News Archives: School of Music and Fine Arts

HPU’s Harmon exhibiting work at Lubbock gallery

BROWNWOOD – December 15, 2015 – A painting by David Harmon, chair of Howard Payne University’s Department of Art, was accepted to the group exhibition “White on White” at the Louise Hopkins Underwood Center for the Arts in Lubbock. The exhibition is open now through January 23.

Each piece in the exhibition features monochromatic works from the many hues and shades of white. The Louise Hopkins Underwood Center for the Arts is open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday, and is free to the public.

Harmon additionally presented a paper in New York City this fall at the National Conference on Liberal Arts and the Education of Artists. His paper was titled “Revealing Aesthetics in Art Appreciation.” The conference, held at the famous Warwick New York Hotel, was sponsored by the School of Visual Arts.

“Mr. Harmon’s commitment to his professional development is apparent in his accomplishments in and out of the classroom,” said Dr. Richard Fiese, dean of HPU’s School of Music and Fine Arts. “His passion for art is reflected in his works as well as in the works of his students.”

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Photo cutline: David Harmon, chair of HPU’s Department of Art, is exhibiting a painting at a Lubbock gallery.

Early HPU artifact discovered in attic of Brownwood home

ellis and music faculty for webBROWNWOOD – December 14, 2015 – An item found in the attic of a Brownwood home was recently given a prominent new location at Howard Payne University. A 117-year-old Howard Payne diploma – the oldest known in existence – was discovered and donated to the university by Derek and Stephanie Kirbo of Brownwood.

The diploma was awarded to Miss Bessie Doswell Ramey in 1898 upon the completion of “the full course in Piano, Harmony, and History of Music.” The university, which was founded in 1889, granted its first degree in 1895.

“The diploma is in astonishingly good condition given its age,” said Dr. Bill Ellis, HPU president. Dr. Ellis presented the diploma to representatives of HPU’s School of Music and Fine Arts during the university’s Recital Hour. The artifact is now on display in the university’s Davidson Music Complex.

The Ramey family was well known in the area, with ties to the Howard Payne founders and other pioneers. Bessie Ramey’s father, John James Ramey, died in 1895. His obituary reads, “Mr. Ramey’s name is inseparably connected with Howard Payne College, of Brownwood, and more than any one man, with the exception of Dr. John D. Robnett, the founder of the institution, supported the college at a time when it was in sore need of friends.”

Although little more is known about Bessie Ramey and her time at Howard Payne, Dr. Ellis emphasized the significance of the diploma’s discovery.

“The individuals who founded Howard Payne built it out of nothing near the very beginning of the establishment of Brownwood,” he said. “Early students like Bessie Ramey paved the way for future generations. We’re so thankful to the Kirbos and will cherish the diploma for many years to come.”

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Photo cutline: A 117-year-old Howard Payne diploma found in a Brownwood attic now has a permanent home inside the university’s Davidson Music Complex. Left to right: Corey Ash, associate professor of music and director of bands; Dr. Elizabeth Wallace, chair of the Department of Music and professor of music; Dr. Richard Fiese, dean of the School of Music and Fine Arts; Dr. Bill Ellis, HPU president; and Dr. Gregory Church, associate professor of music.

HPU brings home top speaker award, other accolades from recent debate tournament

clark_ssbBROWNWOOD – December 8, 2015 – HPU’s Student Speaker Bureau speech and debate team recently competed at the Texas Intercollegiate Forensics Association (TIFA) Fall Championship tournament, held at Del Mar College in Corpus Christi. Braxton Clark, junior social science global studies major from Southlake, was named top debate speaker at the tournament.

Clark and team member Ashley Moon, senior communication major from Waxahachie, won third place in parliamentary debate at the tournament. Additionally, HPU won 5th place overall sweepstakes in the tournament, competing against 23 schools from Texas and Louisiana.

Dr. Julie Welker, professor of communication and chair of the Department of Communication, directs the team.

“I am so proud of how well our team competed at this tournament,” she said. “TIFA is always very competitive, so for our team to receive the top speaker award and the fifth place sweepstakes is quite an accomplishment.”

Also competing at the tournament were Morgan Ashmore, junior communication major from Weatherford; Andrea Balderas, sophomore biology major from Lytle; Christopher Freeland, freshman chemistry and Guy D. Newman Honors Academy major from Brownwood; Reagan Grisham, sophomore theatre major from Arlington; and Luis Ortiz, junior English and Guy D. Newman Honors Academy major from Brownsville.

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Photo cutline: HPU Student Speaker Bureau member Braxton Clark was named the top debate speaker at a recent tournament.

HPU’s Student Speaker Bureau competes in Oxford, England

Oxford team photo 2015 for webBROWNWOOD – December 4, 2015 – Members of Howard Payne University’s Student Speaker Bureau speech and debate team recently competed in Oxford, England. The Oxford Inter-Varsity Debating Competition, hosted by the world-famous Oxford Union, is one of the largest and most prestigious debating competitions globally, hosting almost 200 teams from universities around the world.

Participating students included Morgan Ashmore, junior from Weatherford; Braxton Clark, sophomore from Southlake; Reagan Grisham, sophomore from Arlington; and Ashley Moon, senior from Waxahachie.

Dr. Julie Welker, professor of communication and chair of the Department of Communication, directs the team.

“Students who compete in British Parliamentary debate have eight years of eligibility, so many of the competitors were graduate students, pursuing doctoral degrees, law degrees or other,” she said. “HPU students had the opportunity to debate students of all levels from all over the world.”

HPU competed in six rounds of debate with topics including religion in primary and secondary schools, U.S. immigration policy, penalty enhancements for hate crimes, FIFA World Cup in Russia, and abortion.

In Oxford, the team also visited Christ Church and the Bodleian Library. In London, the team visited the Houses of Parliament and watched a debate in the House of Commons. They also visited Westminster Abbey, the Tower of London, Buckingham Palace, The National Gallery, the National Portrait Gallery and the British Museum.

“The trip to Oxford to debate with other students from all over the world is such an educational experience,” said Dr. Welker. “Not only do our students compete well, but they gain such a deeper understanding of how the world views Americans and American politics.”

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Photo cutline: Members of HPU’s Student Speaker Bureau recently competed in Oxford, England. Left to right: Braxton Clark, Ashley Moon, Reagan Grisham, Morgan Ashmore and Dr. Julie Welker.

HPU to celebrate birth of Christ through “Lessons and Carols”

BROWNWOOD – December 1, 2015 –Howard Payne University’s School of Music and Fine Arts will present its annual Service of Lessons and Carols this Sunday at 8 p.m. at St. John’s Episcopal Church in Brownwood. The service includes Scripture readings about the prophecies and coming of Christ along with music that reflects on the passages being read.

HPU faculty and staff members will read the Scriptures and the university’s Heritage Singers will perform the musical selections with Dr. Allen Reed, retired professor of music, accompanying.

The event is based on the Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols at King’s College, Cambridge, first held on Christmas Eve 1918. The service was first broadcast in 1928 and has broadcast annually, with the exception of 1930. In the United States, the service airs on approximately 300 radio stations.

The university’s Heritage Singers are under the direction of Dr. Monte Garrett, professor of music and director of choral activities.

“The service of Lessons and Carols is a poignant reminder of the prophecies, and their fulfillment, of the coming of Christ,” said Dr. Garrett. “Especially during the busyness of this time of the semester, the service provides an opportunity for contemplation as we focus on the reason we celebrate.”

St. John’s Episcopal Church is located at 700 Main Street in Brownwood. For more information about the event, contact HPU’s School of Music and Fine Arts at (325) 649-8500.

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

BROWNWOOD – November 30, 2015 – Howard Payne University’s Pre-College Music and Art program will host its 21st annual “Christmas at Heartland Mall” celebration on Sunday, December 6, from 1:15 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Heartland Mall.

“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 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 dowens@hputx.edu.

HPU’s Symphonic Band and Concert Choir to present Christmas celebration concert

BROWNWOOD – November 23, 2015 –Howard Payne University’s Symphonic Band and Concert Choir will present a Christmas celebration concert at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, December 3, in the university’s Mims Auditorium. The concert is free to the public and the community is encouraged to attend as HPU celebrates the birth of Jesus Christ.

Among the program’s selections are Carol of the Bells; A Christmas Festival; Stille, Stille, Stille; and many more. There will also be an audience Christmas carol sing-along.

The Symphonic Band is under the direction of Corey Ash, associate professor of music, and the Concert Choir is under the direction of Dr. Monte Garrett, professor of music.

“The musical selections are sure to get the Christmas spirit in full swing as the students perform many Christmastime favorites,” said Ash.

Those attending are encouraged to bring a canned good or boxed dry good as a donation for admission. All of the goods collected will go to Good Samaritan Ministries of Brown County to aid those who need a helping hand during this winter holiday season.

A reception will follow the concert in the band rehearsal hall of the Davidson Music Complex.

“We hope to see you there but, if not, may your holiday season be filled with the joy of family and friends,” said Ash. “Most especially, may you know the joy of the greatest holiday gift of all time, Christ Jesus, our Lord and Savior.”

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Photo cutline: HPU’s Symphonic Band and Concert Choir will present a Christmas celebration concert Thursday, December 3, in the university’s Mims Auditorium.

HPU’s University Singers to present Christmas concert

BROWNWOOD – November 20, 2015 – Howard Payne University’s University Singers will present their annual Christmas concert Monday, November 30, at 7:30 p.m. in the university’s Grace Chapel.

The University Singers is a non-auditioned choir that is comprised of both HPU students and community members. The ensemble is under the direction of Dr. Gregory Church, associate professor of music.

“It is always a pleasure to have both groups in University Singers,” said Dr. Church. “The music-making process is a meaningful way for these two groups of people to come together and interact in working toward a common goal.”

Included in the concert will be music ranging from twelfth-century plainchant to traditional Christmas carols.

“One of the more enchanting pieces in the concert is a setting of William Blake’s poem The Lamb, an original composition by the contemporary composer John Tavener,” said Dr. Church. “The University Singers ensemble has worked diligently to prepare some very challenging music to share as we help kick off the Christmas season.”

The concert is free to the public. For more information, contact the HPU School of Music and Fine Arts at (325) 649-8500.

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HPU’s Huebner and Strebeck to present senior recital

BROWNWOOD – November 17, 2015 –Howard Payne University students Micah Huebner and Hannah Strebeck will present a senior recital on Thursday, November 19, at 7:00 p.m. in the university’s Grace Chapel.

Huebner, a music education major from Brazoria, will perform on the bassoon. Strebeck, a music education major from Highlands, will perform on the flute. Strebeck has been the Clara Freshour-Nelson Scholarship recipient since 2013. Both Huebner and Strebeck are students from the studio of Stephen Goacher, professor of music at HPU.

“The School of Music is proud to present these accomplished students,” Goacher said. “Their four years of intensive study at HPU will be apparent in the program they will present.”

The recital is open to the public and there is no charge for admission. For more information, contact HPU’s School of Music and Fine Arts at (325) 649-8500.

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Photo cutline: HPU’s Huebner and Strebeck will present a senior recital November 19 in the university’s Grace Chapel.

HPU’s Concert Choir to present fall concert

Concert choir 2015 for webBROWNWOOD – November 13, 2015 – Howard Payne University’s Concert Choir will present its fall concert Tuesday, November 17, at 7:30 p.m. The concert will be held in the university’s Grace Chapel and is free to the public.

A variety of musical selections will be presented including four that feature HPU student soloists or instrumentalists. Psalm 23 (from Songs of Faith) and Sing to the Lord, both by Paul Basler, will feature sophomore Carissa Cromer on horn. Moon River, arranged by Harry Simeone, will feature sophomore Garrett Ratliff on guitar. The Storm is Passing Over, arranged by Larry Nickel, will feature graduate student soloist Joshua Woods ’15.

“The choir has worked hard this semester and is excited to share our program with the campus and our community,” said Dr. Monte Garrett, professor of music and director of choral activities. “We are always grateful for the support we receive.”

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

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Photo cutline: HPU’s concert choir will present its fall concert, Tuesday, November 17, at 7:30 p.m.