Plague returns as threat to Madagascar; ties to Lipscomb

Plague returns as threat to Madagascar; ties to Lipscomb

The Black Death, which claimed nearly 50 million lives in the 14th century has returned — this time to a country southeast of Africa: Madagascar. According to World Health Organization, the first outbreak of the plague in Madagascar that can be confirmed was on August 1. To date, over two thousand individuals have been struck with this deadly disease, and as of this week it has killed 195, with numbers continuing to increase daily. Dr. Jill Kirby, an assistant professor in Lipscomb’s biology department, mentioned that one of the things she teaches in her biology class is that the plague still exists today, but now we know a lot more about it and are able to treat it more effectively. “I think the fact that there is such a large outbreak right now is a little bit shocking,” Kirby said. “But when I consider the countries where the outbreak is happening, I am not shocked because of their lack of resources.” Madagascar is 9,390 miles from Nashville, yet it is still managing to impact Lipscomb and several members of the faculty. Dr. Jim Thomas, a Lipscomb communications professor, in particular has strong ties to Madagascar. The relationship with Lipscomb and Madagascar started in 2007 when the ambassador and president of Madagascar, Marc Ravalomanana, came to tour Lipscomb and speak with President Randy Lowry and Dr. Thomas. “The President [of Madagascar] said, ‘I am looking for a school to educate my students from Madagascar to come back and work for the government in Madagascar,” Thomas said. “I want them at a Christian school, and I will pay their tuition for them to come.'” After...
Pixar’s ‘Coco’ brings death to life

Pixar’s ‘Coco’ brings death to life

Over the years, Pixar has brought life to a number of things — toys, cars, monsters and robots, to name a few. With Coco, Pixar manages to bring light and color to death, a theme ordinarily off-limits or glossed over in children’s movies. Coco centers on Miguel (Anthony Gonzalez), a boy in love with music despite his family’s strict abhorrence of any musical note whatsoever. This hatred is due to an unwelcome story in the family’s past regarding Miguel’s great-great grandfather who abandoned his wife and daughter (Miguel’s great-grandma Coco) for music. Despite his family’s uncompromising ban on music, Miguel idolizes famed musician Ernesto de la Cruz (Benjamin Bratt), who tragically died after being crushed by a giant bell during his last performance. After Miguel attempts to “borrow” his idol’s guitar in the altar the town has built to remember him, he is suddenly transported to walking with skeletons as a live boy on the Day of the Dead — the one day of the year where one’s ancestors can come back and visit with family if they are remembered by having their picture set up by relatives left on earth. After finding his ancestors in skeleton form, it’s a race to get Miguel home before sundown unless he wants to stay in the Land of the Dead forever. The Land of the Dead is a bright, intriguing spectacle filled with striking visuals and vivacious color more elaborate than Pixar has every achieved. In typical Pixar fashion, the film manages to bring emotionalism, depth and realism to animated characters, and in this case, even manages to bring these attributes to walking skeletons. Coco’s finale is packed with warmth and emotion, but viewers are...
Phi Sigma takes home first place at eighth annual Stompfest

Phi Sigma takes home first place at eighth annual Stompfest

With a mechanics-inspired routine, women’s social club Phi Sigma scored the top prize at the eighth annual Stompfest on Thursday night in Collins Alumni Auditorium. Men’s social club Theta Psi received second place with its boy-band stomp, and women’s social club Delta Omega took home third place as “DO Army.” Morgan Ellison and Ciara McKinney co-directed Phi Sigma’s show, and Katie Markham helped choreograph. Ellison said the level of competition among all the clubs was incredible this year, and that she felt very proud Phi Sigma came out on top. “We feel like it’s really long overdue, but especially since over the years, all the teams have gotten so good,” Ellison said. “It’s been such tough competition.” The annual event featured seven social clubs on campus performing a 10-minute, student-choreographed routine. Student Government Association and The Office of Intercultural Development sponsored the show. Other clubs that participated in Stompfest included: Delta Sigma’s “Firefighters,” Phi Nu’s “Shipwrecked,” Pi Delta’s “Candy Shop” and Sigma Iota Delta’s “Barbershop.” On Wednesday night, the clubs performed for a “Family and Friends” show, and on Thursday night, a guest panel of judges was brought in for the second performance. The winners were chosen based on the stomp choreography, theme of each club’s group and audience participation. Markham, one of Phi Sigma’s choreographers for the award-winning stomp, said she was proud of how hard everyone on the team worked to get there. “I’m ecstatic,” Markham said. “Very thrilled, very proud. Everyone on the team worked really hard. We put in a lot of hours of practice, and I’m just really proud.” Markham said the way that...
Men’s soccer sees season end with NCAA tourney loss to Butler

Men’s soccer sees season end with NCAA tourney loss to Butler

Despite numerous chances on goal, the Lipscomb men’s soccer team couldn’t get its offense going on Thursday evening – spelling the demise of its 2017 season. The Butler Bulldogs used a pair of Brandon Guhl goals to top the Bisons, 2-0, in the first round of the NCAA tournament at the Sellick Bowl. Lipscomb (11-8-2) finished with a total of 16 shots, and seniors Ivan Alvarado, Ivan Sakou and Kyle Smith each had three attempts apiece. The Bulldogs (13-4-2) found the net just 7:29 into the game when Guhl snuck a shot past Lipscomb goalkeeper Christopher Zappia, who had come off his line to attempt a save. That scoreline held the rest of the half. In the 77th minute, Guhl added an insurance goal off a long pass from teammate Kieran Geldenhuys. It was Guhl’s team-leading 12th tally of the season. Lipscomb was making its first-ever NCAA tournament appearance after topping Jacksonville, 2-1, for the ASUN title last Saturday. It was the Bisons’ first ASUN title since joining the conference and NCAA Division I in 2003. The Bisons graduate 10 seniors including: Alvarado, Sakou, Smith, Eduardo Reza, Cameron Botes, Joe Kerridge, Scout Monteith, Jonathan Ramirez, Anthony Bellini and Brandon Braumuller. Butler advanced to the second round of the tournament and will take on VCU on Sunday in Richmond, Virginia. Photo courtesy of Lipscomb...
Lady Bisons volleyball takes first game of ASUN championship

Lady Bisons volleyball takes first game of ASUN championship

Lady Bisons volleyball (15-12; ASUN 8-6) won the first game of the ASUN championship against The University of North Florida (13-19; 5-9). This marks the 13th consecutive year that Lipscomb has made it to the ASUN semifinals. The Lady Bisons had a strong opening and never lost their stride, leading each of the sets by more than three points the entire game. Carlyle Nusbaum, reigning ASUN Player of the Year, delivered 17 out of the 42 kills. “Offense is something this team knows how to do,” head coach Brandon Rosenthal said. “The team worked like a well-oiled machine with every player executing their positions wonderfully.” The Lady Bisons total amount of digs was 49, 15 digs higher than North Florida’s 34, and senior Brittany Thomas delivered 11 digs. Lipscomb’s Lady Bisons had a whopping 42 kills as opposed to the University of North Florida Osprey’s 23. The Lady Bison’s hitting percentage for the three sets were .302, .280 and .250, respectively. “Our energy was great,” Rosenthal said. “I don’t know if there’s necessarily improvements; I think it’s just continuing to execute the gameplan.” Lipscomb’s next match of the semifinals will be against Kennesaw State on Nov. 17 at 5 p.m.  Photo courtesy of Lipscomb...
‘Les Miserables’ opens at TPAC; delivers powerful performance

‘Les Miserables’ opens at TPAC; delivers powerful performance

Les Miserables brought in a large crowd to the Tennessee Performing Arts Center on Tuesday, for its opening night. The award-winning show made its way to Nashville as a part of the national tour. The musical follows the fictional Jean Valjean on his journey from a prisoner to a successful businessman. The show tracks his sorrows, his moral triumphs and his place in the French Revolution. Valjean’s life is a portrayal of redemption and growth through God and the kindness of God’s people. He exhibits the traits of a forgiven man who is secure in his relationship with God. Les Miserables is an informative production that displays the terrible climate of France during its revolution. It highlights the suffering and injustice of the time and applauds the citizens’ thirst for equality and justice throughout the country. The raw emotion of each scene is touching and has the audience contemplating what is most important in life. There are Christian themes throughout as well as themes of integrity and true love. The messages portrayed throughout the entire show are timeless and can touch any heart no matter the circumstance. The show was creative and elaborate for a traveling production.  The actors’ voices were amazing but the acting itself was underwhelming. Many of the songs were vocally astounding but were unequally accompanied by tired acting. Though the acting was dull, the well-designed set was the opposite. The elaborate, French set was dynamic and eye-catching. The war scenes were beautifully crafted and the smooth transitions between scenes kept the audience’s attention. The production was well received by the audience.  Most scenes were met with cheering and laughing. The cast was given a standing ovation at the end of the night. It was clear that the show was a...