News Archives: School of Music and Fine Arts

HPU pre-college music students participate in junior festival

BROWNWOOD – April 14, 2016 – The District 8-4 Junior Festival, in conjunction with the National Federation of Music Clubs, recently held its local competition at Howard Payne University. Several of Howard Payne University’s Pre-College music students participated in the event and received various awards.

Students who enter the competitive category and earn a “superior” rating at the local festival are entitled to advance to the state competition. Twenty-seven HPU Pre-College students earned the “superior” rating. They are: James Bautista, Hannah Bessent, Nathan Bull, Angie Calfa (two categories), Vic Cooper, Christian Fijer, Kirsten Fijer, Alex Fowler, Leila Gautier, Jaycee Hubbard, Kyle Ivy, Kamry Keese (two categories), Addison Miller, Kylee Medina, Sydney Neel, Aishwarya Nigalye, Hannah Parson, Sarah Reeves (two categories), Drew Reynolds, Jordan Roberts (two categories), Cate Smith and Ava Sparks-Hansen (two categories).

Of these 27 students, 17 will participate at the state competition in San Marcos on May 21. State participants include: James Bautista, Hannah Bessent, Angie Calfa, Vic Cooper, Alex Fowler, Leila Gautier, Jaycee Hubbard, Kyle Ivy, Kamry Keese, Addison Miller, Sydney Neel, Hannah Parson, Sarah Reeves, Drew Reynolds, Jordan Roberts, Cate Smith and Ava Sparks-Hansen.

Andrew Boren and Michael Morales received an “excellent” rating in the competition, while Tony Calfa, Natalee Rose and Carli Schoen were non-competitive participants.

The Pre-College Music and Art Program serves the Brownwood community by offering music and art lessons to children and adults. For more information about the Federated Music Clubs or about the Pre-College Music and Art Program at HPU, contact Diane Owens at 325-649-8501 or dowens@hputx.edu.

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Estate bequeaths musical instruments and memorabilia to HPU band

Estate of Billy E. Ross Bequest, April 2016 for webBROWNWOOD – April 13, 2016 – Howard Payne University’s Yellow Jacket Band received two musical instruments as well as various music-related memorabilia that were bequeathed from the estate of Bill Edward Ross. The donations included a cornet and a banjo along with many historic photos of the HPU band.

Ross was a 1949 graduate of Howard Payne College, a former member of the Yellow Jacket Band and remained a supporter of the band until his death in 2015.

“Mr. Bill Ross is a great benefactor to the music department and especially through his support to the Yellow Jacket Band,” said Dr. Richard Fiese, dean of the School of Music and Fine Arts. “His legacy will remain a part of the history of the Yellow Jacket Band and his generosity will resonate into eternity through the difference he will make in the lives of students in the band.”

The cornet is a G.C. Conn made in 1899 and is an example of an instrument from the “Golden Era” of bands. The banjo was produced in Boston, Massachusetts, in 1961 and is a Vega professional tenor (four-string) banjo. It is from the personal collection of Ross.

The band also received a treasure trove of photographs relating to Ross’ career in the music industry as well as some of the earliest photographs the university has of the Yellow Jacket Band. Correspondence between Ross and Vincent Bach, instrument manufacturing icon, was also received from the estate.

“Bill Ross was an amazing friend and avid supporter of the HPU band,” said Corey Ash, associate professor of music and director of bands. “His legacy as a lover of music and bands in a music education and business career that spanned 60 years will live on in the lives of the students that he touched.”

Both instruments will be displayed permanently in the Davidson Music Complex at Howard Payne University along with the historic photographs and correspondence.

For more information, contact HPU’s School of Music and Fine Arts at 325-649-8500.

Applications are still being accepted for the fall 2016 semester at Howard Payne University. HPU offers a variety of financial aid options including the Heart of Texas Scholarship, which awards $60,000 to students from Brown County and surrounding counties. For more information about HPU, contact HPU’s Office of Admission at (325) 649-8020 or by e-mail at enroll@hputx.edu.

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Photo cutline: The HPU band was recently bequeathed two instruments and band memorabilia from the estate of Bill E. Ross. Pictured from left to right are: Aaron Walling, senior from Georgetown; Corey Ash, associate professor of music and director of bands; Dr. Richard Fiese, dean of the School of Music and Fine Arts; Thomas V. Scarpato, executor of the estate; and Olivia Belsher, senior from Ferris.

HPU faculty member to sing solo in performance of Mozart’s “Requiem” in Abilene

Dr. Greg ChurchBROWNWOOD – April 13, 2016 – Howard Payne University’s Dr. Gregory Church, associate professor of music, will be featured as the tenor soloist in a collaborative performance of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s “Requiem, K. 626.” The performance will take place Thursday, April 14, at 7:00 p.m. in the sanctuary of Aldersgate United Methodist Church in Abilene.

Dr. Church and three other soloists from the Big Country will perform with the McMurry University Chanters, the St. James Methodist Church of Abilene Choir, the St. Paul United Methodist Church of Abilene Chancel Choir, the Aldersgate United Methodist Church of Abilene Chancel Choir and the First United Methodist Church of Eastland Chancel Choir. Abilene’s Festival Orchestra will perform the instrumental portion of the performance.

The concert will last approximately an hour and will feature many familiar musical selections. The public is invited to attend this free concert.

“Mozart’s ‘Requiem’ is one of my favorite concert pieces to sing,” said Dr. Church. “It’s always a joy to sing in Abilene and I’m honored to be the tenor soloist for this performance.”

For more information, contact HPU’s School of Music and Fine Arts at 325-649-8500.

Applications are still being accepted for the fall 2016 semester at Howard Payne University. HPU offers a variety of financial aid options including the Heart of Texas Scholarship, which awards $60,000 to students from Brown County and surrounding counties. For more information about HPU, contact HPU’s Office of Admission at (325) 649-8020 or by e-mail at enroll@hputx.edu.

HPU exhibiting works of art students

student art exhibition april 2016BROWNWOOD – April 8, 2016 – Howard Payne University is exhibiting the work of art majors, minors and other students who have taken classes through HPU’s Department of Art this academic year. The exhibition is scheduled through April 16 and is housed in the Dorothy and Wendell Mayes Art Gallery inside HPU’s Doakie Day Art Center.

Student artists include Travis Adams, sophomore from Brownwood; Sierra Bennett, junior from Tuscola; Jordan Bundick, junior from Blanket; Colby Compton, junior from Early; Lydia Conrad, sophomore from Brownwood; Kaeli Goodgion, sophomore from Comanche; Don Greenwood, junior from Bangs; Julie Hart, senior from Goldthwaite; Catherine Haston, junior from Odessa; Molly Hull, senior from Brownwood; Tyler Jones, senior from Granbury; Will Locke, senior from Kerrville; Jennifer Martinez, freshman from Brownwood; Lawrence Martinez, senior from Pflugerville; Drew McNeil, freshman from Waco; Gabriel Means, sophomore from Palestine; Kinsey Nall, junior from Rising Star; Emily Peisker, senior from Cedar Park; Shawna Rains, sophomore from Cisco; Asiyel Smith, junior from Fredericksburg; Chelsea Taylor, senior from Brownwood; and Scott Turner, senior from Georgetown.

“Student art work has been curated by our faculty, choosing from the very best art projects,” said David Harmon, professor of art and chair of the Department of Art.

Represented art courses include Drawing 1 and 2, Painting 1 and 2, 3D Design, Contemporary Crafts and Ceramics.

“Many art media are represented including acrylic, charcoal, colored pencil, collage, corrugated colored board, foam board, basswood, clay and mixed media,” said Harmon.

HPU’s gallery hours are Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. For more information about the exhibit, contact HPU’s School of Music and Fine Arts at (325) 649-8500. The Doakie Day Art Center is located on the HPU campus, on Center Avenue, near Lipscomb Street in Brownwood.

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Photo cutline: HPU is exhibiting the work of art majors, minors and other students who have taken classes through HPU’s Department of Art this academic year.

HPU’s Student Speaker Bureau competes in San Diego tournament

SSB in San DiegoBROWNWOOD – April 7, 2016 – Student Speaker Bureau, Howard Payne University’s speech and debate team, recently competed at the National Christian College Forensics Association Invitational National Championships. The tournament was held in early March at Point Loma Nazarene University in San Diego, California.

Braxton Clark, junior global studies major from Southlake, was named second-place overall debate speaker at the tournament.

“I am very proud of Braxton’s performance,” said Dr. Julie Welker, team coach and chair of the Department of Communication. “This is the most difficult tournament we attend, and for Braxton to be named second top speaker is outstanding.”

The parliamentary debate team of Clark and Isaac Sommers, junior from Boerne majoring in jurisprudence, English and public policy (Academy), advanced to the quarterfinals round in open parliamentary debate.

Sophomore Reagan Grisham, communication major from Arlington, was named sixth-place speaker in novice parliamentary debate.

Sommers also advanced to semifinals in open extemporaneous speaking and teammate Christopher Freeland, freshman biochemistry major from Bangs, advanced to semifinals in novice extemporaneous speaking.

Freeland stated that Student Speaker Bureau has helped sharpen his communication skills with firsthand trial-and-error experience.

“As a freshman, I found parliamentary debate to be a valuable learning experience through which I walked out of every debate round knowing what worked and what needed improvement,” he said. “As we competed in more and more tournaments, my confidence and competence grew and showed me debate is a tool used for effective communication of ideas.”

Freeland also competes in oral interpretation events of prose and poetry, and he added that these interpretative events have taught him about different artistic points of view.

Other students competing in the tournament were Morgan Ashmore, junior communication major from Brock; Andrea Balderas, junior biology major from Lytle; and Aimee Orozco, sophomore communication major from Shepherd. Each member of HPU’s Student Speaker Bureau auditions for a spot on the team and scholarships are awarded to the individuals based on experience and level of performance.

Students competed in both debate and individuals events throughout the three-day tournament. This year, 23 universities from across the nation participated in NCCFA. All schools are members of the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities. Almost 300 students competed in the tournament.

“Having four of the seven HPU students advance or win some type of speaker award is success by any measure,” said Dr. Welker. “We were competing against some of the largest and most prestigious schools in Christian higher education. Our HPU students did a fabulous job.”

While in San Diego, the team visited the USS Midway and went on a whale-watching boat tour to see the migrating whales.

“These trips are about more than just competing,” said Dr. Welker. “We want our students to have a well-rounded education through travel and experience the culture of each city we visit. While competition is our primary focus, getting out and about and networking is an important part, too.”

In her first year on the team, Ashmore said that her travels with Student Speaker Bureau have been an important part of her learning experience.

“This semester, I have had the amazing opportunity to travel to Colorado, California and England,” she said. “Traveling with Student Speaker Bureau has helped me develop critical-thinking skills and become more well-rounded. Getting to travel to Oxford and London with the team was easily the best experience I’ve had at HPU. I was able to make friends with students from all over the world and experience a new culture.”

Freeland agreed.

“Being a successful new member on the team means commitment, but the experience is worth the time invested,” he said. “The team members learn together, debate together and have fun at the tournaments together. Being part of the Student Speaker Bureau family is an honor and I look forward to new experiences next year with veteran and novice members.”

Applications are still being accepted for the fall 2016 semester at Howard Payne University. HPU offers a variety of financial aid options including the Heart of Texas Scholarship, which awards $60,000 to students from Brown County and surrounding counties. For more information about HPU, contact HPU’s Office of Admission at (325) 649-8020 or by e-mail at enroll@hputx.edu.

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Photo cutline: HPU’s Student Speaker Bureau is pictured at Point Loma Nazarene University’s famous stoa. Pictured from left to right are Dr. Julie Welker, Braxton Clark, Aimee Orozco, Christopher Freeland, Andrea Balderas, Morgan Ashmore, Reagan Grisham and Isaac Sommers.

Husband-and-wife HPU faculty members exhibit artwork at UMHB

David HarmonBROWNWOOD – April 1, 2016 – Howard Payne University’s David Harmon, professor of art and chair of the Department of Art, and his wife, Susan Harmon, adjunct instructor of art, recently returned from exhibiting 70 pieces of their artwork by invitation from the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor in Belton.

David Harmon also gave a lecture during the exhibition at UMHB with more than 200 people in attendance. The theme of the lecture was “Our Modernist Mentors: Architecture, Artists, Design and TV.”

“Our works entail abstract painting,” said David Harmon. “My work is on the mark-making process and my wife’s work is based on the content of shattered lives, especially those of women in international countries.”

David Harmon hails from St. Louis, Missouri. Growing up, he was surrounded by teachers and coaches who were artists and encouraged him to be a painter. He received his undergraduate degree from Webster University in St. Louis and his Master of Fine Arts (MFA) degree from Pennsylvania State University in University Park. He always loved to draw and felt that God was using his art and his desire to teach as a calling in his life. David Harmon came to HPU as an art professor and department chair in 2012.

Susan HarmonSusan Harmon is from Chicago, Illinois, and received her MFA degree from Georgia Southern University in Statesboro and two Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She was recently honored to create a large public art commission mural for the convention center in San Marcos.

The couple have both taught in schools across the country and enjoy being in Texas. They are well traveled and well rounded in their areas of visual art. Their work has been featured in exhibitions around the world and includes many different styles.

In the summer, the couple will exhibit their artwork at Angelo State University in San Angelo with another show scheduled this fall at Sul Ross State University in Alpine.

For more information about HPU’s Department of Art, call 325-649-8500.

Applications are still being accepted for the fall 2016 semester at Howard Payne University. HPU offers a variety of financial aid options including the Heart of Texas Scholarship, which awards $60,000 to students from Brown County and surrounding counties. For more information about HPU, contact HPU’s Office of Admission at (325) 649-8020 or by e-mail at enroll@hputx.edu.

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HPU’s Symphonic Band and Concert Choir to present concert tours

BROWNWOOD – March 31, 2016 – Howard Payne University’s Symphonic Band and Concert Choir will each tour select schools and churches in western and central Texas in April. The band will travel Sunday, April 3, through Tuesday, April 5, on its spring concert tour and the choir will travel Friday, April 8, through Monday, April 11.

“We are always excited to be able to take the name of Howard Payne University and our Lord Jesus on tour through the musical talent of our students,” said Corey Ash, associate professor of music and director of bands. “We get to connect with prospective students, friends and HPU alumni, and we are proud to get to represent the university in this way.”

The band will present concerts at First Baptist Church in Brady, Taylor’s Valley Baptist Church in Temple, Llano High School, Burnet High School and Gatesville High School. Musical selections will include works by composers Frank Ticheli, Alfred Reed, James Swearingen and Camp Kirkland, as well as “Jesus Loves Me, It is Well” by Gene Currie.

“Music is the universal language,” said Ash. “It’s a blessing to be able to share it everywhere we go.”

This year’s tour will take the Concert Choir to Ballinger High School, Colonial Baptist Church in Snyder, Second Baptist Church in Lubbock, First Baptist Church in Stanton and Trinity Christian School in Midland. The program for the choir tour, titled “Lord, I Believe…,” will include works by Mary MacDonald, Thomas Tallis, Larry Shackley and Morton Lauridsen as well as spiritual arrangements by Jester Hairston, William L. Dawson and the team of Alice Parker and Robert Shaw. Additionally, the choir will sing a number of compositions by Sir John Rutter including movements from his famous “Requiem.”

According to Dr. Gregory Church, associate professor of music and director and conductor of the Concert Choir, the concert is loosely based on the five sections of the Catholic Mass: “Kyrie,” “Gloria,” “Credo,” “Sanctus” and “Agnus Dei.”

“We are looking forward to the tour very much,” he said. “These types of choir tours accomplish a number of goals such as recruiting for the university and the music department, connecting with alumni and friends around the state and sharing wonderful music.”

On tour with the Concert Choir will be the Heritage Singers, conducted and directed by Dr. Celeste Church, associate professor of music and dean of institutional research and effectiveness.

After the groups return, a final choir tour concert will be presented on Tuesday, April 12, at First Baptist Church in Brownwood. The free concert will begin at 7:30 p.m. and the public is encouraged to attend.

For more information, contact HPU’s School of Music and Fine Arts at 325-649-8500.

HPU music faculty to present recital

BROWNWOOD – March 28, 2016 – Three of Howard Payne University’s School of Music and Fine Arts faculty will present a recital Friday, April 1, at 7:30 p.m. The recital is free to the public and will be held in the university’s Grace Chapel.

“Everyone is welcome to come enjoy this wonderful evening of music,” said Kevin Winter, new adjunct instructor of French horn. “Selections will include works by Schubert, Francaix, Davies and Britten.”

In addition to Winter, faculty members performing include Dr. Elizabeth Wallace, professor of music and chair of the Department of Music, and Dr. Gregory Church, associate professor of music. Dr. Wallace will perform on the piano, Dr. Church will sing tenor and Winter will perform on the French horn.

“Mr. Winter is a welcome new addition to our faculty as he brings an extremely refined level of artistic performance to his work in the studio and on stage,” said Dr. Richard Fiese, dean of the School of Music and Fine Arts and professor of music. “Hearing him perform with Dr. Wallace and Dr. Church on our campus is a wonderful opportunity for our community to hear music-making of the highest order.”

For more information, contact HPU’s School of Music and Fine Arts at 325-649-8500.

HPU exhibiting works of senior art students

student art exhibitionBROWNWOOD – March 21, 2016 – Howard Payne University is exhibiting the artwork of three senior art students today through March 31. The artwork of Molly Hull of Brownwood, Cantrell Miller of Rochelle and Emily Peisker of Cedar Park is on exhibit in the Dorothy and Wendell Mayes Art Gallery inside HPU’s Doakie Day Art Center. The three students are scheduled to graduate in May.

A reception honoring the artists will be held this Wednesday, March 23, from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. in the gallery foyer. The community is welcome to attend and refreshments will be served.

Each student’s works of art are original artistic statements based upon topics as directed by HPU’s art faculty members including David Harmon, professor of art and chair of the Department of Art; Susan Harmon, adjunct instructor of art; Julie Mize, adjunct instructor of photography; and Tim Cooper, instructor of multimedia communications and computer information systems.

“The faith and devotion to their artist crafts is evidenced in this three-person exhibition,” said David Harmon. “All three artists have been insightful students, not settling for easy solutions but compelling creative ones resulting in this fine exhibition.”

The art media includes drawing, painting, design, photography, graphic design and other studio art areas.

Gallery hours during school sessions are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Howard Payne University and the gallery will be closed for Good Friday, March 25. The art center is located on the HPU campus, on Center Avenue, near Lipscomb Street in Brownwood. All inquiries may be directed to Harmon at (325) 649-8088 or dharmon@hputx.edu.

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Photo cutline: The artwork of three graduating HPU seniors is on exhibit at the university’s Dorothy and Wendell Mayes Art Gallery inside the Doakie Day Art Center.

HPU to host the Assembly Quartet in concert

BROWNWOOD – March 3, 2016 – Howard Payne University’s School of Music and Fine Arts will host the Assembly Quartet, a professional chamber music ensemble of saxophones, in concert on Monday, March 14, at 7:30 p.m. The concert will be held in the university’s Grace Chapel and the public is encouraged to attend.

The Assembly Quartet was originally formed in 2003 by graduate students from the University of South Carolina in Columbia, South Carolina. Its mission is to promote music education and expand the enjoyment of music for people of all ages. The quartet, now based in Mississippi, is a versatile ensemble that plays a variety of music styles from orchestral pops to virtuosic avant-garde.

“The HPU School of Music and Fine Arts is excited to host this wonderful ensemble,” said Corey Ash, associate professor of music and director of bands. “We are proud to be able to offer this concert free of charge to all of our students as well as the community at large.”

For more information about the Assembly Quartet, visit www.assemblyquartet.com or contact HPU’s School of Music and Fine Arts at 325-649-8500.