NACOGDOCHES, Texas - The SFA Friends of Music will accept reservations through noon Monday, April 18, for Extravaganza 29, Stephen F. Austin State University School of Music's annual gala banquet. The event is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Friday, April 22, in the Grand Ballroom of SFA's Baker Pattillo Student Center.
This year's Extravaganza, "The Rising Stars of SFA," celebrates the 29th anniversary of the gala and fundraiser, which features gourmet dining, performances by student soloists and ensembles, and the presentation of student awards in an exciting evening of music, according to Dr. Gary Wurtz, interim director of the SFA School of Music.
"There is no better way to experience a cross section of what the SFA School of Music has to offer than at our annual Extravaganza," Wurtz said. "While enjoying a good meal, those in attendance hear performances by the top choir, band, orchestra, jazz band, student recitalists, opera performers, and more. Our fantastic students provide both dinner music and a dance to end the evening. It is really a lot of fun!"
Part music student awards ceremony, part formal dinner, and part musical potpourri, Extravaganza will feature jazz, harp, wind ensemble, choir, opera, string quartet and orchestra. Additional highlights include awarding the Outstanding Music Alumnus of the year and Outstanding Recitalists of the year.
As is tradition with Extravaganza, the music faculty has selected an outstanding alumnus to honor, and this year's recipient is George Faber of Tyler, director of visual and performing arts for Tyler ISD, as well as a very active and respected musician throughout East Texas. Faber has performed with such notables as Grammy Award-winning song writer and trumpet player Tom Browne, Ray Charles, Chubby Checker, Percy Sledge, Glen Campbell, Johnny Mathis, Lou Rawls, Bill Cosby, Charlie Daniels, The Statler Brothers, The Oakridge Boys, "Blue Lou" Marini of the Blues Brothers, Jon Faddis (director of the Carnegie Hall Jazz Band and former trumpet player with the Doc Severson Tonight Show Orchestra), Mark Mullins (trombonist for Harry Connick, Jr. and founder of the New Orleans-based group Bonerama), and many others.
The Extravaganza 29 committee includes John and Melinda Rohrer, co-chairs, Habiba Awan, Caryl and Harold Hall, Carolyn King, Dee Allums, Gloria and Cecil Settle, Gloria Williams, MaryAnn and Farrar Bentley and Ed Cole.
"The Extravaganza is a wonderful opportunity for our community to enjoy performances by the gifted students of the SFA School of Music," said Melinda Rohrer. "It is a fun event with excellent food and beautiful music."
This year's Friends of Music officers include Jackie Warthan, president; Caryl Hall, president-elect; Missy DeVine, secretary/treasurer; and Carrie Ventura, past president.
Tickets are $40 for adults and $10 for students. Patron level tickets range in prices from $65 to $140, and donations will be accepted for the Friends of Music scholarship fund. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit www.finearts.sfasu.edu.