The PVCC Creative Writing Program Presents: The Bridges Series

The Bridges Series is a collaborative reading/speaking series sponsored by PVCC’s Creative Writing Program. The goal of The Bridges Series is to bring innovative and creative entrepreneurs as well as accomplished writers of fiction, poetry, nonfiction, and other genres to campus. The series has featured award-winning poets and fiction writers, video game developers, advertising professionals, a ghost writer, and many others. One focus of the series is to feature local artists and artists and professionals from outside our city and state. The Fall 2017 Bridges Series features writers Patricia Murphy, Hedy Habra and Beth Cato. 

Thursday, September 14th: Patricia Murphy


The Puma Press Room
10:30am - 12:00pm

Patricia Colleen Murphy founded Superstition Review at Arizona State University, where she teaches creative writing and magazine production. Her book Hemming Flames (Utah State University Press, 2016) won the May Swenson Poetry Award judged by Stephen Dunn, and in 2017 won the Milt Kessler Poetry Award. A chapter from her memoir in progress was published as a chapbook by New Orleans Review. Her writing has appeared in many literary journals, including The Iowa Review, Quarterly West, American Poetry Review, Smartish Pace, Burnside Review, Poetry Northwest, Third Coast, Hobart, decomP, Midway Journal, Armchair/Shotgun, and Natural Bridge. She lives in Phoenix, AZ.

Thursday, October 19th: Hedy Habra


The Puma Press Room
10:30am - 12:00pm

Hedy Habra has authored two poetry collections, Under Brushstrokes, finalist for the USA Best Book Award and the International Poetry Book Award, and Tea in Heliopolis, winner of the USA Best Book Award and finalist for the International Poetry Book Award. Her story collection, Flying Carpets, won the Arab American National Book Award's Honorable Mention and was finalist for the Eric Hoffer Award. Her book of literary criticism, Mundos alternos y artisticos en Vargas Llosa explores the visual and interartistic elements in the Peruvian Nobel's narrative. A recipient of the Nazim Hikmet Poetry Awards, she was a six-time nominee for the Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net. Her work appears in Cimarron Review, Te Bitter Oleander, Blue Fifth Review, Cider Press Review, Drunken Boat, Gargoyle, Nimrod, Poet Lore, World Literature Today and Verse Daily. She has a passion for art and teaches Spanish at Western Michigan University. 

Thursday, November 16th: Beth Cato

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The Puma Press Room
10:30am - 12:00pm

Beth Cato hails from Hanford, California, but currently writes and bakes cookies in a lair west of Phoenix, Arizona. She shares the household with  a hockey-loving husband, a numbers-obsessed son, and a cat the size of a canned ham. She's the author of THE CLOCKWORK DAGGER (a 2015 Locus Award finalist for First Novel) and THE CLOCKWORK CROWN (an RT Reviewers' Choice Finalist) from Harper Voyager. Her novella "Wings of Sorrow and Bone" was a 2016 Nebula nominee. BREATH OF EARTH begins a new steampunk series set in an alternate history 1906 San Francisco. Follow her at and on Twitter at @BethCato. 

The Bridges Series is in partnership with The Entrepreneurship Education Center, the PVCC English Division, the Division of Fine & Performing Arts, The Buxton Library and Club Z.

PVCC hosts Ken Waldman, Alaska's Fiddling Poet | Free Event

Tuesday, March 22, 2016 @ 7:30pm, Free Admission

The Center for Performing Arts Main Stage

PVCC's Creative Writing Program Presents:

Ken Waldman, Alaska's Fiddling Poet

Ken Waldman primarily plays old-time music, which predates bluegrass. Historically, this is a string-band music linked to Appalachia, though, really, there are variants most everywhere in North America. Some of the tunes he plays are more than two centuries old, though he also has recorded over a hundred he's composed in the style.

Though solo fiddling has its own long-standing tradition—and Ken will still occasionally play solo, especially in conjunction with literary or storytelling events—there's also a long tradition of fiddle and banjo, and of four-piece string-bands with fiddle, banjo, guitar, bass. The permutations are endless: some groups will add a second fiddle, or a mandolin, or will specialize in singing. Some will feature a percussive dancer.

While the music is more widely recognized as square dance music, it's also music of a community, and made among friends. Where bluegrass invariably features hot virtuosic solos, old-time music is an ensemble affair, which relies on a shared background of listening to the music, and playing it. 

What distinguishes Ken is that he uses this music in performance as backdrop as he shares original poems—poetry often about this music—and tells stories, most often about the music, or about Alaska. And while bluegrass may he considered flashier, old-time music may be considered more soulful, which doesn't preclude a high level of musicianship, or satisfaction in the listening. Ken started playing fiddle in 1981, long enough that he knows, and has as friends, hundreds of musicians who are among the very best in this genre. When Ken performs, he can bring “local” accompanists who are highest level musicians themselves, artists who headline their own regional, national, international shows. 

Over the years, as Ken's performances have evolved, he enjoys assembling these all-star bands, and featuring the all-star musicians during the course of the evening. The resulting roots music variety shows, which also include December holiday shows, have proven to be one of Ken's most popular offerings. Ken tailors the evening to a particular community, so shows will incorporate big groups with multiple fiddlers and dancers as well as soloists, duos, and trios, which Ken introduces with a brief poem or story.

The Ensemble Experience at PVCC

The Music Department at Paradise Valley Community College is pleased to offer a wide variety of music performance ensembles for the Spring 2016 semester. The music ensembles are open to music students and community members of all ages and abilities. The spring offerings include Concert Band, Jazz Big Band, Latin Jazz Band, Jazz Combo, Vocal Ensemble, String Ensemble, Cello Ensemble, Piano Ensemble, Contemporary Music Ensemble, Clarinet Ensemble, Multimedia Ensemble, Brazilian Percussion Ensemble, Student Rock Band and much more!

Music Ensembles are listed in the course catalog under the prefix MUP and course number 160, 185, 181, 190.

Music Ensembles meet once per week in the late afternoon and evenings in the Center for the Performing Arts.

The ensemble experience at PVCC provides students with community: our ensembles are a mix of high school students, college-age students, community members and retired professionals. Students and instructors collaborate to select repertoire for public performances held in the Center for Performing Arts. Students gain practical and performance experience in instrumental, vocal, and mixed ensembles.

Spring 2016 Ensembles at PVCC:
MUP 163 Jazz Ensemble: Jazz Big Band
MUP 181 Chamber Music Ensemble: Union Jazz Institute
MUP 181 Chamber Music Ensemble: Jazz Combo
MUP 181 Chamber Music Ensemble: Latin Jazz
MUP 190 Percussion Ensemble: World Music
MUP 181 Chamber Music Ensemble: Multimedia
MUP 181 Chamber Music Ensemble: Openscore
MUP 181 Chamber Music Ensemble: Flute
MUP 181 Chamber Music Ensemble: Cello/String
MUP 181 Chamber Music Ensemble: Brass
MUP 181 Chamber Music Ensemble: Band
MUP 181 Chamber Music Ensemble: Recording
MUP 181 Chamber Music Ensemble: Classic Piano

Register for Spring 2016 at

Mata Ortiz Ceramic Artists Coming to PVCC

Master ceramic artists, Lucy Sandoval Mora and Lorenzo Bugarini will demonstrate their mastery of clay and paint on Tuesday, January 26, 9am-4:30pm in the D building Ceramic studio. The public is welcome to attend.

Lucy began making pottery as a teenager growing up in a village of potters. Her mother taught her the skill of making pots out of locally gathered clay. Lorenzo learned how to sand and polish the pots Lucy makes and fires them in a primitive kiln built on the dirt. Together they create fantastic pots decorated with sylized birds and animals inspired by Native American motifs. They will have many pieces for sale.

Mountain Minorities: Rai and Tamang Cultures of Nepal Exhibit

From October 1 - November 30, 2015, Paradise Valley Community College is hosting the Mountain Minorities: Rai and Tamang Cultures of Nepal. The exhibit is on loan to the college from the East-West Center in Honolulu, HI and PVCC is the first mainland host. The curator of the exhibit is Dr. Michael Schuster.

Reception Details

Dr. Schuster will be visiting the college on Tuesday, November 3rd for two presentations and a reception. We will welcome Dr. Schuster to the college on 3 NOV @ 6:30P with a reception and presentation in the Buxton Library. Dr. Schuster will also be presenting @ 12:30p in the library on that same date.

Nepal, high in the Himalayas and the birthplace of the Buddha, is a crossroads between India and China. This small landlocked country is home to a great diversity of peoples, languages, flora, and fauna. Nepal has a population of more than 26 million people,made up of over 80 different ethnic communities. Although people often think of the Sherpas guiding trekkers and mountain climbers up to the Everest base camp, there are many lesser known communities living in the lower ranges of the mountains. These are very isolated communities who are often very poor, and have unique ritual practices, clothing,weavings, paintings, and utensils,many of which are on display. This exhibition will focus on two communities: the Tamang and the Rai peoples.

Click here to download the exhibit handout.

Click here to view a gallery of selected exhibit items. 

Fall 2015 Visual Arts Events at PVCC

The PVCC Visual Arts Department is pleased to host the following events, workshops and visiting artists during Fall of 2015. We hope to see you there!

Friday, September 18th, 6-9pm


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See exceptional ceramic masterpieces created by Chinese Ceramic Master Artists. Meet the artists and enjoy refreshments, live music and a silent auction to benefit the PVCC Glassblowing Program. 

Saturday, September 19th, 5-9pm


PVCC Ceramics Studio (D Building)

Choose a handmade ceramic pot, apply raku glaze, and watch your piece transform before your eyes into Art. This event is from 5-9pm in the PVCC Ceramics Studio (D Building) and is $25 per person. Proceeds benefit the PVCC Glassblowing Program. 

Friday and Saturday, October 30 & 31, 8am-4pm


PVCC Ceramics Studio (D Building)

Free for PVCC students, this hands-on workshop introduces participants to techniques for working with hot glass by pouring, casting and combining with other materials. Registration is limited. Reserve a spot by emailing

Sunday, November 9th, 3-4pm


Center for Performing Arts Main Stage

Ana Thiel is an internationally known artist who uses hot glass combined with other materials to create art. She was educated at Pilchuck Glass School, founded by Dale Chihuly, and has exhibited and taught around the world. She lives in San Miguel De Allende, Mexico. Free to the public, held at the Center for Performing Arts Main Stage.

For more information Contact David L. Bradley, Visual Arts Faculty
Phone: (602) 787-6615
Office: M-165