Stephen F. Austin State University

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SFA College of Fine Arts announces 2016-2017 University Series

July 27, 2016 - Robbie Goodrich
Big Head Todd and the Monsters lead the Big Head Blues Club, along with second-generation blues stars Mud Morganfield, Billy Branch and Ronnie Baker Brooks, in a tribute to one of the most influential songwriters of early rock and roll in presenting "The Songs of Willie Dixon" in a College of Fine Arts' University Series event at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 13, in W.M. Turner Auditorium on the SFA campus.
NACOGDOCHES, Texas - The College of Fine Arts at Stephen F. Austin State University continues its tradition of bringing professional artists to East Texas in presenting five national touring acts in the 2016-2017 University Series.

This fascinating mix of performance art features a famous British actor performing the works of a Nobel Prize-winning playwright and poet, a Celtic Christmas celebration and a Dutch vocal ensemble performing a repertoire that covers more than five centuries.

"We round out the series by paying tribute to one of the pillars of modern blues and showcasing the music of America's top female brass quintet," said John W. Goodall, associate dean of the College of Fine Arts and director of the series.

"Designed to bring quality fine arts experiences to East Texas, the series consists of five highly acclaimed professional touring groups," Goodall said. "This year's series offers a wide range of artistic talent, from dance to music to theater.

"From a Celtic Christmas performance to a tribute to blues great Willie Dixon, it's going to be another great season, and one our loyal University Series patrons, and newcomers alike, will not want to miss," he said.

The season opens Thursday, Sept. 15, with extraordinary British actor Julian Sands presenting "A Celebration of Harold Pinter," directed by John Malkovich. Sands was approached in 2005 by the Nobel Prize-winning playwright and poet to prepare a set of Pinter's poems for a special presentation in London. This extraordinary collaboration evolved into this wonderfully humorous and fascinating solo show nominated for a 2013 Drama Desk Award. This performance is sponsored in part by Commercial Bank of Texas.

If you're a fan of Muddy Waters and Bo Diddley, or even Led Zeppelin, Jimi Hendrix and The Rolling Stones, then you've heard the songs of Willie Dixon. On Thursday, Oct. 13, Big Head Blues Club comes to Turner Auditorium to celebrate the legendary songwriter. Big Head Todd and the Monsters join forces with three second-generation blues stars, Mud Morganfield, Billy Branch and Ronnie Baker Brooks, to pay tribute to one of the most influential songwriters of early rock and roll in presenting "The Songs of Willie Dixon." This performance is sponsored in part by Lehmann Eye Center.

Acclaimed Irish ensemble Danu´ celebrates Christmas at SFA with "Fe´ile Na Nollag" (A Christmas Gathering) on Friday, Dec. 16. Celtic music lovers around the globe have been thrilled by their virtuoso players on fiddle, flutes, button accordion, percussion and the gorgeous voice of Nell Ni´ Chro´ini´n, along with top-notch guest dancers. This performance is sponsored in part by Nacogdoches Medical Center.

A radiant, charismatic quintet comprised of America's top female brass players, Seraph Brass will perform on Tuesday, Jan. 24. The quintet is committed to challenging audiences with engaging and exciting programming, presenting a diverse body of repertoire that includes original transcriptions, newly commissioned works and well-known classics. This performance is sponsored in part by Cataract, Glaucoma & Retina Consultants of East Texas/Benchmark Optical.

The series concludes with a performance of the Olga Vocal Ensemble on Thursday, Feb. 2. Hailing from the land of tulips, wooden shoes and windmills, the Dutch vocal ensemble Olga creates pure musical joy from five distinct but harmonious voices. With their red kettle mascot, these men are ready to conquer every heart with their powerful and charming presentation that combines enthusiasm, humor and drama with genuine vocal clarity that enchants both young and old. This performance is sponsored in part by BancorpSouth.

Season tickets for the complete 2016-2017 University Series go on sale Aug. 1 and are $100 for adults, $80 for seniors and $40 for students. Single event ticket prices are $25 for adults, $20 for seniors and $10 for non-SFA students/youth. Tickets for SFA students are $3.

"These are fantastic prices for quality entertainment," 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 or any of the other performances presented through the College of Fine Arts can be made beginning Monday, Aug. 15.

For more information on the 2016-2017 University Series, visit finearts.sfasu.edu, stop by the Box Office in Room 211 of the Griffith Fine Arts Building, or call (936) 468-6407 or (888) 240-ARTS. All performances are at 7:30 p.m. in Turner Auditorium, which is also located in the Griffith Fine Arts Building, 2222 Alumni Drive.

For a complete schedule of all College of Fine Arts events in art, music and theatre, visit finearts.sfasu.edu.