College of Fine Arts News Archive

July 2017

  • Documentary follows creation of Steinway piano

    Documentary follows creation of Steinway piano

    July 27, 2017—Robbie Goodrich

    The Stephen F. Austin State University School of Art and the Friends of the Visual Arts will present a free, one-night screening of "Note By Note: The Making of Steinway L1037 " at 7 p.m. Friday, Aug. 4, in The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House in downtown Nacogdoches.

    A feature-length independent documentary directed by Ben Niles, "Note By Note" follows the creation of a Steinway concert grand #L1037 - from forest floor to concert hall.

    The film explores the relationship between musician and instrument, chronicles the manufacturing process, and investigates what makes each Steinway unique, according to information at "Note By Note" is the first documentary to portray the patience, craft and personality built into each Steinway.

    This screening is part of the School of Art's monthly Friday Film Series and is sponsored in part by William Arscott, Nacogdoches Film Festival, Karon Gillespie, Mike Mollot, David Kulhavy, Brad Maule, John and Kristen Heath, Galleria Z, Jill Carrington, Jean Stephens, Jim and Mary Neal, Richard Orton and Main Street Nacogdoches.

    The Cole Art Center is located at 329 E. Main St. For more information, call (936) 468-1131.

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  • SFA College of Fine Arts announces 2017-18 University Series

    SFA College of Fine Arts announces 2017-18 University Series

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    “Christmas With the Annie Moses Band” is among the featured performances in the 2017-18 University Series offered by the SFA College of Fine Arts.

    July 25, 2017—Robbie Goodrich

    The College of Fine Arts at Stephen F. Austin State University will present five national touring acts in the 2017-18 University Series, building on its tradition of bringing leading professional artists to East Texas.

    This diverse mix of the performing arts features Paul Taylor's famous dancers, a holiday performance by the exhilarating Annie Moses Band, the Grammy award-winning, all-male, a cappella ensemble Chanticleer, a controversial play that re-imagines the last night in the life of legendary civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. for Black History Month, and the fresh Nashville bluegrass sounds of The Barefoot Movement.

    "We wanted to offer, as much as possible, the full range of performance possibilities in this year's series," said Scott Shattuck, associate dean of the college and director of the series. "So we found superb dance and theatre as well as the best of classical and popular music, and a sensational cross-over group that will bridge many styles in their thrilling performance of our favorite Christmas songs."

    An Encore Event that is separate from the University Series, yet equally as exciting, is a pair of performances of the Moscow Ballet's Great Russian Nutcracker as the international troupe celebrates its 25th year of touring North America. Performances are scheduled for Thursday and Friday nights, Nov. 16 and 17, and are sponsored in part by Lehmann Eye Center.

    "This popular ballet ensemble performed in 2009 before a sold-out Turner Auditorium, and this year's milestone tour will truly launch the holiday season in Nacogdoches," Shattuck said. "Promising repeated rave reviews, The Great Russian Nutcracker performances will likely once again see sell-out dates, so get your tickets early!"

    A younger sibling to the Paul Taylor Dance Company, Taylor 2 brings the work of the modern dance world's leading choreographer to life. This spectacularly warm, gracious and daring dance company yields a more intimate creation that delivers the same emotional knockout that Paul Taylor has become known for worldwide. Critics and audiences cheer as Taylor 2 introduces the athleticism, humor and range of emotions for which his work is famous. The Sept. 14 performance is sponsored in part by Cataract, Glaucoma & Retina Consultants of East Texas/Benchmark Optical/Medical Arts Surgery Center.

    Experience the beauty of "Christmas with the Annie Moses Band" as the acclaimed ensemble performs stunning arrangements of holiday favorites, bringing Juilliard-honed chops to Nashville-styled music-making in a captivating blend of popular and classical arrangements. The band's innovative sound has delighted audiences from jazz aficionados to bluegrass buffs on PBS and on stages as diverse as Carnegie Hall and the Grand Ole Opry. From "Carol of the Bells" to "O Holy Night," this is a holiday journey audiences are sure to love. The performance is Tuesday night, Dec. 12, and is sponsored in part by Nacogdoches Medical Center.

    Called "the world's reigning male chorus" by The New Yorker magazine, the San Francisco-based, Grammy award-winning ensemble Chanticleer will perform Friday, Jan. 19. Known around the globe as "an orchestra of voices," the a cappella choir is famous for its seamless blend of its 12 male voices ranging from soprano to bass and its original interpretations of vocal literature, from Renaissance to jazz and from gospel to pop. The performance is sponsored in part by BancorpSouth.

    L.A. Theatre Works and its producing director Susan Albert Loewenberg will present "The Mountaintop" on Saturday, Feb. 3. In this award-winning Broadway play, author Katori Hall imagines a provocative conversation between Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and a mysteriously shrewd motel maid on the night before King's death. Shortly after saying, in his final speech, "I've been to the mountaintop," King finds himself in a poetic and stormy clash of perspectives as performed by the acclaimed radio theatre company. The play contains mature language and controversial themes. "The Mountaintop" is presented in association with the SFA Office of Multicultural Affairs.

    Heralded by CMT Edge as "one of the most promising bands on the bluegrass scene," the Nashville-based group The Barefoot Movement will perform Thursday, March 8. When this up-and-coming, youthful quartet of superb musicians romps through pop-infused "newgrass" medleys and country-flavored ballads, you can expect an evening of music with something for everyone. The performance is sponsored in part by Commercial Bank of Texas.

    Season tickets for the 2017-18 University Series go on sale Aug. 1 and are $100 for adults, $80 for seniors and $40 for students.

    "These are fantastic prices for entertainment of this quality," said Diane Peterson, Fine Arts Box Office manager. "Season tickets provide a 25-percent savings over single tickets, and patrons can have their same seat throughout the season.

    "Plus, we offer season-ticket options," she said. "The classic package includes one ticket to each of the five performances, and the TixMix package allows patrons to create their own season."

    Single-event ticket purchases for the University Series, The Nutcracker or any of the other performances presented through the College of Fine Arts can be made beginning Monday, Aug. 14.

    Single event ticket prices for the University Series are $25 for adults, $20 for seniors and $10 for non-SFA students/youth. Tickets for SFA students are $3.

    Nutcracker tickets are $45 for Section A seating; $36 for Section B seating; and $20 for Section C seating. Discounts are available for seniors, students, children and SFA faculty and staff members.
    All performances are at 7:30 p.m. in W.M. Turner Auditorium in the Griffith Fine Arts Building, 2222 Alumni Drive, on the SFA campus.

    For more information, visit, stop by the Box Office in Room 211 of the Griffith Fine Arts Building, or call (936) 468-6407 or (888) 240-ARTS.

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  • Preview performance of festival play to be presented Tuesday

    Preview performance of festival play to be presented Tuesday

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    July 20, 2017—Robbie Goodrich

    An opportunity to preview a performance of the play Stephen F. Austin State University School of Theatre students plan to tour next month at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in Edinburgh, Scotland, takes place Tuesday night, July 25.

    "Closed For Repairs," written by former SFA student Bobby Britton of Angleton, will be presented at 7:30 p.m. in the Music Recital Hall in the Wright Music Building on campus. Admission is $10 at the door, and proceeds will benefit study abroad opportunities for theatre students.

    Britton graduated from SFA in May with a Bachelor of Arts degree and plans to begin graduate studies in the fall at Emerson College in Boston. He describes the selection of his work to be performed at the festival as "a huge honor and a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity."

    Last fall, Britton was working with Angela Bacarisse, professor of design and arts management at SFA, on an independent studies project to write the play. Bacarisse saw the potential in Britton's writing and encouraged him to work on the script with the idea that it could be a real contender at the Festival Fringe. Having previously attended the festival and toured student productions there, Bacarisse has seen the stories and directing styles that do well.

    Britton collaborated with Jackie Rosenfeld, a playwright advisor and theatre instructor at SFA, and Bacarisse, who is now the touring producer of the play, to develop the narrative. Slade Billew, assistant professor of acting and movement in the School of Theatre, was brought in as director. Under his style of directing, which involves more movement-based and physical theatre, the script further evolved and is still changing today.

    The festival's website advertising about the upcoming SFA production describes the play as: "SFA student Bobby Britton's semi-autobiographical play leads us on a young man's journey to discover his personal truth in a conservative Texas town. Blending honest dialogue, contemporary songs, and powerful movement, this ensemble-driven piece takes on issues of identity and acceptance in the Bible belt. As the play moves through moments of intense despair and transcendent joy, performers use their bodies and voices to create the world of small town America, exploring the realities of feeling alone in the Lone Star State. The play is intended for mature audiences."

    "The show is about my experience with reparative therapy," Britton said. "Through therapy sessions, we are able to see flashbacks into this character's early childhood and some of his relationships with other people that shaped him into who he is today."

    "Personal stories that have both humor and drama do very well at the festival," Bacarisse said. "I connect Slade's style of directing with a more European style of performance, as opposed to the American kitchen-sink realism. It will go well with the German and Irish companies and others who will be showing there."

    A group of 19 SFA theatre students and faculty and community members will travel abroad Aug. 1 through 16, and festival performances in Edinburgh are Aug. 4 through 9. The Fringe is considered the largest and most prestigious performing arts festival in the world. SFA theatre students, accompanied by Bacarisse, attended the festival in 2015, and two of those students, seniors Anais Saenz and Jason Trevino, both of Houston, are returning this year.

    As a company, the students are responsible for venue rental fees, travel, equipment rental, and publicity and marketing, Bacarisse said. Students house manage, run the lighting and soundboards and stage-manage for their performances.

    The students will not see their venue, which is in a Scottish church basement hall, until the day before the show opens, which presents a special challenge, Bacarisse said. But they know it will be the smallest space in which the show has been performed to date.

    "That's one of the things that is good about the experience for students," Billew said, "in that it more closely mimics the experience of being a touring show. We've also talked about working on a new play, and how things will change, as we're often learning new blocking of new lines very quickly."
    The total cost per student is approximately $5,000, which includes airfare and room and board. Donations are still being accepted to help fund the trip. Various fundraisers, such as Tuesday night's preview performance, have been conducted to help defray costs.

    "We are so grateful for everyone who supports the arts and our students," Bacarisse said. "Allowing them the opportunity to tour a show, perform abroad and learn more about our global community is a great gift."

    Tax-exempt donations for the trip can be made at by clicking on the "give online" tab and writing "Scotland trip" for special instructions.

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  • Watercolor East Texas show opens Saturday

    Watercolor East Texas show opens Saturday

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    Local artist Nancy Lemberger won first place in last year's Watercolor East Texas juried exhibition. This year's show opens at 6 p.m. Saturday, July 22, in Cole Art Center.

    July 18, 2017—Robbie Goodrich

    The 33rd Watercolor East Texas juried exhibition will open with a reception from 6 to 8 p.m. Saturday, July 22, in The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House in downtown Nacogdoches.

    This year's juror is Texas artist Michael Holter, who is a signature member of National Watercolor Society, Outdoor Painters Society and Southwestern Watercolor Society. He works in both watercolor and oil. His work has received numerous awards and can be found in private and cooperate collections in the U.S. and abroad.

    Although Holter has been painting most of his life, his work experience spans a wide range of creative endeavors, from art teacher, creative director and businessman in fine art and commercial art. He describes his work as "impressionistic."

    "I like to represent people or places and allow the painting to evolve from the structure of what is recognizable," he said. "The challenge is to balance the care needed to make the representation interesting … and perhaps believable, with the freedom, looseness and painterly quality that makes painting so unique and expressive." His work can be viewed at

    The exhibition runs through Aug. 23.

    The Cole Art Center is located at 329 E. Main St. For more information, contact WET member Carol Athey at or call the art center at (936) 468-1131.

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  • SFA's Music Preparatory Division offers scholarships

    SFA's Music Preparatory Division offers scholarships

    July 14, 2017—Robbie Goodrich

    The Music Preparatory Division of the Stephen F. Austin State University School of Music is accepting scholarship applications for its fall classes.

    The music program features the study of a variety of musical instruments and choral techniques. Upper-level musicians as well as SFA faculty and students teach classes.

    Partial scholarships are awarded to music students based on need, according to Pat Barnett, Music Prep director. Application forms and information about the various programs offered are available on the Music Prep website at Deadline to apply for scholarships is Aug. 1.

    A Music Prep open house will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 19, at 3028 Raguet St.

    "New and returning students and their parents are invited to attend the open house at the Prep House to speak with faculty and to register for private and group lessons," Barnett said. "Piney Woods Youth Orchestra auditions are on the same day of the open house, and auditions begin at 10 a.m."

    Students may enroll for 16 private lessons or 12 private lessons for the semester. In addition to the Piney Woods Youth Orchestra, Music Prep offers an Adult Piano Class, Music Theory Adventures for beginning and intermediate students, the Choristers youth choral ensemble, and the Raguet Strings adult ensemble. Harp ensemble classes are offered for students in third through sixth grades, middle and high school ages and adults.

    Music Prep offers private music lessons in piano, harp, violin, Suzuki violin, flute, cello, trumpet, trombone, voice, percussion and more.

    Private lessons begin the week of Aug. 21 for 16-week upper level faculty instruction and the week of Sept. 11 for 12-week SFA music major instruction.

    The Music Prep office is open from 1 to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. For additional information, contact Barnett at (936) 468-1291 or at Visit the Facebook site at SFA Music Prep.

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  • Nacogdoches Photographic Association to open annual summer show

    Nacogdoches Photographic Association to open annual summer show

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    The winning entry in the 2016 Nacogdoches Photographic Association's gallery show was by Tom Willis of Lufkin for the photo “Hartman Rocks.” This year's show opens with a reception at 6 p.m. Friday, July 21, in The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House in downtown Nacogdoches.

    July 12, 2017—Robbie Goodrich

    The Nacogdoches Photographic Association will open its 2017 gallery show with a reception at 6 p.m. Friday, July 21, in The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House in downtown Nacogdoches.

    Theme for the photo show is "Nacogdoches," and juror is professional photographer and former Nacogdoches resident Steve Kozak.

    Awards will include Best of Show, first, second and third places and honorable mention. The 2017 Best of Show recipient will be announced at the opening reception.

    Kozak is an active member of the Texas Professional Photographers Association and the Professional Photographers of America. He has earned the "Master of Photography" and the "Photographic Craftsman" degrees and the "Certified Professional Photographer" degree from PPA. He has also been awarded the "Full Fellowship" degree from TPPA. He has taught at the Texas School of Professional Photography and at Imaging USA.

    Kozak's articles have been published in The Professional Photographer and Texas Professional Photographer magazines. His motivational and informative programs make him a popular speaker and lecturer on the program circuit.

    The Nacogdoches Photographic Association was organized in 1992. Monthly meetings are held at 7 p.m. on the first Tuesday of each month (except on field-trip nights) in The Cole Art Center. For more information, contact R.G. Dean at The NPA website URL is, and their works can be seen on Facebook.

    The show will run through Aug. 23. Gallery hours are 12:30 to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday. The Cole Art Center is located at 329 E. Main Street. For additional information, call (936) 468-1131.

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  • Bidding continues in 12x12 art scholarship fundraiser

    Bidding continues in 12x12 art scholarship fundraiser

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    Charles Longbine's Woodworking Series #1 “First Snow” is among the works featured in this year's 12x12 scholarship fundraiser hosted by the SFA Friends of the Visual Arts at Cole Art Center.

    July 10, 2017—Robbie Goodrich

    Silent bidding in this year's 12x12 scholarship fundraiser for the Friends of the Visual Arts at Stephen F. Austin State University continues through July 15 at The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House in downtown Nacogdoches.

    The purpose of 12x12 is to raise funds for FVA scholarships and grants that that are awarded to SFA art students. Between $12,000 and $15,000 is awarded annually in scholarships to deserving students in the School of Art.

    The silent auction features 12-by-12-inch pieces of art created by approximately 70 artists from Nacogdoches, Lufkin and other areas of East Texas. Initial bidding ($250 minimum) will continue until the fundraiser's concluding party and reception at 6 p.m. Saturday. Those who attend the party will have a chance to claim a piece for a starting bid of $100, but bidding will continue for another hour.

    Texas state Rep. Travis Clardy will be the evening's master of ceremonies and will announce the winners of the art pieces. The event is open to the public, and the reception is free.

    Among this year's sponsors are The Daily Sentinel, Fredonia Brewery, Birdie's Bakery and The Flower Shop.

    The Cole Art Center is located at 329 E. Main St. For more information about 12x12 or to become a sponsor, call The Cole Art Center at (936) 468-6557.

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  • 'Miracle Worker' play continues through Saturday in Downstage Theatre

    'Miracle Worker' play continues through Saturday in Downstage Theatre

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    July 10, 2017—Robbie Goodrich

    The Stephen F. Austin State University School of Theatre will present the final shows this week of William Gibson's "The Miracle Worker" as part of its SummerStage Festival. The play, featuring Frisco sophomore Aubrey Moore (left) as Anne Sullivan and Plano senior Cecily Maucieri as Helen Keller, is at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, July 11, 12 and 13, and at 2 p.m. Saturday, July 15, in the Downstage Theatre on the SFA campus. General admission tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for seniors and $7.50 for students/youth. For tickets or more information, visit or call (936) 468-6407 or (888) 240-ARTS.

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  • 'Ivy + Bean the Musical' concludes this week

    'Ivy + Bean the Musical' concludes this week

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    July 10, 2017—Robbie Goodrich

    "Ivy + Bean the Musical," with book, music and lyrics by Scott Elmegreen and based on books by Annie Barrows, will conclude its SummerStage Festival run at Stephen F. Austin State University with two final shows this week. The children's show, featuring Mesquite junior Zaria Harp (left) as Ivy and Chandler senior Jessica Benson as Bean, is at 2 p.m. Thursday, July 13, and at 6:30 p.m. Friday, July 14, in W.M. Turner Auditorium on the SFA campus. General admission tickets are $7.50. For tickets or more information, visit or call (936) 468-6407 or (888) 240-ARTS.

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  • SFA students travel to France for Cannes International Film Festival

    SFA students travel to France for Cannes International Film Festival

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    Stephen F. Austin State University students from the hospitality administration and filmmaking programs traveled to France to participate in the 70th Cannes International Film Festival. During their trip, students also visited the Château De Bellet vineyard.

    July 5, 2017—University Marketing Communications

    Lights. Camera. Cannes.

    Stephen F. Austin State University students from the hospitality administration and filmmaking programs traveled to France in May to participate in the 70th Cannes International Film Festival, which celebrates cinematographic art with various red-carpet events, workshops, seminars, film screenings and more.

    SFA students worked at the American Pavilion, the center of activity at the festival for the American film community, and networked and engaged in various experiential-learning opportunities.

    "Being able to network with like-minded people from around the country helps people become better filmmakers," said Sophie Watson, senior film major from London, England. "Working the film festival also helped with career development for us as filmmakers because this is another way to get our foot in the door."

    Dr. Gina Fe Causin, assistant professor in SFA's School of Human Sciences, coordinated this experience and also attended the festival.

    "Experiences like this open the students' eyes to how the hospitality and film industries function, and it also presents students with opportunities and possibilities for after graduation," Causin said.

    During the festival, students worked a fundraising event at the American Pavilion, participated in setting up and breaking down areas for various events, attended film screenings, walked the red carpet and more.

    "I learned there is a realm of fields within hospitality and that the list of potential careers is endless," said Alexandra Powell, Round Rock senior hospitality administration major. "I also learned how to flip a venue for an event and all of the behind-the-scenes work that goes into it."

    Jade Godoy, Huffman senior hospitality administration major, said traveling to Cannes encouraged her to get out of her comfort zone and try new things.

    "I never thought I would get the chance to visit France and attend the Cannes Film Festival. I wanted to get the most out of my experience, so I made sure to see and do as much as I could," Godoy said.

    When students weren't working the pavilion, they had free time to enjoy the festival.

    "I loved the film screenings," Godoy said. "It was amazing to see the film industry from a different perspective, plus walking the red carpet was pretty magical."

    Tori Rice, a film major from Austin, had her short film "Helpless" accepted into the Short Film Corner of the festival.

    "Once I got to Cannes, I quickly realized there was more to it than just having my film accepted into the short corner. I had access to private parties and special events," Rice said. "I also enjoyed meeting producers and directors. It was great to see industry professionals become more interested in me as a filmmaker and not just as a student."

    Additionally, Rice's and Watson's short films were featured in the American Pavilion Short Film Showcase.

    "This experience reminded me that making it big in the film industry will take time," Watson said. "It taught me you should not be afraid to make that introduction, that phone call or that jump that could propel you to meet someone who could benefit your career in the long run."

    Of course, it wouldn't be show business without celebrity sightings. The group saw many celebrities, including Elton John, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Karen Allen, Spike Lee, Barry Jenkins, Brittany Snow and Faye Dunaway.

    Outside of the festival, students traveled to the Château de Bellet vineyard, the medieval village of Éze, France, and Ventimiglia, Italy.

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