Colette Eloi is an African Diaspora Folklorist/Choreographer in the MFA in Creative Inquiry, Interdisciplinary Arts program. "The experience that I am going though as an MFA student can be likened to a feeling of expanding and contracting, of both my mind's perspective and my knowledge base," says Colette. "My MFA project is to write a libretto using styles that are non-conventional to the operatic style yet in close alignment with the aesthetic of opera."
Nathan McAllister Beier is a Composer/Musician/Writer in the MFA in Creative Inquiry, Interdisciplinary Arts program. "The encouragement and enthusiasm I've received from classmates and teachers at CIIS has been so healing and nurturing," says Nathan. "The interest in my work is genuine, and the ideas I receive are provocative, scary and fun. It's like everyone is saying to me, ‘Yes! And please give me more!' All of the above mixes together to create a deep trust which gives me strength to face my fears and take on challenges. The immediate example of this is me leaping very noticeably from the singer/songwriter material of guitar and voice to the largely instrumental work of solo piano and ensemble works for drums, piano and bass. And there's just more to come." Nathan's final MFA project is a vinyl recording of solo piano compositions. The pieces for this record are musical language explorations of people's names.
Joie Rey / Jana Lynn Cohen is a Fine Art/Commercial Photographer and Multimedia Interdisciplinary Artist in the MFA in Creative Inquiry, Interdisciplinary Arts Program. "I am so glad that I get to experience artists of many mediums, rather than doing a traditional MFA where everyone in my program would be using the same materials," says Joie. "I find other art forms more inspiring, and gain fresh perspectives from them. As a result of this program, I have gone back to my roots as a photographer and I have begun to utilize other mediums, such as writing and collage in conjunction with photography within my work." Joie's final MFA project is entitled, "Dissonance: A Visual Memoir (A Preservation of Memories)." Visit the CIIS blog for Joie's post on how Joie decided on the MFA in Creative Inquiry, Interdisciplinary Arts.