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

Contact: Christina Chapple
Date: 6/14/02
Click on image for publication quality photo
CUTLINE ... MOVING INTO THE COLUMBIA -- Donna Gay Anderson, artistic director of Southeastern Louisiana University's Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts/Fanfare, and secretary Betsy Creel unload supplies at their new offices at the Columbia. The staff, previously housed on campus in the Pottle Music Building Annex, moved into new offices in the downtown Hammond theatre on Monday, June 10. While the move means more space and convenience, it also means new telephone numbers. Columbia/Fanfare staff can now be reached at 985-543-4366 (phone), 985-543-4369 (fax) and 985-543-4371 (box office).

     HAMMOND -- Last Monday (June 10) was moving day for the Southeastern Louisiana University staff of the Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts/Fanfare.
     The six-member crew that now runs both the newly-renovated downtown theater and Southeastern's 17-year-old October arts festival have transferred from two crowded rooms on campus in the Pottle Music Building Annex to more spacious digs at the theatre on the corner of East Thomas and Cherry Streets.
     Artistic Director Donna Gay Anderson; Keiron Couret, associate director for programming; and secretary Betsy Creel are settling into the Columbia's administrative office area, which is tucked behind the box office in the theater's east lobby. Private offices for Anderson and Couret open off a larger general work area, where Creel presides over the phone, supervises student workers, and "buzzes in" the visitors who come to the office entrance, which is on Cherry St.
     Pamela Mills, associate director for development and marketing, and accounting specialist Barbara Fredrick are occupying new offices off the building's west lobby, while Pete Pfeil, associate director for operations and production, is conveniently close to the stage inan office in the building's southwest corner,.
     Last week, the staff was adjusting to daily mail runs to campus, new telephone and fax numbers, and work spaces still cluttered with unpacked supplies. But they were finding the transition from the campus to the Columbia "quite pleasant," Anderson said.
     "We really were cramped for space in Pottle," she said. "Even when we were housed on campus, there were still a lot of places we had to drive to anyway. So many of our supporters are right here (in downtown Hammond). Already, we've been able to just walk down the street to meet with Fanfare sponsors."
     "Although we now reside in downtown Hammond, we still proudly wave the Southeastern flag," she added.
     The moving tasks have not stopped the staffs' preparations for the Columbia's next event -- a concert by legendary bluesman Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown at 7:30 p.m. on July 3 -- or for the 2002 Fanfare season, which gets underway on September 27 with the traditional brown bag jazz concert at Cate Square.
     Gatemouth Brown tickets will go on sale June 26, when ticket manager Lek Hebert and assistant Barbara Bankston will begin manning the box office from noon to 5 p.m. on weekdays. Prior to June 26, tickets can be purchased online at
     Anderson said tickets for Fanfare 2002 events will be available beginning September 16.
     "As the anchor festival of the Columbia Theatre, Fanfare is intact and stronger than ever," she said. "Although many of its performances will be presented in Columbia, some of them will remain on campus. This way, we can reach more students and patrons than ever."
     Fanfare 2002 events include concerts by the seven-piece Celtic ensemble Ceili Rain, Irish fiddle-guitar duo Martin Hayes and Dennis Cahill, and the acclaimed chamber music group, the Turtle Island String Quartet. The Columbia will also house the North Carolina Dance Theatre's ballet version of "A Street Car Named Desire," "A Midsummer Night's Dream" by Aquila Theatre Company and a lecture by Sylvia Nasar, author of the biography that inspired the Oscar-winning film "A Beautiful Mind." 
     Family entertainment includes the popular Missoula Children's Theatre, which will cast local children in "The Adventures of Hans Christian Andersen" and Tales & Scales, an ensemble that has coined the word "musictelling" to describe its blend of music, stories, theatre and dance.
     The new telephone number for the Columbia/Fanfare staff is 985-543-4366, while the fax number is 985-543-4369 and the box office number is 985-543-4371. Email addresses remain the same.