April 24, 2014, BY Kathryn Kopchik

Photo credit: Erik Giesen Loo '16
photo credit: Erik Giesen Loo '16

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Kathryn Maguet, executive director of the Weis Center for the Performing Arts at Bucknell University, has been honored with the Burma-Bucknell Award.

The annual award recognizes a Bucknell University community member or organization who has made outstanding contributions to intercultural and international understanding.

"Kathryn's focus on inclusive values and global perspectives has brought an astounding variety of world-class performers to Bucknell and the surrounding community," Bucknell President John Bravman said. "These events regularly draw a wide range of campus and community members. The programming also plays a significant role in diversity-related programming and thus, the cultural fabric of campus life."

Bravman also lauded Maguet for encouraging artists to interact with the local community and with students in the form of classroom visits, pre-show receptions or informal demonstrations. "Kathryn's work engages students to step outside of their comfort zone and reminds all of us to challenge our world views and to embrace cultural understanding for the common good," he said.

Maguet, an Illinois native, joined the Bucknell administration in May 2011 after serving as Center Series Director at the University of Massachusetts Fine Arts Center. She held similar positions at the Sun Valley Center for the Arts in Idaho, Peery's Egyptian Theatre in Utah, and Hamilton College in New York.

Burma-Bucknell BowlThe original bowl was presented to the University by the President of Burma in 1958 as a symbol of the historic partnership between Bucknell and the nation of Burma, now known as Myanmar.

His Excellency U Win, Ambassador from the Union of Burma to the United States, presented a beautifully hand-crafted silver bowl from the President of the Union of Burma and Mrs. Win Maung, "symbolizing 100 years of friendly relationship between the people of Burma and Bucknell University."

Motifs of contemplation, peace and tranquility are worked into the locally mined silver. The hand-carved stained teakwood stand is supported by three half-lion, half-dog chinthes who are the protectors of the bowl. Maguet was presented with a gift bowl, symbolic of the one presented to Bucknell by President of Burma.

Recent recipients include Bucknell psychology professor Bill Flack; the Bucknell African Student Association; Bucknell geography professor Paul Susman; Nadir Sharif, a 2007 Bucknell graduate who is serving as assistant director of residential education; and Muyambi Muyambi, a 2012 graduate who co-founded Bicycles Against Poverty.

The Weis Center is committed to presenting artists from around the world. The Weis Center's annual Series includes more than 30 professional performances each year, including world music, jazz, blues, modern dance, classical, a Family Discovery Series, and much more.

In conjunction with the performances, artists perform a variety of residency activities on- and off-campus including coaching students individually or in small groups, facilitating classes, leading pre-performance talks, workshops, and demonstrations, and conducting "flash concerts" in community locations. 

For more information about the Weis Center and its programs, visit bucknell.edu/WeisCenter or facebook.com/WeisCenter