COLA celebrates art and education with first “Hootenanny” week
By any estimation, the first Hootenanny — a celebration of Louisiana Tech’s College of Liberal Arts — was an entertaining and educational week, a prelude of Hootenannies-to-come and a long overdue bash that focused a spotlight on the artsy side of academics.
The brainchild of first-year dean and long-time Tech associate professor and program director Karl Puljak, this spring’s Hootenanny ’23 was accented by music, performance, featured guests — even free popcorn and Kona Ice.
“I simply wanted to shine a light on just a few of the great things that happen within just one week in our College, from the Shakespeare Festival to the performances in the Stone Theatre to AVFEST,” Puljak said. “I also wanted to provide our faculty and students an opportunity to enjoy our visiting artist and guest musicians to celebrate the wrap-up of the academic year.”
Kyle “Black Cat Tips” Brooks, a street folk artist, painter, poet, and muralist from Atlanta, Ga., visited campus all week, presented to several classes in the School of Design, and even did some work: Brooks painted a mural in Robinson Hall for the School of Communication and created a painting for the School of Literature and Language on the second floor of GTM.
Performances of The Lightning Thief, the School of Theatre’s final production of the year, were sold out, and the annual Shakespeare Festival on the celebrated birthday of The Bard in the GTM Courtyard was a hit as usual. To wind down the Hootenanny Friday, the Arkansas band Sad Daddy and Ruston’s Monty Russell performed music, also in the GTM Courtyard.
“We’re already planning for next year,” Puljak said. “Bigger and better!”