John Vallentine, director, School of Music, (319) 273-2024
Gwenne Culpepper, University Marketing and Public Relations, (319) 273-2761
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa's School of Music will host its 21st annual Scholarship Benefit Concert at 7:30 p.m., Friday, Sept. 27. This yearï¾©ï¾ˆs event, 'Rhythm and Smooth,' will be presented in the Great Hall of the Gallagher-Bluedorn Performing Arts Center.
Performers for the evening include guest artists SONSAX, a Costa Rican saxophone and percussion band. Also featured will be the Northern Iowa Symphony Orchestra, the UNI Percussion Ensemble, the Concert Chorale, the UNI Singers, the UNI Wind Symphony, and the UNI Flute choir. Other student performers will include pianist Edwin Neimann, and the George Walker Society of Music. Several faculty and alumni will perform, among them soprano Jean McDonald and tenor Jeffrey Birth, clarinetist Jack Graham and guest pianist Joan Smalley, tubist Jeffrey Funderburk and guest pianist Iva Navratova, and bass-baritone Won Cho and pianist Robin Guy.
In previous years, the event had been presented on two consecutive nights in UNIï¾ˆs Russell Hall. But, explains John Vallentine, director of UNI's School of Music, the new Gallagher-Bluedorn offers an acoustically perfect hall with additional seating, so the concert will occur on one night only. 'This event features some of the best talent at UNI and the concert has received standing ovations in the past for performance excellence' Vallentine stated. 'Weï¾©ï¾ˆre excited that this is our 21st annual event providing needed support for our students,'he said. The program includes a wide-range of music favorites, from Broadway to Classical.
Vallentine, who noted that recent budget cuts have had serious impact on tuition costs for UNI students, said this year's concert is more important than ever. 'Providing scholarships is the number-one reason we present this concert,'he said. 'Audience members and donors know that their contributions go directly to provide support for our students.' 'We're a nationally and internationally recognized School of Music, but if we want to continue to attract the best students we have to be able to provide financial assistance for them and their families.ï¾©ï¾˜
Tickets may be purchased in advance at the Gallagher-Bluedorn Performing Arts Center box office, on the Web at tickets.uni.edu, by calling 1-877-273-SHOW, or are available at the door for $25. All proceeds to the Scholarship Benefit Endowment will be used for future music scholarships for students.