Artist, thinker and believer Dr. Gregory Pepetone is Professor of Music and Interdisciplinary Studies at Georgia College and State University in Milledgeville, Georgia. Author of Gothic Perspectives on the American Experience (Peter Lang Press, 2003) and contributor to many books dealing with religious issues such as Religion and Alcohol (Peter Lang Press, 2004) and The Gospel According to Super Heroes: Religion and Popular Culture (Peter Lang Press, 2005), Pepetone has long been interested in the relationship between religion, popular culture and artistic vocation. A Fellow in Residence at the University of the South in Sawanee, TN., and a recent participant at the Institute for Integrated Studies at Miami University in Miami, OH.
Pepetone has also taught in London England, the American Midwest and at Goddard College in Vermont. Growing up in Las Vegas in the 1950s caught between the glitz of the strip and the teaching of a strict Baptist grandfather, Pepetone was recognized by Leonard Bernstein as an extraordinary talent and sent away to study at the Interlochen Arts Academy. His education was to ultimately include a doctorate in music from the University of Iowa and a year of study at the University of Dubuque Theological Seminary. Not surprisingly, his teachings and writings range over a broad spectrum of disciplines including music, film, religion, philosophy, politics and popular culture.
Dr. Pepetone will visit classes as part of his higher calling conversations and conclude the week as the Dorian Keyboard Festival critic with a guest piano recital. See complete schedule below..
Monday, November 6
10:30 a.m.: Speak in Daily Chapel, CFL, "Rendering unto Caesar: The Evangelical Heresy?"
2:45-3:45 p.m.: Classroom visit, Rhetoric of Spirituality, Main 213, "Gothic Arts as a Mediator of Spirituality in Culture: The Otherworld Journey of the Gothic Hero"
6:00 p.m.: Preus Lounge, Showing of Oliver Stone's JFK followed by a Q&A session
Tuesday, November 7
11:00 a.m.-noon:Classroom visit, Feminist Philosophy, Ockham House 103, "Gothic Feminism in the Yellow Wallpaper (Gilman) and The Black Cat (Poe/Edgar G. Ulmer)"
6:00 p.m.: Philosophy Colloquia, Ockham House 14, "From Dallas to Baghdad: Why the Kennedy Assassination Still Matters"
Wednesday, November 8
9:15-10:15 a.m.: Classroom visit, Introduction to Philosophy, Ockham House 103, "Reflections on Nietzsche's Musical Gothic Imagination
12:15-1:15 p.m.: Classroom visit, Introduction to Mass Media, Olin 213, "Gothic Feminism"
Thursday, November 9
12:45-2:15 p.m. Classroom visit, Media and Society, Main 116B, "A Tale Told by an Idiot: Conspiracy Theory and the Post-Modernist Perspective"
Friday, November 10
Guest Critic at Dorian Keyboard Festival
7:30 p.m.: Guest Piano Recital, Jensen-Noble Recital Hall
Saturday, November 11
Guest Critic at Dorian Keyboard Festival
Sunday, November 12
Noon-3:00 p.m. Public Master Class, Jensen-Noble Recital Hall
The following statement of purpose was submitted by Gregory Pepetone:
"Anything that happens in the world affects me;" wrote the great nineteenth century composer and interdisciplinarian, Robert Schumann, "politics for example, literature, people, and I reflect about all these things in my own way—and these reflections then seek to find an outlet in music." He went on to say, "I do not care for the man whose life is not in harmony with his work."
A sense of vocation is a subjective awareness that our lives are shaped by a mysterious imperative. The essence of that imperative, as Schumann suggests, is a profound need to perceive an underlying harmony in our often episodic and discordant lives. Like Dante, sooner or later we enter a wilderness from which we must look to whatever sources of guidance our intuition may provide for deliverance. As Dante chose Virgil and Beatrice to protect, inspire, and guide his other world journey through thirteenth century Italy, my principle mentors through the Inferno, Purgatorio and Paradiso of modern America have included figures from the arts such as Mozart and Beethoven, from religion such as the second century Alexandrian theologian Origen, C.S. Lewis and Madeleine L'Engle, and from politiciians such as Thomas Jefferson and John F. Kennedy.
What I propose to do in the course of several presentations is to discuss the vocations of these inspirational figures in relation to my own vocation as a performer, educator, and citizen. In today's consumer-oriented world, there are few incentives, tangible or otherwise, to choose a genuine vocation over a prosperous career. This is particularly true for those whose vocation is found in the arts and
humanities. I hope in the course of my presentations to share my vocation and to help other pilgrims as they embark on life's wilderness journey.