Wednesday, August 26, 2015

The four century saga of knight-errant Don Quixote and his squire Sancho Panza will kick off the 2015-2016 season of the television, radio, and internet program WorldCanvass.  Host Joan Kjaer and WorldCanvass guests will discuss the novel, the title character’s mark on artistic and public imagination, and fundamental questions raised by the work such as the relationship of fiction to reality, life to art, and the ‘ownership’ of an original creation. The public is invited to attend the WorldCanvass discussion at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, September 15, at FilmScene in downtown Iowa City. 

Widely considered to be the first modern novel, Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra is inventive, charming, and insightful, telling the tale of a man who, against all odds, sets out to right wrongs, restore justice, and bring honor to the woman he loves.  The story’s complexities, the virtuous aspirations of the deluded hero, and the resulting commentary on life are as enthralling to today’s readers as they were when the book first appeared in 16th century Spain.

WorldCanvass will serve as a prelude to the October 22-24 Obermann-International Programs Humanities Symposium “Parody, Plagiarism, and Patrimony: Don Quixote in the Age of Electronic Reproduction.” The symposium, with major funding from the Obermann Center for Advanced Studies and an International Programs Major Projects Award, has been organized by faculty members Ana Rodriguez-Rodriguez and Denise Filios of the Department of Spanish and Portuguese in the Division of World Languages, Literatures, and Cultures (CLAS).

WorldCanvass: Don Quixote’s Four Century Saga

Part 1--5:00-5:25

Don Quixote: comic hero to immortal literary figure

  • Ana Rodriguez-Rodriguez—UI Department of Spanish and Portuguese
  • Denise Filios—UI Department of Spanish and Portuguese

Part 2—5:30-5:55

Quixote adaptations

  • Pablo Rodriguez Balbontin—UI Department of Spanish and Portuguese
  • Kathleen Edwards—UI Museum of Art
  • Kathrine Moermond—UI Old Capitol Museum

Part 3--6:00-6:25

Don Quixote in world culture and music

  • Anna Barker—UI Department of Asian & Slavic Languages and Literature
  • William Jones—UI orchestras and opera
  • Josh Sazon—Iowa City Community Theatre

The program, which is produced by UI International Programs and takes place at Iowa City’s non-profit cinema arts organization FilmScene, 118 East College Street, is free and open to the public.  Concessions will be available for purchase and audience members are invited to enjoy a social hour from 4:00-5:00 p.m. preceding the show. 

WorldCanvass is recorded before a live audience for later broadcast on UITV, YouTube, iTunes, and the Public Radio Exchange. Podcasts can be downloaded for free from iTunes and past programs are available through IP’s website.

WorldCanvass is a production of UI International Programs in collaboration with FilmScene and University of Iowa Video Services. For more information on WorldCanvass, contact Joan Kjaer at or visit the WorldCanvass webpage.