The School of the Arts at Samford University has an exciting season planned which includes the annual Davis Architects Guest Artist Series, the Emma Taylor Theatre for Youth Series, the Michael J. and Mary Anne Freeman Theatre and Dance Series, the Dr. Chandler and Jane Paris Smith Opera Series, an Art and Design Series highlighting one of Alabama’s most notable artists—Thornton Dial—and close to 100 student ensemble and faculty events. A full calendar of events can be found at Samford.edu/arts/events.
Each year, the official season opens with the Faculty Gala which will take place Sept. 13 in Brock Recital Hall. This event is sponsored by Ann and Howard Holt. Other faculty to perform throughout the year include Joel Scott Davis, Brian Viliunas, Cindy St. Clair, Sadie Goodman, Brad Diamond, Michael Averett and the Samford String Quartet.
The Davis Series, which is in partnership with the Birmingham Chamber Music Society, will feature five performances including euphonium player Demondrae Thurman with pianist Kathryn Fouse on Sept. 22, SPA Trio on Oct. 6, violinist Itamar Zorman with pianist Adam Golka on Jan. 24, pianist Spencer Myer on Feb. 9, and cellist Camille Thomas on April 11. All events will be in Brock Recital Hall at 7:30 p.m. There will be a pre-concert reception for the SPA Trio event and a pre-concert lecture for the Zorman concert, both starting at 7 p.m.
The theatre season will begin with the Emma Taylor Theatre for Youth’s performance of Orphie and the Book of Heroes, Sept. 30-Oct. 2 in Harrison Theatre. The Freeman series launches with Mr. Burns, a Post-Electric Play taking place on the Boren Courtyard Stage on Oct. 27-30. The spring season will include the annual dance concert Feb. 9-12, The Birds March 16-19, and conclude with Urinetown, the musical April 13-16.
The Art and Design Series started this summer with “Good on Paper”, works by printmakers Liz Chalfin and Noah Breuer. The exhibition coincided with the inaugural Alabama Printmaking Conference in partnership with PaperWorkers Local. It will run until Sept. 8. “I, Too, Am Thornton Dial”, Sept. 15-Dec. 2, is a partnership exhibit with Abroms-Engel Institute for the Visual Arts at the University of Alabama at Birmingham and the Wiregrass Museum to present the first Alabama solo exhibition for the late Thornton Dial Sr. Curated by Paul Barrett, the presentation at Samford focuses on Dial's works on paper. The president of the White House Historical Association, Stewart McLaurin, will speak at Samford on Oct. 20 at 7 p.m. in Brock Recital Hall. Graphic design student work will be on display at the end of the fall semester. In the spring, the exhibit “Mother Nature/Mother Nurture” will run Jan. 12-Feb 23, followed by the Art and Design Student Showcase March 16-April 6 and the Studio Art Seniors exhibit April 13-29.
The Smith Opera Series will present Amahl and the Night Visitors for Samford’s holiday production running Dec. 1-4 in Harrison Theatre. This event is sponsored by Elouise Williams. Opera students will also present their annual workshop in the spring.
Student ensembles will perform in the fall and the spring including the Samford Orchestra, Jazz Band, Wind Ensemble, Commercial Music Ensemble LAKESHORE, A Cappella Choir, University Chorale, Marching Band, Chamber Ensembles and the Worship Arts Ensemble.
The Wright Center will also host several events including Samford alumnus and magician David Garrard on Sept. 22, Sozo Children’s Choir on Sept. 27, several Alabama Symphony Orchestra concerts, the Birmingham Boys Choir Christmas Concert on Dec. 12 and Opera Birmingham's Sounds of the Season on Dec. 19. For more information and ticket links to these events visit Samford.edu/wrightcenter.