Commencement events fill weekend

Graduating Yalies will go out to the sounds of bells, music, drama and the words of New York Gov. George Pataki.

Numerous events are planned before Commencement, including concerts, musicals and Baccalaureate services. Here’s the wrap-up of Commencement weekend activities.

The Yale Dramatic Association is geared up to perform its spring musical, “City of Angels,” a comedy about a novelist’s adventures in adapting his story for film.

Opportunities for other musical entertainment include everything from a cappella to choir to the Yale Concert band.

For outdoor entertainment, Yalies and their guests can enjoy the familiar sounds of Harkness Tower’s bells as the Yale Guild of Carillonneurs serenades the campus early Saturday afternoon. That evening, the Yale Glee Club will sing a collection of sacred motets, folk songs and Yale songs.

On Sunday, the Yale School of Music will present its annual Commencement Concert at Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church and the Yale Concert Band will perform that night on Old Campus. Whim ‘n Rhythm and Yale’s 93-year-old men’s a cappella group, the Whiffenpoofs, will sing in Woolsey Hall.

In addition to the musical activities, Yalies and their guests will attend the ceremonies traditionally held prior to Commencement.

On the day before the ceremonies begin, Yale President Richard and Mrs. Jane Levin will host a reception at the President’s House at 43 Hillhouse Ave.

Capped and gowned, students will process from Cross Campus to Woolsey Hall where Levin, Yale College Dean Richard Brodhead and University Chaplain Frederick Streets will address students and their guests. Students in Berkeley, Calhoun, Davenport, Jonathan Edwards, Silliman and Ezra Stiles colleges will attend the Baccalaureate service at 9:30 a.m. and Branford, Timothy Dwight, Morse, Pierson, Saybrook, and Trumbull students will attend the service at 11 a.m.

On Class Day, University officials will award undergraduate academic awards and faculty teaching awards on Old Campus. Yale students will plant the class ivy and sing “Bright College Years” while waving white handkerchiefs in the air.

Although President George W. Bush spoke at last year’s Commencement, speakers traditionally address seniors on Class Day. Gov. Pataki will be the keynote speaker at this year’s Class Day. Past speakers have included Hillary Rodham Clinton LAW ’73, Bob Woodward ’65, David Gergen ’63 and Tom Brokaw.

Along with the festivities, Commencement weekend will also be a time for reflection.

To honor deceased friends and relatives of graduating seniors, the University Chaplain’s office customarily holds a multi-faith service of remembrance in Battell Chapel. During the service, the names of the deceased are read and candles are lit in their honor.

Graduating seniors will don their valedictory outfits one last time on Monday as they march from their residential colleges to Old Campus, where Commencement will take place at 10:30.

Students will then receive diplomas in commencement ceremonies at their respective residential colleges.

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