News Archives: School of Music and Fine Arts

HPU’s Symphonic Band to present spring concert

BROWNWOOD – February 22, 2017 – Howard Payne University’s Symphonic Band will present its first concert of the spring semester on Tuesday, February 28, at 7:30 p.m. in the university’s Mims Auditorium.

“The band will present an exciting program titled ‘Around the World in 60 Minutes,’” said Corey Ash, associate professor of music and director of bands. “This concert will celebrate worldwide musical styles, and the band will exhibit different cultural flavors and experiences from western European countries, the Americas and beyond.”

Selections include “Four Scottish Dances” by Malcolm Arnold, “Irish Tune from County Derry” by Percy Grainger, “Wedding Dance” by Jacques Press, “Elsa’s Procession to the Cathedral” by Richard Wagner, “La Fiesta Mexicana” by H. Owen Reed and many more.

There is no admission charge for this concert and the public is encouraged to attend.

“Bring a friend and come enjoy an evening of exciting music compliments of HPU’s School of Music and Fine Arts and the Symphonic Band,” said Ash. “You won’t want to miss it.”

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

HPU extends call for entries for “I-10 Two” contemporary juried-art exhibition

I-10 Two logoBROWNWOOD – February 22, 2017 – Howard Payne University’s Department of Art has extended a call for entries for its upcoming juried-art exhibition, “I-10 Two: A National Exhibition of Contemporary Two-Dimensional Art.” Artists may enter up to three pieces of art and entries will be accepted through March 20.

This exhibition is open to all living U.S. contemporary artists residing above and below Interstate 10, the southernmost transcontinental highway ranging from San Diego, California, through several states including Texas and onward to the east in Jacksonville, Florida. Submissions of all 2-d art forms in abstract, non-representational/non-objective and realist imagery will be considered.

The exhibition’s organizer, David Harmon, chair and professor of art, shared his thoughts on the event.

“HPU’s Department of Art is excited to provide this exhibition for a second time – this time in the spring semester,” Harmon said. “We hope to have a large variety of contemporary 2-d artwork entries from all over the area and around the country. This is a great opportunity for the university, those entering artwork and patrons who will visit the exhibit. Art is a wonderful thing.”

The exhibition will be held March 29 through May 5 at the Doakie Day Art Center, located on the HPU campus on Center Avenue, near Lipscomb Street in Brownwood. The gallery is open weekdays 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Please visit for further information including entry guidelines. Direct all inquiries to David Harmon at 325-649-8088 or


HPU to exhibit work of senior art student Colby Compton

Colby ComptonBROWNWOOD – January 20, 2017 – Howard Payne University will exhibit the artwork of Colby Compton, senior studio art major from Early. The exhibition is scheduled January 23 through February 17 in the Dorothy and Wendell Mayes Art Gallery inside HPU’s Doakie Day Art Center.

Compton’s senior project has centered upon the completion of a body of consistent acrylic landscape paintings, evoking his interests in both fantasy and science fiction. He has studied the paintings of 19th-century artists such as Frederic Church and George Inness as well as several 20th century surrealist artists including Rene Magritte.

“A sense of mood, place and space are all revealed,” said David Harmon, professor of art and chair of HPU’s Department of Art. “Visual interest is achieved and maintained as a result of his use of a limited palette of colors, evident in his mysterious landscape paintings.”

Harmon said Compton is devoted to the formation of artistic concepts, craftsmanship, imagination and skills.

“This has resulted in consistent, original creative solutions in his overall HPU studio coursework,” he said.

The gallery is open weekdays 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The Doakie Day 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


Cutline: HPU senior Colby Compton is pictured with “Violet Eye,” one of the paintings from his upcoming exhibition.

HPU Concert Choir to perform on tour

BROWNWOOD – January 20, 2017 – Howard Payne University’s Concert Choir will tour select schools and churches in Texas and Arkansas near the end of January. The choir will travel Friday, January 27, through Tuesday, January 31.

The concert tour is titled “Creator Created Creating: My Maker’s Bounding Line.” A variety of musical selections will be presented including works from Joseph Haydn’s “The Creation” which depict the days of creation. During each concert, many allegorical references will be made to Yahweh’s presence through light, water, trees, mankind and the vastness of the firmament, all of which speak to the unfathomable omnipotence of our Creator.

“We are excited for this year’s tour,” said Dr. Christopher Rosborough, assistant professor of music and director of choral activities. “We look forward to sharing what HPU has to offer, connecting with alumni and friends and sharing music in honor of God’s creation. We hope to be a blessing to each audience we visit.”

This year’s Concert Choir tour will take the group to Robert E. Lee High School in Tyler, Marshall High School in Marshall, Meadows Baptist Church in Plano, Travis Academy of Fine Arts in Fort Worth and Granbury High School in Granbury. The group will also have the opportunity to travel to Trinity Episcopal Cathedral in Little Rock, Arkansas, and Woodland Heights Baptist Church in Conway, Arkansas. The choir will finish the tour with concerts at Brownwood High School and Early High School.

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

HPU University Singers to begin rehearsals

BROWNWOOD – January 12, 2017 – The University Singers, Howard Payne University’s community and collegiate choral opportunity, is welcoming new musical enthusiasts into its membership for the spring 2017 semester. Rehearsals are set to begin Monday, January 16, from 6:30 p.m. to 7:50 p.m. in the choral rehearsal hall in the university’s Davidson Music Complex.

The goal of the University Singers is to cultivate an ensemble of singers within the community and university who strive to offer a high level of artistry, while advocating for great choral music in Brownwood and its surrounding areas. Participants can expect to glean a balance of exposure to great choral literature, vocal instruction and a knowledge and execution of musical excellence.

This unique choral group presents two concerts per year, one at Christmastime and one in the spring. Highlighted works for the upcoming spring concert include the Gabriel Fauré “Requiem” and a collection of hymn arrangements based on the topic of eternity.

The choir is under the direction of Dr. Christopher Rosborough, assistant professor of music and director of choral activities at HPU.

“The University Singers had a terrific semester of music-making this past fall,” said Dr. Rosborough. “I look forward to what the future of this ensemble will hold as we enter into this fantastic and timeless literature!”

Membership is not limited to Brownwood residents and HPU students. All are welcome to take part in this ensemble. If you are interested in joining, please contact Dr. Rosborough before the first rehearsal at 325-649-8503 or

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


HPU Pre-College Music and Art Program to begin spring semester

Pre-College Music & Art Program LogoBROWNWOOD – January 11, 2017 – Howard Payne University’s Pre-College Music and Art Program is set to begin its spring semester lessons this month. Pre-college music lessons will begin the week of Monday, January 16, and pre-college art lessons will begin the week of January 23.

The program, presented by HPU’s School of Music and Fine Arts, serves Brownwood and the surrounding communities by offering music and art lessons to children and adults. Music lessons, which will be 45 minutes in length each week for 14 weeks, include instruction in piano, voice, strings, guitar and band instruments. The program also offers Kindermusik for pre-school children. Art lessons, which will be one hour in length each week for 12 weeks, will feature beginning and intermediate drawing and painting. Instructors in the program include the HPU music and art faculty, experienced area teachers and student teachers.

Existing pre-college students will keep the same schedule assigned in the fall unless a change in day or time is requested. No new forms are required, but fees and first tuition payment are due at the first lesson. New students are encouraged to register for classes.

“We look forward to a rewarding semester and appreciate the opportunity of working with your children,” said Diane Owens, director of the program. “We encourage all who are interested to come be a part of this program. Classes are still available.”

For more information, contact Owens at or (325) 649-8501 or Jill Holamon at or (325) 649-8500.


Community Band to begin rehearsals at HPU

BROWNWOOD – December 13, 2016 –The Central Texas Community Band will begin rehearsals for the spring 2017 season on Monday, January 16, at 7:30 p.m. in the band hall of Howard Payne University’s Davidson Music Complex.

All musicians high school age and up are invited to bring their instruments and be a part of this community project. The band will rehearse varied literature to perform at its annual spring concert.

The band’s director is Corey Ash, associate professor of music and director of bands at HPU, and several from the area will serve as guest conductors.

“It’s time to dust off that old clarinet or trombone and get back in the band,” said Ash.

For more information, contact Ash at 325-649-8502.


HPU’s Pre-College Music and Art program to host “Christmas at Heartland Mall”

BROWNWOOD – December 2, 2016 – Howard Payne University’s Pre-College Music and Art program will host its 22nd annual “Christmas at Heartland Mall” celebration on Sunday, December 4, from 1:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. at Heartland Mall in Early.

“Students in the program will present some wonderful vocal and instrumental Christmas selections to family and friends,” said Diane Owens, director of the program and adjunct instructor in the School of Music and Fine Arts. “Please plan to join us for a musical Sunday afternoon at Heartland Mall.”

Additionally, the pre-college art students will have some of their recent work on exhibit for mall shoppers and other guests to see.

The event will be located at the main mall entrance near Sears.

The Pre-College Music and Art program serves the Brownwood community by offering music and art lessons to children and adults. For more information, contact Owens at (325) 649-8501 or

HPU debaters score several awards at championship tournament

SSB Team PhotoBROWNWOOD – December 2, 2016 – Howard Payne University debaters Christopher Freeland and Tyler Olin were semifinalists in parliamentary debate at the Texas Intercollegiate Forensics Association Fall Championship tournament held recently in Tyler. HPU competed against 23 universities.

The team of Freeland, sophomore biochemistry and Guy D. Newman Honors Academy major from Bangs, and Olin, sophomore social science jurisprudence and Guy D. Newman Honors Academy major from Howe, boosted the team’s overall rankings, allowing HPU to win second place in debate sweepstakes and fifth place in overall sweepstakes. Olin was also named top novice speaker in parliamentary debate.

Braxton Clark, senior social science global studies major from Southlake, was awarded third place overall debate speaker, and Isaac Sommers, senior social science jurisprudence and Guy D. Newman Honors Academy major, was named ninth place top debate speaker.

“Our team did exceptionally well,” said Dr. Julie Welker, Student Speaker Bureau team coach, professor of communication and chair of HPU’s Department of Communication Studies. “I’m proud of the way our team performed, and we are continuing to prepare for upcoming tournaments.”

Gabi McWhirter, senior theatre major from Brownwood, won fourth place in novice dramatic interpretation, and freshman Madi Neal, social science jurisprudence major from Chandler, won third place in novice impromptu speaking.

“Gabi and Madi are both new to our team and I’m thrilled at their excellent performances,” said Dr. Welker. “Breaking into novice finals at the fall championship tournament is always difficult, and these two competitors did a fantastic job at competition.”

HPU students also competed in the International Public Debate Association (IPDA) debate format. Clark, Olin and Sommers all advanced to competition out-rounds. Clark won second place, Olin won third place and Sommers won fourth place in IPDA debate. HPU had three of the top four final places at the meet.

Students on the team also competed in individual events, including extemporaneous speaking (current events), impromptu speaking, prose, poetry, informative speaking, dramatic interpretation, duo interpretation and persuasive speaking.

Also competing were team members Morgan Ashmore, senior communication major from Weatherford; Andrea Balderas, junior biology major from Lytle; Erin Haley, freshman communication major from Mason; Mike Hord, freshman political science and social science jurisprudence major from Montgomery; Reagan Grisham, junior communication major from Arlington; Aimee Orozco, junior communication major from Shepherd; Isabelle Stahrfisher, freshman communication major from Fort Worth; and Haylee Williams, freshman communication major from Bellville.

The HPU team will next travel to Texas A&M University in February.


Cutline: HPU’s Student Speaker Bureau brought home several awards from a recent championship tournament. Pictured from left are: Dr. Julie Welker, Morgan Ashmore, Braxton Clark, Aimee Orozco, Isabella Stahrfisher, Madison Neal, Christopher Freeland, Gabi McWhirter, Erin Haley, Brooklyn Britton, Isaac Sommers, Andrea Balderas, Haylee Williams, Reagan Grisham, Tyler Olin and Ms. Sidni Kirby.

HPU’s Abbatiello and Cooper to present piano duet recital

BROWNWOOD – November 22, 2016 – Howard Payne University students James Abbatiello and Abraham Cooper will present a piano duet recital on Tuesday, November 29, at 7:00 p.m. in the university’s Grace Chapel. The recital is free of charge and open to the public.

Abbatiello is a senior communication major from Kerrville. Cooper is a senior biochemistry major and music performance piano major from Brownwood. Both Abbatiello and Cooper are students from the studio of Dr. Elizabeth Wallace, chair of the Department of Music and tenured professor of music at HPU.

Selections that will be performed are “Sonata for Piano Four Hands in D major, Op. 6” by Ludwig Van Beethoven, “Waltzes, Op. 39” by Johannes Brahms, “Microjazz Piano Duets” by Christopher Norton, “Sonata for Piano Four Hands” by Francis Poulenc and “C.S. Theme and Variations, Op. 6” by Randall Compton.

“Mr. Abbatiello and Mr. Cooper are fine young musicians and have gladly shared their music for special events here at HPU and in the community,” said Dr. Wallace. “This is their last semester as a piano team since Mr. Abbatiello will be graduating and the recital celebrates great music and a great partnership.”

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


Cutline: HPU’s Abraham Cooper, left, and James Abbatiello will present a piano duet recital November 29 in the university’s Grace Chapel.