University of Arkansas Commits to Becoming an All-Steinway School

Purchase of pianos will take music program to new level

Thursday, March 18, 2010
Pianist Jura Margulis at the keyboard of a Steinway concert piano.

Pianist Jura Margulis at the keyboard of a Steinway concert piano.

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – The University of Arkansas has made a commitment to becoming an All-Steinway School, providing students and faculty with the highest quality pianos for instruction and performance. As the third institution in the Southeastern Conference and one of only 113 colleges and universities in the world to attain this honor, the university will acquire all Steinway brand pianos, which are the preferred instruments of more than 99 percent of the concert artists worldwide.

“Steinway pianos open up new worlds of sound,” said Jura Margulis, holder of the Emily J. McAllister Endowed Professorship in Piano. “I’m excited to watch these instruments spark our students’ imaginations and transform their performances.”

The university has long demonstrated a passion for the arts. Visual and performing arts are an integral part of the campus spirit and a key component of the university’s deep connection to its community. Students, faculty and alumni perform around the country and throughout the world, sharing their talents and representing the excellence of the institution.

Today, University of Arkansas faculty teach more than 315 music majors and minors in the J. William Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences, all of whom must have proficiencies in piano and be supported by trained piano accompanists. Providing students and faculty members with exceptional equipment allows for the best instruction possible. Thus, the University of Arkansas has committed to becoming an All-Steinway School.

“Our desire to develop and nurture current students’ and faculty members’ talents as they become the best they can be is only enhanced by providing them with the finest resources in their fields,” said University of Arkansas Chancellor G. David Gearhart. “We aim to recruit the top music students across the country and around the world as well as the most gifted musicians available to teach our students, and we now know that they will be training and performing on the highest quality pianos available. This initiative truly takes our university and our offerings to a new level of excellence. I am proud to be a part of the University of Arkansas during such an exciting time.”

Becoming an All-Steinway School will cost the University of Arkansas $1.3 million, all of which will be raised through private support. To date, $200,000 has been raised. In addition to gifts from individual benefactors, undesignated gifts received through the Chancellor’s Society — a program that recognizes alumni and friends who make a significant annual commitment to the future of the university — may be directed to this initiative.

“It is time that we grow, strengthen and promote the talents of our students and faculty by producing more quality arts productions that earn the university a solid reputation for hosting programs that enrich, enlighten and entertain our campus and communities,” said Bill Schwab, dean of Fulbright College. “ Being an All-Steinway School will swiftly move our reputation forward for administering quality arts programs, particularly in music.”

Contacts:

Danielle Strickland, manager of advancement communications
University Relations
479-575-7346, strick@uark.edu

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