Blasko named new band director for classical music department

Blasko named new band director for classical music department

Lipscomb has brought on a number of changes this year, ranging from new academic department locations to a new outdoor patio outside the cafeteria. Additionally, several new faculty members have joined the Lipscomb staff. One of these new professors is Dr. Ben Blasko, who was recently named band director for the classical music department. Blasko was a music education major at a small college in his home state of Pennsylvania. He then completed his graduate coursework at the University of North Texas and eventually became director of bands at the University of Dubuque, before moving to Lipscomb this fall. In addition to his role at Lipscomb, he’s also a professional trumpet player and has done film work, notably studying with Bruce Broughton, who has worked on films such as Silverado. “I came [to Lipscomb] because I was looking for a place where I could practice my faith and integrate it into my teaching,” Blasko said. “When I interviewed here, what really drew me [in] were the students and how the faculty interacted with the students. I very much got a sense of [the] mentor relationships between faculty and students.” Blasko said he is honored to work with a “legend in music” in Brown Bannister, Lipscomb’s Director of Music. Students in the classical department have also welcomed Blasko’s arrival, citing their readiness for new and specialized attention. The music department not only hosts the classical music side, but it also has the commercial music emphasis (previously titled contemporary music). Since the commercial program was started in 2015, some classical students said that they felt that a lot of attention was placed...
David French speaks of mutual understanding at ‘Pizza and Politics’

David French speaks of mutual understanding at ‘Pizza and Politics’

Lipscomb’s department of history, politics and philosophy welcomed alumnus David French to its “Pizza and Politics” event. French is a graduate of Harvard Law, an author and an Iraq War veteran. French was also a potential independent candidate in the 2016 presidential election. French identifies as politically conservative. The thesis of his Monday night message was of acceptance. French spoke mostly about the freedom of religious expression, and how tolerance for Christianity in the modern world is fading. He used the example of Jack Phillips, a Christian cake-maker in Colorado who declined the opportunity to make a wedding cake for a gay couple, as an example of this. According to French, Phillips respectfully declined to bake a wedding cake for a two men, and liberal America was outraged and demanded legal action. This conflicted with his right to conduct his private business and practice his religious expression, French believes. On the other end of the political spectrum, French also brought up Collin Kaepernick, who exercised his freedom of symbolic speech at a 2016 NFL game by kneeling during the national anthem in protest of police brutality. “Where was the tolerance?” French asked. “Where was the acceptance of something you might otherwise like, because the idea and the value of shared liberty transcended the political issue at the moment? It was nowhere to be found.” French addressed the country’s current tense political climate. “We are in the grips of something called negative polarization,” he said. He explained this as being aligned with a party out of fear and hatred of the other. French addressed this polarization and gave advice on...
Well Friday offers coffee deals and live music, starting this week

Well Friday offers coffee deals and live music, starting this week

It’s the end of a long week of classes and homework. How does live music and discounted coffee sound? Enter Well Friday, the cure to school stresses. Sponsored by Lipscomb and facilitated by the College of Entertainment and the Arts (CEA), Well Friday is a bi-weekly, two-hour time of live music and discounted coffee at The Well coffeeshop on Granny White Pike. This is a perfect time to “treat yo self” and to get “a great deal on lunch…while hearing great music for free,” according to the CEA’s email announcement. The first Well Friday will be held tomorrow from 11 AM to 1 PM. At each Well Friday, Lipscomb offers the first fifty attending students a free coffee, tea, or soda token. After that, The Well will provide a 15% discount on food and drinks to everyone else. Well Friday is a relatively new opportunity for Lipscomb students. “We launched a few test events last May as the semester was ending, but it’s an idea we’ve been working on for a while,” Scott Baker, Director of Marketing and Recruiting at the CEA, said. “[Lipscomb CFO] Danny Taylor really had the initial vision for it. He wanted a special time every now and then that the whole Lipscomb family could get together, away from work and school, and just enjoy each others’ company with good food, drink, and music.” The partnership between the CEA and The Well isn’t new. However, when the Black River Stage, a quaint, conveniently-located performing venue, was built in The Well earlier this year, the relationship between the CEA and The Well reached a new level....
Lipscomb alum Tyler Russell releases new single “Now or Never”

Lipscomb alum Tyler Russell releases new single “Now or Never”

Nashville songwriter Tyler Russell has made a lasting impression on his teachers, and not just because of his talents. This Lipscomb alum wants to let God use him to bless others. Russell, a 2015 musical theatre graduate, intentionally chooses to live with joy. Whether it is in his music or while meeting new people, Tyler tries to let God help him to spread joy and love. “Now or Never,” which was released on August 17th on all major music streaming platforms, is Russell’s latest single. While the song isn’t specifically a Christian song, Russell said he and songwriting partner, Alexandria “Zandy” Fitzgerald from The New Respects, placed emphasis on “choosing joy.” “The Bible says there’s a time and a place for everything,” he said. “It’s just important to remind people to dance and have a good time.” Russell recalled his experience at Lipscomb as having a positive and inspirational impact on his songwriting. “The skills that I learned at the (Lipscomb) theatre department taught me so many things that I’m using now with songwriting,” he said. “I got to learn about so many different people’s stories, where people came from and what they go through. “I’m someone who loves to be inspired by what people go through, and I feel like God really puts inspiration through the people around me. I feel like lots of songs came from my time at Lipscomb.” Beki Baker, Chair of Lipscomb’s Theatre Department and one of Tyler’s old professors, was excited to hear Russell’s new single.  “The song itself is such a great representation of Tyler,” Baker said. “It’s upbeat, it’s positive and it’s looking for the good things in...
Can You Hear the Ticking? Eli Roth brings children’s mystery film to the big screen

Can You Hear the Ticking? Eli Roth brings children’s mystery film to the big screen

The House With a Clock in Its Walls will enchant audience members with a magical storyline. Adapted from John Bellairs’ 1973 young adult book, this movie brings to life the whimsical adventures of a young boy named Lewis (Owen Vaccaro). Lewis, suddenly orphaned when his parents are killed in a car accident, moves in with his eccentric Uncle Jonathan (Jack Black). Jonathan lives in a gothic style Victorian home, the perfect setting for spooky adventures and mysterious happenings. Mrs. Zimmerman (Cate Blanchett), a neighbor, spends a good deal of time at the house too. Soon after settling into his new residence, Lewis discovers there is more going on than meets the eye. Magic. Uncle Jonathan and Mrs. Zimmerman happen to be a warlock and witch searching for a hidden clock hidden within the “haunted” home’s walls. (Hence the title of the movie.) The mystery revolves on the previous owners of the home, evil warlock Isaac Izard and his wife Selena. Both of whom died/disappeared a year earlier while creating a powerful clock full of dark magic. Lewis, Jonathan and Mrs. Zimmerman must stop the ticking noise before the evil magic of Izard erases history. Along the way to solving the mystery, Lewis faces challenges, acquires bravery, deals with bullies and learns the power of friendship.  At moments, there is too much going on, and the main storyline/mystery of the clock fall wayside to Lewis’ self discovery, making the mystery of the clock hidden inside the house feel like an afterthought. More refining of the script would have helped focus the story and keep audience members engaged. Shockingly, this movie was directed by Eli...
Lipscomb defeated by No. 7 Kentucky in overtime battle

Lipscomb defeated by No. 7 Kentucky in overtime battle

The Lipscomb men’s soccer team was defeated in overtime by No. 6 Kentucky by a score of 3-2. The team is now on a five-game losing streak before heading into conference play. “Another tough loss; this one is especially tough,” head coach Charles Morrow said. “Disappointed in the results certainly, but really proud of the guys and the way we played. “I think today was a step forward in the season, even though it was a loss. Sometimes it’s hard to see the positives with losses mounting up.” Kentucky came into the game strong when midfielder, Kalil Elmedkhar, scored the first goal just over the minute mark. This was Elmedkhar’s second goal of the season. The score remained 1-0 at halftime. Kentucky scored again in the fifty-second minute. Aime Mabika secured the goal by a penalty kick, to put the Wildcats up 2-0. One minute later, the Bisons started to find their momentum when Ryan Birchfield scored a minute later, in the fifty-third minute, on a penalty kick. This is the first goal Kentucky has let up all season. Birchfield helped the Bisons again to tie the game by assisting a goal in the seventy-fourth minute, made by Logan Paynter. Regulation ended with the score 2-2, sending the game into overtime. Kentucky’s Jj Williams scored in the ninety-fifth minute. Bison goalkeeper, Luke Wilson came out, and the ball found an empty net. Morrow said he was disappointed about the game tonight, but he is optimistic for what lies ahead. “I really feel like this team is really close to being a really, really good team. If guys can stay...