College of Fine Arts News Archive

October 2019

  • SFA Chamber Singers to present ‘The Tapestry of Sound’

    SFA Chamber Singers to present ‘The Tapestry of Sound’

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    The Chamber Singers at SFA will perform at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 8, in Cole Concert Hall on the university campus.

    October 30, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    The Chamber Singers at Stephen F Austin State University will present “The Tapestry of Sound” at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 8, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

    The diverse program will feature a wide range of music, from J.S. Bach to Cyndi Lauper, spanning more than 375 years, according to Dr. Michael Murphy, director of choral activities for the SFA School of Music and director of the choir.

    “The rich threads of different music – classical, folk, popular and religious – create a rich tapestry of sounds presented by the 24-voice SFA Chamber Singers,” Murphy said.

    Formerly the Madrigal Singers, the Chamber Singers will be accompanied by Davidson Reyes of San Pedro de Marcorís, Dominican Republic, piano, with Jacob Rivas of The Colony assisting as graduate conductor.

    Among the program selections is Bach’s double choir “Komm, Jesu, Komm,” believed to have been composed before 1732 for a funeral.

    “The most personal of all of Bach’s motets, this masterpiece opens with alternating pleas that give way to statements of assurance and dance rhythms,” Murphy said.

    Just last year, American composer Dan Forrest set Daniel Landinsky’s Hafiz-inspired poetry “The Sun Never Say” to a new composition that was recorded this year by the popular British vocal ensemble Voces8.

    “Forrest’s lush setting matches the poetry about the beauty of unconditional love,” Murphy said.

    The Chamber Singers will also perform Cyndi Lauper’s 1986 “True Colors,” which spent two weeks in the No. 1 spot on the Billboard Hot 100. “True Colors” has recently become popular again through several choral arrangements.

    Concert tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu.

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  • Vienna Boys Choir to perform at SFA

    Vienna Boys Choir to perform at SFA

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    The world-renowned Vienna Boys Choir, conducted by Choirmaster Manuel Huber, will perform at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 21, in W.M. Turner Auditorium on the Stephen F. Austin State University campus. This special College of Fine Arts Encore Event performance is sponsored in part by Commercial Bank of Texas. Photo: Lukas Beck

    October 30, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    The Vienna Boys Choir, renowned as one the finest vocal ensembles in the world for more than five centuries, will perform “Journey Through the Americas” in concert at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 21, in W.M. Turner Auditorium on the campus of Stephen F. Austin State University.

    A special Encore Event presentation of the SFA College of Fine Arts, the concert is sponsored in part by Commercial Bank of Texas.

    “On their last visit to Nacogdoches in 2012, the Vienna Boys Choir sold out Turner Auditorium,” said Scott Shattuck, associate dean of the College of Fine Arts and director of the University Series and Encore Events. “So it’s especially important for music-lovers to order their tickets well in advance for this very special event. It’s truly a thrill to have such an internationally renowned choral group visit SFA again.”

    “Journey Through the Americas” includes favorite Strauss waltzes, classical masterpieces by Verdi and Beethoven, modern-era works by Bernstein and Gershwin and folk songs from around the world. The program includes a performance of “Amazing Grace” arranged by John Coates.

    The Vienna Boys Choir can trace its history as far back as the 13th century, but it was formally established at Vienna Imperial Chapel in 1498 by Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian I. The many incarnations of the group have been performing continuously ever since.

    Today’s Vienna Boys Choir is comprised of talented young singers from all over the world who are admitted by audition. One-hundred choristers between the ages of 10 and 14 are divided into four touring groups. Each spends 11 weeks of the year on tour. Between them, the choirs give around 300 concerts each year, attended by almost half a million spectators around the globe.

    The choir currently on tour in the U.S. includes boys from Austria, Germany, Japan, Korea, Poland, Czech Republic, Mongolia, Bosnia and Herzegovina. The choir’s conductor, Manuel Huber, the most recent addition to the ranks of choirmaster of the Vienna Boys Choir, is from Italy and has extensive experience as a voice coach, choir director and music educator in a variety of positions throughout Europe. Prior to his appointment with the Vienna Boys Choir, he was musical director of the Youth Project at the Gut Immling Opera Festival, a voice coach with the highly regarded Tölzer Knabenchor, and guest conductor of Kammerphilharmonie Budweis, Bad Reichenhaller Philharmonie, and Salzburg’s Mozarteum University Symphony Orchestra.

    The POK Pühringer Privatstiftung, based in Vienna’s Palais Coburg, is the choir’s general sponsor. Exclusive tour management is provided by Opus 3 Artists, New York, New York.

    Prior to the SFA performance, Dr. Tod Fish, assistant professor and associate director of choral activities in the SFA School of Music, will present an informative talk at 7 p.m. in Griffith Gallery. The gallery is located across the hall from Turner Auditorium, which is inside the Griffith Fine Arts Building, 2222 Alumni Drive. The audience is invited back to the gallery for a post-performance reception to honor the show’s corporate sponsor.

    On the night of the concert, the College of Fine Arts will team up with the SFA Office of Student Engagement to collect non-perishable food items for The Pantry at SFA, which is the food pantry designed to assist SFA students in need. Any non-perishable food item will be accepted, but current special needs are canned fruit, variety boxes of oatmeal packets and canned entrees, such as Chef Boyardee ravioli, spaghetti, etc.

    Encore Event tickets are $45 for Section A seating; $36 for Section B seating; and $27 for Section C seating. Discounts are available for seniors, students, children and SFA faculty and staff members, ranging from $3 (for SFA students) to $36 tickets, depending on discount type. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit finearts.sfasu.edu, stop by the Box Office in Room 211 of the Griffith Fine Arts Building, or call (936) 468-6407 or (888) 240-ARTS.

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  • Performance to feature songs by Texas composers

    Performance to feature songs by Texas composers

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    Julia Fox, soprano

    October 30, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    The Texas New Music Ensemble will present “A Recital of Texas Songs” at 1 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 9, in Cole Concert Hall on the campus of Stephen F. Austin State University.

    The performance will feature Julia Fox, soprano, and Andrew Schneider, piano, and will include five songs written by Texas composers. The program also includes the second performance ever of “Pagan Songs” by Chad Robinson, artistic director of Texas New Music Ensemble.

    Other selections to be performed include “Six Songs on Poems of Walt Whitman” by Joe LoCascio; “Wendell Berry Songs” by Joel Love; “Ode” by Marcus Maroney; and “A Dome of Many-Coloured Glass” by SFA music composition graduate Joshua Zinn.

    As a featured soloist, Fox has appeared with Houston ensembles Mercury, Ars Lyrica, Aperio and others. Internationally, she has performed in some of the world’s greatest venues, including the Vatican, the National Cathedral and Carnegie Hall. She has also performed with the Houston Grand Opera, Opera Leggera, Midland Opera Theater, Empire Opera, enCANTA Collective, Foundation for Modern Music, Greenbriar Consortium and Houston Baroque, among others. A native Houstonian and graduate of High School for the Performing and Visual Arts in Houston and Amherst College, Fox apprenticed with the Brentano String Quartet and Peabody Trio.

    Also a native of Houston, Schneider holds a Bachelor of Music in music composition from Rice University. He is a former organist for St. Michael Catholic Church, Houston, and continues to perform as a church organist throughout the Houston area. He has served Lone Star College-Kingwood as staff accompanist since 2014. He regularly plays harpsichord continuo for Mercury Houston and has participated in performances for the Houston Early Music Festival. He has performed with the San Antonio Symphony, Kingwood Chorale and The Woodlands Chorale. He is also a vocal coach, composer and conductor.

    According to its mission statement, Texas New Music Ensemble is dedicated to the enrichment of Texas communities through the performance of contemporary art music created by Texas composers and performed by Texas musicians.

    This performance is a feature of the SFA School of Music’s Friends of Music Concert Series. Admission is free. For more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu.

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  • Opera, musical theater scenes explore timeless theme of love

    Opera, musical theater scenes explore timeless theme of love

    October 30, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    The Stephen F. Austin State University School of Music will present opera and musical theater scenes featuring themes of love when students present “It’s Complicated” at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 9, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

    Directed by James Held, adjunct professor of opera, the performance tackles the “timeless and complex theme of love in its many forms,” explored through opera and musical theater from the Classical period to the 2000s, according to Held. Pianists Rachel Clark and Dr. Thomas Nixon will accompany.

    “There are selections from 1790 to 2001 – from Mozart to Sondheim and beyond,” Held added.

    Among the program selections are scenes from “Der Rosenkavalier” by Richard Strauss. Held describes the opera as “one of the most enduring” from Austrian Romantic repertoire. “The music is nothing short of resplendent and pulls at the heartstrings,” he said.

    Gian Carlo Menotti’s “The Old Maid and the Thief” will also be performed. “Menotti was a Pulitzer Prize-winning operatic composer during the rise of television, and in fact wrote several operas specifically for TV,” Held said. “The Old Maid and the Thief ”was originally commissioned by NBC as a radio drama and included narration. This performance uses action instead of narration to tell the story.

    The program features Georges Bizet’s “Carmen,” which is “perhaps the most beloved French opera ever written,” Held said. “It’s a timeless tale of the dangers of love gone awry. The drama is brilliantly driven by Bizet’s near-perfect score.”

    There will be several scenes from the musical theater repertoire, from shows such as “Into the Woods” by Stephen Sondheim; “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying” by Frank Loesser; “Anything Goes” by Cole Porter; and “Urinetown” by Mark Hollmann and Greg Kotis.

    Other scenes from operas include “Die Fledermaus” by Johann Strauss II; “Così fan tutte” and “Die Zauberflöte” by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart; and “La Cenerentola” by Gioachino Rossini.

    Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu.

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  • SFA Percussion Ensemble to perform works by Daughtrey, Pickering, others

    SFA Percussion Ensemble to perform works by Daughtrey, Pickering, others

    October 30, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    The SFA Percussion Ensemble at Stephen F. Austin State University will perform a concert at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Nov. 11, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

    Directed by Dr. Brad Meyer, director of percussion studies for the SFA School of Music, the student ensemble will perform works by Caleb Pickering, Ney Rosauro, Lynn Glassock, Nathan Daughtrey and Casey Cangelosi.

    Pickering describes his “Powder Keg” as a high-energy keyboard quartet scored for two vibraphones and two marimbas. He writes, “The work is explosive in nature (pun intended) and shifts between rhythmic and harmonic stability and instability throughout, with the main motives remaining mostly intact and as a common thread throughout.”

    Freshman Kevin Schultz of Wichita Falls is featured on marimba on Rosauro’s Prelude No. 2 written as a homage to the Brazilian composer Heitor Villa Lobos, who Rosauro says continues to inspire and motivate him to “write music with Brazilian roots.”

    Glassock’s “Layers” is a programmatic composition that explores the use of layered textures, rhythms and melodies. Through the use of staggered entrances of repeated musical material, Glassock “creates an auditory kaleidoscope for the audience to experience,” according to Meyer.

    Two works by Daughtrey, “Encantata” and “Limerick Daydreams,” are on the program. “Encantata” features Palestine junior Briley Patterson on vibraphone. The piece is based on harmonic material from the first movement of the composer’s Concerto for Vibraphone. The title (meaning “enchanted”) is derived from the poem “La Luz Encantada” (“Enchanted Light”) by Pablo Neruda. Daughtrey writes, “While the piece is harmonically very chromatic, it is filled with beautiful, memorable melodies that attempt to capture the wonder of this poignant poem. The slow and rubato nature of ‘Encantada’ is a very different representation of the poem than the vibe concerto, which is very bright and sparkling.”

    “Limerick Daydreams” was the second-place winner of the 2005 Percussive Arts Society International Composition Congest. The 12-minute work scored for 10 percussionists is based on the Irish reel, “Highway to Limerick.”

    Junior Kurt Swisher of Tyler is featured on marimba on Cangelosi’s “Second Character,” which is described as “full of life and energy.” Cangelosi includes markings such as "fury" and "with fire" in the score to help give the performer added incentive and inspiration to bring this piece to life during each performance, according to program notes.

    Concert tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu.

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  • SFA School of Theatre to present ‘Pullman, WA’

    SFA School of Theatre to present ‘Pullman, WA’

    October 25, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    The Stephen F. Austin State University School of Theatre will present the play “Pullman, WA” at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 8, and at 2 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 9, in the Downstage Theatre on the SFA campus.

    Dr. Slade Billew, assistant professor of acting and movement for the School of Theatre, directs the one-act play by Young Jean Lee. “Pullman, WA” is about three ordinary people who try (and fail) to give a life-changing self-help seminar.

    “It’s a play about the culture of ‘influencers’ who tell others how to live their best life while struggling to not fall apart themselves,” Billew said. The play is recommended for mature audiences.

    The cast includes Huffman junior Mike Warren as Mike; Dallas sophomore Emily Edwards as Emily; and Cypress junior Crayten Clendion as Crayten.

    The production staff includes Jamie Carroll, Dallas senior, as stage manager and assistant director; Makayla Moreno, Edinburg sophomore, costume designer; and Brooke Philbrick, Nacogdoches sophomore, lighting and sound designer.

    Billew teaches acting and movement at SFA. He also choreographs fights and intimacy and directs. He holds post-graduate degrees from Virginia Commonwealth University and Bowling Green State University. In his creative work, Billew explores the boundaries of theatre with a particular interest in direct audience engagement and productions that avoid traditional plotlines.

    Tickets are $4. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit theatre.sfasu.edu. The Downstage Theatre is located in the Griffith Fine Arts Building, 2222 Alumni Drive.

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  • ‘The Book of Life’ featured in SFA’s Friday Night Film Series

    ‘The Book of Life’ featured in SFA’s Friday Night Film Series

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    The Golden Globe-nominated “The Book of Life” will be screened at 7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 1, in The Cole Art Center.

    October 22, 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 feature film “The Book of Life” at 7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 1, in The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House in downtown Nacogdoches.

    From producer Guillermo del Toro and director Jorge Gutierrez comes the animated comedy “The Book of Life,” which chronicles the journey of Manolo, a young man who is torn between fulfilling the expectations of his family and following his heart. Before choosing which path to follow, he embarks on an incredible adventure that spans three fantastical worlds where he must face his greatest fears. Rich with a fresh take on pop music favorites, “The Book of Life” encourages us to celebrate the past while looking forward to the future, according to the description at imdb.com.

    The film features the voices of Diego Luna, Zoe Saldana, Channing Tatum, Christina Applegate, Ice Cube, Hector Elizondo and other Hollywood A-listers. Nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Best Animated Feature Film, “The Book of Life” is rated PG for mild action, rude humor, some thematic elements and brief scary images.

    “The Book of Life” screening kicks off Nacogdoches’ Dia de los Muertos Fiesta. The main event is from 4 to 8 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 2, in downtown. East Main Street will be closed for the first time for the fiesta, and there will be an additional outdoor performance stage near the Cole Art Center.

    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 the Nacogdoches Junior Forum.

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

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  • Pineywoods Brass Quintet to perform for Brass Day at SFA

    Pineywoods Brass Quintet to perform for Brass Day at SFA

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    The Pineywoods Brass Quintet will perform at 4 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 3, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

    October 22, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    Pineywoods Brass Quintet (SFA Faculty Brass Quintet) will perform a concert of original works for brass quintet along with arrangements of jazz standards and tangos as part of the 3rd Annual Brass Day at SFA on Sunday, Nov. 3.

    The day’s activities will start with master classes for Texas high school students to study and practice music for the upcoming 2020 All-State Band auditions, according to Dr. J.D. Salas, associate professor of tuba-euphonium at SFA and Brass Day organizer.

    “The master class portion of the day will include instruction on both the Texas Music Educators Association All-State Etudes and Association of Texas Small School Bands All-State Etudes to better serve the East Texas area,” Salas said.

    Brass Day at SFA is a free, annual outreach event in which high school brass students work with SFA brass faculty to prepare for region and area auditions to qualify for the Texas All-State Bands. There will also be information for prospective music majors about the School of Music and its audition requirements for acceptance. All Brass Day events are located in the Tom and Peggy Wright Music Building, 2210 Alumni Drive.

    All-Region clinics for 2A through 4A schools will be at 1 p.m., and clinics for 5A and 6A schools will be at 2 p.m. An information session about SFA is at 3 p.m., followed by the performance by the Pineywoods Brass Quintet at 4 p.m. in Cole Concert Hall.

    The Pineywoods Brass Quintet is comprised of members of the brass faculty at SFA and include Dr. Gary Wurtz, director of the School of Music; Dr. Jacob Walburn, assistant professor of trumpet; Dr. Charles Gavin, professor of horn; Dr. Deb Scott, professor of trombone; and Salas. Among the selections on the concert program are “Suite from The Monteregian Hills” by Morley Calvert, “Three Pieces” by Ludwig Maurer and “Autumn Leaves” by Johnny Mercer, arranged by Zack Smith.

    For more information about Brass Day, visit https://jdsalas.com.

    Tickets for the Pineywoods Brass Quintet concert are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. Students who pre-register for Brass Day will receive free admission. Registration deadline is Monday, Oct. 28. For concert tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu.

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  • SFA’s Trombone Choir to perform new works

    SFA’s Trombone Choir to perform new works

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    SFA’s Trombone Choir will perform new compositions for trombone ensemble in a concert at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 5, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

    October 22, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    The Trombone Choir at Stephen F. Austin State University will perform new works featured at this year’s International Trombone Festival when the student ensemble performs at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 5, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

    The choir’s director, Dr. Deb Scott, professor of trombone in the SFA School of Music, is also the director of the Composers Workshop for the ITF, putting her in the unique position to hear and help select new works for the trombone choir.“There were eight new works for trombone ensemble, and we will be presenting two of them,” she said.

    The choir will perform Alex Buehler’s “Z/28,” which represents sounds and harmonics that occur within an actual 1969 Z/28 Camaro engine. The piece is composed for a 16-part trombone choir. Buehler is currently pursuing a master’s degree in composition at the University of North Texas.

    “The Dastardly Master Asteroid Blaster” by Adam Summey was also selected to be performed at the 2019 ITF. Summey is a trombonist studying at Appalachian State University.

    "Both pieces use the unique timbre of the trombone to create a lot of energy that is really fun to listen to,” Scott said. “I’m excited to bring these compositions back home.”

    More traditional trombone choir pieces will include David Uber’s “Three Miniatures, Op. 29” and a transcription of William Byrd’s “Cantiones Sacre II-Aec Dies” from the 16th century.

    Along with the trombone choir, members of the SFA Trombone Quartet will perform a new composition, “Flurry,” by SFA graduate composition student Scott Hansen. Quartet members include Kahlil Wyatt of Duncanville; Sterling Davis of Columbus, Ohio; Levi Grant of Longview; and Joe Segelke of Bridge City.

    Concert tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu.

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  • Nabb to perform works by Debussy, Ter Veldhuis, Bolcom

    Nabb to perform works by Debussy, Ter Veldhuis, Bolcom

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    Nathan Nabb

    October 22, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    Dr. Nathan Nabb, professor of saxophone in the School of Music at Stephen F. Austin State University, and SFA collaborative pianist Hyun Ji Oh will present a faculty recital at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 6, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

    The recital will serve to recognize the birthday of Adolphe Sax, the inventor of the saxophone.

    “I don’t often choose a program with a unifying theme in terms of compositional styles,” Nabb said. “I mainly choose music that I am interested in sharing with audiences and students. But, I did choose this date for a reason: Nov. 6 is Adolphe Sax’s birthday. Since he is the inventor of our instrument, saxophonists tend to recognize this date in different ways, and I thought it would be fun to give a recital!”

    Among the program selections is Claude Debussy’s “Petite Suite,” a well-known and beloved piece for four-hand piano.

    “The version Hyun Ji and I will play is a beautiful arrangement by composer Jun Nagao,” Nabb said. “The ‘Petite Suite’ is a set of four short pieces with all of the wonderful harmonies and beautiful phrasing and interplay one expects from this great composer.”

    Jacob ter Veldhuis’ “Garden of Love” for soprano saxophone and soundtrack is based off of a William Blake poem with the same title. Ter Veldhuis, also known as Jacob TV, is a Dutch avant-garde classical composer.

    “The work begins with a pre-recorded recitation of the poem,” Nabb said. “Then the speech sounds are manipulated into music that the saxophone interacts with throughout the piece, along with other bird sounds one may hear in nature. The whole work is very exciting, groove oriented and fun for the audience and performer.”

    The program also includes William Bolcom’s “Lilith,” which Nabb described as “an evocative work” for alto saxophone and piano. “As the title implies, this piece is inspired by Lilith, a demonic character originating in the Babylonian Talmud and early Jewish mythology,” he said. The movement titles are “The Female Demon,” “Succuba,” “Will o’ the Wisp,” “Child-Stealer” and “Night Dance,” with each exploring all of the traits of this terrifying character.

    Concert tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu.

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  • Lee Rocker of the Stray Cats to perform in SFA University Series concert

    Lee Rocker of the Stray Cats to perform in SFA University Series concert

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    Lee Rocker of the Stray Cats and Rocker’s own band are headed to the SFA campus to perform hits like “Stray Cat Strut” and “Rock This Town,” plus lots of other songs he performed post-Stray Cats with music legends from Ringo Starr to The Rolling Stones. The show is at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 24, in Turner Auditorium.

    October 18, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    Tickets are still available for a performance of Lee Rocker of the Stray Cats whose rockabilly show is coming to Stephen F. Austin State University at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 24, in W.M. Turner Auditorium as part of the College of Fine Arts University Series.

    Attending the high-energy show fronted by Rocker, with his signature upright bass, is a great way to kick off a full weekend of homecoming fun at SFA, according to Scott Shattuck, associate dean of the College of Fine Arts and director of the series.

    “He’s gonna ‘Rock This Town,’, no doubt about that,” Shattuck promised. “Lee Rocker is just coming off a huge anniversary tour with his Stray Cats band mates. His set list includes all of their top hits, and his show is full of other favorite rock classics that are sure to please.”

    Rocker made his mark singing, playing, standing on, spinning and rocking his giant upright bass as a founding (and current) member, along with Brian Setzer and Slim Jim Phantom, of the Grammy-nominated rockabilly group the Stray Cats, which sold more than 10 million albums and garnered 23 gold- and platinum-certified records worldwide. Rocker and his band are headed to Nacogdoches to perform Stray Cats hits like “Sexy and Seventeen,” “Stray Cat Strut” and “Rock This Town,” plus many other rock-era songs he has performed post-Stray Cats with music legends from Ringo Starr and George Harrison to John Fogerty and The Rolling Stones. The performance is sponsored in part by Lehmann Eye Center.

    Prior to the Rocker performance, Dr. J.D. Salas, associate professor in the SFA School of Music and a professional jazz-blues bassist, will present an informative talk at 7 p.m. in Griffith Gallery. The gallery is located across the hall from Turner Auditorium, which is inside the Griffith Fine Arts Building, 2222 Alumni Drive. The audience is invited back to the gallery for a post-performance reception to meet the performers and recognize Dr. Robert Lehmann and his staff as the corporate sponsor.

    Thursday night’s University Series concert is followed by a full slate of official homecoming activities sponsored by the SFA Alumni Association and other campus organizations on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. The annual homecoming game features the SFA Lumberjacks taking on the McNeese State Cowboys at 3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 26, in Homer Bryce Stadium. Visit http://www.sfaalumni.com for a full schedule of events.

    Single event ticket prices for the University Series are $30 for adults, $24 for seniors, $15 for SFA faculty and staff and $12 for non-SFA students/youth. Tickets for SFA students are $3. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit finearts.sfasu.edu, stop by the Box Office in Room 211 of the Griffith Fine Arts Building, or call (936) 468-6407 or (888) 240-ARTS.

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  • SFA vocal student finalist in Houston scholarship competition

    SFA vocal student finalist in Houston scholarship competition

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    Taryn Surratt

    October 17, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    Stephen F. Austin State University student Taryn Surratt, a senior high lyric mezzo-soprano from Houston, has been selected as one of 10 finalists in the Gilbert & Sullivan Society of Houston’s Inaugural Vocal Scholarship Competition.

    Surratt will perform "Se Romeo" from “I capuleti e i montecchi” by Vincenzo Bellini, "Must the Winter Come So Soon" from “Vanessa” by Samuel Barber, and Yum-yum's aria from “The Mikado” by W.S. Gilbert and Arthur Sullivan. The competition is from 4 to 6 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 19, in St. Mark’s Episcopal Church in Houston.

    “I was excited upon hearing that I was one of the finalists for the scholarship competition,” Surratt said. “I performed in the chorus with the Houston Society the summer after graduating high school, and I am a previous recipient of their vocal scholarship. I am looking forward to seeing some familiar faces this coming weekend at the competition. The Gilbert and Sullivan Society of Houston has always been a welcoming and caring group of people.”

    This past summer, Surratt attended the Houston Grand Opera's Young Artist Vocal Academy and sang the role of Agnese in Bellini's “Beatrice di Tenda” at the London Bel Canto Festival. While focusing on her voice studies at SFA, she has maintained a 4.0 grade point average. She plans to pursue a Master of Music in vocal performance after graduating in May.

    The Gilbert & Sullivan Society, Houston's oldest opera company, has awarded more than $100,000 in scholarships since 1952. This year, finalists from nine universities in three states will compete for more than $5,000 in prize money. Audience members will also get to vote for their favorite for an additional $500 award. Judges for the event will be Conductor Viswa Subbaraman, Carleen Graham of Houston Grand Opera's HGOCo, and Jeffery Larson of L2 Artists from New York City.

    The mission of the Gilbert & Sullivan Society of Houston is to preserve and promote the classic works of Sir William Gilbert and Sir Arthur Sullivan through the production of live musical theater. The organization seeks to entertain and educate the public on the relationship between modern culture and historical works by presenting high-quality performances, while maintaining a strong commitment to the community and fine arts by donating tickets to at-risk children's organizations and providing scholarships to vocal performance and technical theater students.

    Tickets to the competition are $20 and will be available at the door. St. Mark’s Episcopal Church is located at 3816 Bellaire Blvd, Houston.

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  • SFA art exhibition to explore evolution of printed illustration

    SFA art exhibition to explore evolution of printed illustration

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    The hand-colored woodcut print “Red Riding Hood,” McLoughlin Brothers, New York, 1860, is among the works in the exhibition “Picturing Books: Illustrations in Print from the 15th to the 20th Centuries,” Vol.  I, opening Thursday, Oct. 31, and running through Jan. 5 in The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House.

    October 17, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    The Stephen F. Austin State University School of Art and SFA Art Galleries will present the exhibition “Picturing Books: Illustrations in Print from the 15th to the 20th Centuries,” Vol. I, opening Thursday, Oct. 31, and running through Jan. 5 in The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House.

    Curated by Dr. John Handley, director of SFA’s art galleries, and Dr. David A. Lewis, professor of art history, the exhibition, presented in two volumes, will offer a series of “chapters” that explore the evolution of the printed illustration, beginning with the Incunabulum (meaning the first 50 years of the printed book), including the Nuremberg Chronicle of 1493 and continuing up to the 20th century. Volume II will be presented in the early spring semester and will run through March 29.

    “This exhibition will present a major art form that is often overlooked, even though it is the most familiar of them all,” Handley said. “Book illustration historically has consisted of original prints in such media as woodcut, wood engraving, etching, copperplate engravings, and later, lithography and process printing using photo mechanical techniques. As such, this show links the graphic arts with fine arts, since books are not only illustrated but connect those images to text.”

    The printing press with moveable type was invented by Johannes Gutenberg in the early 1400s, producing the now famous Gutenberg Bible by the middle of that century. Printed illustrations appeared with greater frequency by the end of the 1400s. One of the most famous of these was the Nuremberg Chronicle (a sweeping history of the world from a Christian perspective) beginning in 1493. By the early 1500s, printed illustrations were common place in both religious works, produced by woodcut blocks and, increasingly, copperplate engravings, according to Handley.

    “The exhibition will be organized like a book into volumes and chapters,” Handley explained. “Volume I will include biblical themes and human and natural history. There will also be a section of children’s books dating from the early 1700s onward.”

    Because the exhibition contains books and other printed items that are hundreds of years old, the materials will be displayed under protective glass. Viewers will be able to “see” additional pages in the books by scanning codes on mobile devices, including phones.

    A reception for Volume I works will be at 6 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 7, at Cole Art Center. Art exhibitions and receptions are sponsored by the Friends of the Visual Arts, Nacogdoches Junior Forum, William Arscott and The Flower Shop. Admission is free.

    For more information, call (936) 468-1131.

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  • Men’s Choir, Women’s Choir to perform songs about Earth, wind, fire

    Men’s Choir, Women’s Choir to perform songs about Earth, wind, fire

    October 16, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    The Men’s Choir and Women’s Choir at Stephen F. Austin State University will present the program “Elemental: Songs about Earth, Wind and Fire” at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 22, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

    The program theme lends itself to a wealth of outstanding texts and music based on the subjects of Earth, wind and fire, according to Dr. Tod Fish, associate director of choral activities in the School of Music and the choirs’ director. SFA collaborative pianists Hyun Ji Oh and Dr. Thomas Nixon will accompany.

    “This theme has allowed for tremendous diversity in our programming,” Fish said. “The choirs will perform music ranging from earlier masters such as Felix Mendelssohn, Franz Schubert and Clara Schumann to current star composers Jake Runestad and Eleanor Daley.”

    Dr. Jennifer Dalmas, professor of violin and viola, and Dr. Brad Meyer, director of percussion studies, will perform on Runestad’s “Sing Wearing the Sky.”

    Among the other program highlights is the Women’s Choir performing “Suite” de Lorca by Finnish composer Einojuhani Rautavaara, longtime professor of composition at the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, Finland.

    “Rautavaara was known as an eclectic composer who fused archaic and modern styles skillfully,” Fish explained. “He displays this ability in his 1973 composition, ‘Suite’ de Lorca, which is a staple in both the mixed and treble choir repertory. Rautavaara takes four dark texts by the Spanish poet Lorca, and merges modern techniques such as semi-tone clusters, mediant triad harmonies and aleatoric effects with ancient techniques such as modality and fauxbourdon. ‘Suite’ de Lorca is neo-classical in nature and fully displays Rautavaara's gift for pluralism.”

    The Women’s Choir will also perform Schumann’s “Er ist gekommen,” arranged by Brandon Williams. Originally composed as a solo lied, Williams arranged the piece for a women’s chorus. The lied was written in June of 1841, while Schumann was pregnant with her and husband Robert's first child, Marie. “Er ist gekommen” is part of a three-song set (op. 12) from texts by 19th-century poet Friedrich Rückert.

    “The piece is driven by a virtuosic accompaniment that will put our outstanding collaborative pianist, Hyun Ji Oh, on full display,” Fish said.

    The Men’s Choir will perform “Tu qui consortem” by Brian Bondari, associate professor of music theory and composition at Trinity University and Fish’s friend.

    “Brian and I collaborated on this composition during our time together at the University of Kansas,” Fish said. “It is a poignant piece based on a war poem by Sextus Propertius. The story is from the standpoint of Gallus, a mortally wounded soldier. Gallus implores the other soldiers to tell his sister that he fought valiantly but perished at the hand of an unknown enemy. He begs his comrades to ‘save themselves,’ so that their families may ‘rejoice’ in their return home from the atrocities of war.”

    Two new graduate students in the School of Music, David Zielke of Albany, Oregon, and Greg Simmons of Lufkin, will conduct two selections with the Men’s Choir. Zielke will also conduct the Women’s Choir on Paul Read’s “Birdsong.”

    The program will also feature a portion of the music chosen for the Women’s Choir’s performance at the 2020 Southwest American Choral Directors Conference in Little Rock, Arkansas, this coming March.

    Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu.

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  • SFA School of Theatre to present Shakespeare’s ‘Titus Andronicus’

    SFA School of Theatre to present Shakespeare’s ‘Titus Andronicus’

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    Freshman theatre student Triston Dodson of Hawkins portrays the lead character in William Shakespeare’s “Titus Andronicus” to be presented by the SFA School of Theatre at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, Nov. 12 through 16, in W.M. Turner Auditorium on the SFA campus.

    October 16, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    When the School of Theatre faculty at Stephen F. Austin State University chose William Shakespeare’s male character-dominated play “Titus Andronicus” for this year’s Mainstage Series, it was in response to the all-female show, “The Wolves,” that had filled the first Mainstage run for the fall semester.

    Although “Titus Andronicus” has been described as one of Shakespeare’s bloodiest plays, Cleo House Jr., director of the School of Theatre and this play’s director, sees it as one of The Bard’s “most fun plays,” he said, adding that he believes it “encapsulates all the things we love about the theatre.”

    “Great imagination, high camp, lots of drama, extreme simulated violence and lots of twists and turns,” House listed as the play’s theatrical qualities. “It’s the kind of play that harkens back to playing cops and robbers in your back yard.”

    “Titus Andronicus” chronicles Rome’s honored general as he returns home from war and begins a cycle of revenge filled with bloody deaths as punishment for a series of committed wrongs. The show runs Nov. 12 through 16 in W.M. Turner Auditorium.

    The play’s action on stage includes intricate fight choreography, film-like special effects, beheadings and missing limbs. But according to House, if you’re 13 or older, “this show is for you.”

    “We have worked hard to make this play relatable and understandable,” he said. “Our version of ‘Titus’ is an adaptation that is set in a post-apocalyptic future. If you’re familiar with the movie ‘Mad Max,’ that gives you an idea of the tone of our play.”

    Keeping the audience engaged in this play is challenging because of its complicated language, the fast pace of the storytelling and the multiple scene changes, according to House.

    “Pace is a challenge because there is so much information that we are trying to convey to the audience, but we also need to keep the pace of the production moving along to keep the audience engaged,” House explained. “When working on a show like this, you want to let the words do the work, but we also must create points of reference that the audience can grasp so that they remain engaged as the story is unfolding.

    “Then, just on a practical level, there are so many shifts in location,” he added. “How do we get from one place to the next as smoothly and simply as possible? How do we do it in such a way that pace, engagement and storytelling are not adversely affected?”

    At issue for the students actors, as with most of Shakespeare’s plays, is the language.

    “Shakespeare’s language is foreign to most young actors, and he made up words,” House said. “Learning those words and how to communicate those ideas to a modern audience can be difficult.”

    The play is also filled with stage combat. Actors are spending countless rehearsal hours learning complex fight choreography that is being taught to them by Dr. Slade Billew, assistant professor of acting in the School of Theatre who specializes in fight choreography.

    As the result of all the elaborate details that will be included in this presentation of “Titus Andronicus,” House believes the audience experience will be greatly enhanced. After seeing this play, theatre patrons will have “a greater appreciation for the work that goes into creating theatre,” he believes.

    “Hopefully, they’ll be a fan of Shakespeare and an even bigger fan of the School of Theatre,” he said.

    “Titus Andronicus” will be presented at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, Nov. 12 through 16, in W.M. Turner Auditorium on the SFA campus. A matinee for high school students is at 10 a.m. Thursday, Nov. 14.

    Single tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for seniors and non-SFA students and $7.50 for youth. Tickets for SFA students are $5. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.theatre.sfasu.edu. The play is recommended for mature audiences.

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  • Spectrum Ensemble to present ‘A New Light’ percussion concert

    Spectrum Ensemble to present ‘A New Light’ percussion concert

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    Spectrum Ensemble of Denton will present the percussion program “A New Light” at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 23, in the Wright Music Building’s Band Hall, Room 121, on the SFA campus.

    October 14, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    Spectrum Ensemble will bring a program of original percussion duo works to Nacogdoches when founders Jaime Esposito and Stephen Hall perform at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 23, in the Wright Music Building’s Band Hall, Room 121, on the Stephen F. Austin State University campus.

    Spectrum Ensemble is a new music group based in Denton advocating for LGBTQ+ representation in Classical music by performing concerts of new music written by top young queer composers and performed by queer/ally musicians. Additionally, proceeds from concerts are donated to LGBTQA+ advocacy non-profits/charities.

    Touring throughout the South this fall, Spectrum Ensemble will present “A New Light,” which features works written by queer composers Kevin Rosacias, Luke Ellard, Derek Twyonick, and LJ White, alongside classics by Leonard Bernstein and Samuel Barber.

    “In our concerts, we present the often-ignored lineage of influential queer musicians in Classical music throughout history until the present day,” Esposito said.

    New contemporary music works by top queer composers are juxtaposed in the performance with works of famous composers throughout history, like Bernstein, Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky and Aaron Copland.

    “In this way, we present wonderfully engaging musical programs while exemplifying LGBTQ+ visibility,” Esposito said.

    To learn more about the ensemble and the players:

    Website: Spectrumensemble.org

    Instagram: @spectrumensemble

    Facebook: @Queerspectrumensemble

    Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCDb0xvK7jk9AUbJtaaIyOYw/videos

    Concert tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu.

    article ID 1783

  • Clarinetist Kowalsky to collaborate with SFA music faculty on concert

    Clarinetist Kowalsky to collaborate with SFA music faculty on concert

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    Frank Kowalsky

    October 14, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    Clarinetist Frank Kowalsky, professor emeritus at Florida State University, will perform a guest recital at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 24, in Cole Concert Hall on the campus of Stephen F. Austin State University.

    Kowalsky will collaborate with several SFA music faculty members, all of whom are graduates of Florida State University, according to Dr. Christopher Ayer, professor of clarinet in the SFA School of Music.

    Dr. Jennifer Dalmas, violin and viola; Dr. Evegeni Rachev, cello; and Dr. Ron Petti, piano, were all doctoral students at FSU while Kowalsky was professor of clarinet there. Rachev’s cello teacher at FSU was Lubomir Georgiev, who wrote Dialogues I for cello and piano. Rachev will perform it with Kowalsky that evening.

    “So, it’s a special treat for all of them to collaborate together on this concert,” Ayer said.

    Among the other selections on the program are “Peregi Verbunk” by Leo Weiner; Suite for Clarinet, Violin and Piano and “Scaramouche” by Darius Milhaud; and Sonata by Carlos Guastavino.

    Kowalsky has performed as principal clarinetist with several orchestras throughout the United States. His introduction of Scott McAllister’s “X—Concerto for Clarinet” to the clarinet community in 1998 led to the commissioning of McAllister’s concerto, “Black Dog,” which he premiered at Florida State University in 2003. A member of the faculty at the Interlochen Arts Academy for 10 years, Kowalsky joined the faculty at Florida State University in 1984 and retired in 2013. He holds degrees from the Eastman School of Music, the Manhattan School of Music and the Catholic University of America.

    Concert tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu.

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  • SFA College of Fine Arts Dean’s Circle hosts successful fundraiser

    SFA College of Fine Arts Dean’s Circle hosts successful fundraiser

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    The SFA College of Fine Arts Dean’s Circle recently recognized state Rep. Travis Clardy, left, for his support of and contributions to Nacogdoches, SFA, the College of Fine Arts and the Dean’s Circle at the organization’s annual fall Winners’ Circle fundraiser. Presenting the honor to Clardy was College of Fine Arts Dean Dr. A.C. “Buddy” Himes.

    October 8, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    Members of the Stephen F. Austin State University College of Fine Arts Dean’s Circle recently recognized its 2019 award recipients at the annual artists’ spotlight and fundraiser and Winners’ Circle reception held in Mast Hall in downtown Nacogdoches.

    A highlight of the evening included special recognition of state Rep. Travis Clardy for his support of and contributions to Nacogdoches, SFA, the College of Fine Arts and the Dean’s Circle.

    “I’m certain that there was not anyone at our event whose life in the East Texas region has not been positively affected by the legislation he has helped pass,” said Dr. A.C. “Buddy” Himes, dean of the College of Fine Arts. “We were pleased and honored that so many people came to our event to show their appreciation for Rep. Clardy’s many contributions to our community, and to support the College of Fine Arts.”

    The event also recognized the 2019 Dean’s Awards recipients, including Sarah Bone, art major from Richmond; Travis Wattigney, music major from Fort Worth; Matthew Mitchell, music education major from Huffman; and Aubrey Moore, theatre major from Frisco.

    Also recognized was School of Art Professor Piero Fenci as the Dean’s Circle Endowed Professor for 2019-2022. The Dean’s Circle created the award in 2016 to recognize and honor those who “embody the qualities of the ideal professor that characterize all College of Fine Arts faculty members,” Himes said. The award is intended to provide the resources for all manner of professional endeavors in which the recipient may choose to become involved. This marks the second endowed professorship completed by the Dean’s Circle. The first honoree was Dr. Charles R. Gavin, professor of horn and chamber music in the SFA School of Music.

    “We greatly appreciate our membership and event sponsors,” Himes said. “Their financial support makes possible these awards, which allow recipients to further their creative pursuits and aspire to a higher level of excellence.”

    Sponsors included Cal-Tex Lumber Company, Inc., Travis Clardy, Nacogdoches Medical Center, Naioma Shannon, Southside Bank, Suzanne Warlick, The Right Step Child Enrichment Center, CBH Insurance Agency, An O’Haver Financial Company, Chris and Yvette Sidnell, Dr. Gary Barkocy, Mast Hall, Naca Valley Vineyard and Nacogdoches Film Festival.

    The Dean’s Circle is a group of community and university leaders whose mission is to assist the College of Fine Arts in perpetuating its tradition of excellence by enhancing academic and artistic performance programs, creating endowed professorships for faculty, and recognizing outstanding students in each school with the annual Dean’s Awards.

    For more information about the Dean’s Circle or to become a member, contact Himes at (936) 468-2801 or at himesac@sfasu.edu.

    article ID 1780

  • SFA’s A Cappella Choir to present ‘When the Poet Sings’

    SFA’s A Cappella Choir to present ‘When the Poet Sings’

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    The SFA A Cappella Choir will present “When the Poet Sings” at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 18, at Sacred Heart Catholic Church.

    October 8, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    The A Cappella Choir at Stephen F. Austin State University will present “When the Poet Sings” at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 18, at Sacred Heart Catholic Church.

    Conducted by Dr. Michael Murphy, director of choral activities for the School of Music, the A Cappella Choir will perform works by Petr Eben, Norman Dello Joio, Giuseppe Verdi, Ivo Antognini, Elaine Hagenberg, Brandon Waddles, Felix Mendelssohn and more.

    The concert will also feature the world premiere of Andrew Smith’s “Inspiration.” SFA Director of Collaborative Piano Dr. Ron Petti will accompany. The Colony graduate student Jacob Rivas will be featured as graduate conductor.

    Sacred Heart Catholic Church is located at 2508 Appleby Sand Road.

    Admission is free, but donations will be accepted. For more information, visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu or call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407.

    article ID 1781

  • Reception planned for Denali-inspired art exhibition at SFA

    Reception planned for Denali-inspired art exhibition at SFA

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    Denali Colloquy, created by artist Susan Campbell and inspired by the music of SFA composition student Corinna Hogan, is one of the works on display at the exhibition "Denali: Artists Respond to Music Inspired by Wilderness" in the Griffith Fine Arts Gallery on the SFA campus. A reception for the exhibit is slated for 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 17, in the Griffith Gallery.

    October 8, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    A reception for the exhibition “Denali: Artists Respond to Music Inspired by Wilderness” is slated for 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 17, in Griffith Fine Arts Gallery on the Stephen F. Austin State University campus.

    SFA’s School of Art hosts the exhibition through Nov. 21. Two languages – music and visual art – combine to create works of art made in response to chamber music composed in Denali National Park. The exhibition is a collaboration between the Elements Artist Group and composers from the Fairbanks Summer Arts Festival’s Composing in the Wilderness Program, directed by SFA composing Professor Dr. Stephen Lias. SFA senior composition student Corinna Hogan of Gatesville is among the collaborating composers.

    In 2017, Lias led nine experienced composers into the backcountry of Denali National Park where they composed original chamber music inspired by their wilderness experiences and shared recordings of their compositions, musical scores, ideas and inspiration with the Elements artists. The artists worked in a variety of media including fiber art, ceramic tiles, painting, poetry, and artist books to create 18 works of visual art, each one a personal response to a musical composition.

    In experiencing the exhibition, a smart phone enables access to the music that inspired each artistic response. QR codes, posted throughout the exhibition, provide links to the music so that the music and art it inspired can be experienced at the same time. Binders of the musical scores and program notes are also on display as part of the exhibition.

    Support of a Community Arts Development Grant from the Alaska State Council on the Arts helped fund the project along with sponsorship by The National Park Service, Alaska Geographic, Fairbanks Summer Arts Festival and Composing in the Wilderness. For more information about the project, visit https://www.composinginthewilderness.com/elements.

    This exhibition and reception, which also includes a multimedia presentation, is sponsored in part by William Arscott, The Flower Shop and the Friends of the Visual Arts. Admission is free. For more information, call (936) 468-1131.

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    article ID 1782

  • Atlanta Symphony Orchestra musician Brebach to perform at SFA, present workshop

    Atlanta Symphony Orchestra musician Brebach to perform at SFA, present workshop

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    Emily Brebach

    October 3, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    Emily Brebach, English horn with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, will perform a guest oboe and English horn recital at 4 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 12, in Cole Concert Hall on the Stephen F. Austin State University campus.

    The recital is part of the School of Music’s Friends of Music Concert Series and will showcase works by Eugène Bozza, Charles Koechlin, Maurice Ravel and Alyssa Morris, among others.

    Three of the program pieces are French. Bozza’s “Divertissement” translates to “fun” or “entertainment,” while Koechlin’s “Au Loin” translates to “far away” or “far off.” Ravel’s “Pavane pour une infante defunte” translates to “Pavane for a Dead Princess.” These three French works are considered old favorites of the English horn repertoire.

    “Chrysalis for English Horn and Piano” was written by living composer Alyssa Morris. Each movement of this piece represents a different stage of metamorphosis from caterpillar to butterfly. The music is fun for the performer and audience alike, according to Brebach.

    Joining the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra as English horn and oboe in the fall of 2012, Brebach has performed with orchestras throughout the United States, including the Boston Symphony Orchestra, the Minnesota Orchestra, the Kansas City Symphony and the Houston Symphony. She is an artist affiliate instructor of oboe at Emory University and a faculty member of the Atlanta Symphony's Talent Development Program, and she maintains an active private studio. Brebach also presents master classes and reed-making seminars at music schools across the country. She spends her summers in residence at the Brevard Music Center in Brevard, North Carolina, as English horn and oboe as well as artist faculty, and also as English horn at the Grand Teton Music Festival.

    Saturday’s recital tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu.

    Brebach’s recital is part of a larger guest artist residency, which includes master classes. On Sunday, Oct. 13, she will join SFA’s Dr. Abby Y. Held, faculty oboe in the School of Music, in presenting Oboe Etude Workshop Day from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. in the Music Recital Hall. In addition to working with SFA student oboe musicians, the presenters invite high school oboe students for a free workshop designed to help them master their All-State oboe etudes.

    “This is a free event open to high school oboists who are preparing All-State audition etudes, or working on etudes in their own personal studies,” said Held, who will also present the clinic “Dealing With Nerves” during the workshop. Participants may register for Oboe Etude Workshop Day by contacting Held at helday@sfasu.edu. Held promises “surprises and prizes” at the workshop.

    article ID 1775

  • SFA School of Theatre presents ‘The Wolves’ through Saturday

    SFA School of Theatre presents ‘The Wolves’ through Saturday

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    October 3, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    The Stephen F. Austin State University School of Theatre will present Sarah DeLappe’s play “The Wolves” at 7:30 nightly through Saturday, Oct. 5, in W.M. Turner Auditorium on the SFA campus. A finalist for the 2017 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, “The Wolves” is a coming-of-age play that follows the daily routines and conversations of nine girls on a soccer team who deal with big problems and tiny battles on the field and in life. In a scene from ‘The Wolves’ are, from left, Bridgeport freshman Elora Rogers; Irving senior Kathleen McNamara, Lufkin sophomore Britney Day (background); and Richmond senior Harsa Rutherford. Single tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for seniors and non-SFA students and $7.50 for youth. Tickets for SFA students are $5. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit

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    article ID 1776

  • SFA Symphony Orchestra to perform works by Tchaikovsky, Bernstein

    SFA Symphony Orchestra to perform works by Tchaikovsky, Bernstein

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    Alina Nebzhidovskaia

    October 3, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    The SFA Symphony Orchestra (Orchestra of the Pines) at Stephen F. Austin State University will perform under the baton of its new conductor, Dr. Gregory Grabowski, at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 14, in Cole Concert Hall on the university campus.

    Among the selections on the program are Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s “Romeo and Juliet Overture-Fantasy” and Leonard Bernstein’s “Symphonic Dances” from “West Side Story.” The concert also features a performance by Alina Nebzhidovskaia, one of the three winners of the School of Music’s recent concerto competition, on Alexander Glazunov’s Violin Concerto.

    Grabowski joined the School of Music this semester as director of orchestral activities. He comes to SFA from Susquehanna University in Selinsgrove, Pennsylvania, where he conducted the Susquehanna University Orchestra and musical theatre performances. He began his career in the public schools of Frisco ISD. Grabowski has led the Richardson Symphony, Flower Mound Symphony, Lewisville Lake Symphony, Bakersfield Symphony, Baltimore Chamber Orchestra and the Fairbanks Festival Orchestra. He holds degrees from the University of North Texas and Southern Methodist University.

    Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu.

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  • Wind Symphony, Symphonic Band program takes listeners on international musical tour

    Wind Symphony, Symphonic Band program takes listeners on international musical tour

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    James Syler

    October 3, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    The Wind Symphony and Symphonic Band at Stephen F. Austin State University will perform the music of James Syler when the student ensembles perform at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 15, in W.M. Turner Auditorium on the SFA campus.

    The program, “Wanderlust,” features music based on locations and cultures throughout the world, taking the audience on an international musical tour.

    Syler is composer in residence with the SFA School of Music this fall and has been working with the bands and composition students.

    Under the direction of Chris Kaatz, assistant director of bands at SFA, the Symphonic Band opens the concert “in Philadelphia” with John Philip Sousa’s popular march “The Liberty Bell.” The band also performs Syler’s lush and reverent “Cantique,” which references a common genre of French religious music in both title and character. Next, Alex Shapiro’s “Tight Squeeze” packs three continents’ music into a piece lasting just as many minutes.

    “Combining Viennese dodecaphony, Latin bebop and Detroit techno, this electroacoustic work is an exhilarating journey unto itself,” according to Kaatz.

    The Symphonic Band closes the first half across the pond with Malcolm Arnold’s first set of “English Dances.” Originally written for orchestra, this four-movement work is built on original melodies crafted in the spirit of English folk songs and dance.

    “Visiting musical landscapes both pastoral and melancholic, ‘English Dances’ ends the first half with an exhilarating, celebratory romp,” Kaatz said.

    Directed by Dr. Tamey Anglley, associate director of bands at SFA, the Wind Symphony will open the second half of the concert with Francisco Alonso’s “La Calesera,” which is a famous Spanish pasodoble taken from the composer’s musical comedy “Zarzuela.”

    The Wind Symphony will also perform Syler’s “Suite Louisiane,” which is a five-movement work written in 2018 and commissioned by the Louisiana Chapter of the College Band Directors National Association.

    “Each movement focuses on songs that have unique histories and rich musical characteristics based in different areas of Louisiana,” Anglley said. “It is a wonderfully educational and entertaining journey through American folk songs.”

    The final piece on the concert is Norman Dello Joio’s Scenes from “The Louvre.” Dello Joio composed the soundtrack for the television documentary “A Golden Prison: The Louvre” in 1964. He he won an Emmy for the soundtrack and arranged the highlights into a five-movement suite for band.

    “Dello Joio chose to use the music from Renaissance-era composers to match the historical depth of the film,” Anglley said. This piece includes original material from Dello Joio as well as material from Renaissance composers such as Tielman Susato, Jean-Baptiste Lully and Vincenzo Albrici.

    Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu.

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  • ‘The Velveteen Rabbit’ to open SFA’s children’s series

    ‘The Velveteen Rabbit’ to open SFA’s children’s series

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    Two performances of “The Velveteen Rabbit” on Friday, Oct. 18, will open the 2019-20 Children’s Performing Arts Series at SFA.

    October 3, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    The Children’s Performing Arts Series at Stephen F. Austin State University will open its 2019-20 season on Friday, Oct. 18, with two performances of Virginia Repertory Theatre’s “The Velveteen Rabbit.”

    Adapted by Thomas W. Hammond from the original book by Margery Williams Bianco with music and lyrics by Ron Barnett, “The Velveteen Rabbit” is Virginia Rep’s fanciful musical production of the classic story that centers around a boy and his love for his favorite toy, a rabbit covered with velveteen, according to Diane Peterson, SFA Fine Arts Box Office manager and director of the children’s series. The boy loves the rabbit more than anything and takes it everywhere. After the boy recovers from scarlet fever, the family must dispose of the contaminated toy.

    “As the rabbit awaits his fate, a magical fairy blooms from a flower and turns the beloved plaything into a real, live rabbit, showing us the power and magic of unconditional love,” Peterson said.

    “The Velveteen Rabbit” targets children in Pre-K through fifth grade. Performances are at 9:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. in W.M. Turner Auditorium, located in the Griffith Fine Arts Building on the SFA campus. Tickets are $7.50 for individuals and $6 per person for groups of 20 or more.

    Presented by the SFA College of Fine Arts, the Children’s Performing Arts Series annually features five shows designed to entertain, educate and engage young audiences of all ages, according to Peterson. Study guides provide suggestions for pre- and post-performance activities and discussions for teachers to use in the classroom. A comprehensive study guide for “The Velveteen Rabbit” may be accessed at cpas.sfasu.edu.

    Other upcoming CPAS performances include “A Christmas Carol” on Thursday, Dec. 12; “We the People” on Friday, Jan. 31; Super Scientific Circus on Friday, Feb. 28; and “Cinderella” on Tuesday, April 28.

    To order tickets, call (936) 468-6407 or (888) 240-ARTS. Visit the CPAS website at cpas.sfasu.edu for additional information.

    You may also be interested in the following related article:

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  • School of Theatre to present student-directed ‘These Shining Lives’ scenes

    School of Theatre to present student-directed ‘These Shining Lives’ scenes

    October 2, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    The Stephen F. Austin State University School of Theatre will present scenes from the student-directed play “These Shining Lives” at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 11, and at 2 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 12, in the Downstage Theatre on the SFA campus.

    Jessica Griffin, a theatre major from Brownsboro, directs scenes from Melanie Marnich’s one-act play. The play chronicles the strength and determination of four women, considered expendable in their day, who worked in a factory in the 1920s. Catherine and her friends are dying, but their story is one of survival in its most transcendent sense, as they refuse to allow the company that stole their health to steal their spirits or endanger the lives of those who follow them.

    The cast includes Scurry freshman Courtney Pratt as Catherine; Frisco freshman Anthony Johnson as Tom; Plano freshman Marissa Mondragon as Charlotte; Bastrop sophomore Erinn St. Clair as Pearl; Houston sophomore Alexis Hargy as Frances; Buffalo junior Zach White as Mr. Reed; Wylie junior Drake St. Pierre as the company doctor/Dr. Dalitsch; Plano junior Sarah Clark as reporters; and Lufkin freshman Jeremiah Hewitt as Grossman.

    The production crew includes Tommy Vest, Sherman sophomore, as stage manager; Jenna Alley, Kingwood sophomore, scenic designer; Jordyn Averitte, Baytown senior, costume designer; Hannah Pittman, Bulverde junior, lighting designer; and Gaby Trevino, Duncanville sophomore, sound designer.

    Griffin is a senior teacher certification student in the School of Theatre.

    Faculty production advisor for the play is Dr. Inga Meier.

    Tickets are $4. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit theatre.sfasu.edu. The Downstage Theatre is located in the Griffith Fine Arts Building, 2222 Alumni Drive.

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  • Cole Art Center teams with public library to screen ‘Seven Samurai’ in Big Read event

    Cole Art Center teams with public library to screen ‘Seven Samurai’ in Big Read event

    press image
    A free, one-night screening of Akira Kurosawa’s 1954 masterpiece “Seven Samurai” is at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 11, at Cole Art Center.

    October 1, 2019—Robbie Goodrich

    The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House will partner with the Nacogdoches Public Library and its NEA Big Read Nacogdoches project to present a screening of Akira Kurosawa’s 1954 masterpiece, “Seven Samurai.”

    A free, one-night screening of the Oscar-nominated film is at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 11, at Cole Art Center. Refreshments will be provided.

    The story takes place in 1586 during the Sengoku period of Japanese history. According to the film description at imdb.com, a veteran samurai, who has fallen on hard times, answers a village's request for protection from bandits. He gathers six other samurai to help him. They teach the townspeople how to defend themselves, and they supply the samurai with three small meals a day. The film culminates in a giant battle when 40 bandits attack the village.

    The NEA Big Read is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest. This program seeks to broaden understanding of the world and its communities, and of oneself, through the joy of sharing a good book. This screening of “Seven Samurai” is just one of many events the Nacogdoches Public Library has planned during October as part of the Big Read initiative.

    “I want to thank Cole Art Center for once again being involved with our city-wide program this year,” said Crystal Hicks, assistant director of the library. “We're so glad to have such a wonderfully engaged and supportive community.”

    Following the screening, there will be time for discussion of the film and the NEA Big Read novel, “Into the Beautiful North,” by Luis Alberto Urrea. The novel is set in Mexico and follows the adventures of Nayeli and her friends as they travel north across the border into the U.S. The trip is inspired by the film, “The Magnificent Seven,” which is based on “Seven Samurai.”

    The Big Read activities will take place in October and will culminate with the annual Dia de los Muertos Fiesta on Nov. 2. The Nacogdoches Public Library is one of 78 nonprofit organizations to receive an NEA Big Read grant to host community reading programs between September 2019 and June 2020. For more information about the Big Read initiative, contact Hicks at (936) 559-2970.

    The Cole Art Center is Stephen F. Austin State University’s historic downtown art gallery, located at 329 E. Main St. For more information about the screening, call (936) 468-1131.

    article ID 1773

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