College of Fine Arts News Archive

June 2019

  • Registration still open for Kids Piano Camp at SFA

    Registration still open for Kids Piano Camp at SFA

    June 27, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    Registration is still underway for the Kids Summer Piano Camp presented by the Music Preparatory Division of the Stephen F. Austin State University School of Music.

    Directed by Dr. Mario Ajero, professor of piano at SFA, the camp is from 10 a.m. to noon July 15 through 18 in the piano lab (Room 223) in the Boynton Building on the SFA campus. The camp is for first- through third-grade students, and no previous experience is necessary.

    Tuition is $100, and seating is limited. Registration forms can be downloaded at http://www.music.sfasu.edu/prep, or contact Music Prep director Pat Barnett at pbarnett@sfasu.edu or musicprep@sfasu.edu, or call (936) 468-1291. The Music Prep Office, located at 3028 Raguet St., is open from 1 to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

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  • 'The Reluctant Dragon' opens Thursday

    'The Reluctant Dragon' opens Thursday

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    June 26, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    The School of Theatre at Stephen F. Austin State University opens its SummerStage Festival with two performances of "The Reluctant Dragon" at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Thursday, June 27, in W.M. Turner Auditorium on the SFA campus. Based on the book by Kenneth Grahame and adapted by Mary Hall Surface, "The Reluctant Dragon" features El Campo sophomore Cameron Wall as Glaston, the young boy who forms a friendship with the peace-loving Dragon, played by Nacogdoches senior Alexis Beck and Katy sophomore Erik Brockman. General admission tickets are $8. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 and visit http://www.theatre.sfasu.edu for other show dates and times. The SummerStage Festival, which also features "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee," with music and lyrics by William Finn and book by Rachel Sheinkin, continues through July 12.

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  • Art Scholarships announced for 2019-20 academic year

    Art Scholarships announced for 2019-20 academic year

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    Among the 2019-20 SFA art scholarship recipients and 36th Annual Art Alliance Spring Show award recipients are, back row, from left, Aldo Ornelas, Kailan Counahan, John Allen, Cameron Sweet; middle row, Lucille Coleman, Erik Ordaz Lozano, Mason Cullen, Joshua Castro-Donathen, Typhanie Shepherd, Madeline Castillo, Ethan Donart; front row, Haley Campbell, Ericka Bates, Allison Silcox and Chloe Garrett.

    June 26, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    Christopher Talbot, director of the School of Art at Stephen F. Austin State University, announced the recipients of SFA and Friends of the Visual Arts scholarships for the 2019-20 academic year at the opening of the 35th Annual Art Alliance Spring Show. More than $25,000 in scholarships was awarded.
    Recipients included:
    Sarah Bone, Richmond sophomore, awarded a Friends of the Visual Arts Scholarship;
    Erik Ordaz Lozano, Mexico City, Mexico, graduate student, awarded the Piero Fenci Scholarship for the Ceramic Arts;
    Ethan Donart, Sugarland junior, awarded the Art Alliance Scholarship and a 2019 School of Art Scholarship;
    Mason Cullen, Cypress sophomore, awarded the Jack McKinney Memorial Art Scholarship and a 2019 School of Art Scholarship;
    Madeline Castillo, League City senior, awarded the Eloise Chambers Adams Art Scholarship and a 2019 School of Art Scholarship;
    Erin Kimball, incoming freshman from Flower Mound, awarded a Friends of the Visual Arts Scholarship;
    Aldo Ornelas, Chihuahua, Mexico, graduate student, awarded a Friends of the Visual Arts Scholarship;
    Shelby Locklin, Southlake junior, awarded a 2019 School of Art Scholarship;
    Chloe Garrett, Orange sophomore, awarded a 2019 School of Art Scholarship;
    John Allen, Houston junior, awarded a 2019 School of Art Scholarship;
    Joshua Castro-Donathen, Houston senior, awarded a 2019 School of Art Scholarship;
    Savannah Heim, incoming freshman from Flower Mound awarded a 2019 School of Art Scholarship;
    Kailan Counahan, Rusk graduate student, awarded a 2019 School of Art Scholarship; and
    Emma Livingston, incoming freshman from Flower Mound, awarded a Regents' Scholarship.
    The Friends of the Visual Arts also sponsors and awarded the following five scholarships named for retired or current professors:
    Typhanie Shepherd, Lufkin junior, awarded the William E. Arscott Art Scholarship;
    Allison Silcox, Winnie junior, awarded the Gary Q. Frields Art Scholarship;
    Lucille Coleman, Yoakum senior, awarded the Charles D. Jones Art Scholarship;
    Cameron Sweet, Duncanville junior, awarded the Robert Kinsell Art Scholarship; and
    Ericka Bates, Nacogdoches sophomore, awarded the Gary Parker Art Scholarship.
    Talbot also announced the awards for the 36th Annual Art Alliance Spring Show held in the Art Building galleries. Juror was Michelle White, chief curator of the Menil Collection, Houston, and juror of Texas National 2019. She chose three art works to receive a cash award: Haley Campbell, Nacogdoches sophomore, for "Zorn Master Copy," Jack Shanklin, Thousand Oaks, California, graduate student for "Teapot no. 1" and Typhanie Shepherd, Lufkin junior, for "Minglin' Mingo."
    For information about the School of Art, call (936) 468- 4804 or visit http://www.art.sfasu.edu.

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  • SFA's Friday Night Film Series to present 'Given' documentary

    SFA's Friday Night Film Series to present 'Given' documentary

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    “Given” follows a surfing family from their island home through 15 different countries in the quest for surf and to fulfill a calling handed down through generations. The documentary will be screened at 7 p.m. Friday, July 12, in The Cole Art Center.

    June 25, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    The Stephen F. Austin State University School of Art and the Friends of the Visual Arts will present a free, one-night screening of the documentary "Given" at 7 p.m. Friday, July 12, in The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House in downtown Nacogdoches.

    The website https://www.giventhemovie.com/ describes "Given" as the simple yet powerfully contemplative story of a unique family legacy come full circle. Told through the visceral experience of a 6-year-old, "Given" follows legendary surfers Aamion and Daize Goodwin from their island home of Kauai through 15 different countries in the quest for surf and to fulfill a calling handed down through generations. Set in wave after wave of stunningly visual Earthscapes, "Given" blooms into a tender yet stirring exploration of a young boy's understanding of life through his familial bonds and their reverence for nature.

    Directed by Jess Bianchi, "Given" runs 72 minutes.

    This screening is part of the School of Art's monthly Friday Film Series and is sponsored in part by William Arscott, Nacogdoches Film Festival, Karon Gillespie, Mike Mollot, David Kulhavy, John and Kristen Heath, Galleria Z, Jill Carrington, Jean Stephens, Jim and Mary Neal, Richard Orton and Main Street Nacogdoches.

    The Cole Art Center is located at 329 E. Main St. For more information, call (936) 468-1131.

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  • Annual 12x12 event raises funds for SFA art scholarships, grants

    Annual 12x12 event raises funds for SFA art scholarships, grants

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    This entry by Wally Knight is among the artwork that will be available for bidding in this year's 12x12 Scholarship Fundraiser for the Friends of the Visual Arts at SFA. Silent biding starts July 2 at The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House.

    June 24, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    Work is well underway to make this year's 12x12 Scholarship Fundraiser for the Friends of the Visual Arts at Stephen F. Austin State University another success.

    The silent auction features 12-by-12-inch pieces of art created by approximately 80 artists from Nacogdoches, Lufkin and other areas of East Texas. Anyone may silently bid on the unique one-of-a-kind pieces, according to Crystal Hicks, event committee chairwoman.

    "The 12x12 event is the main fundraiser for the FVA," says Hicks. "It's a fun and lively night, and the FVA members work for months to collect the art and plan the evening."

    Silent bidding ($250 minimum) begins Tuesday, July 2, at The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House and will continue up to the day of the art party, which is planned for 6 to 8 p.m. Saturday, July 20, at the art center. Starting bids drop to $100 the night of the event, and raffle tickets will be sold five for $20.

    "You could possibly take home a valuable piece of art for a $20 investment," said Lisa Steed, events coordinator for SFA art galleries.

    The purpose of 12x12 is to raise funds for the FVA scholarships and grants that that are awarded to SFA art students. Between $12,000 and $15,000 is awarded annually in scholarships to deserving students in the School of Art.

    The awards help students defray the costs of special projects for art classes or M.B.A./B.A. exhibitions. Some recipients have attended conferences or gone on school trips that will help with their professional development. This has included Maymester trips for art students to go to Italy. The organization also awards scholarships for elementary school students to attend the SFA Art Academy.

    "The FVA's mission is to support the arts in our community," said Hicks. "Thanks to events like the 12x12 and other initiatives throughout the year, we're able to see firsthand how the funds we raise benefit students and art lovers alike."

    The annual 12x12 art auction and party is a summer favorite of many East Texans, but no one appreciates the effort that goes into the planning and the donated art more than the students who benefit from the work of generous volunteers and artists.

    "I became involved in the 12x12 event when I was an adult student at SFA," said Michelle Filer, donating artist. "I saw firsthand how the scholarships and grants allowed students the opportunity to create art and follow their dreams by enabling them financially to afford to do so. I believe a sign of a strong and thriving community shows through the viability of its support of the arts."

    "Local artists, as well as former students and professors, provide original works of art for this event," Hicks said. "It's a blast to rub elbows with the artists and other art lovers. The 12x12 show is more than just a fundraiser; it's a way to celebrate and grow the art community in the area."

    The Cole Art Center is located at 329 E. Main St. For more information about 12x12 or to become a sponsor, call The Cole Art Center at (936) 468-6557.

    You may also be interested in the following related article:

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  • 'The Reluctant Dragon' to open SFA's SummerStage Festival

    'The Reluctant Dragon' to open SFA's SummerStage Festival

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    On the road in Mount Enterprise performing scenes from “The Reluctant Dragon” are SFA theatre students, front from left, Wylie junior Drake St. Pierre; El Campo sophomore Cameron Wall; Wichita Falls sophomore Shelby Miller; Lufkin junior Katie Hargroue; back from left, Nacogdoches senior Alexis “Alli” Beck; Sour Lake senior Ian Ritchey; Katy sophomore Alexis Hargy; Baytown sophomore Triston Haq; and Katy sophomore Erik Brockman.

    June 24, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    Area residents are seeing SummerStage everywhere!

    Stephen F. Austin State University theatre students involved in the School of Theatre's SummerStage Festival have entertained young and old at East Texas libraries and at the Texas Blueberry Festival in downtown Nacogdoches. SummerStage posters are all over town. Ads and feature articles are in local newspapers. Students' interviews have been heard on area radio stations.

    But the only place to experience the SummerStage Festival is in W.M. Turner Auditorium in Griffith Fine Arts Building on the SFA campus. Sponsored by Tipton-Ford-Lincoln, the festival, which runs June 27 through July 12, features the musical comedy "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee" and the beloved children's story "The Reluctant Dragon."

    Based on the book by Kenneth Grahame and adapted by Mary Hall Surface, "The Reluctant Dragon" is the charming tale of an unlikely friendship between a young boy and a peace-loving dragon, and it's about overcoming prejudice and fear in a small medieval domain. Theatre students have been taking the tale on the road where area children have enjoyed a sampling of what's to come when the play opens the festival on Thursday, June 27.

    "The children at the library performances really seemed to engage with our actors, and that was only a reading of the story," said Dr. Slade Billew, assistant professor of theatre and director of "The Reluctant Dragon." "I know that young people and adults alike will connect with the full performance and enjoy the fun and energy of the show."

    Attending a live theatre production like "The Reluctant Dragon" together as a family can strengthen relationships, according to Cleo House, director of the School of Theatre.

    "Theatre inspires creativity in children, and a by-product of that creativity is self-expression and the ability to problem solve," House said. "Of course, it is a fun time for them and the entire family. Believe it or not, research shows that families that attend the theatre together can increase their bonds to each other. It's helpful to know that while you're attending the theatre, you are doing many positive things at once."

    "The Reluctant Dragon" will be presented at 10 a.m. June 27 and 28 and July 5, 8, 10 and 11; at 2 p.m. June 27; and at 6:30 p.m. July 12. General admission tickets are $8.

    "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee," with music and lyrics by William Finn, book by Rachel Sheinkin, conceived by Rebecca Feldman, with additional material by Jay Reiss and originally directed on Broadway by James Lapine, is about an eclectic group of sixth graders who make their way through a spelling competition where each, eager to win, reveals his/her hopes, struggles and passions through songs. The play will be presented at 7:30 p.m. July 3, 5, 8, 9, 10 and 11, and at 2 p.m. July 9 and 12. General admission tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for seniors and $5 for students/youth. This show has some adult themes and is recommended for mature audiences (PG-13).

    Pay-what-you-can performances for both SummerStage shows are on July 8.

    All performances are in Turner Auditorium. Griffith Fine Arts Building is located at 2222 Alumni Drive. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.theatre.sfasu.edu/.

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  • SummerStage Festival brings 'family affair' performance to SFA's Turner Auditorium

    SummerStage Festival brings 'family affair' performance to SFA's Turner Auditorium

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    Jason, Roz and Jamie Couch rehearse a scene from “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee,” a feature of this year's SummerStage Festival at SFA. The festival runs June 27 through July 12 and also features the children's show “The Reluctant Dragon."

    June 21, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    The upcoming performance of "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee" at Stephen F. Austin State University may present a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for a Nacogdoches family.

    Jamie and Rosalyn Couch and their son, Jason, will perform together as characters in the musical comedy in W.M. Turner Auditorium in Griffith Fine Arts Building - the same building where SFA students Jamie and Roz first met while auditioning for a play some 27 years ago.

    "My husband and I first met at an audition in 1992 for a Downstage Theatre production of 'Overruled' by George Bernard Shaw," Roz said. "We were cast as husband and wife. Little did we realize that not only would we be married in real life six years later, but we would one day have a son, Jason, who would be a theatre student at our alma mater. Now, we have the incredible privilege of treading the boards of Turner Auditorium again, this time as a whole family."

    The SFA School of Theatre's SummerStage Festival runs June 27 through July 12, and in addition to "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee," it features the beloved children's story "The Reluctant Dragon." The festival is sponsored in part by Tipton-Ford-Lincoln.

    "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee," with music and lyrics by William Finn, book by Rachel Sheinkin, conceived by Rebecca Feldman, with additional material by Jay Reiss and originally directed on Broadway by James Lapine, is about an eclectic group of sixth graders who make their way through a spelling competition where each, eager to win, reveals his/her hopes, struggles and passions through songs.

    In "Bee," Roz plays Rona Lisa Peretti, the very enthusiastic organizer of the competition. She keeps the spelling bee running smoothly and provides color commentary about the spellers. Jamie plays Vice Principal Douglas Panch, a frustrated and somewhat cynical educator who finds his faith in and understanding of human nature both renewed and enriched by the experience of meeting the kids of the bee. Jason plays contestant Chip Tolentino.

    "Chip Tolentino has been a fun character to expand on over the course of the rehearsal process," Jason said. "Although he's used to getting his way, his experiences in the bee take him down a few notches, and he begins to understand that 'life is random and unfair.'"

    Growing up in Mesquite, Roz Rommel participated in theatre throughout high school. She was the first female tech director at North Mesquite High School as well as historian for the school's International Thespian Society Troupe.

    "During high school, I participated in SFA's High School Summer Theatre Workshop," she said. "The Theatre Department impressed me with its quality and convinced me to choose SFA for my college career." She came to SFA in 1990 to obtain a Bachelor of Arts degree, double-majoring in theatre and English."

    At SFA, Roz performed in many Mainstage Series productions, including "Once upon a Mattress," "Talking Pictures," "Mistress of the Inn," "Gypsy," "Pippin" and "Romeo and Juliet." She also did technical work for a number of other Mainstage productions and acted in and performed tech work for many Downstage productions.

    Jamie's interest in theatre began as a theatre-goer in high school, but his decision to step onto the stage came in college.

    "I was an English major who was seeking greater insight and understanding regarding dramatic literature, especially Shakespeare," he said. "I didn't want to be an English professor whose knowledge of drama was limited to what was printed on the page. I needed a practical understanding of how the theatre worked. I also wanted the language of Shakespeare to be as familiar to me as my own modern American English. I obtained all that - and so much more.

    "In the years since I first auditioned and was cast in a production of 'Romeo and Juliet' as a sophomore in college, I've performed in over 40 productions," he said "I've done musicals, children's shows, many classical plays, and worked with the Texas Shakespeare Festival. I've been an assistant director, a stage manager and a combat choreographer, but the vast majority of my experience has been as an actor. The theatre has enriched my life immeasurably. It's how I met my wife, who also happens to be my best friend."

    Being raised by two people with an extensive amount of experience with theatre greatly influenced Jason's interest in acting. His first role was in a community theatre production of "A Christmas Carol." He was 6 and portrayed Tiny Tim.

    "I've participated in numerous theatre programs, such as Junior Jacks, and I acted throughout my entire high school career," he said. "I can't put into words how grateful I am for the opportunity to be in a Mainstage musical."

    Angela Bacarisse, professor of theatre at SFA and director of the play, has known Roz and Jamie for years. Jamie performed in "Hamlet" the first semester Bacarisse was at SFA and again in "Blithe Spirit," both directed by Allen Oster. Over the years, she has seen Roz perform as different characters at events at Millard's Crossing Historic Village.

    "When it was decided that we were going to do this musical, I knew that I wanted to have real adults play the adult parts," Bacarisse said. "I asked Roz to participate first, and then we broached the idea of Jamie joining the show. I wanted to work with alumni of the department. And it worked out that they are celebrating an anniversary while we are doing this!" (The Couches will celebrate their 20th wedding anniversary in July.)

    It wasn't until after the adult characters were cast that auditions were held for the students to play the 'kids,'" Bacarisse said. "It was just good luck and talent that landed Jason in the same show."

    Today, Roz is owner of Rozjam Entertainment, providing singing telegrams and other entertainment in the Nacogdoches area. Jamie is a faculty member in the Department of English and Creative Writing in SFA's College of Liberal and Applied Arts. Jason is a freshman theatre student at SFA.

    "'Putnam County Spelling Bee' is a musical, so it's great fun, and in particular, it's enormously creative because it includes audience participation and comedic ad libs," Roz said. "Everyone in the cast is amazingly talented, and I often feel like my character - amazed at their (as Rona says in the play) 'extraordinary ability.'

    "Although Jamie and I performed in several productions together in college, the chance to perform with him as well as Jason may be a once in a lifetime opportunity, so I'm savoring every moment," Roz added.

    "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee" will be presented at 7:30 p.m. July 3, 5, 8, 9, 10 and 11, and at 2 p.m. July 9 and 12. General admission tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for seniors and $5 for students/youth. This show has some adult themes and is recommended for mature audiences (PG-13).

    "The Reluctant Dragon," based on the book by Kenneth Grahame and adapted by Mary Hall Surface, is the charming tale of an unlikely friendship between a young boy and a peace-loving dragon, and it's about overcoming prejudice and fear in a small medieval domain. "The Reluctant Dragon" will be presented at 10 a.m. June 27 and 28 and July 5, 8, 10 and 11; at 2 p.m. June 27; and at 6:30 p.m. July 12. General admission tickets are $8.

    Pay-what-you-can performances for both shows are on July 8.

    All performances are in W.M. Turner Auditorium in the Griffith Fine Arts Building, 2222 Alumni Drive.

    For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.theatre.sfasu.edu/.

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  • SFA Music Prep announces new Guitar Camp dates

    SFA Music Prep announces new Guitar Camp dates

    June 21, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    New dates for Guitar Camp offered by the Music Preparatory Division of the School of Music at Stephen F. Austin State University are July 23 through 26.

    Larry Greer, who teaches guitar at SFA and Angelina College, is camp director. The camp is from 2 to 3 p.m. each day at the Music Prep House, located at 3028 Raguet St.

    Lessons are designed for students ages 10 and up. Tuition is $50, and guitar rental is $10. Lessons are provided in rock, country, classical and jazz. Class size is limited to 10 students.

    Register for the camp by visiting http://www.music.sfasu.edu/prep, or contact Music Prep director Pat Barnett at pbarnett@sfasu.edu or musicprep@sfasu.edu, or call (936) 468-129l. Office hours are 1 to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

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  • Nacogdoches Photographic Association to open annual summer show

    Nacogdoches Photographic Association to open annual summer show

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    The first-place entry in the 2018 Nacogdoches Photographic Association's gallery show was by Sharon Scifries for the photo “Memories and Old Lace.” This year's show opens with a reception at 6 p.m. Friday, June 21, in The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House in downtown Nacogdoches.

    June 10, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    The Nacogdoches Photographic Association will open its 2019 gallery show with a reception at 6 p.m. Friday, June 21, in The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House in downtown Nacogdoches.

    Photographer and multi-media artist Amanda Breitbach, assistant professor of art at Stephen F. Austin State University, served as juror. Breitbach grew up on a family farm and ranch in eastern Montana. She studied photography and French at Montana State University before serving as an agroforestry volunteer with the United States Peace Corps in Guinea, West Africa. She has worked as a newspaper photographer, writer and editor as well as a freelance photographer. She earned her Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 2016.

    Awards will include Best of Show, first through fifth places and honorable mentions. The 2019 Best of Show recipient will be announced at the opening reception.

    The Nacogdoches Photographic Association was organized in 1992. Monthly meetings are held at 7 p.m. on the first Tuesday of each month (except on field-trip nights) in The Cole Art Center. For more information, contact R.G. Dean at dean@sfasu.edu or Richard Minix at rwminix1@gmail.com. The NPA website URL is nacogdochesphotoassoc.org, and members' works can be seen on Facebook.

    The NPA show will run through July 20. Refreshments will be served at the reception. Gallery hours are 12:30 to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday; 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday; and 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday. The Cole Art Center is located at 329 E. Main Street. For additional information, call (936) 468-1131.

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