cross. Last year I was one of the HC Study Abroad bloggers and I wrote a blog about my travels in Galway, Ireland. If you’ve been following me from the beginning, welcome back! I hope you enjoy a fresh yet familiar perspective on the life of a fellow senior.
When I returned from Ireland I was home for a couple weeks, and then I went to London for the theatre Maymester program. It was a blast; on top of seeing a total of 32 (yes, 32) theatre productions throughout London we visited a great variety of monuments and museums, including the British Library, British Museum, the Imperial War Museum, the Tate Britain and Modern Museums, and many, many more. I think one of my favorite parts of London was seeing Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet at the Globe Theatre for the first time. Not only did we get to stand right in front of the stage as “groundlings”, but the show itself was a wild ride from start to finish, with Romeo and Juliet’s parents giving birth to coffins during the prologue and all of the characters wearing white clown makeup while occasionally dancing to bass-heavy pop music. By the end of it I was mesmerized beyond belief.
If you happen to be interested in attending this (or any other) Maymester program, feel free to contact the Study Abroad office for information about each program, or stop by Professor Ed Isser’s office on the 4th floor of O’Kane if you want to hear more about London. In the meantime, one of my friends who went with me to London made this awesome video montage of all the pictures we all took. Check it out here!
I spent the rest of the summer home with my family and friends in Jacksonville, Florida. I’ve been blessed to have the luxury of living close to the beach and close enough to Orlando that I can spend a weekend there with friends and even take a trip to Disney World if I wanted. So, naturally, that’s what we did. I’m sure you know the rest!
I also had the opportunity to do some creative work for one of my brother’s teachers from my high school. Being a local published author, he often recruits past students and faculty from the school to help him with editing and designing before sending the book to an independent publisher. He reached out to my tech-savvy brother about designing a book cover for his next book, and he recommended that I would be a better fit for the creative components of it. I had already designed posters for the College Choir in the past, so I thought “why not”? And so for the next few weeks I got to work in my first commissioned experience in graphic design. It took a bit of trial and error, but I recently got a copy of the book in the mail and can’t wait to finally read it! I would highly recommend checking out this and the rest of his books, which you can buy on Amazon here. He was an incredible person to work with when it came to designing and I look forward to enjoying the fruits of his labor.
My return to campus after being away from a year has been a whirlwind so far. I came back a week before classes started for Choir Week, a tradition where the Chamber Singers would spend a week on campus learning new music for the upcoming semester and preparing to sing at Mass of the Holy Spirit that weekend. This year came with a couple changes: not only did I get to meet the new choir director, Professor Allegra Martin, but this year we invited the entire College Choir for Choir Week. It was such a blessing (and still is!) to see so many fresh faces on the hill, many of them first years ready to join one of the most exciting groups on campus! I can’t wait to see the Choir’s progress during rehearsal and feel it unfold during performances. Mark your calendars now for the first performance on October 27th, the first day of Family Weekend!
Speaking of performances, as a theatre major I’m beyond excited to see what’s in store for the department and for A.C.T., aka Alternate College Theatre. For those who aren’t familiar, A.C.T. is the student-run theatre group on campus that puts on two major productions during the year and hosts several other theatre events, including Midnight Theatre and Cabaret Night. This year’s A.C.T. lineup includes Stop Kiss, a play directed by junior Alexis Rappaport, and the musical Legally Blonde, which will be directed by senior Emma Callahan. Professor Ed Isser will be representing the theatre department this fall by directing Lope de Vega’s Fuente Ovejuna, a historical Spanish play that will be performed bilingually in Spanish and English. Keep an eye out for emails and posters for each of these productions – they are not to be missed!
In the meantime, as anyone might guess, I will be quite busy with my classes ahead. I’m especially looking forward to my directing class; I’ve acted in directing projects for other students in the class before, and can’t wait to take the reins myself. I actually had the chance to direct a couple projects back when I was in Galway, but now I’m ready to learn about different directing techniques and have real hands-on practice with them.
On top of that I will also be applying for the Fulbright scholarship to study a Master’s program in Theatre and Performance at Queen Mary, University of London. The Fulbright Program ensures full tuition and room and board coverage for almost any university around the world in which students might pursue graduate study and/or research. I’m interested in Queen Mary specifically because their Theatre and Performance MA is a mix of seminar and practical work, and many of the faculty members’ concentrations lie in social justice and mental health. I’m honestly a little nervous about going through the college application process again – especially for grad school! – but I truly feel that this will be a step in the right direction for my future, even if I don’t get the scholarship.
All business aside, I’m so thrilled to be back on the roster as a Holy Cross blogger and can’t wait to share the rest of my experiences with you! I hope you have a wonderful start to the semester, and I look forward to writing again soon.