Coles Support Performing Arts Center on Campus
$250,000 gift will be used for exceptional musical and theatrical facilityWednesday, March 20, 2013
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Nick and Carolyn W. Cole of Fayetteville are doing their part to enrich the cultural offerings of the university, thanks to a recent pledge to support the Jim and Joyce Faulkner Performing Arts Center. The couple is contributing $250,000 to the center, which will be in the renovated Old Field House on the University of Arkansas campus. Planned to seat more than 650 people, the facility will have a tremendous impact on the university’s performing arts programs and will become an exceptional showplace for musical and theatrical performances.
“We are most grateful to Nick and Carolyn for this wonderful gift,” said Chancellor G. David Gearhart. “They have a long history of supporting the university, and their love for the arts is apparent. This facility will greatly enhance the cultural opportunities for our students, faculty and staff, as well as the community and beyond. It is a very important initiative for us.”
Currently, on-campus musical performances are hosted in the 238-seat Stella Boyle Smith Concert Hall, and theatrical productions are staged in the 250-seat University Theatre. Both facilities are located in the Fine Arts Center, which was built more than six decades ago.
Upon completion, the new facility will host university musical groups such as the University Symphony Orchestra, Concert Band, Wind Symphony, Symphonic Band, Jazz Band, Schola Cantorum, Concert Choir and Master Chorale. Theatrical performances will be staged by the Music Theatre, Shakespeare Theatre and Boars Head Summer Theatre. The facility will also host the popular Summer Chamber Music Festival, the Miss Arkansas pageant and provide space for public lectures.
“I attended the University of Arkansas in the 1990s as a non-traditional student, and the experience was outstanding in every way,” said Carolyn. “Nick and I believe that what takes place on the U of A Fayetteville campus impacts Fayetteville, Northwest Arkansas, the entire state and beyond. We are pleased to take part in supporting the Faulkner Performing Arts Center.”
Nick and Carolyn Cole have a history of philanthropy at the university and are members of the Chancellor’s Society, Towers of Old Main and the Campaign Arkansas Steering Committee. Their previous gifts to the university have supported the Carolyn Walton Endowed Fund in Creative Writing and the Carolyn F. Walton Graduate Fellowship in Creative Writing, both in the J. William Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences. Carolyn holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in English from the Fulbright College. She is a life member of the Arkansas Alumni Association and a member of the Women’s Giving Circle.
Jennifer Holland, director of development communications
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