News release
Public Information Office  SLU 10880  Hammond, LA 70402  phone: 985-549-2341  fax: 985-549-2061

Contact: Christina Chapple
Date: 7/1/02
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MISSOULA RETURNS TO SLU FANFARE -- The Missoula Children's Theatre, a favorite with fans of Southeastern Louisiana University's Fanfare celebration, will return to the annual arts festival with a performance of "The Adventures of Hans Christian Andersen" at 2 p.m., October 12, at the Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts. 

A BEAUTIFUL MIND AUTHOR -- Sylvia Nasar, a professor of business at Columbia University, former New York Times economics correspondent, and author of the acclaimed autobiography of John Nash that inspired the 2002 Oscar-winning film, "A Beautiful Mind," will speak to Southeastern Louisiana University Fanfare audiences at 7:30 p.m., October 21, at the Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts.

INNOVATIVE CHAMBER MUSIC -- Cellist Yo Yo Ma has proclaimed the Turtle Island String Quartet "to be a unified voice that truly breaks new ground--authentic and passionate." The innovative musicians combine a variety of music styles to create completely new musical textures and forms. TISQ will perform at 7:30 p.m., October 23, at the Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts during Fanfare, Southeastern Louisiana University's annual fall arts festival.

     HAMMOND -- The author whose award-winning biography inspired an Oscar-winning film, the timeless appeal of Celtic music, a hot ballet version of a Tennessee Williams' classic ... and "Elvis" in the building. Those are just some of the highlights of Southeastern Louisiana University's Fanfare 2002.
     Now in its 17th season, the university's annual arts festival is entering a new era with the opening of the Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts in downtown Hammond. The addition of the beautifully renovated theater, which boasts a 900-seat performance hall and state-of-the-art technical capabilities, as a Fanfare venue means even bigger and better entertainment for the festival's campus and community fans, said Donna Gay Anderson, artistic director of Columbia/Fanfare.
     "This year marks Fanfare's 17th birthday, which is a clear indicator that the public supports and appreciates the value of the arts in our society," said Anderson. "We are continuing our tradition of offering world class performers and speakers at affordable prices, while also reaching into the regions schools to encourage our children to explore and delight in creative arts."
     Since its inception in 1986, Fanfare has had a "festival within the festival" just for children, offering area schools a wealth of matinees, master classes, and personal visits by guests artists. This year, more than 5,400 young people are expected to participate in Fanfare education outreach events by artists such as the Missoula Children's Theatre, North Carolina Dance Theatre, Turtle Island String Quartet and the Aquila Theatre Company.
     "Our music performances this year range from country to jazz to classical to Celtic," Anderson added, "and we are excited that our anchor speaker is the author of 'A Beautiful Mind,' Sylvia Nasar."                    
     Nasar, who is a professor of business at Columbia University and a former New York Times economics correspondent, wrote the acclaimed autobiography of John Nash that inspired the 2002 Oscar-winning film, "A Beautiful Mind." Her topic for her Fanfare lecture at the Columbia Theatre will be "A Beautiful Mind: Genius, Madness, Reawakening."
     Anderson said the 2002 Fanfare schedule also includes:
       Fanfare's traditional kick-off -- a free Brown Bag Concert in Hammond's Cate Square on September 27. That evening Hammond radio station KAJUN 107.1 will join the Fanfare schedule as host of the local edition of the world's biggest country music talent showcase, the Colegate/True Value Country Showdown.
      Concerts at the Columbia by two groups famed for Celtic music. The seven-piece ensemble Ceili Rain -- "Ceili," pronounced "Kay-lee," is a Gaelic word meaning "a party with live music and dancing" --  blends hard-driving rock guitar with traditional Celtic sounds to create "Celtic music for a pop/rock palate." Also on the schedule are fiddler Martin Hayes and guitarist Dennis Cahill, who meld overtones of jazz, new age, country and rock to the charm and beauty of traditional Irish music.
      Turtle Island String Quartet, a chamber music group that blend folks and bluegrass, swing jazz, be-bop, funk and R&B, rock and hip-hop, bossa nova and salsa to create new musical textures and forms.
      The Jordanaires, who played with Elvis Presley on his first RCA recording sessions and on virtually every recording he made through 1970. The singing legends have been together for half a century, but longevity hasn't dimmed their talents. They will be joined by Ponchatoula's Brandon Bennett, who placed second in the 2000 "Images of Elvis," the youngest contestant to ever place in the "Elvis-clone" contest.
      For families, a day of fun activities at Hammond Square Mall; the Missoula Children's Theatre's musical version, starring local children, of  fairytales and stories of Hans Christian Andersen; and "Tales & Scales," a unique troupe that spins music, story, theatre and dance into an unforgettable performance called "musictelling."
      The Aquila Theatre Company, one of the foremost producers of touring classical theatre, presenting Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream," and Southeastern Theatre's production of"Our Town." Presented in honor of the grand re-opening of Southeastern's Vonnie Borden Theatre, the Thornton Wilder drama was the theater's curtain opener in 1970.
      The North Carolina Dance Theatre's ballet version of Tennessee Williams' "A Streetcar Named Desire," and Southeastern Danceworks' "Sleepwalker Nocturne," an original work that portrays a young woman's attempts to hold on to love, regardless of the obstacles.
      "Divas," starring Big Easy Award nominated actress and vocalist Troi Bechet in a musical theater tribute to great women of jazz such as Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald, Peggy Lee, and Sarah Vaughn; and "Tres Vidas," the acclaimed CORE Ensemble's music theater piece celebrating the lives of three powerful Latin American women.
      Lectures by screenwriter Loraine Despres, an Amite native who penned the "Who Shot JR?" episode of the television series "Dallas"; and Julian Brazier, a member of Britain's House of Commons. 
      "The Telephone" and "The Medium," Southeastern Opera-Music Theatre's double bill of comedy and tragedy by the Pulitzer Prize winning composer and librettist Gian-Carlo Menotti.
     An entertaining and eclectic lecture series sponsored by the Department of History and Political Science featuring three award-winning Southeastern professors, two visiting historians  -- and the return of the ever-popular "Togaman," English professor Wade Heaton.
      A film series devoted to motion pictures based on works by Jane Austen, and the debut of "Wild Kingdom," a new film by Alan Marsh, who won a national award for his Fanfare 2001 movie, "Wish."
      As community participants, Amite's annual "Explosion of the Arts"; Sweet Home Baptist Church's celebration of African-American folkways and heritage; the unique Hungarian Settlement Celebration, featuring authentic foods and dancing; a performance of Shakespeare's "The Merchant of Venice" in Covington, and a new festival celebrating quilt-making in Ponchatoula. 
      Performances by flute virtuosos Brooks de Wetter-Smith and Antonio Carrasqueira, along with pianist Maria Jos‚ Carrasqueira; the internationally acclaimed Centenary Choir; pianist and Southeastern graduate Lucien Zidaru and actor Bill Haley in an evening of music and poetry; and the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra's always popular "Picnic 'n Pops." 
      Concerts by the Southeastern Wind Symphony, featuring guest conductor Timothy Muffitt of the Baton Rouge Symphony Orchestra; and the Southeastern Chamber Orchestra, featuring a night of Russian classics with award-winning violinist Ilya Kalen as guest soloist. 
      Exhibits by Caroline Durieux, one of Louisiana's most important artists; the National League of American Pen Women; Southeastern faculty artists; and -- in conjunction with Ponchatoula's Great Invitational Quilt Expos, Ponchatoula artists at the Louisiana Furniture Gallery.
     Fanfare tickets will be on sale this year at the Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts box office, 220 E. Thomas Street. The box office, 985-543-4371, will be open from noon to 5 p.m., beginning September 16. 
     For a 2002 Fanfare brochure and ticket order form or for additional information about Fanfare events, call the SLU Public Information Office, 985-549-2341, or email Fanfare brochures will be available in September. Fanfare information will also be available online at