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SRQ DAILY Jan 29, 2022

Saturday Perspectives Edition

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Saturday Perspectives Edition

"This strategic curriculum teaches students both the creative and management skills employers find most valuable in today's creative economy. "

- Dr. Larry Thompson, Ringling College of Art & Design

[Higher Education]  The Business of Art and Design and Creative Writing
Dr. Larry Thompson, lthompso@ringling.edu

At Ringling College of Art and Design, students learn how to be highly skilled artists, designers and creative professionals in a variety of genres including fine arts, filmmaking, game art, graphic and motion design, animation and illustration. But beyond that, there are two programs that are specifically designed to equip students with the skills needed to forge new paths in the world of business and content creation: Business of Art and Design and Creative Writing. 

Why pursue a business degree at an art and design school? It’s a good question, and I love answering it. The Ringling College Business of Art and Design Bachelor of Arts degree is specialized, and unique as it is not offered at any other art college. This strategic curriculum teaches students both the creative and management skills employers find most valuable in today’s creative economy. In this program, students are prepared to redefine and refine what businesses need today, emphasizing design thinking, brand strategy, project management and team leadership.

Another quality of this business program is students have countless opportunities to collaborate with other students across all majors to bring their creative visions to life: producing animated games and films, planning events and exhibitions, crafting bold advertising and marketing campaigns and developing entrepreneurial ideas for new creative businesses.

“The magic of Ringling’s business program is that it immediately sets you apart. In my internship experience at Warner Bros., I wasn’t expected to have any design capabilities, but I excelled because I did,” said Emily Fritz, a 2020 graduate of the Business of Art and Design program now working as a manager in Global Digital Marketing for Sony Pictures Entertainment. “I find myself capable of things far beyond my job description, because Ringling College’s business program covered all the bases.”

The business curriculum is designed to be flexible, empowering students to tailor their academic experience to their individual interests and career goals. Students tackle real client projects to build their resumes and portfolios or dive into strategy to develop and launch their own business ventures. Graduates go on to work as animation producers, production coordinators, brand strategists and marketing directors to name a few, at top companies including DreamWorks, Pixar, JibJab, Blue Mammoth Games and more.

The other major aforementioned is Ringling College’s Creative Writing Bachelor of Fine Arts program. In a world where content is king, skilled writers are in high demand and these graduates can apply their skills in a variety of creative industries. Through a series of Visiting Writer Forums, guest lectures and critiques, in-house magazine and journal opportunities and a diverse selection of course offerings, the Creative Writing program allows students to explore a range of aesthetics and genres.

Yes, Ringling College Creative Writing students learn how to become great storytellers, which is at the heart of every creative endeavor, whether it be a novel, movie or TV scripts, short story, game or comic book. But more importantly, these students are set up for success when they graduate with both the technical competence and fluency of narrative to succeed in print and digital media, as well as in new, emerging technologies. In other words, they know how to make their writing financially viable. There are so many exciting avenues to pursue as a writer, everything from playwright to video game writer, graphic novelist, blogger, copywriter and more. The opportunities are endless.

Some may think the Business of Art Design and Creative Writing majors stretch the boundaries of a traditional art and design education. That’s true, because at Ringling College, that’s exactly what we do, what our students are looking for and why we created such programs.

Perhaps American artist Andy Warhol said it, and did it, best. Known for taking common culture images, making them pop with bright colors, and then mass-producing them in his own factory, Warhol not only became an iconic artist; he also left an estate in excess of $200 million. “Being good in business is the most fascinating kind of art,” he once said.

Dr. Larry Thompson is president of Ringling College of Art & Design. 

Image via Pixabay

[Nonprofit]  Neuro Diversity and Ability Inclusion
Chris Collins

For many in the Suncoast community, diversity and Inclusion is a movement that began in the last five years, with broader interest peaking in the summer of 2020 as is evidenced by Google search trends. For those of us working with or caring for a person with a disability, diversity and inclusion is a second language spoken fluently. Neurodiversity acknowledges the variation in how we behave, think and learn without the need for designating these variations as abnormal or problematic. Ability inclusion can be summed up in three words, Least Restrictive Environment. As part of the Individual with Disabilities Education Act, Least Restrictive Environment is a civil right afforded to students with a disability to participate and be included with the general school population where safe and developmentally appropriate, the spirit of which has been an adopted ideology by the broader special needs community.

It would be imprudent to describe diversity and inclusion for people with disabilities without mentioning organizations that have worked tirelessly to establish themselves as the paragon of inclusion in our community. The Lily School for Child Development at Easterseals Southwest Florida, Selby Preschool at The Haven and The Florida Center for Early Childhood are excellent examples of empowering our children to be inclusive of all abilities, beginning in the early childhood classroom. As these children become young adults, fantastic organizations such as Goodwill or Rise and Nye’s educate, employ and empower individuals with disabilities, creating a sense of belonging, individuality and acceptance in the communities they live and work.

The great work done by these organizations and so many others cannot happen without the support of the community and our elected officials and frankly, we still have a long way to go. Private insurance and government contracts often neglect necessary components our professionals require to adequately care for and educate these remarkable individuals. Infrastructure, professional development and administrative costs are often excluded and disregarded when discussing what it takes to be a successful disability service. Occupational, physical, speech and language and behavioral therapists – along with teachers, paraprofessionals, and other certified professionals – all have requirements to continue their education and are left to pay for these services out of their own pocket, in a pediatric industry that is woefully underpaid.

Consider a local nonprofit or professional therapist/educator association for your individual, corporate or foundation gifts to support professional development and program enhancements in our community’s outstanding or aspiring inclusionary organizations.

The Suncoast Association for Behavior Analysis hosts a variety of professional development workshops and seminars. Members and/or workshop attendance are open to special needs professionals, students, and parents. Corporate and philanthropic sponsorships are always welcome. 

Chris Collins serves on the board of directors as Fundraising and Marketing Coordinator for the Suncoast Association for Behavior Analysis. Contact Collins at ChrisCollins@AbilityToInclude.org or (941) 705-1849. 

[SOON]  THEATER: Florida Studio Theatre: The Play That Goes Wrong , February 2 – March 13, Varies.

Welcome to the opening night of The Murder at Haversham Manor, where things are quickly going from bad to utterly disastrous. With an unconscious leading lady, a corpse that can’t play dead, and actors who trip over everything (including their lines), everything that can go wrong does go wrong during this 1920s murder mystery play. Will these accident-prone performers beat the odds and make it to their final curtain call? Find out with this Olivier Award-winning comedy. The Play That Goes Wrong, by Henry Lewis, Johnathan Sayer, and Henry Shields, will play beginning January 19, 2022 through March 13, 2022 in FST's Gompertz Theatre.

[SOON]  HEALTH: Selby Gardens: Fitness in the Forest: Outdoor Movement Class at Historic Spanish Point February , February 2 – February 23, 10:15am-11:15am

An outdoor guided workout of gentle exercises combining yoga, martial arts, and dance. Immerse yourself in nature, overlooking Little Sarasota Bay, and increase energy, flexibility, balance, and physical wellness. Wear comfortable clothes and lightweight shoes; bring water and a towel for the final stretch. Any age/fitness level welcome. General admission to HSP included. Drop-ins encouraged. For ease of transaction, drop-in payments should be made in cash. Please check-in 15 minutes before for your class at the Welcome Gazebo. Fitness in the Forest will take place on Wednesdays from 10:15am to 11:15am: February 2, 9, 16, and 23. Class fee: Members $20 / Non-members $30. Class Size: 50 Students. Instructor: Kathy Oravec.

[SOON]  MUSIC: Sarasota Orchestra: Masterworks: Beethoven and Tchaikovsky , February 3 – February 6, 8pm and 2:30pm

This program presents two captivating young stars to Sarasota on Thursday, February 3 at 8pm, Friday, February 4 at 8pm, Saturday, February 5 at 8pm, and Sunday, February 6 at 2:30pm. Grammy Award-winning violinist Augustin Hadelich performs Beethoven's serene, yet astoundingly difficult Violin Concerto. Maestro Yaniv Dinur has a reputation for dynamic and passionate performances. Opening the concert, Gabriella Smith's Field Guide features rhythms and sounds of the natural world. The program concludes with Tchaikovsky's iconic Symphony No. 4, one of the Russian master's most exhilarating works.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Library Foundation of Sarasota: Love Our Libraries , February 3

The Library Foundation of Sarasota County is celebrating its 10th Anniversary with its annual sellout event, the Love Our Libraries Author Luncheon. This year’s event returns in person on February 3, 2022, at the Sarasota Municipal Auditorium and will celebrate all the important ways Sarasota's local library system supports our community. The event will feature Emmy Award-winning filmmaker, author, cultural critic and journalist Dr. Henry Louis Gates, Jr.  As host of the popular PBS series Finding Your Roots, Dr. Gates has helped to expand America’s sense of itself, stimulating a national conversation about identity with humor, wisdom and compassion. Henry Louis Gates, Jr. is the Alphonse Fletcher University Professor and Director of the Hutchins Center for African & African American Research at Harvard University. In addition to being an award-winning filmmaker and journalist, Professor Gates has authored or co-authored 25 books and created 23 documentary films. In his most recent book, “The Black Church: This is Our Story, This is Our Song,” Gates presents a powerful new history of the Black church in America, taking readers on a 400-year journey where the church has been the Black community’s abiding rock and fortress. 

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: The Ringling: Ringling Underground , February 3 – April 7, 8pm-11pm

Enjoy live music, art and atmosphere in the Museum of Art Courtyard during Ringling Underground 8pm to 11pm. This event features an eclectic mix of local and regional live music. Check out up-and-coming artists displaying their work in the Museum of Art Courtyard. Note: Wearing a face mask is strongly encouraged. Upcoming dates are February 3, March 3, and April 7.

[SOON]  FILM: The Ringling: The Gospel According to Andre , February 3, 1pm

No one in the fashion world can afford to ignore André Leon Talley. This is partly because of his incredible fashion knowledge, vast network and strident opinions, and partly due to his hugely flamboyant appearance. As an African American over six feet tall, he stands out in the predominately white fashion industry. Talley doesn’t live for fashion, but for beauty and style. "Fashion is fleeting, style remains," he says early on in this documentary about the motivations behind this high priest of couture. Designers and fellow journalists talk at length in the film, which also features a lot of stunning archive footage. Talley grew up with his grandmother in Durham, North Carolina. He had a sheltered upbringing—stylish Sunday visits to church were the highlight of his week. This was the era of racial segregation in the United States: if his grandmother wanted to try on a hat in a store, she had to put a headscarf underneath to "protect" the white ladies from her black hair. Memories like this certainly contributed to Talley’s extraordinary drive to make it in the world of haute couture. The Gospel According to Andre will show on February 3, 2022 at 1pm at the Historic Asolo Theater. 

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Boys & Girls Clubs of Sarasota and DeSoto: Steak & Burger, Youth of the Year Celebration , February 4, 6pm

Boys & Girls Clubs of Sarasota and DeSoto Counties will honor 6 outstanding Club members at the annual Steak & Burger, Youth of the Year Celebration on Friday, February 4, 2022, at 6pm. at the Lee Wetherington Boys & Girls Club. Club members who compete for the Youth of the Year title embody the values of leadership service, academic service and healthy lifestyles. This premier recognition program of the Boys & Girls Clubs of America celebrates the extraordinary achievements of Club members. Candidates compete at the local Club, state and regional levels before attending the national celebration.

[SOON]  FILM: The Ringling: Toni Morrison: The Pieces I Am , February 4, 6:30pm

After a stint as an editor early in her career, American writer Toni Morrison understood the publishing industry better than the ordinary writer—but she refused to be defined by the establishment. She wrote her books from a vital, underrepresented point of view. Morrison was one of the few who wrote for an African American audience, and she understood the way language could operate as an oppressive or uplifting force—she refused to let her words be marginalized. After years of fighting to be heard, Morrison was awarded a Nobel Prize for her writing, and her novels are now taught in schools around the world. Through a trove of archival material, evocative works of contemporary art, and interviews with Oprah Winfrey, Angela Davis, and Morrison herself, we revisit her famed books and learn about the inspiration for her writing. The Pieces I Am will show on February 4, 2022 at 6:30pm at the Historic Asolo Theater.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Tidewell Foundation: 13th Annual Signature Luncheon , February 4, 11:30am

Save the date for the 13th Annual Signature Luncheon hosted by the Tidewell Foundation benefiting Tidewell Hospice with Featured Speaker Henry Winkler. The event takes place on February 4th, 2022 at 11:30am at The Ritz-Carlton Sarasota. All proceeds from this event will help Tidewell Hospice provide care, comfort, and compassion to more than 10,000 patients and families each year. During the event, a raffle for a chance to win a two night stay at the world-class Ritz-Carlton Sarasota & one round of Golf for Two at the Ritz-Carlton Golf Club will also be held. There is a maximum of 500 raffle tickets available, and they are first-come, first-serve.

[SOON]  FESTIVAL: Fresh Fridays: Love in the Air , February 4, 7pm-10pm

On Friday, February 4th, downtown Sarasota will glitter with twinkling eyes as love and romance are celebrated like never before at Five Points Park from 7pm to 10pm. The first-Friday event organizers invite couples to apply for a chance to be married or renew their wedding vows at Five Points Park by City of Sarasota mayor, Erik Arroyo. In addition to the public ceremony, the couple selected will also get an assortment of wedding support from downtown merchants, including jewelry, hair/makeup, wardrobe, and a private reception for friends and family—all complimentary. Interested couples should send an email to freshfridays@next-mark.com with their names, a brief introduction, and why they think they should be the ones to get married at Five Points Park for LOVE IN THE AIR. Deadline is Wednesday, January 19. Like previous events, LOVE IN THE AIR will feature free signature party favors, free light bites, free roses for the first 500 guests, free entertainment, and the opportunity to enjoy an adult beverage al fresco. Though the wedding ceremony is the marquee moment, the event is designed to celebrate love and romance for all attendees.

[SOON]  MUSIC: Guitar Sarasota: International Concert Series: Rene Izquierdo - Cuba , February 5, 7:30pm

Rene Izquierdo will play at Riverview Performing Arts Center on Saturday, February 5, 2022 at 7:30pm. Rene Izquierdo graduated from the Guillermo Tomas, Amadeo Roldan Conservatory and Superior Institute of Art in Havana. In the United States, Mr. Izquierdo earned a Master of Music and an Artist Diploma degrees from the Yale University School of Music, where he studied with Benjamin Verdery. While at Yale he represented the university in an exchange program with the Conservatoire National de Musique et de Danse du Paris and worked with guitarists Olivie Chassain and Roland Dyens.

[SOON]  HEALTH: Selby Gardens: Sunset Sound Meditation at the Point February , February 6 – February 27, 4pm-5pm

Discover sound meditation while surrounded by the beauty of Little Sarasota Bay. Sound frequencies and vibrations facilitate relaxation and mental health. A certified sound therapist will be your guide in HSP’s tranquil Sunken Gardens. Wear comfortable clothes and lightweight shoes; bring water and a towel for the final stretch. Open to all age/fitness levels. General admission to HSP included. Please check-in 15 minutes before for your class at the Welcome Gazebo. Sunset Sound Meditation will take place on Sundays from 4pm to 5pm: February 6, 13, 20, and 27. Class fee: Members $50 / Non-members $65. Class Size: 30 Students. Instructor: Lucy Tight.

[SOON]  MUSIC: Jazz Club of Sarasota: Giving Hunger The Blues , February 6, 11:30am-9:30pm

Sarasota's largest and longest running charity music event returns for 2022. Giving Hunger The Blues will take place on Sunday, February 6 from 11:30am to 9:30pm at Nathan Benderson Park. With nationally-acclaimed headliners and a full day of live music, food, and our most spacious venue yet, Giving Hunger The Blues promises to be an unforgettable event all for a great cause: the Mayors Feed The Hungry Program of Sarasota-Manatee.

SRQ Media Group

SRQ DAILY is produced by SRQ | The Magazine. Note: The views and opinions expressed in the Saturday Perspectives Edition and in the Letters department of SRQ DAILY are those of the author(s) and do not imply endorsement by SRQ Media. Senior Editor Jacob Ogles edits the Saturday Perspective Edition, Letters and Guest Contributor columns.In the CocoTele department, SRQ DAILY is providing excerpts from news releases as a public service. Reference to any specific product or entity does not constitute an endorsement or recommendation by SRQ DAILY. The views expressed by individuals are their own and their appearance in this section does not imply an endorsement of them or any entity they represent. For rates on SRQ DAILY banner advertising and sponsored content opportunities, please contact Ashley Ryan Cannon at 941-365-7702 x211 or via email

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