Welcome to Arkansas State University!

News Article

Benefit Recital in Support of Students Attending OperaMaya


JONESBORO – Two recent graduates from the Department of Music at Arkansas State University will participate in OperaMaya Summer Festival.

Dennese Adkins, soprano, and Meagan Conley, trumpet, will present a benefit recital this evening at the Chancellor's Residence in Jonesboro.  Dr. Lauren Schack Clark, professor of music, will be collaborative pianist for the concert.  A reception for guests will follow.

During the spring semester, OperaMaya general director Mary Grogan made her third visit to the A‑State campus for a master class and auditions.  Adkins and Conley were selected for the summer festival as a result of their auditions.

Conley studied with Dr. Chris Wilson, associate professor of trumpet, while working on the Bachelor of Music Education degree.  She also holds the Master of Music degree in trumpet performance from the University of Iowa and a professional performance certificate from Pennsylvania State University.

Adkins just graduated this past spring with a Bachelor of Music in vocal performance, and was a student of Dr. Marika Kyriakos, professor of music and department chair.

A-State has developed an affiliation with OperaMaya over the past three years with students participating since the summer of 2013.  In addition, Kyriakos will be on the voice faculty again this season after having enjoyed her first year during the summer festival of 2014. 

At the recital in Jonesboro, each student will share their background as their musical talents.  For details or to reserve seats, one may contact Kyriakos at mkyriakos@astate.edu or at (870) 972-3801.

Adkins, from Cabot, received a scholarship to participate in the OperaMaya Young Artist Program, which is an intensive summer program with a strong focus in performance.

Her experience at A-State has prepared her well for this endeavor with various roles in Opera Theatre.  This year she won second place in the National Association of Teachers of Singing region auditions and first place in the A-State Concerto Competition. 

Conley, originally from Lepanto, has received the top scholarship to play trumpet in the OperaMaya Summer Festival Orchestra this year.  The orchestra plays many concerts, and is not limited to operatic performances.  Conley joined the A-State music faculty this past year to teach trumpet part-time.

This year the OperaMaya faculty and participants will provide a performance tour in the Mexican Riviera, June 28 to July 12, staying in four different resorts.  An original composition catering to the Mayan culture is premiered each season.

# # #

Dennese Adkins
Dennese Adkins


Dr. Marika Kyriakos
Dr. Marika Kyriakos