Micky Elliott College of Fine Arts News Archive

November 2021

  • SFA School of Theatre earns numerous KCACTF honors

    SFA School of Theatre earns numerous KCACTF honors

    November 30, 2021—Robbie Goodrich

    The School of Theatre at Stephen F. Austin State University was honored by the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival with numerous awards and nominations for the school’s fall semester plays “Bootycandy” and “Ajax in Iraq.”

    The KCACTF is a national theater program involving 18,000 students annually from colleges and universities across the country. Since its inception, KCACTF has given more than 400,000 college theater students the opportunity to have their work critiqued, improve their dramatic skills, and receive national recognition for excellence.

    “We are truly excited and honored that our students have been recognized for their hard work,” said Cleo House Jr., director of the School of Theatre and director of “Bootycandy.” “I believe this is a record number of SFA students to be recognized by KCACTF in one semester. This speaks to the commitment of not only the students, but also to the dedication of our faculty.”

    “Bootycandy” is being “held for consideration” for invitation to the regional festival in 2022, which means that it will be a part of a select list of plays and musicals from university productions across Texas, Arkansas, Oklahoma and Louisiana that will be reviewed, discussed and voted on by the regional committee. The committee’s goal is to select/rank the productions that represent “the best of what our region offers,” according to House. Only the top plays will be presented at the regional festival.

    “It may sound corny, but it really is an honor just to be nominated, because some excellent theatre is happening in our region and across Texas,” House said.

    The School of Theatre presented Robert O’Hara’s play “Bootycandy” for its first Mainstage production in October. The play is a satiric portrait of American life told through the lens of Sutter, a gay Black man on an outrageous odyssey through his childhood home, his church, dive bars, motel rooms and even nursing homes. O'Hara weaves together scenes, sermons, sketches and daring meta-theatrics to create a kaleidoscopic portrayal of growing up gay and Black.

    Ellen McLaughlin’s play “Ajax in Iraq” was presented in collaboration with Panola College Theatre in November at the Community House in Center. The play was described as a mash-up of Sophocles' classic tragedy “Ajax” with the modern-day war in Iraq. The schools sought to help their students and communities gain a better understanding of the difficulties U.S. military members and everyone in their lives endure in dealing with war and its aftermath.

    The KCACTF commendations are as follows:

    “Bootycandy” – Beaumont junior Andr'e J. Hankerson, Irene Ryan Acting Nominee; Texarkana sophomore Daun (DJ) Whaley, Irene Ryan Acting Nominee; Longview freshman Jaz'Lyn Lewis, Irene Ryan Acting Nominee; Waxahachie sophomore Kiya Green, Meritorious Achievement in Acting; Nacogdoches senior Ty Carter, Meritorious Achievement in Acting; Katy senior Alexis Hargy, Meritorious Achievement in Assistant Directing; Cleo House Jr., Meritorious Achievement in Directing; McKinney senior Carson Cook, Meritorious Achievement in Lighting Design; Splendora junior Stephen Bradley, Meritorious Achievement in Properties Design; and cast of “Bootycandy,” Meritorious Achievement Ensemble.

    “Ajax in Iraq” – Allen senior Sara Clark, Irene Ryan Acting Nominee; Katy freshman Astrid Maldonado, Irene Ryan Acting Nominee; Cushing junior Drake Willis, Irene Ryan Acting Nominee; Lufkin junior Chance Chunn, Meritorious Achievement in Stage Management; Houston senior Elizabeth Bobbitt, Meritorious Achievement in Stage Management; Ponder sophomore Connor Molen, Meritorious Achievement in Consent Forward Practices; and The Woodlands senior Dorie Bloodworth, Meritorious Achievement in Assistant Directing.

    For more information about the SFA School of Theatre, call (936) 468-4003 or visit theatre.sfasu.edu.

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  • SFA’s A Cappella Choir, Chamber Singers present ‘Season of Light’ concert

    SFA’s A Cappella Choir, Chamber Singers present ‘Season of Light’ concert

    November 22, 2021—Robbie Goodrich

    The A Cappella Choir and Chamber Singers at Stephen F. Austin State University will present the program “Season of Light” when the student ensembles perform their final concert of the semester at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 4, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

    Under the direction of Dr. Michael Murphy, director of choral activities for the SFA School of Music, with Grant Peterson, graduate conductor from Wylie, and Dr. Ron Petti, collaborative pianist, the groups will perform music by Wolfram Buchenberg, Jocelyn Hagen, Adolphus Hailstork, Abbie Betinis, Arvo Pärt, Franz Biebl, William Mathias, John Rutter, Paul Manz and much more.

    “The SFA Chamber Singers and A Cappella Choir will showcase contemporary choral music and holiday favorites on this concert,” Murphy said.

    Featured will be three of German composer Buchenberg’s “Four Sacred Songs” and a world premiere of Minnesotan composer Jocelyn Hagen’s newest work, “A Lantern of Your Heart,” commissioned for the SFA A Cappella Choir. Graduate conductor Peterson will conduct Biebl’s “Ave Maria” and Mathias’ “A Babe Is Born.”

    Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. To purchase tickets, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit finearts.sfasu.edu. For additional information, contact the SFA School of Music at (936) 468-4602.

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  • SFA’ Singin’ Axes, Kantorei choirs to present ‘O Magnum Mysterium’

    SFA’ Singin’ Axes, Kantorei choirs to present ‘O Magnum Mysterium’

    November 22, 2021—Robbie Goodrich

    The Singin’ Axes and Kantorei choirs at Stephen F. Austin State University will present the concert “O Magnum Mysterium” when the choral ensembles perform at 5:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 3, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

    “‘O Magnum Mysterium’ is the title of a beautiful, contemporary motet by my dear friend, Dr. Brian Bondari, professor of music theory and composition at Trinity University,” explained Dr. Tod Fish, associate director of choral activities for the SFA School of Music and the choirs’ director. Bondari’s setting of this seasonal text will be sung by the combined Kantorei and Singin’ Axes choirs.

    “O Magnum Mysterium” is translated as: “O great mystery, And most wonderful sacrament, That animals could witness the birth of the Lord lying in a manger. We saw the birth and the choir of angels praising God. Alleluia!”

    Caroline Van Landingham, graduate student in choral conducting from Cypress, will conduct one selection each with the choirs. She will conduct Kantorei Choir performing Richard Felciano’s arrangement of “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel,” and she will conduct the Singin’ Axes performing William C. Powell’s arrangement of Rosephanye Powell’s “The Word Was God.”

    The combined choirs will sing the first movement of John Rutter’s “Gloria.” Kantorei will sing Michael Engelhardt’s gospel rendition of “And Suddenly,” which is from Luke 2:13-14. The Singin’ Axes will sing Joshua Himes’ setting of the “Ave Maria” text.

    “We will end the concert with the combined choirs singing Hawley Ades’ arrangement of Leroy Anderson’s audience favorite, ‘Sleigh Ride,’” Fish said.

    Joining the choirs are SFA’s collaborative pianists, Dr. Maria Lyapkova and Dr. Thomas Nixon.

    Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. To purchase tickets, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit finearts.sfasu.edu. For additional information, contact the SFA School of Music at (936) 468-4602. The concert will be live streamed.

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  • SFA Symphony Orchestra to showcase student concerto competition winners

    SFA Symphony Orchestra to showcase student concerto competition winners

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    Sara Rosado

    November 19, 2021—Robbie Goodrich

    The Symphony Orchestra at Stephen F. Austin State University will present “The Stars of Tomorrow: Winners of the 2021 SFA Student Concerto Competition” when the ensemble performs its final concert of the fall semester at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 30, in Cole Concert Hall.

    The program will open with Emmanuel Chabrier’s “Fête Polonaise” from his opera “Le roi malgré lui.”

    “This is a tour de force for the orchestra and opens the evening’s program with joy and excitement as we celebrate the talents of SFA’s music students,” said Dr. Gregory Grabowski, director of orchestral activities for the School of Music and the SFA Symphony Orchestra’s conductor.

    This year’s concerto competition winners are Sara Rosado, Katy graduate student, mezzo-soprano; Stoney Shelton, Arthur City junior, clarinet; Julian Torres, Irving senior, tuba; Briley Patterson, Palestine senior, vibraphone; and Davis Carr, Richmond senior, marimba.

    “These students have worked hard,” Grabowski said. “After hearing amazing finalists in this year’s concerto competition, they have all earned their spot to be featured on the stage with the SFA Symphony Orchestra.”

    Shelton will perform a movement from Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto; Rosado will perform “Smanie implacabili” from “Cosi fan tutte” by Mozart; Torres will perform two movements from “Teutonic Tales” by Robert W. Smith; and Patterson and Carr will perform a movement from Emmanuel Séjouré’s Double Concerto for Marimba and Vibraphone.

    Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. To purchase tickets, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit finearts.sfasu.edu. For additional information, contact the SFA School of Music at (936) 468-4602. The concert will be broadcast at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 8, on the SFA Symphony Orchestra’s YouTube channel.

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  • Nacogdoches pianist Antonio Ajero division finalist in the MTNA Senior Piano Competition

    Nacogdoches pianist Antonio Ajero division finalist in the MTNA Senior Piano Competition

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    Antonio “Nio” Ajero of Nacogdoches advances to South Central Division round of the Music Teachers National Association Senior Piano Performance Competition after recently winning the Texas state round of the competition at the University of Houston.

    November 18, 2021—Robbie Goodrich

    Antonio “Nio” Ajero of Nacogdoches will compete as a division finalist in the Music Teachers National Association South Central Division Senior Piano Performance Competition.

    Ajero, the son of Mario and Gina Ajero, earned the opportunity after winning the Texas State round of the MTNA Senior Piano Performance Competition Nov. 13 at the University of Houston. A senior at Nacogdoches High School, Ajero has been studying piano for 14 years and is currently a student of Minhae Lee at the Stephen F. Austin State University School of Music and Linda Parr in SFA’s Music Prep Division. He previously studied with Andrew Parr, professor emeritus of piano at SFA.

    Ajero will advance to the South Central Division round, and if he wins the division, he will advance to the National Finals held at the 2022 MTNA National Conference in Minneapolis, Minnesota, in March.

    The three-tiered MTNA competitions begin at the state level. Winners of each state competition advance to the division competition. Division winners then proceed to the national level.

    To receive more information about MTNA National Competitions, call (888) 512-5278, email mtnanet@mtna.org or visit the website at http://www.mtna.org.

    Music Teachers National Association is a nonprofit organization comprised of 17,000 independent and collegiate music teachers committed to advancing the value of music study and music making to society and to supporting the professionalism of music teachers. Founded in 1876, MTNA is the oldest professional music association in the U.S.

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  • SFA Music Prep’s String Project to benefit from national grant

    SFA Music Prep’s String Project to benefit from national grant

    November 18, 2021—Robbie Goodrich

    The Music Preparatory Division in the Stephen F. Austin State University School of Music will be among the beneficiaries of a grant from The NAMM Foundation to the National String Project Consortium, of which SFA Music Prep is a partner.

    Piloted last spring and continuing this fall, Music Prep’s String Project is an initiative that includes the nine public school districts within Nacogdoches County and some surrounding districts. String Project students have the opportunity to learn to play a stringed instrument at a low tuition cost as part of an after-school activity facilitated by SFA music majors earning degrees in music education, according to Alba Madrid, Music Prep director.

    The National String Project Consortium was selected as one of 25 music-making organizations to receive a grant to fund vital programs that provide access to music-making opportunities across a variety of different communities and demographics.

    “We are extremely excited to make string education widely available in our community,” said Alba Madrid, Music Prep director, “and we are looking forward to partnering with the school districts in our area to make this possible.”

    The NAMM Foundation is a nonprofit organization funded in part by the National Association of Music Merchants and its 10,000-plus members. Programs supported by The NAMM Foundation, including the National String Project Consortium, advance music learning for people of all ages and abilities, according to Mary Luehrsen, executive director of The NAMM Foundation. “Together, we advance a more musical world based on a shared belief that music is a force for good and (forms) connections in our world,” she said.

    The National String Project Consortium will utilize the grant to support the organization’s mission to train college students to be prepared teachers of tomorrow and provide accessible and affordable instruction to community youth.

    The National String Project Consortium is a coalition of String Projects sites based at colleges and universities across the U.S. The NSPC is dedicated to increasing the number of children playing stringed instruments and addressing the critical shortage of string teachers across the nation. In addition to SFA, other beneficiaries of the grant are University of California at San Bernardino, University of Northern Colorado, San Jose State University and Tennessee Tech University.

    “For many years, the Music Preparatory division of the SFA School of Music has been the primary source for teaching young people to play orchestral string instruments,” according to Dr. Gary Wurtz, interim dean of the Micky Elliott College of Fine Arts at SFA. “The teachers in the program do a marvelous job, and the director, Alba Madrid, has a great vision and a unending energy to strengthen and promote the program. Her success in being awarded this grant is further proof of the fantastic job she is doing.”

    Since its inception in 2015, the annual grant program of The NAMM Foundation has donated more than $18 million to domestic and international music education programs, scientific research, advocacy and public service programs related to music-making.

    For more information about the String Project or other Music Prep programs, contact Madrid at madrida@sfasu.edu or musicprep@sfasu.edu, or call (936) 468-1291. Parents can also find program information on Facebook and Instagram. The Music Prep House is located at 3028 Raguet St. Office hours are 1 to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

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  • SFA MFA candidate Gryder to exhibit works combining graphic design, photography

    SFA MFA candidate Gryder to exhibit works combining graphic design, photography

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    The exhibition “Anaglyph: The Collision” by graduate art student Jessica Gryder can be viewed Nov. 15 through 19 in the front gallery of the Art Building off Wilson Drive on the campus of Stephen F. Austin State University.

    November 12, 2021—Robbie Goodrich

    Stephen F. Austin State University graduate student Jessica Gryder will present her Master of Fine Arts candidacy exhibition “Anaglyph: The Collision” Nov. 15 through 19 in the front gallery of the SFA Art Building off Wilson Drive on campus.

    An exhibition reception is planned for 4:45 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 16, in the front gallery. Admission and reception are free.

    Gryder, who graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in graphic design in 2020 from McMurry University in Abilene, uses a combination of film and digital photography to create inkjet images mounted on wood panel.

    In an excerpt from her artist statement, influenced by graphic designer and art director Bradbury Thompson’s Rock Roll, Gryder states: “I saw vibrant variations creep into my art due to the enjoyment and childlike freedom colors can bring. Like an anaglyph, the viewer is able to mentally create a new image with the layers provided. The separate layers represent the relationship of past and present women influential in my life. I invite people to physically move in order to take in the different layers of each piece. Similarly, I encourage the viewer to move in a forward direction while reflecting and learning from the past.”

    For information about the SFA School of Art, call (936) 468-4804.

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  • SFA, Panola College theatre programs present ‘Ajax in Iraq’ through Saturday

    SFA, Panola College theatre programs present ‘Ajax in Iraq’ through Saturday

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    November 11, 2021—Robbie Goodrich

    Stephen F. Austin State University School of Theatre, in collaboration with Panola College Theatre, present Ellen McLaughlin’ play “Ajax in Iraq” at 7:30 nightly through Saturday, Nov. 13, at the Community House in Center. Among the cast members in this mash-up of Sophocles' classic tragedy “Ajax” with the modern-day war in Iraq are, from left, Sara Clark, SFA theatre student from Allen, as Athena, and Abigail McCalister, Panola theatre student from Rusk, as Mangus. Containing adult language, adult content and a scene of sexual violence, “Ajax in Iraq” is recommended for mature audiences. General ticket prices are: adult, $15; senior (62+) $10; SFA faculty/staff, $7.50; youth, $7.50; student, $5. Purchase tickets at https://finearts.sfasu.edu/boxoffice or call (936) 468-6407. For questions about the play, contact the School of Theatre at (936) 468-4003. A pre-recorded performance of the show will also be available for purchase a full 72-hour period between Nov. 11 and 13. Cost is $29.95. Access to that may be purchased through https://get.broadwayondemand.com/

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  • SFA voice students present program of opera scenes

    SFA voice students present program of opera scenes

    November 11, 2021—Robbie Goodrich

    Voice students in the School of Music at Stephen F. Austin State University will present “A Program of Opera Scenes” at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 18, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

    Under the direction of Dr. Deborah Dalton, associate professor of voice and opera at SFA, with collaborative pianist Dr. Thomas Nixon and Bora Cho, graduate assistant in collaborative piano, the program will feature scenes from “The Mikado” by W.S. Gilbert and Arthur Sullivan; “Die Fledermaus” by Johann Strauss; “Il trovatore” by Giuseppe Verdi; “The Old Maid and the Thief” by Gian-Carlo Menotti; “The Most Happy Fella” by Frank Loesser; “Cosi fan tutte” by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart; “Carmen” by Georges Bizet; “Hansel and Gretel” by Engelbert Humperdinck; and “The Bartered Bride” by Bedřich Smetana.

    “I am delighted to have Dr. Thomas Nixon’s help this term,” Dalton said. “He brings a wealth of experience from coaching singers for Arizona Opera, University of Arizona opera program, and others. Bora Cho, graduate assistant in collaborative piano, will join us again. Cho did an outstanding job playing the entire scenes program in Fall 2020.”

    Dalton chooses the annual opera workshop program repertoire according to the voices and abilities of each class. Classes are limited to juniors, seniors and graduate students.

    Among the prominent scenes to be performed is the card scene from “Carmen” in which the characters Frasquita and Mercedes use the cards to tell their fortunes and are delighted with the promise of love and riches. When Carmen demands a turn, every hand for her is the same – death.

    Another scene is the “Fledermaus” trio, where Eisenstein, his wife, Rosalinda, and their maid, Adele, each have exciting plans for the evening. “Eisenstein is to report to jail that very evening but he plans to attend a lavish ball first,” Dalton explains. “We discover that the ladies have received an invitation to the ball, too, and none of them know the others are invited. As they say a sad farewell, each one finds it difficult to contain their excitement.”

    Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. To purchase tickets, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit finearts.sfasu.edu. For additional information, contact the SFA School of Music at (936) 468-4602.

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  • SFA Music Prep students qualify for All-Region orchestras

    SFA Music Prep students qualify for All-Region orchestras

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    Among the All-Region Orchestra qualifiers from the SFA Music Prep program are, top to bottom, McKenzie Ellison, Holden Kelly, Jonah Raychev, Kira Gallander, Karys Alders, Will Sams, Grace Hao and Mason Baker.

    November 9, 2021—Robbie Goodrich

    Fifteen students in the Music Preparatory Division of the Stephen F. Austin State University School of Music were selected for TMEA All-Region High School Orchestra and Middle School Orchestra.

    Qualifying for the high school orchestra were Holden Kelly, Luke Scala, Haylee Harman, Sabrina Flores, McKenzie Ellison, Karys Alders, Kira Gallander, Josue Morales, Will Sams, Grace Hao and Mason Baker, who also earned principal bass position and advanced to the state audition.

    Qualifying for the middle school orchestra were Jonah Raychev, who was selected concertmaster, and Gracie Lyn Harman and Maggie Scala. These students earned the top three spots in the middle school orchestra violin section.

    For more information about Music Prep programs, contact Director Alba Madrid at madrida@sfasu.edu or musicprep@sfasu.edu, or call (936) 468-1291. Parents can also find program information on Facebook and Instagram. The Music Prep House is located at 3028 Raguet St. Office hours are 1 to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

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  • Marine Corps trombonist Ebo to perform on SFA jazz bands’ concert

    Marine Corps trombonist Ebo to perform on SFA jazz bands’ concert

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    Marine Corps Gunnery Sgt. Ken Ebo

    November 8, 2021—Robbie Goodrich

    The jazz bands at Stephen F. Austin State University will welcome Marine Corps trombonist Gunnery Sgt. Ken Ebo to perform on a concert at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 12, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

    The concert features the Swingin’ Axes, directed by Dr. Deb Scott; the Swingin’ Aces, directed by Dr. J.D. Salas; and the Swingin’ Jacks, directed by Dr. Jake Walburn. The Axes will perform with trombonist Ebo, who is music placement director for the Marine Corps music program for the southwestern U.S. According to Scott, Ebo is returning to perform at SFA “by popular demand.”

    “Ebo will join the Axes on several jazz band standards and finish with a bebop feature for all the trombones in the band that Ebo composed called ‘Trombonius Rex,’” Scott said.

    The Swingin’ Axes will also perform a brand new composition by Gabe Musella that honors the memory of Scott’s former jazz band director and close friend Alan Shinn called “Here’s to You, Big Al.” They will also perform a hard-driving shuffle called “In a Big Way” by Dan Gailey and a fun, fast waltz by Chris Culver called “Berglike.”

    Ebo is the former head of the Instrumental Division at the Naval School of Music in Virginia Beach where he also served as trombone faculty member and jazz improvisation instructor. He is an active clinician, educator and performer and holds degrees from Indiana University and the University of South Carolina. He has played with numerous artists in both military and civilian settings, including Natalie Cole, Frank Sinatra Jr., Johnny Mathis, Jon Faddis, Michael Mossman, and Tim Akers and the Smoking Section.

    Ebo is a recipient of the Musician of the Year Award for the U.S. Marine Corps and has performed nationwide as the musical director and lead trombonist for the Marine Corps Jazz Orchestra. His compositions and arrangements have been featured as part of USMC national recruiting efforts and have been performed by numerous ensembles.

    Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. To purchase tickets, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit finearts.sfasu.edu. For additional information, contact the SFA School of Music at (936) 468-4602.

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  • SFA’s Jacks of Steel to perform music from ‘Star Wars,’ other popular hits

    SFA’s Jacks of Steel to perform music from ‘Star Wars,’ other popular hits

    November 8, 2021—Robbie Goodrich

    The Jacks of Steel at Stephen F. Austin State University will present the ensemble’s fall program at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Nov. 15, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

    Under the direction of Dr. James Vilseck, adjunct professor of percussion in the SFA School of Music, the steel band will perform a program that features “an energetic combination of traditional calypsos, sambas and popular music.”

    “Some familiar hits include the ‘Cantina Band’ from ‘Star Wars,’ Jimmy Buffet’s ‘Margaritaville,’ and a special surprise at the end for all fans of SFA,” Vilseck said. “Come out and enjoy this fun and refreshing evening of world music.”

    Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. To purchase tickets, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit finearts.sfasu.edu. For additional information, contact the SFA School of Music at (936) 468-4602.

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  • SFA bands, chamber ensembles present Kaleidoscope concert

    SFA bands, chamber ensembles present Kaleidoscope concert

    November 8, 2021—Robbie Goodrich

    Stephen F. Austin State University bands will present the annual Kaleidoscope concert featuring all three concert bands and multiple faculty and student chamber ensembles at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 16, in the Grand Ballroom of the Baker Pattillo Student Center on the SFA campus.

    The idea of a “kaleidoscope” concert is for there to be no breaks between performers to make it “a seamless concert switching from one group to the next,” according to Dr. Tamey Anglley, director of bands at SFA.

    The concert will open with the SFA Trombone Octet, conducted by SFA trombone professor Dr. Deb Scott, and performing Madeline A. Lee’s “La Cathédrale,” which was chosen as one of the winning pieces to be premiered at the 2021 International Trombone Festival.

    The Symphonic Band, conducted by Dr. Chris Kaatz, will perform “Sea Songs” by Ralph Vaughan Williams and “October” by Eric Whitacre. According to Kaatz, “Sea Songs” was originally conceived as the final movement of Vaughan Williams’ “Folk Song Suite.” “Like the larger work to which it initially belonged, this pleasant British-style march utilizes English folk songs as its source material,” Kaatz said. Whitacre writes about his piece, “October is my favorite month. Something about the crisp autumn air and the subtle change in light always makes me a little sentimental, and as I started to sketch, I felt that same quiet beauty in the writing.”

    The SFA Percussion Ensemble, under the direction of SFA percussion professor Dr. Brad Meyer, will perform “to wALk Or ruN in wEst harlem” by Andy Akiho. Originally written for a chamber ensemble of flute, bass clarinet, violin, cello, piano, vibraphone and drum set for the 2008 Bang On A Can Summer Music Festival, the ensemble will perform the percussion arrangement.

    The Pineywoods Brass Quintet, which includes SFA faculty members Jacob Walburn, trumpet; Gary Wurtz, trumpet; Andrea Denis, horn; Deb Scott, trombone; and J.D. Salas, euphonium, will perform the Chick Corea classic jazz tune, “Spain.” Composed in 1971 and released on his “Light as a Feather” record in 1973, “Spain” is Corea’s most recognized piece and is considered a jazz standard.

    The Wind Symphony, conducted by Dr. Dan Haddad, will perform two selections, including Philip Sparke’s “Sunrise at Angels Gate” and Arturo Marquez’s “Conga del Fuego Nuevo.” Written in 2001, “Sunrise at Angels Gate” refers to one of the many named rock formations on the northern side of the Grand Canyon. Sparke tried to depict the sights and sounds of dawn there. Originally composed for orchestra in 2005 and arranged for band in 2011, “Conga del Fuego Nuevo” (Conga of the New Fire) refers to the music of street ensembles that perform during the carnivals in Havana and Santiago de Cuba.

    Stone Fort Wind Quintet, including SFA faculty members Christina Guenther, flute; Graham Mackenzie, oboe; Margaret Fay, bassoon; Chris Ayer, clarinet; and Andrea Denis, horn, will perform “Chums!” by Karl Jenkins. The composer wrote this piece for his daughter-in-law’s woodwind quintet, which were all close friends.

    The Wind Ensemble, conducted by Anglley, will close the concert with the wind band classic “La Fiesta Mexicana” by H. Owen Reed. The performance will feature the SFA mariachi group, Los Leñadores.

    “Composed in 1949 while Reed spent six months in Mexico on a Guggenheim Fellowship, ‘La Fiesta Mexicana’ takes the listener through many of the experiences associated with a Mexican fiesta,” explained Anglley, “including the tolling of church bells, fireworks, a parade, religious celebration of Mass, a circus, a bullfight, and cantinas with the band of mariachis.”

    Admission to the concert is free. For additional information, contact the School of Music at (936) 468-4602.

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  • SFA’s Stone Fort Wind Quintet to perform works by Delaney, Jenkins, Harberg

    SFA’s Stone Fort Wind Quintet to perform works by Delaney, Jenkins, Harberg

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    Christina Guenther

    November 1, 2021—Robbie Goodrich

    The Stone Fort Wind Quintet at Stephen F. Austin State University will present its fall recital at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Nov. 8, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

    The quintet is comprised of SFA School of Music faculty members Christina Guenther, flute; Graham Mackenzie, oboe; Christopher Ayer, clarinet; Andrea Denis, horn; and Margaret Fay, bassoon.

    This concert of the Stone Fort Wind Quintet is the premiere performance for three new faculty members – Mackenzie, Denis and Fay.

    “Dr. Ayer and I are happy to welcome them to this long-standing faculty ensemble, and the entire quintet hopes the audience enjoys our fall concert,” Guenther said.

    The program features Charles Delaney’s Suite for Woodwind Quintet, “Petite Offrande Musicale” (Petite Musical Offering) by Nino Rota, Karl Jenkins’ “Chums!,” and The Suite for Wind Quintet by Amanda Harberg.

    Guenther describes Delaney’s Suite for Woodwind Quintet as “a charming piece in six movements.” After the introduction, each movement features a different instrument in the quintet: March features horn; Waltz features flute; Gavotte features bassoon; Sarabande features oboe; and Gigue features clarinet. “Delaney intended this work for children’s concerts, as it displays characteristics of the various instruments,” she said. Delaney was the longtime flute professor at the Florida State University and a teacher of Dr. Guenther.

    “Petite Offrande Musicale” (Petite Musical Offering) by Nino Rota is a short work alternating a contemplative slower theme and a cheerful, energetic second theme. Rota was an Italian composer, conductor and pianist.

    Jenkins is a Welch multi-instrumentalist and composer. His work, “Chums!,” is a high-energy showpiece with quirky twists and turns throughout presented through meter changes, sudden key changes, and unexpected interjections of new themes, according to Guenther. “Listen for the surprise added effect performed by all quintet members at the end of this fun piece,” she said.

    The Suite for Wind Quintet by Amanda Harberg is “an exquisitely-written work that requires ultimate focus from the performers,” Guenther said. Composed in four movements – Cantus, Furlana, Fantasia and Cabaletta – it features “beautiful melodies, virtuosic technical passages, and an incredible amount of mixed meter.”

    “This piece requires excellent ensemble communication, presents individual and ensemble challenges, and has become a favorite of the Stone Fort Wind Quintet,” Guenther said. Harberg is an actively-performing pianist/composer and teaches at Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey.

    Admission is free. For additional information, contact the SFA School of Music at (936) 468-4602.

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