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OBU Music Holds 32nd Annual Concerto Aria

January 2, 2006

A unique experience for prospective music students happens in February. Oklahoma Baptist University hosts its 32nd Annual Concerto Aria Concert, Feb. 20, 8:30 p.m., in OBU's Potter Auditorium.

The Concerto Aria series was born from the desire to allow OBU piano majors the opportunity to accompany the orchestra. It gradually evolved into a university-wide event and included both instrumentalists and vocalists.

The inaugural event in 1974 featured four solo pianists and was the brainchild of former OBU piano faculty member Clair McGavern and current OBU music professor Ron Lewis.

McGavern served as a member of the OBU faculty for several decades, working as a piano faculty member and as assistant dean of the Warren M. Angell College of Fine Arts. Lewis has been an OBU faculty member for 35 years and served as president of Oklahoma Music Teachers Association from 2002-04

This traditional series is part of Music Main Event, a day for potential music majors to visit campus and get a taste of what it is like to study and train at OBU. The prospective students spend the day visiting music classes and private lessons, participating in ensemble rehearsals and auditioning for music scholarships. They also have the opportunity to stay overnight with music majors in the OBU residence halls.

"Of the many musical events I remember as a student at OBU, the Concerto/Aria performances rank as one of the annual highlights for me," said David De Seguirant, associate professor of music and director of choral activities and a 1986 OBU graduate.

Four vocalists will be featured, including Emily Rose, a soprano and senior vocal music major from Edmond, Okla.; Michael Slaughter, a bass and senior church music major from Oklahoma City; Keri Burman, a coloratura soprano and senior vocal performance major from Edmond, Okla.; and Bethany Hailey, a soprano and senior vocal music major from Raleigh, N.C.

Two instrumentalists will be performing, including Aaron Jameson, a trumpet player and senior church music major from Yakima, Wash.; and Hillary Anderson, a flute player and freshman music major from Oklahoma City.

A piece composed by Michael Ware, a senior theory and composition major from Oklahoma City, will be featured in the program, and pianist Stacey Miller, a senior piano performance major from Plains, Kan., also will be performing.

Conductors for this year's performance will be De Seguirant, Dr. Jim Hansford, professor of music, director of bands and coordinator of instrumental studies; and Dr. James Vernon, chair of Division of Music.

The event is free and open to the public. For more information, please contact the Division of Music in the Warren M. Angell College of Fine Arts at or 405-878-2305.