FROM THE EDITOR: College encourages arts’ excellence

By ROBYN ZELICKSON

Music. Art. Theater. Dance.

Before I worked on the Aztec Press, I was oblivious to these programs at Pima Community College.

Because I’ve been interested in the arts from a young age, however, I was naturally drawn to writing about arts and entertainment.

When I take a trip down memory lane, I can look from last September to the present and recall highlights of meeting some of Pima’s many talented and interesting people.

One of my favorite people in the Theatre Arts department, Mickey Nugent, was a delight to interview both for “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” and “In the Heights.” With an extensive background in theater going back to his Broadway days, he is warm and funny.

Todd Poelstra, the program coordinator for PCC Theatre Arts, is a man of many hats. Poelstra directs, handles lighting and set-building and additionally was a key part of the Frida Kahlo exhibit at the Botanical Gardens. He is a quiet man with immense skill.

Nolan Kubota, dance faculty, was a pleasure to encounter. He has danced in theaters around the world and entertained many while a part of renowned dance companies. Look for more on Kubota in a profile by colleague Nicholas Trujillo in an upcoming issue.

David Andres was also a joy to get to know and a pleasure to bond with over our mutual love and concern for the future of our oceans. His art is brilliant and very moving. I have my fingers crossed for him to win the Governor’s Arts Award this semester.

I look forward to getting to know some of the gifted faculty in the music department, including Jonathan Ng, Mark Nelson, Mike Kuhn, Alexander Tentser, Alex Cardieri, Michael Lich and Jeff Sanders – an extensive list.

Carol Carder, the marketing and public relations director for the Center of the Arts at the West Campus, has been a helpful guide along the way. Her dedication to publicizing events is phenomenal and she’s been my partner-in-crime on many a story.

No column would be complete without mentioning my beloved Aztec Press co-workers, who have helped me to learn about excellence in writing and photography. You’ve all inspired me to improve and taught me about our craft and about life.

Last but certainly not least, there’s our adviser and fearless leader Cynthia Lancaster, who is leaving us at the end of this semester. It’s tough to put into simple words what her influence has meant to me. Travel safe and enjoy your retirement, Cynthia.

The newsroom has been a blessing to me in times when I needed a second home. It’s a serious yet joyful place, full of humor and, let’s not forget, dope music.

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