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Redbird media: Latest creative works by ISU faculty

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The following summaries of books and music created by Illinois State faculty  appear in the fall 2018 print issue of the Redbird Scholar.

Sweet Dreams Do Come True: Verlon Thompson, a Musical Memoir

By Brent K. Simonds, professor, School of Communication (self-published, 2017)

Sweet Dreams Do Come True is by Professor Brent Simonds’ music performance film and biographical documentary of Nashville singer/songwriter Verlon Thompson. The memoir celebrates the life of a “sweet, kind soul” who grew up an Oklahoma farm boy with big musical dreams. The film includes interviews with roots music heavyweight Guy Clark, bluegrass musician Sam Bush, and country music songwriter Wayland Holyfield. It was named Best Feature Documentary at the 2018 Red Dirt International Film and has been screened at several film festivals.

Actor for Life: How To Have An Amazing Career Without All the Drama

Co-authored by Connie de Veer, professor, School of Theatre and Dance (Smith & Kraus Publishers, 2018)

In this book, Acting Professor Connie de Veer and master coach and teacher Jan Elfline offer insights into the mental attitudes actors need to sustain healthy and long-lasting careers in theater, film, and television. The authors offer actors a way of thinking that allows them to handle rejection, grueling hours, and other difficult aspects of the acting life. Actor for Life emphasizes the need to nourish the mental and emotional needs of actors and teaches readers how to develop resilience, motivation, and courage.

Related Article: New edition Professor Crothers’ book examines American culture’s influence on the world

Twenty-First Century Feminisms in Children’s and Adolescent Literature

By Roberta Seelinger Trites; Distinguished Professor, Department of English; interim chair, Department of Management and Quantitative Methods (University of Mississippi Press, 2018)

Author of Waking Sleeping Beauty: Feminist Voices in Children’s Novels, Roberta Seelinger Trites returns to analyze how literature for the young still provides an outlet in which feminists can offer girls an alternative to sexism. Throughout the book, Trites explores issues of identity, gender, race, class, age, and sexuality in a wide range of literature for young readers, such as Kate DiCamillo’s Flora and Ulysses, Jacqueline Woodson’s Brown Girl Dreaming, and Rainbow Rowell’s Eleanor & Park.

Grand Bargain!

By Rose Marshack, associate professor, Arts Technology Program, and Rick Valentin, associate professor, Arts Technology Program (Lotuspool Records, 2018)

Grand Bargain! is the first new album in 14 years released by Poster Children, Rick Valentin and Rose Marshack’s punk rock ensemble. Poster Children, originally formed in Champaign in 1987, have 11 internationally released albums on major and independent labels. The band has performed extensively in the U.S. and Europe, and is known for its DIY attitude and pioneering digital communication with fans, creating websites, blogs, E-CDs, and podcasts a decade before these technologies became popular.

Some of the information from these summaries came from the authors and their publishers. Books, audio and video recordings, and mobile applications created by Illinois State University faculty, staff, and students are eligible for inclusion in this section. Submit entries to kdberse@IllinoisState.edu. For more listings, visit IllinoisState.edu/RedbirdScholar.

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