MURRAY, Ky. — Music will literally fill the Carson Four Rivers Center in Paducah on Thursday, Sept. 25, during a free pops concert, “A Celebration of Music,” featuring student musicians from Murray State University’s department of music. A reception is scheduled for 6:30 p.m., with the concert beginning at 7:30 p.m.
Murray State’s Symphony Orchestra, the Concert Choir, the University Chorale, the Symphonic Wind Ensemble and the Racer Band will treat the audience to large-scale performances. Many of the university’s smaller ensembles — the Trumpet, Percussion, Piano and Flute Ensembles; the Guitar and Saxophone Quartets; the Racer Men’s Choir; and the MSU Jazz Orchestra — will take their performances into the aisles with audience members.
Well-recognized music such as The Star-Spangled Banner, The Battle Hymn of the Republic and Nearer My God to Thee joins classic standards by the masters including Bach’s Organ Fugue in G Minor and the jazzy, swinging, modern Why Can’t We Have Nice Things by Gordon Goodwin. This eclectic mix of music makes the concert accessible to music lovers of all tastes.
While the attendance to the concert is open to everyone, regional high school students and their musical directors, along with guidance counselors, are particularly encouraged to attend to get a feel for the breadth of musical opportunities available at Murray State University. The wide range of musical groups offer involvement both to students majoring in music and those whose study takes them to other areas of interest.
“At Murray State, all of our musical performance ensembles are open to all students on campus,” Dr. Pam Wurgler, chair of the department of music, noted. “We want to find students who had great high school musical experiences and get them involved in our many and varied college performing organizations. For instance, more than 60 percent of the Racer Marching Band members are majoring in areas other than music. Being able to sing or play an instrument in a college musical ensemble is a fantastic opportunity for all students.”
Dr. Bob Davies, Murray State president, will be on hand to bring greetings to the audience. Most recently, Davies spent a day in Paducah meeting with leaders in education and government, along with MSU area alumni.
The concert will last less than an hour, but hearing the exciting sounds of more than 350 student musicians from MSU as they bring Murray State to Paducah in a “Celebration of Music” will linger. This celebration strengthens the tie between the university, McCracken County and the MSU Paducah Regional Campus.
“Murray State University’s new Paducah Regional Campus opened in January 2014 and has already seen significant growth. The Paducah campus provides an assortment of educational endeavors and civic engagement opportunities in McCracken County, and we’re proud to be a part of the Paducah area,” Dr. Brian Van Horn, dean of MSU Center for Continuing Education and Academic Outreach, said.
A number of partners from Paducah/McCracken County joined Murray State to present the “Celebration of Music.” Supporting the event are Independence Bank, McCracken County, the City of Paducah and the Greater Paducah Economic Development Council, and from Murray State the offices of the president, regional outreach and development.
Danny Evitts, president of Independence Bank in Paducah, will present closing comments. “In 2009 Independence Bank sponsored this event — it was such a success and so enjoyable we made a commitment to bring this talent back to the Carson Center, and I am proud to say they are back,” noted Evitts. “The Murray State music department is renowned for developing young talent and now you can hear a brief sample of all that the department has to offer.
“Our community is so fortunate to have the MSU Paducah Regional Campus here,” Evitts continued. “The long tradition of providing affordable, highly recognized, award-winning educational programs continues with local access.”