For all those Robin Williams fans here at SOU, there’s an event you will not want to miss. Sunday, Oct. 5, the university will be putting on a Robin Williams film tribute at the Southern Oregon University Music Recital Hall.
The tribute will consist of four films: “Dead Poets Society,” “Good Will Hunting,” “Patch Adams,” and “Good Morning, Vietnam.” Along with the films, there will be a 20 to 30 minute panel about Williams’ acting genius and depression. The panel will consist of Victor Chang, the director of counseling at the Student Health and Wellness Center, and James Donlon, a member of the Theater Performance faculty. David Humphrey, the Director of the Oregon Center for the Arts at Southern Oregon University, will moderate. “We’ve been calling it creative madness,” said Humphrey about the panel’s topic. “How does an artist suffer that?” is but one of the questions that he hopes to have discussed.
Humphrey decided that SOU should do something to remember the actor at the end of spring term and sent out an Email in July to anyone who would be interested. Humphrey received many positive responses. In total, 30 people got involved in the project including our new President Saigo. The idea blossomed from there. Starting as a 24 hour showing of Williams’ films, the event morphed in time and shape to its current format: eight and a half hours of movie time with one 20 to 30 minute panel between the first and second film.
“When David Humphrey proposed the idea, I thought it was absolutely imperative to talk about depression,” said Chang, one of leaders in depression and suicide prevention here at SOU. Chang went on to say that when tragedies such as Williams’ death occur, it allows for avenues such as this event to better promote information to help avoid similar incidents. Originally, there was going to be two panels. One was going to be geared toward Williams’ artistic abilities led by Donlon, and the other being led by Chang was going to focus on depression, its link to art and awareness. Due to time constraints, the two were collapsed into one, explained Chang.
The tribute starts at noon, and goes till 9 p.m. Admissions is free and open to public as well as students and faculty. The event is being sponsored by the Oregon Center of the Arts, Provost Office, Student Health and Wellness Center, Jefferson Public Radio and Division of Business, Communications and the Environment.
Humphrey hopes students and community members of all ages will come together for the event, “and that way, Southern Oregon has given tribute to an amazing actor.”