Lipscomb student gets behind-the-scenes look at CMA music Festival

Lipscomb student gets behind-the-scenes look at CMA music Festival

Alongside her grandma, student Veronika Jones worked with Music City Center throughout the entirety of the the CMA music festival and even found a potential career path she said she wants to pursue after graduation. The Junior International Affairs major worked the Fanfair inside Music City Center at the Radio Disney Country meet and greet. Jones was in charge of counting the fans that lined up and cutting off the line when the performers had to leave. “A lot of the times performers had somewhere to be right after they were done, like an interview or another show, so it was really fast paced,” Jones said.  “I met a lot of really nice people that were really understanding if I did have to cut the line off.” Jones worked closely with artists Cam, Maddie & Tae, LANCO and more. She noted that one of her favorite parts about working the CMA Fest was meeting all different kinds of people, not just the performing artists. “Everybody I worked with was awesome, and I also met a whole lot of interesting people from all over the world,” Jones said. “I met these girls who all became friends through Twitter because they were all Kelsea Ballerini fans.” Despite the many people she met, Jones said her favorite person she worked with was her “Gran.” Jones’ grandmother works for Music City Center and has worked the CMA Music Festival the past nine years. Music is a big part of Jones’ family, and she spent a lot of her childhood at the Grand Ole Opry where her Gran worked as a tour guide. “If...
‘Won’t You Be My Neighbor’ offers look into Mister Rogers’ genuine care for children

‘Won’t You Be My Neighbor’ offers look into Mister Rogers’ genuine care for children

There’s nothing easy about being a child. Within only half-a-decade from birth, you’re expected to walk, talk, socialize, behave and conform to the “adult” way of your culture. Nowadays, a conversation about emotion and the nuances of life are rarely shared with children outright; instead, children are expected to just grow and guess how the adults have it figured out (we don’t).  This wasn’t always the case though. Several decades ago, a piano composer named Fred Rogers became upset with the way that early television treated its child audience. He was appalled with the silly and slapstick nature of  TV shows aimed at younger audiences. So he put aside his goal of being an ordained Presbyterian minister and set out to create a show that would speak to children at their level, with dignity and sincerity, while also displaying authority and wisdom. And he did exactly that. Every day, Fred Rogers would be “Mister Rogers” to the children of the Pittsburgh area, and then to the rest of the United States. Won’t You be my Neighbor is a very special kind of documentary. It isn’t a biopic on the inner workings of the man Fred Rogers, and it isn’t some history piece detailing Mister Roger’s Neighborhood and the way it came to be renowned in the United States. It’s a barely even a documentary. Really, it’s something far more wholesome. Won’t You be my Neighbor is a celebration of a time long past. It’s a presentation of ideas and ideologies of one genuinely kind man. The film does not go deep into Fred Roger’s personal life, nor does it...
‘Waitress’ at TPAC has all the right ingredients

‘Waitress’ at TPAC has all the right ingredients

TPAC’s latest production in its all-star summer lineup is Waitress, the musical based off the hit 2007 film of the same name. Two-time Tony Award nominee and six-time Grammy nominee Sara Bareilles brings the narrative to life with an engaging, upbeat soundtrack that will make you laugh, cry, smile and everything in-between. Desi Oakley leads the cast as Jenna, a waitress at the local southern diner who has a propensity for making delicious, unique pies, and who also finds herself unexpectedly pregnant while in an abusive marriage with her husband Earl. Waitress is definitely a musical driven by vocal performance rather than dance (unlike last season’s American in Paris, which featured ballerinas in the lead roles and was driven more towards dance rather than acting and singing). Oakley’s vocal performance is outstanding, and she is by far the star of the show. Her rendition of “She Used to Be Mine” is especially good. Charity Angél Dawson plays Jenna’s cheeky coworker/best friend Becky, and Lenne Klingaman plays awkward Dawn, another fellow waitress and friend at the diner. However, Jeremy Morse nearly steals the show as Ogie, Dawn’s first love interest and future husband. Morse’s long rendition of “Never Getting Rid of Me” is sure to delight, getting the crowd laughing after emotionally-taxing scenes between Jenna and Earl. Waitress is raw, depicting the ups and downs of life without hesitation, and it is a show more geared towards adults than young families with children. It does have some coarse language and deals with heavy themes such as abusive marriage and adultery. In each scene that Ogie and Dawn appear, however, they lighten the mood;...
VIDEO: Heroes and Villains Fan Fest celebrates inclusion

VIDEO: Heroes and Villains Fan Fest celebrates inclusion

Not only is Nashville’s Heroes and Villains Fan Fest about fandoms and comic book characters, but its biggest fans said it also brings people together, can help children struggling with bullying at school and can even be used as a way to reach people for Christ. Lumination’s Lebron Hill and Cavin Jacobson attended the fan fest and spoke with Lipscomb student Liz Rainey, Costumers for Christ founder Scott Bayless and the fan fest president Jackie Pruttsman.      ...
Lipscomb graduates first contemporary music major Jacalyn Thompson

Lipscomb graduates first contemporary music major Jacalyn Thompson

As a school located in the heart of Music City, Lipscomb University started its own contemporary music program in the Fall of 2015, and the program is having its first graduate this year, Jacalyn Thompson. Previously headed by Grammy-award-winning music producer Charlie Peacock, the four-year major takes students down one of two paths: songwriting or producing. Now, another decorated production veteran Brown Bannister has taken the reigns in leading the department. Many students have continued with the program despite the changes, and they are currently finishing up their third year. Senior Jacalyn Thompson stands out among the songwriting students. She came into Lipscomb with some credits, making her Lipscomb’s first graduate in contemporary music, completing the major requirements in three years. “It feels good; it really does,” Thompson said. “I’m excited to blaze this trail.” The idea of graduating before her peers is bittersweet to Thompson. As excited as she is for her future, she said she can’t help but feel nostalgic. “I will have graduated early, but I count myself as the class of 2019,” she said. “It’s a family. If I won a Grammy, I’d totally give them a shoutout.” Thompson will be following in the footsteps of most Lipscomb graduates in the performing arts by hosting a recital in Shamblin Theater on Wednesday, May 2 at 6 p.m. All of the songs will be originals by Thompson. Some will be performed by her friends, most of whom currently attend Lipscomb or have attended at some point in their careers. Thompson noted that her peers in the department are all supportive of each others’ musical endeavors. The...
‘Avengers: Infinity War’ packs powerful punch, but is it real? (no spoilers!)

‘Avengers: Infinity War’ packs powerful punch, but is it real? (no spoilers!)

Avengers: Infinity War had a lot of hype to live up to. Ten years in the making gathers a lot of buildup, not only in the story it’s forced to tell, but in the sheer magnitude of characters that must star in such a massive undertaking. With 20+ big-name celebrities such as Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Chris Hemsworth, Robert Downey Jr. and more, the film has a lot of powerful characters to include. One would think this much power all at one time would create a sort of screen-time tug-of-war. While it can seem like a lot at one time, Infinity War triumphantly succeeds in what it had set out to do. Perhaps it’s because the real star isn’t one of these 20+ headliners, but the leading villain, Josh Brolin’s Thanos. One of the biggest qualms about Marvel films has been its lack of dynamic villain characters. Marvel Studios has not yet had a villain as iconic as DC’s The Joker, as Marvel often fails at developing its villains as well as its heroes. DC even had a film dedicated entirely to villains in Suicide Squad, while Marvel’s villains in film still can’t compare to The Joker’s celebrity. While Thanos still doesn’t reach that level, his super-villain character, nonetheless, is developed far beyond the typical Marvel villain. To Thanos, his ideas are noble. Thanos is intent on completing his mission of “killing people to prevent overpopulation,” letting nothing stop him, not even if it means hurting himself in the process. Yet Thanos is far from the brilliant criminal mastermind, with his “success” coming from his sheer power rather than...