FACtalks Fall Lecture Series 2018

FACTalks /fak täks/ (pl. noun) our Fall Lecture Series. Informative and wide-ranging talks given by local experts in their fields. Q&A will follow. Tuesdays at 7:30pm at The Fort Atkinson Club, 211 S. Water St. East. Free and open to the public!

Organizer: Ben Knowles (benjamin.d.knowles@gmail.com)

Upcoming Talks:

Tuesday, September 25: Jeremy “Guzzo” Pinc and Ann Engelman

“Why Poetry Inspires: How the Fort Atkinson Poetry Corner Came to Be”

Artist Jeremy Pinc and Ann Engelman, President of Friends of Lorine Niedecker, present the stories behind the two Poetry Walls at Main St. and Sherman Ave, and context for the poems and stanzas that were chosen.

Jeremy Pinc is a Fine Arts painter living in Fort Atkinson, Wisconsin. His work can be seen in many venues around town, notably the Café Carpe and the Lorine Niedecker murals at Sherman Ave and Main St. He is currently enrolled in the Masters program at UW-Madison. His art interests include cartoons, graffiti, fine arts painting and graphic design.

Ann Engelman is a management consultant for public broadcasting and non-profit organizations. She was the founding President of the Public Television Programming Association, the Assistant Director of Program Operations at PBS and the Executive Producer for Independent Eye, a series of television programs designed to showcase the work of independent producers. She is currently President of the Board of Directors for Friends of Lorine Niedecker, and manages the Wisconsin Poetry Festival.


Tuesday, October 2: Rachel Wood

“Inside the Human Voice: The Science of Singing”

Composer Richard Strauss wrote: “The human voice is the most beautiful instrument of all, but it is the most difficult to play.” Most of us rely on our voices for communication every day, and many of us love to sing. But have you ever wondered how the voice works? How do the different parts of the human instrument—the respiratory system, the larynx, and the vocal tract—work together to produce the sounds of singing? This talk will explore the following topics:

  • How does the human voice work?
  • How is vocal sound produced?
  • How is the voice similar to/different from other instruments?
  • What makes someone a “good” singer?
  • What can vocal training accomplish?
  • How can I improve my singing voice?
  • How can I keep my singing voice healthy?

Mezzo-soprano Rachel Wood has appeared in opera, concert, and recital performances across Canada, the United States, Italy, and the Netherlands. In Wisconsin, Rachel has appeared as a soloist with the Wisconsin Chamber Choir, Janesville Choral Union, Sinfonia Sacra, Sonata à Quattro, Whitewater Chamber Players, and Madison Bach Musicians. Rachel completed her Doctor of Music degree at Indiana University, and holds Master of Music and Bachelor of Music degrees from the University of Western Ontario. Rachel has served as a Lecturer of Voice at the University of Western Ontario, and an Associate Instructor at Indiana University. She is currently an Assistant Professor of Voice at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, where she teaches studio voice, lyric diction, song literature, and voice pedagogy.


Tuesday, October 23: Members of La Cultura Latina, Fort Atkinson High School

“An Introduction to ‘La Cultura Latina’: Latino Food and Dance”

Members of La Cultura Latina will present an introduction to Latino culture, focusing on food, music and dance. Different styles of dance will be demonstrated, and audience members will be invited to sample Latin cuisine. Afterwards, the students will take questions about their culture and lives within the local Fort Atkinson Latino community.

La Cultura Latina is a club for Latino high school students in Fort Atkinson to talk about what matters to them, plan for the future, and celebrate their culture.


Tuesday, November 6: Mark Chaney and Ben Knowles

“A History of Electronics in Dance Music”

Come learn about the history of electronic dance music through the hardware that made it possible. We will discuss the evolution of genres and styles from the 1970s through the present, and the synths, drum machines, sequencers, samplers and other gear that define them. The basics of analog synthesis and MIDI will be covered, and we will have our equipment set up for live demonstration, as well as an opportunity for hands-on jamming.

Mark Chaney and Ben Knowles are local musicians who record and (very occasionally) perform as VLVX.


Tuesday, November 20: Angie Szabo

The State of the Arts: Teaching Art in Fort Atkinson

Local artist and art educator Angie Szabo will give a wide-ranging talk about the past, present, and future of art education in Fort Atkinson. How does one teach creativity? What philosophies lie behind artistic instruction? And how are these important skill sets and thought processes best conveyed to younger generations?

Angie Szabo teaches art at Fort Atkinson High School. She is also a practicing Visual Artist, the wife of a talented Native American Artist, mother to three talented young artists, a member of the Black Hawk Artists, and an Executive Board Member of the Fort Arts Council