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Music school celebrates 100th anniversary with concert tonight

Jan. 23, 2004

By Meredith Simmons, reporter

At 8 p.m. today in Waco Hall, the music, talent and progress of Baylor's School of Music will be showcased in a celebration concert signifying its greatest landmark - 100 years of bestowing music degrees.

Since the concert is to represent the music school as a whole, every type of the school's musical variety will be displayed and packed into an hour and a half benefit performance.

Piano solos, wind ensembles, chorale performances and a jazz string quartet are only a taste of what the eventful evening holds, not to mention a grand finale of a 'whirlwind' of music.

As Dr. Herbert Colvin, Baylor's retired director of academic studies and teacher of musical theory said, the performance will be so 'saturated with music' that 'the people will be really entertained and thrilled.'

But to most of the students and faculty involved, Friday night's performance is more than just a concert, it's a personal expression of how music has forever touched their lives.

In our world today, 'music is a powerful force that is around us all the time and very easy to take for granted,' Dr. Will V. May, dean of the music school, said.

'It is such a part of our daily lives, that going to a concert requires a commitment from the audience,' May said.

In order to honor that commitment, those attending the gala performance are asked to not applaud between pieces, and to wait until intermission and the finale.

This not only will cause each selection of music to flow in an artistic way from piece to piece but also will allow the time necessary for presenting such a wide range of music and talent.

The gala promises to bring forth musical classics in traditional ways but also with an innovative flare, like an oboe and English horn duet and a blast of herald trumpets announcing the end of intermission.

Concert participants hope to keep the audience absorbed in the music and constantly entertained.

'It is sure to be a feeling-full roller coaster ride,' May said, 'where the students performing and audience members will express feelings of both 'melancholy and joy.'

But as much as the concert is a commemoration of the school's finely-tuned development, it's even more a celebration of its current status. Tonight's performance is not about lingering on the past, but 'about showcasing the present,' May said.

'These students are the musicians that will be populating the symphonies of tomorrow,' May said.

'Why pay a lot of money to go to the symphony when most of our concerts are free?' May asked.

For ticket information and reservations, contact Linda Dreyer, administrative assistant for the music dean's office, at 710-1161.

Tickets for the anniversary concert cost $25.