Opera Star and Emory & Henry Alumnus, Michael Austin, Highlights Fall Season at McGlothlin Center for the Arts

by Billy Chandler

A performance by renowned international opera star Michael Austin highlights the fall season of the McGlothlin Center for the Arts at Emory & Henry College.

Austin, a 1975 graduate of Emory & Henry, will perform Sunday, Oct. 15, at 3 p.m. on the Kennedy-Reedy stage. At that time, he also will be honored with the College’s first Legacy of the Arts Award, which recognizes artists, performers and others who have, through their talents and contributions, extended the E&H reputation for arts excellence.

Austin is one of three guest performing artists who will entertain this fall at the McGlothlin Center for the Arts.

On Friday, Sept. 15, Guilherme Andreas, flutist, and Gianne Ge Zhu, pianist, will perform “Romantic Brazilian Music for Flute and Piano.” The performance, which begins at 7:30 p.m. in the Kennedy-Reedy Theatre, narrates the tale of romantic classical music in Brazil, representing diverse voices.

The third guest performance will be provided Friday, Nov. 3, by Nic Gareiss and Allison de Groot. The duo, two of the finest contemporary exponents of banjo and percussive dance sound, will perform “The Thrill,” which is drawn from the influences of the late Hobart Smyth, an old-time musician and dancer from Marion, Va. The program begins at 7:30 p.m. in the Kennedy-Reedy Theatre.

A native of Wytheville, Austin pursued music studies at the Academy of Vocal Arts and the Julliard School of Music after graduating from Emory & Henry. His talent earned him an Outstanding Apprentice Artist at the Santa Fe Opera Festival.

Later he would be recognized internationally for his exceptional portrayal of Otello, becoming the first African-American tenor to sing the role in a U.S. opera house.

Currently residing in Berlin, Austin has toured the world. In 2023-24, he will perform 25 concerts throughout Asia.

Tickets for the Austin concert are $40. Tickets for other guest performances are $25. Tickets are available by calling 276-944-6333 or by going online to www.ehc.edu/mca/tickets.


McGlothlin Center for the Arts

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