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A UM play inspired by Aristophanes debuts at sunset

Story_closeup_SarmientoThe University of Miami's ongoing celebration of the humanities and arts continues on Friday with a day-into-evening event titled A Walk in the CLOUDS: Celebrating the Classics at UM.  All events (except for parking) are free, and the day includes a classics symposium with multiple speakers, a keynote address about Aristophanes' play The Clouds, Edith Freni's world premiere play A Work of Pure Fiction and a post-performance reception at the Lowe Art Museum.

The day begins with a 10 a.m.to 12:30 p.m. session featuring speakers from the department of classics and department of theater arts. The lineup:  Stephen Di Benedetto on "Playing Aristophanes,"  Scott Farrington on "The Tragicomic Dionysus," Jennifer Ferriss-Hill on "Tragedy in Comedy:  The Comic Afterlife of Mysian Telephus," Wilson Shearin on "Loquacity and Sickening Nonsense: Plutarch's Reception of Aristophanes," Han Tran on "Cannibals Can't Sing: A Cyclops Struggles in the Land of Bacchus," and T. George Hendren on "Blood and Wine: The Sinister Side of Bacchic Revelry."  The symposium takes place in the College of Arts and Sciences Gallery at the Wesley Foundation building, 1210 Stanford Dr., Coral Gables.

Keynote speaker Kenneth J. Reckford, the Keenan Professor of Classics Emeritus at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, delivers his address from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m., also in the Arts and Sciences Gallery.  The title:  "[Why] Did Aristophanes' Clouds Fail?."

A Work of Pure Fiction, a piece inspired by Aristophanes' Clouds, will debut at 5 p.m. on the lawn next to the Lowe Art Museum, 1301 Stanford Dr.  The performance by UM theater students is deliberately timed to take advantage of the setting sun.

A reception in the Lowe's Tobin Gallery, highlighted by a viewing of the museum's Greek calyx-krater (a painted ancient vessel used to mix water and wine), ends the celebration.

For more information about A Walk in the CLOUDS, call 305-284-5500.  For parking information, visit the university's web site.

(Photo of Danny Mendendez and Mary Hadsell in A Work of Pure Fiction by Laura Sofia Sarmiento)