Women in the Arts takes to the airwaves

UMSL Professor of Music Barbara Harbach is the director of Women in the Arts. (Photo by Stephanie Zettl)

Women in the Arts at the University of Missouri–St. Louis took to the airwaves beginning Sept. 16 with a new biweekly radio program on The U, UMSL’s online student radio station. Hosts Barbara Harbach, professor of music and director of Women in the Arts at UMSL, and Stephanie Eaton, manager of the UMSL Bookstore, interviewed Diane Touliatos, Curators’ Professor of Music at UMSL, about Byzantine composer Kassia, additional Byzantine and women composers, and her forthcoming book, “A Descriptive Catalogue of the Musical Manuscript Collection of the National Library of Greece.”

The next interview will air live at 9:30 a.m. Sept. 30 on The U’s Web site, http://umslradio.com. Subsequent interviews will be held at 9:30 a.m. every other Thursday. Each episode of the program will be archived on The U’s Web site.

“The program will support and highlight women creators in the St. Louis region and beyond,” said Harbach, a resident of Bellerive Acres, Mo.

Future guests will include fiction writers Mary Troy and Lindsay Shadwell; poets Drucilla Wall and Allison Funk; and editor Sally Ebest.

“Women in the Arts was created as a way to support, nurture and challenge women of all cultural, ethnic and artistic backgrounds in their role in the arts. That’s our mission,” Harbach said. “We want to increase awareness and understanding of the achievements of women creators.”

The initiative began in 2005 as a yearlong celebration of creative women featuring hundreds of artistic performances, exhibitions, conferences and educational events at UMSL and throughout greater St. Louis. It later developed into Women in the Arts, housed in the College of Fine Arts and Communication at UMSL, which was made possible through the support of a $2 million commitment made by Harbach and her husband, UMSL Chancellor Tom George.

Women in the Arts will maintain many of the more than 50 partnerships cultivated for the original yearlong celebration and create new collaborations. Current partners include Cinema St. Louis, Laumeier Sculpture Park, Left Bank Books and Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra, as well as numerous additional organizations at UMSL and throughout the region.

Other Women in the Arts events slated for this academic year include a launch party on Dec. 1 for Harbach and Touliatos’ recently released book “Women in the Arts: Eccentric Essays in Music, Visual Arts and Literature” and Harbach’s latest album, “Music of Barbara Harbach, Volume 6: Chamber Music III – Reeds, Brass, Strings, Harpsichord & Piano.” Another launch party for “Beauties,” a new book by Mary Troy, director of the Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing Program at UMSL, will take place Jan. 26. Co-sponsored by the Office of Research Administration and Gender Studies, both events will be held in the Gender Studies Suite, 211 Clark Hall on UMSL North Campus, One University Blvd., St. Louis County (63121).

Women in the Arts also will start a self-titled peer-reviewed journal focusing on women creators in all the arts. The quarterly journal’s first issue will appear in the winter of 2011.

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