April 26, 2016 - NACOGDOCHES, Texas – Stephen F. Austin State University bands will present the annual “Concert in the Park” at 2 p.m. Sunday, May 1, on the lawn in front of the Wright Music Building.
Performing will be the University Band and the Symphonic Band, both directed by Dr. James Dreiling, acting assistant director of bands at SFA; the Wind Symphony, directed by Dr. Tamey Anglley, acting associate director of bands; and the Wind Ensemble, directed by Dr. David Campo, acting director of bands while Fred J. Allen is on spring sabbatical.
The SFA University Band will open the concert with “Into the Clouds” by Richard Saucedo and guest conducted by graduate assistant Dwight Watson of Wylie. The second selection is conducted by graduate assistant Taylor Goodwin of Ennis and was inspired by the untimely death of gifted actor James Dean. “As Summer Was Just Beginning” was composed by Larry Daehn in 1994 and has become a popular ballad with bands across the nation. The University Band will conclude its portion of the concert with a march by Karl L. King. “Liberty Fleet” was composed in 1942 and is one of his lesser-known marches.
The Symphonic Band will open its portion of the concert with “Albanian Dance” by Shelley Hanson followed by a medley of familiar tunes from the 1938 classic film “The Wizard of Oz,” including “Ding-Dong! The Witch is Dead,” “If I Only Had a Brain,” “We’re Off to See the Wizard” and “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.” The Symphonic Band will conclude with the classic march “Them Basses” by G.F. Huffine featuring the low brass and woodwinds sections.
The Wind Symphony will perform Scott Joplin’s second published march “Combination March” written in 1896 for piano. “Combination March” was only Joplin’s second published march. Wind Symphony will finish with George Gershwin’s well-known “An American In Paris.”
Concert in the Park will close with the Wind Ensemble performing highlights of the semester with selections from composers Steven Bryant, Léo Delibes, Darius Milhaud and Henry Fillmore. The performance will feature Bryant’s “In This Broad Earth,” Delibes’ stirring “March and Cortege of Bacchus,” first presented by the Wind Ensemble on their annual spring tour, and selections from Milhaud’s“ Suite Francaise” and Fillmore’s rousing march, “Rolling Thunder.”
The “Concert in the Park” setting was created by SFA Director of Bands Emeritus Melvin B. Montgomery. Admission is free. Beginning at 1 p.m., Kappa Kappa Psi and Tau Beta Sigma, honorary band service fraternity and sorority, will sell $5 hamburger plates that include a burger, chips and drink.
For more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit www.finearts.sfasu.edu.
April 25, 2016 - NACOGDOCHES, Texas – The Rockin’ Axes at Stephen F. Austin State University will present “The Sounds of the ’70s, Part II” when the ensemble performs at 7:30 p.m. Friday, April 29, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.
Directed by Andy Sperandeo, instructor in SFA School of Music’s Sound Recording Technology program, the Rockin’ Axes consists of SRT students who study influential, popular music of the 20th and 21st centuries, according to Sperandeo. The course work helps students to develop skills necessary to transcribe, rehearse, arrange and perform in an ensemble setting.
“The Sounds of the ’70s, Part II” will feature the music of Michael Jackson, Styx, Billy Joel, the Rolling Stones, Earth Wind & Fire and more.
“We did ‘The Sounds of the ‘70s, Part I’ last semester, but there was still so much great music from that era we didn’t cover that I wanted to carry the theme over to this semester,” Sperandeo said.
Among the pieces to be performed are Jackson’s “Rock With You,” “Come Sail Away” by the progressive band Styx, and Joel’s “Just the Way You Are.”
“Billy Joel was and still is one of the greatest singer/songwriters of our time,” Sperandeo said. “I think the students can learn a thing or two from his writing style and learn to appreciate what a great voice he has, as well.”
The Rockin’ Axes will also perform “Wild Horses” by the Rolling Stones and “Shining Star” by Earth, Wind & Fire.
“The Stones were one of the first super groups of the ’60s and’ 70s, so they had to be included in the set list,” Sperandeo said. “‘Wild Horses’ has been covered by so many artists over the years, showing its staying power and connectedness to so many generations.
“Earth, Wind & Fire had it all – progressive, soulful, powerful horn section, soaring harmony vocals, catchy ‘poppy’/funk tunes,” he said. “We also would like to pay homage to the late great founder, Maurice White.”
As guest artists on the program, the Contemporary Guitar Ensemble, also a product of the SRT program and directed by Sperandeo, will perform an arrangement of guitar great Jimi Hendrix.
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 www.finearts.sfasu.edu.
April 21, 2016 - NACOGDOCHES, Texas — With the ringing of a bell, Sam Houston, played by Stephen F. Austin State University junior Sarah Hutchins, comes to life in a living wax museum at Millard’s Crossing Historic Village in Nacogdoches. As a group of third-grade students gathers around her, Hutchins, dressed in a fringe jacket and black hat, reflects to the early 1900s while sharing Sam Houston’s story.
“He did a lot in his day. He lived with the Cherokees and had a very good relationship with them. He was a politician in Texas and Tennessee and a war hero in both states,” Hutchins explained to an attentive group of students. “He made Texas what it is today, and he was like the George Washington of Texas.”
For more than 20 years, SFA, area schools and Millard’s Crossing Historic Village have worked together to bring the past to life in an interactive field trip known as Pioneer Days. Roz Couch, assistant director for Millard’s Crossing Historic Village, said the collaboration is wonderful.
“Part of our mission at Milliard’s Crossing is to connect the generations. I think it’s important for children to learn that people who lived in the old days weren’t that different than we are now. They still had to eat, wash their clothes, do chores and go to school,” Couch said. “I think it’s wonderful for students to find out where they came from so they can appreciate the hard work and struggles their ancestors had and appreciate all the benefits and advantages they have in the 21st century.”
During the event, SFA elementary education students interact with third graders though a variety of experiential learning activities, such as the living wax museum.
“It’s really neat interacting with the children,” Hutchins said. “It’s fun to put the students in the context of this time and have them enjoy a period they are probably unfamiliar with.”
In the living wax museum tour, students walk through the Millard-Lee House, which dates to 1837, and engage in conversations with various characters such as Anna Raguet and Lera Millard Thomas. Students learn about each person’s contributions to the city, state and nation.
“First, we looked at curriculum for third grade, and then we figured out what we wanted the students to take away from their experience,” said Emma Avery, SFA senior elementary education major who portrayed Lera Millard Thomas. “It’s really fun to see the students get excited when they ring the bell and we come to life.”
Additional activities for participants included attending school in a one-room schoolhouse, hand washing clothes, playing pioneer games, plowing a garden, making toys from corncobs and feathers, and more. At each station, SFA students were dressed in traditional pioneer clothing and discussed aspects of life in the early 1900s.
Event coordinator and organizer Dr. Vicki Thomas, assistant professor of elementary education at SFA, said this event serves a dual purpose. It provides SFA students a platform to practice skills and methods learned in class while also educating area children about Texas history.
“Some of our best practices as teachers are using role playing and experiential learning. Hands-on activities like ones used during Pioneer Days really make concepts and lessons concrete for both our teacher candidates and for our area third graders,” Thomas said.
To prepare for this event, approximately 50 SFA students in Thomas’ classes researched the history of Millard’s Crossing, life in the early 1900s and influential people from the time period. Students also prepared lesson plans in line with the Texas Education Agency’s essential knowledge and skills standards. Through performance-based activities, SFA students practiced lesson planning and managing groups of students.
The April 19 and 21 event served approximately 300 third graders from various schools in Nacogdoches County.
April 20, 2016 - Sixty-five Girl Scouts attended an informative and hands-on science, technology, engineering and math day organized by the Stephen F. Austin State University College of Sciences and Mathematics this month.
Begun in 2011, the annual Girl Scout STEM Day is hosted by SFA’s STEM Research and Learning Center. Through hands-on learning discoveries, the event is designed for girls to cultivate an early interest in the STEM fields.
“We had approximately 65 Girl Scouts attending our annual Girl Scout STEM Day, which is an increase from 50 attendees last year,” said Julie Sandifer, the SFA STEM Research and Learning Center K-12 outreach coordinator. “The theme was ‘Science is my Superpower’ and was designed for girls kindergarten through sixth grade.”
Girl Scouts who attended the Saturday afternoon event worked with SFA faculty and staff members to make fossils, learn how to use microscopes and computer coding on iPads, and investigated engineering in science with origami. Participants also examined the golden ratio in nature, investigated the properties of fungi, and explored the world of reptiles, bugs and animals with the interactive Wildlife on the Move presentation by K.C. Rudy, an SFA alumnus and co-owner of Wildlife on the Move, a Dallas-based company that is dedicated to helping children develop an appreciation for nature and fostering a stewardship for Earth’s wildlife.
April 19, 2016 - Stephen F. Austin State University’s hospitality administration program welcomed approximately 200 high school students to its second Cooking Up Careers event on Friday, April 15.
The event was designed to introduce SFA and the program to high school students who are interested in taking hospitality and culinary courses.
“It was wonderful having more than 200 students on campus to experience our hospitality program firsthand,” said Dr. Chay Runnels, SFA hospitality administration program coordinator and associate professor. “We are one of four hospitality four-year programs in the state, and the only program with a culinary focus. The students who attended were able to learn about career options in the industry and college life at SFA.”
Dr. Judy Abbott, dean of SFA’s James I. Perkins College of Education, and Blake Loggins, the Lumberjack mascot, welcomed students before the festivities began. Janet McLeroy, assistant director of admissions, and Brittany Fish, SFA hospitality administration graduate, spoke with the participants.
During the event, students were divided into groups and attended two 45-minute sessions. Industry professionals delivered a session on careers in the hospitality industry and discussed how to make a positive impression during and dress for a job interview. Panel participants were Bric Alverson and Ryan Russell from Aramark; John McLaren, The Fredonia Hotel general manager; Marty Prince, Texas Forest Trail executive director; Jessica Gilligan, sales manager at Courtyard by Marriott in Lufkin; and Claudann Jones, Nacogdoches County AgriLife Extension agent.
Eight SFA seniors also conducted a session and discussed college life at SFA, choosing a major and how to successfully transition from high school to college.
High school teachers in attendance were invited to attend two sessions, which informed them about SFA, how to help their students prepare for college, and new and existing resources available to teachers.
As the sessions were convening, Todd Barrios, chef and clinical instructor at SFA, hosted a Market Basket Challenge with seven culinary teams in the Human Sciences North Building lab. The East Texas Restaurant Association awarded $600 to the top culinary teams. Challenge judges included Roger Lumley, owner of Pappasito’s in Tyler and current president of the East Texas Restaurant Association; Bob Westbrook, retired restaurant owner and past president of the East Texas Restaurant Association; Chef Jack Bretzke, East Texas Chef’s Association member; and Chef Jackson York, chef of Lakeview Methodist Conference Center and Texas Chef’s Association Chef of the Year 2010.
Participating high schools included Carthage, Diboll, Marshall, Hallsville, Beckville, Union Grove, Gilmer, Alba-Golden, Pine Tree, Lufkin, Winona and Nacogdoches.
Cutline: Seven culinary teams comprised of visiting high school students competed in a Market Basket Challenge during Stephen F. Austin State University’s hospitality administration program’s Cooking Up Careers event.
April 15, 2016 - NACOGDOCHES, Texas — Tables decorated in purple and white and adorned with science-related centerpieces were packed last week during the second annual Stephen F. Austin State University Women in STEM Luncheon and Style Show in the Baker Pattillo Student Center Grand Ballroom.
SFA Regent Nelda Luce Blair — an attorney and president and owner of the Blair Law Firm in The Woodlands — presented to the audience three guiding principles she said comprise some of women’s “Super Natural” traits.
“We have a whole bunch of those super natural traits, but we are only going to talk about three today,” Blair said, “Optimism, which is very natural to us; encouragement, which we do as an inborn trait; and ‘seriously?’ I will explain that one later.”
Blair related personal struggles she encountered as a female lawyer that mirror issues facing women in STEM disciplines, especially the underrepresentation of females in STEM professions. According to Change the Equation — an organization working to ensure all students are STEM literate through collaboration with schools, communities and states — female STEM students are 6 percent more likely to change their major. Also, only 30 percent of elementary school teachers feel well prepared to encourage girls to participate in science.
“Motivation is the heart of encouragement, because if you give people a motive to do something, that’s encouraging them,” Blair said. “I bring in women and young girls during the summer and have them work in my law office because it helps them realize they can do anything they want to, just like women pursuing STEM fields.”
After detailing personal stories and urging women to “seriously, not to take yourselves or others too seriously,” Blair joined a dozen other professional women and female STEM students on the runway to model clothing designs ranging from business to formal wear. Fashions were provided by the Town House, a Nacogdoches boutique.
April 15, 2016 - Dr. Steve Bullard was appointed provost and vice president for academic affairs during Stephen F. Austin State University’s Board of Regents meeting Tuesday.
Bullard has served as interim provost since July 2015 and has been dean of the Arthur Temple College of Forestry and Agriculture at SFA since 2009. He also holds the Henry M. Rockwall Chair in forestry. Prior to his employment at SFA, Bullard served as chair of the Department of Forestry at the University of Kentucky from 2004 to 2009, and as a faculty member and administrator at Mississippi State University from 1983 to 2004.
Bullard received a bachelor’s degree in forestry and a master’s degree in forest management-economics, both from Mississippi State University, as well as a doctoral degree in forest management economics from Virginia Polytechnic Institute in 1983.
Dr. Kenneth Farrish, director of the division of environmental science and professor of forestry and environmental science, was officially named the 2016-17 SFA Regents Professor during the board meeting.
Reserved for exemplary role models to the university community, the title of Regents Professor is the highest honor SFA bestows upon faculty members and is held for one academic year.
Farrish joined the SFA faculty in 1996. In 2003, he was named the Arnold Distinguished Professor of Forest Soils and Environmental Science.
Faculty members granted tenure by the board included Luis Aguerrevere, human services; Mary Catherine Breen, secondary education; Andrew Brininstool and Christopher Sams, English; Ellen Caplan, library; Dusty Jenkins and Sarah Savoy, psychology; Leah Kahn and Pamela Vaughn, elementary education; Kelly Noe, accounting; Mark Schaub, economics and finance; and Linda Post, art.
Regents approved the following faculty promotions:
To professor – Mario Ajero and Christina Guenther, music; Kwame Antwi-Boasiako, government; Jeremy Becnel, mathematics and statistics; Linda Bobo, kinesiology; Philip Catton, history; I-Kuai Hung and Matthew McBroom, forestry; Kefa Onchoke, chemistry; Mark Scanlan, economics and finance; Scott Shattuck, theatre; Le’Ann Solmonson, human services; and Chris Talbot, art.
To associate professor – Luis Aguerrevere, human services; Mary Catherine Breen, secondary education; Andrew Brininstool and Christopher Sams, English; Karol Chandler Ezell, anthropology, geography and sociology; Brandon Fox, elementary education; Dusty Jenkins and Sarah Savoy, psychology; Kelly Noe, accounting; and Linda Post, art.
In addition, regents approved the appointment of Eralda Lameborshi as visiting lecturer of English and creative writing.
Regents approved the appointment of Kyle Keller as head men’s basketball coach, as well as Christopher Morriss, coordinator of intramural sports and camps, and Katherine Yandell, Campus Recreation coordinator of aquatics and safety; Elizabeth Chambliss, financial aid officer; Tanh Nguyen, postdoctoral research associate, forestry and agriculture; Aparecida de Fatima Cordeiro Dutra, research associate in the Center for Regional Heritage Research; Amanda Romig, compliance coordinator in the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs; Gavin McCarty, post office manager; and Cynthia Haile, director of parking and traffic.
Appointments in the Office of Admissions included Lauren Manzanares, regional coordinator, and Chelsea Pitts, counselor. Changes of status in the office included Ryan Horne, from assistant director to regional coordinator; and Janet McLeroy, from senior admissions counselor to assistant director.
Other status changes included Kristen Smith, from financial aid officer to student loan manager in the Office of Financial Aid; Gary Wurtz, from professor of music to professor and interim director of the School of Music; Katie McClain, from human resources specialist II to human resources representative; Veronica Weaver, from assistant director of orientation to director of the Office of Multicultural Affairs; Randall Scott, from director of Piney Woods Area Health Education Center to manager of transportation and special services; and Laura Turner, from academic adviser in the Nelson Rusche College of Business to academic adviser in the College of Sciences and Mathematics.
Promotions in the Ralph W. Steen Library include Johna Von Behrens to librarian II and Dillon Wackerman to archivist II. Status changes include Hayley Gillen, from program associate in the James I. Perkins College of Education to supervisor, library acquisitions and loans; Barbara Olds, from supervisor of library acquisitions and loans to manager of library e-resources and assessment.
Donald Brent Burt of the Department of Biology was granted faculty development leave for the fall 2016 semester. Faculty development leave for the spring 2017 semester was granted to Philip Catton of the Department of History and James Van Kley of the Department of Biology.
Regents honored three long-term faculty members who have recently retired with the title professor emeritus: Libby Rhodes, kinesiology; Kathleen Belanger, social work and Robert Strader, computer science. Regents also approved the retirements of John Goodall, associate dean of the College of Fine Arts; Rebecca Greer, professor of human sciences; and Mark Turner, assistant professor of music.
Submitted by Shirley Luna, Ed. D.
April 14, 2016 - Members of the Stephen F. Austin State University Board of Regents viewed schematic drawings for a new Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics facility during the group’s April quarterly meeting and voted to name the facility in honor of long-time SFA benefactors Ed and Gwen Cole.
“The Coles have changed lives at SFA,” said Jill Still, SFA vice president for advancement. “Funding provided by Ed and his late wife, Gwen, supports fine arts, audiology, nursing, student scholarships, faculty development, athletic programs and more. Their generous gifts have impacted student success, which was a passion that they shared.”
A glass atrium planned for the four-story Ed and Gwen Cole STEM Building will highlight the 50-foot dome of a new planetarium, which will seat more than 100 people and provide significant viewing opportunities for SFA students and the public.
Barry Nelson, Board of Regents secretary and chair of the building and grounds committee, said the committee members enjoyed the challenge of working with the architects to develop a design that was unique and impressive while meeting the budgetary requirements of the project.
“The building will have a stunning entryway that will draw people in,” Nelson said. “The facility will define our campus, and it will be a structure that others will come to see when they are planning STEM facilities and even other types of building projects.”
In correlation with current educational trends, the facility will showcase “maker spaces,” which are classrooms and laboratories focused on hands-on learning. Dr. Kimberly Childs, dean of the College of Sciences and Mathematics, defined maker spaces as “unscripted labs where students go to invent, imagine and build.”
Dr. Danny Gallant, vice president for finance and administration, said the university is moving forward to the next design phase. Construction is projected to start in November, and the expected completion and move-in date is August 2018.
When the STEM facility is complete, space will become available in other buildings on the campus, particularly the E.L. Miller Science Building. During a special meeting Friday, the board heard presentations from two architectural firms to determine space requirements and develop programming for the science building.
Members approved hiring Facility Programming and Consulting, a company that specializes in space utilization. Facility Programming and Consulting worked with the university on the new STEM building and has completed projects across the nation. The company will identify renovation needs in the Miller Science Building and provide recommendations to ensure the best use of institutional space in the building.
Regents also approved construction of a parking lot adjacent to the parking garage on Feazell Street to replace spaces that will be removed as a result of the STEM facility construction.
SFA’s 2020 master plan addresses the need for additional space for the College of Fine Arts, including the development of a performing arts district. Three architectural firms presented material and ideas concerning this project to the board during Friday’s meeting.
Regents approved the hiring of Houston-based Kirksey Architecture to review the university’s needs, requests and limitations pertaining to the performing arts center. Kirksey Architecture will create “a recipe book for building” the performing arts center through fact-finding, facility tours and research. Kirksey Architecture also played a role in the design of SFA freshman residence hall Lumberjack Landing.
The board approved renovations to the William R. Johnson Coliseum men’s basketball locker room, which includes converting 200 square feet from the shower area to provide more room for team gatherings and meetings.
In other business, regents approved the allocation of scholarship funding to support enrollment in the Department of Secondary Education and Educational Leadership in the James I. Perkins College of Education. Board members approved a reduced rate for students in the online educational leadership program, which will save each student in the 18-credit hour certificate program more than $2,000, while each student in the 30-credit hour master’s program will save almost $4,000. The rates will allow SFA to remain competitive among peer institutions.
Additionally, regents ratified a five-year agreement with AcademicWorks, a financial software program, to help centralize the scholarship process and make it easier for students to apply and search for scholarships.
Regents approved the fiscal year 2015-16 summer budget and ratified $82,125 additional grant awards allocable to the 2016 fiscal year; the funds are a portion of the $6.7 million in grant funding for the fiscal year.
When the Stephen F. Austin State University Foundation was created 40 years ago, members of the SFA Board of Regents at that time served as foundation board members. On Tuesday, regents honored the current foundation board members and reaffirmed the university’s relationship with the foundation, a non-profit organization that exists to serve and benefit the university.
Regents heard reports from Hilltop Securities, the Faculty Senate, Student Government Association and President Baker Pattillo. Regents received an update on the university’s marketing campaign and new SFA website, and approved the campaign’s budget.
During the Tuesday meeting, the board received a report from the SFA auditor and also approved:
- building and grounds policy, academic and student policy, and financial affairs policy revisions;
- the redistribution of funds from the sale of property donated to the university;
- curriculum and core curriculum revisions;
- an amended agreement with the Educational Advisory Board through June 2021;
- an amendment of SFA’s and Texas A&M University’s investment agreement; and
- increasing Aramark’s financial commitment to the university as it continues to diversify its food service program.
Submitted by Shirley Luna
April 13, 2016 - NACOGDOCHES, Texas – Stephen F. Austin State University’s Steel Band will present a multifaceted program when the band, also known as Jacks of Steel, performs at 6 p.m. Sunday, April 24, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.
“The concert will consist of a diverse variety of styles, including traditional, contemporary, pop songs and even some ska music,” said Dr. Brad Meyer, director of percussion studies for the SFA School of Music.
The Steel Band will perform the fun ’80s tune “Take on Me” by A-Ha! and the Ernies’ “Inspector 8,” which is an energetic ska tune arranged by Brian Nozny. Ska is a modern style of vocalized Jamaican popular music, which emerged in the 1950s as a blend of African-Jamaican folk music, calypso and American rhythm and blues.
The band will get the audience “grooving and moving,” Meyer said, with “Happy” by Pharrell Williams and “Uptown Funk” by Bruno Mars.
Cole Concert Hall is located in the Tom and Peggy Wright Music Building, 2210 Alumni Drive. 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 www.finearts.sfasu.edu.
Meyer described the Steel Band as “one of the most popular and requested ensembles in the School of Music.” With 16 members, the group uses a full set of steel pans, including three leads, two double tenors, two cellos and bass pans as well as a large rhythm section with drumset, electric bass and various Latin percussion. The group performs a wide variety of music, including traditional Caribbean music, pop, rock and Latin.
“The nature of the ensemble allows for student members to develop skills in improvisation and music arranging,” Meyer said.
Membership is open to both music and non-music majors with consent of the instructor. The band is available to perform at private local events. To reserve the group to perform, contact Meyer at firstname.lastname@example.org.
April 12, 2016 - NACOGDOCHES, Texas – The SFA Friends of Music will accept reservations through noon Monday, April 18, for Extravaganza 29, Stephen F. Austin State University School of Music’s annual gala banquet. The event is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Friday, April 22, in the Grand Ballroom of SFA’s Baker Pattillo Student Center.
This year’s Extravaganza, “The Rising Stars of SFA,” celebrates the 29th anniversary of the gala and fundraiser, which features gourmet dining, performances by student soloists and ensembles, and the presentation of student awards in an exciting evening of music, according to Dr. Gary Wurtz, interim director of the SFA School of Music.
“There is no better way to experience a cross section of what the SFA School of Music has to offer than at our annual Extravaganza,” Wurtz said. “While enjoying a good meal, those in attendance hear performances by the top choir, band, orchestra, jazz band, student recitalists, opera performers, and more. Our fantastic students provide both dinner music and a dance to end the evening. It is really a lot of fun!”
Part music student awards ceremony, part formal dinner, and part musical potpourri, Extravaganza will feature jazz, harp, wind ensemble, choir, opera, string quartet and orchestra. Additional highlights include awarding the Outstanding Music Alumnus of the year and Outstanding Recitalists of the year.
As is tradition with Extravaganza, the music faculty has selected an outstanding alumnus to honor, and this year’s recipient is George Faber of Tyler, director of visual and performing arts for Tyler ISD, as well as a very active and respected musician throughout East Texas. Faber has performed with such notables as Grammy Award-winning song writer and trumpet player Tom Browne, Ray Charles, Chubby Checker, Percy Sledge, Glen Campbell, Johnny Mathis, Lou Rawls, Bill Cosby, Charlie Daniels, The Statler Brothers, The Oakridge Boys, "Blue Lou" Marini of the Blues Brothers, Jon Faddis (director of the Carnegie Hall Jazz Band and former trumpet player with the Doc Severson Tonight Show Orchestra), Mark Mullins (trombonist for Harry Connick, Jr. and founder of the New Orleans-based group Bonerama), and many others.
The Extravaganza 29 committee includes John and Melinda Rohrer, co-chairs, Habiba Awan, Caryl and Harold Hall, Carolyn King, Dee Allums, Gloria and Cecil Settle, Gloria Williams, MaryAnn and Farrar Bentley and Ed Cole.
“The Extravaganza is a wonderful opportunity for our community to enjoy performances by the gifted students of the SFA School of Music,” said Melinda Rohrer. “It is a fun event with excellent food and beautiful music.”
This year’s Friends of Music officers include Jackie Warthan, president; Caryl Hall, president-elect; Missy DeVine, secretary/treasurer; and Carrie Ventura, past president.
Tickets are $40 for adults and $10 for students. Patron level tickets range in prices from $65 to $140, and donations will be accepted for the Friends of Music scholarship fund. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit www.finearts.sfasu.edu.