NEW PALTZ — Schuyler G. Chapin, commissioner of the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs and former manager of the Metropolitan Opera Association, will be the keynote speaker for the Arts in America Now Conference at the State University of New York at New Paltz on October 13.

Since 1989, Arts in America Now, has given students, faculty, alumni, and Hudson Valley residents an opportunity to meet renowned artists, critics, scholars, and performers. This year’s symposium is devoted to the “Lives of Artists,” and serves as the grand finale to Homecoming for the Arts, a week of special events celebrating the opening of the College’s new Fine Arts Building and the renovation of McKenna Theatre.

Chapin, who has more than 40 years of experience in arts administration, has served as vice president of Worldwide Concert and Artists Activities for Steinway and Sons; as vice president of Columbia Records, a division of CBS, where he was in charge of the classical music and theatre departments; and as vice president of the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, where he created the “Mostly Mozart” and “Great Performer” concert series.

Chapin is the author of two books: “Musical Chairs” and “Leonard Bernstein: Notes from a Friend.” His new book, “Sopranos, Mezzos, Tenors, Bassos and Other Friends,” is due to be published in October.

In addition to Chapin, other notable speakers and panelists scheduled for the conference include playwright Robert Auletta, whose modern version of Sophocles’ “Ajax” was directed by Peter Sellars in 1986; Carolyn Brown,

former lead dancer with the Merce Cunningham Dance Company and Ann Morra, assistant curator in the department of film at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City.

The art history department has scheduled two films about Vincent van Gogh, “Vincent and Theo” and “Lust for Life,” on October 12. These films will be shown in Lecture Center 100 beginning at 7 p.m. on October 12. Introducing the evening’s presentation, Ann Morra from the Museum of Modern Art will speak on “Hollywood Views: The Lives of Artists.”

Alumni in various art disciplines will participate in a panel discus-sion about their transitions from college to successful careers in the world of the arts.

The symposium will conclude with speaker Robert Blackburn, renowned artist and the director and founder of the Printmaking Workshop in New York City. Blackburn, whose work has been exhibited at the National Gallery of Art, the Albright-Knox Gallery, and the Cleveland Institute of Art, was honored with the MacArthur Foundation Genius Award in 1992.

The conference, sponsored by the School of Fine and Performing Arts, runs from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in McKenna Theatre. There is no charge to attend any of the events. For more information call (845)257-3860.


9 a.m.: Introductory Remarks
President Alice Chandler
Dean Peter Alexander

9:15 a.m.: Panel #1: Historical Roles of Artists, Myths about Artists in Different Cultures
Moderator: Ann Morra
Panelists: Terry Adkins (Art); Shafer Mahoney (Music);David Lang, composer of opera, “Modern Painters”; and Beth Wilson (Art History)

10:30-11:45 a.m.: Keynote: Schuyler Chapin

1-2:15 p.m.: Panel #2: The Creative Process Unveiled
Moderator: Robert Auletta
Panelists: Jan Schmidt (English); Carolyn Brown, (dancer); Rimer Cardillo (Art).

2:30-3:30 p.m.: Panel #3: The Evolving Artist or Is There an Artist Life or A Life in Art After College and How Do I Get There?
Moderator: Jaimee Uhlenbrock (Art History)
Panelists: alumni in the arts

3:45-5 p.m.: Speaker: Robert Blackburn

5 p.m.: Reception