Crossroads Concert, Workshops to Focus on Global Sustainability

Crossroads Concert, Workshops to Focus on Global Sustainability

The divergent – yet intertwined – worlds of science and art will blend together Monday, Feb. 22, at UCF in a live evening concert and morning workshops to create public synergism around the challenges of our future, specifically global sustainability and climate change.

By merging intellect with emotion, the Crossroads Project: Rising Tide hopes to inspire others to work together and solve these pressing global problems.

Crossroads will present a multidisciplinary performance by a physicist, composer, visual artists and a string quartet 7:30-9:30 p.m. in the Visual Arts Building auditorium.

“Where science informs us, it is the arts that infuses our knowledge with the experience of our humanity,” said Steve Fiore, co-organizer of the event with the Department of Philosophy and the Institute for Simulation and Training.

Fiore first saw the Crossroads Project perform at the 100th anniversary conference of the Ecological Society of America and he said he was amazed at the seamless blend of ideas by the group. 

“I was so impressed by the power of the performance, I knew I wanted to bring them down to UCF given our own research on environmental sustainability, as well as UCF’s efforts in combining art and science,” he said.

Earlier Monday, the Crossroads performers will work with the Office of Interdisciplinary Studies and participate in two workshops focusing on sustainability. The first is aimed at students to help them understand sustainability and activism in support of the environment. The other is for faculty and designed to help them understand interdisciplinary approaches to teaching about environmental sustainability. The morning workshops are both filled.

The environmental experts have been traveling the country to promote awareness and understanding of interdisciplinary thinking and environmental action, and UCF is fortunate to have them work with our students and faculty, said Claudia Schippert, co-organizer of the event and interim director of the Office of Interdisciplinary Studies.

The Crossroads Project: Rising Tide was organized by Utah State University physicist Robert Davies and the Fry Street Quartet to explore society’s sustainability by marshaling the power of art and science. The presentation combines musical performance and spoken word with scientific visualizations, photography and paintings.

Music for the performance was written by Haydn, Janácek and New York composer Laura Kaminsky, and images will be presented by painter Rebecca Allan, photographer Garth Lenz and sculptor Lyman Whitaker.

In an NPR interview, Davies said he founded the project because he was surprised by the gap between what scientists know about climate change and what the public understands about it. He also said public lectures were not spurring enough people to take action, so he started Crossroads to encourage change.

Monday’s UCF performance is organized by the Department of Philosophy-Ethics Center Initiative and the Office of Interdisciplinary Studies. For details on the the performance, go to http://www.ist.ucf.edu/crossroads/.