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SOU partners with local arts

The new Oregon Center for the Arts at Southern Oregon University presents a full slate of arts events and performances Wednesday through Saturday, Nov. 12-15, to celebrate its opening on the Ashland campus.

The celebration begins with a concert by SOU's Jazz Collective titled “Old, New, Borrowed and Blue,” a performance of contemporary and upbeat modern jazz, at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 12, in the Music Recital Hall, off South Mountain Avenue. Admission is $10, $5 for seniors, and free for students.

The Chrysocolla Duo — sax player Idit Shner and harp player Linda-Rose Hembreiker — will present "That's When Their Troubles Began," a program of classical and jazz, at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 13, in the Music Hall. Admission is $10; free for students.

In the adjacent Theatre Arts Building, SOU's theater arts program will open playwright Peter Barnes' “Red Noses” at 8 p.m. in the Center Stage Theatre, while performances of playwright Adam Bock's "The Drunken City" continue in the building's smaller Center Square Theatre. "Red Noses" runs through Sunday, Nov. 23, and "The Drunken City" runs through Sunday, Nov. 16. Tickets cost $21, $18 for seniors and $6 for students.

The SOU Tutunov Piano Series, an annual series of classical concerts named after professor of piano and artist in residence Alexander Tutunov, will continue with concert pianist Francesco Nicolosi performing the work of Scarlatti, Mozart, Liszt and Thalberg at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 14, in the Music Hall. Nicolosi is artistic director of the Sigismund Thalbert International Piano Competition based in Naples, Italy. He performs in famous concert halls around the globe. Tickets cost $20 for reserved seating. Students get in free.

The week's activities will culminate at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 15, with a gala celebration featuring local arts partners Tutunov, the Rogue Valley Symphony, the Southern Oregon Repertory Singers and SOU's Chamber Choir.

“This special concert celebrates the opening of the new Oregon Center for the Arts at SOU, which trains, educates and presents Oregon artists,” said David Humphrey, director of the Oregon Center for the Arts at Southern Oregon University, in a press release. “Not only is it an important academic division at SOU, but it is a community partnership with artists and arts organizations locally and across the state of Oregon. The Gala Celebration Concert is a model of the center's collaboration with some of Oregon’s best concert artists and ensembles.” 

The Rogue Valley Symphony, under the direction of Martin Majkut, will present works by Copland, Tower and Gershwin. The symphony, the Southern Oregon Repertory Singers and SOU's Chamber Choir will combine, under the direction of Paul French, to present Ralph Vaughn Williams' "Serenade to Music," with text from "The Merchant of Venice," and Tutunov will perform the American classic "Rhapsody in Blue."

Tickets to the Gala Celebration Concert cost $46 for reserved seats, or $80 to include admission to the reception. Student tickets cost $10. 

Through Dec. 6, the Schneider Museum of Art will exhibit selections from “PORTLAND2014: A Biennial of Contemporary Art,” a collection of artwork that looks at Oregon visual artists who are defining and advancing the contemporary arts landscape. Museum hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Admission is $5 at the door.

The SOU Performing Arts box office is located in the Music Recital Hall lobby. Hours are noon to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and two hours before each performance. Tickets also can be purchased by calling 541-552-6348 or online at sou.edu/performingarts. Contact the box office for discounts offered to SOU alumni, Osher Lifelong Learning Institute participants and SNAP/Oregon Trail cardholders.

Conductor Martin Majkut will lead the Rogue Valley Symphony in a performance during the celebration of the Oregon Center of the Arts. Photo courtesy of SOU