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Fowler Center has New Director, Dr. Wendy Hymes


Dr. Wendy Hymes, an accomplished musician and arts administrator, has assumed her duties as director of Fowler Center at Arkansas State University, according to Dr. Don Bowyer, dean of the College of Fine Arts.

She will have administrative responsibility for the Fowler Center Series and general oversight of the Fowler Center, which is utilized throughout the year for College of Fine Arts presentations and a variety of other university and community activities.

The series opener for the 2012-13 season is “Piano Men,” starring Jim Witter, on Tuesday, Sept. 25, at 7:30 p.m. in Riceland Hall.

“The Fowler Center is such an incredible intersection of the arts, and I love being part of a university community, especially a vibrant one like ASU,” Dr. Hymes said.  "Besides the incredible music here, it's a privilege to be in a facility with a renowned art gallery and state-of-the-art theater."

Her research for her doctoral dissertation, “African Art Music for Flute: Selected Works by African Composers” resulted in her production of her first solo CD, “African Art Music for Flute,” on which she performs with pianist Darryl Hollister. 

Her recent article in the Flutist Quarterly, a journal of the National Flute Association, reflects her professional interest in bringing new musical styles to the forefront of classical music.

“Dr. Hymes is a perfect fit for our program, combining her backgrounds in arts administration and performance,” said Dr. Don Bowyer, dean of the College of Fine Arts.  “The programs at the Fowler Center are an important part of our mission as a college, providing performances and exhibitions that greatly enhance the education of our students while also providing vital cultural opportunities for the entire region.”

The Missouri native earned her doctor of musical arts degree from Louisiana State University after completing a master of music degree at Indiana University and her bachelor of arts in music at Principia College in Elsah, Ill. Her research interests include intercultural music, flute traditions from around the world, and chamber music by diverse world composers.

Dr. Hymes has served on the music faculties at Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville, Jefferson College in Missouri, and Louisiana State University.  Her specialties are flute, flute pedagogy, music appreciation, music for children, and arts administration.

Previously, she was director of development for African Musical Arts Inc. and served on the board of the Flute Society of St. Louis. As a musician, she enjoys collaborating with contemporary composers and has premiered more than 30 works on the international stage at venues in Brazil, England, Ghana, Nigeria and Togo.

She has performed with the Intercultural Music Initiative Chamber Players, Synchronia, Musaica, the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra, the Union Avenue Opera, the St. Louis Philharmonic and the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra.

Her flute can be heard on recordings with organist Lucius Weathersby, bassist Bill Grimes, harpist Amy Camie, and the St. Louis Women's Chorale.  She also made three recordings of African choral music as a singer with the St. Louis African Chorus. Her professional affiliations include the National Flute Association, Chorus America, and the National Association of Music Education.

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