To some visitors, Chautauqua looks the same as it did the day it was born, a mind-boggling idea to someone who has ever slept in a tent. But change comes hard to Chautauquans steeped in generations-old tradition. And change it must.
Among the many notable people who have walked Chautauqua’s grounds, Thomas Alva Edison might well have been the most influential person in America’s day-to-day life.
There are many giants at Chautauqua — not measured by physical stature, wealth, size of house or material possessions, but by the contributions they have made to the Chautauqua community. Now in its eighth year, a celebration of five Chautauqua Giants will commence at 3:30 p.m. today in the Hall of Christ. The presentation is part of the Oliver Archives Heritage Lecture Series.
The event first occurred in 2006 as part of a week themed “Five Giants.” Jon Schmitz, Chautauqua archivist and historian, said that Tom Becker asked him to do a presentation on the “Giants of Chautauqua.” Schmitz, in turn, asked five people to choose five Chautauquans, “living or dead, famous or unknown, people they knew or never met, and to say a few words about why they believe they made a special contribution to Chautauqua.”
Two speakers will address issues of human health at 3:30 p.m. today in the Hall of Christ as part of the Oliver Archives Heritage Lecture Series. Dr. Max Rohrbaugh, anesthesiologist at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, will speak about “Historical Perspectives on Jehovah’s Witnesses’ Refusal of Blood Transfusion.” Jon Schmitz, Chautauqua Institution archivist and historian, will sort out some of the comparisons people generally make between the Canadian and American health care systems.
On a number of occasions, Jared Jacobsen, Chautauqua organist and worship and sacred music coordinator, and Marlie Bendiksen, Chautauqua Institution Archives associate, have instructed and delighted Chautauqua audiences on the subject of hymns — a little bit of history, a little bit of song.
This year will be a little more of the same and a little bit different. Titled “History of the Sacred Song Service,” their Chautauqua Heritage Lecture Series presentation will begin today at 3:30 p.m. in the Hall of Christ. They invite audience participation.
Given presentations by Jacobsen and Bendikesen in years past, the series’ attention to Chautauqua’s Sacred Song Service is the next logical thing to do, Bendiksen said.
The diverse offerings of a Chautauqua summer, with their various epistemological assumptions, befuddle people. Jon Schmitz, Chautauqua archivist and historian, will help to sort out any confusion in a lecture at 3:30 p.m. today in the Hall of Christ.
Schmitz has titled his talk “Creation and Recreation: Science and the Sabbath at Chautauqua.”
The Pillars: Arts, Recreation, Education, Religion. … Or is that Religion, Education, Recreation, Arts?