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Scenes from The University of Rhode Island

URI concert to celebrate the life of late URI president

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Proceeds to help establish Frank Newman Scholarship

KINGSTON, R.I. -- November 23, 2004 -- The University of Rhode Island will present a concert featuring the URI Symphonic Wind Ensemble and Concert Band to celebrate the life of Frank Newman, the eighth president of URI who died last spring. The concert will be held at the URI Fine Arts Center Concert Hall on Sunday, Dec. 12 at 3 p.m. Tickets are $8 for general admission, $2 for students and can be purchased at the door. The box office will open an hour before the performance.

The concert, in part, is a fundraising effort to establish the Frank Newman Scholarship Fund at URI.

Winnie Brownell, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, stated: “Frank Newman valued the arts, and as President, ensured that the students and the community had an opportunity to appreciate the visual and performing arts through more than 100 concerts, exhibitions, and performances each year.

Frank was known for his cheery visits to the rehearsals of student arts groups, especially the marching/concert band, which will be featured at the concert, added Brownell. He enjoyed the voice of the late Mary Langdon, a professor of music and an internationally renowned performing artist; and in recent years, he praised the beautiful voice of her former student Margaret Frazier. We are especially pleased, therefore, that Peggy, an instructor of voice at URI and a member of the Boston Camerata, will be singing the Pie Jesu of Andrew Lloyd-Webber, with the Symphonic Wind Ensemble as a special tribute to Frank.”

The concert program will begin with the Concert Band performing Suite Française by Darius Milhaud (1892-1974), O Magnum Mysterium by Morten Lauridsen (1943- ), Armenian Dances, Part 1 by Alfred Reed (1921- ), and Sleigh Ride by Leroy Anderson (1908-1975).

After a brief intermission, the Symphonic Wind Ensemble will perform Ride by Samuel Hazo (1966-), Second Suite in F for Band by Gustav Holst (1874-1934), Pie Jesu by Andrew Lloyd-Webber (1954-) featuring Margaret Frazier, soprano soloist. The concert will conclude with Four Colonial Country Dances by James Curnow (1945- ).

Newman was an influential figure in higher education policy since the 1970s. He was president of URI from 1974 to 1983. Historical records document milestones of his presidency including the commissioning of the RV Endeavor, the creation of the Center for Ocean Management Studies, the opening of the Watkins Lab, and the establishment of the Robotics Research Center and the Center for Atmospheric Chemistry. In 2002, URI named its admissions building, Newman Hall, in his honor.

Just prior to his presidency at URI, Newman chaired an eight-member panel to study the future direction of federal support for higher education. The panel published two studies, which came to be known as the Newman Reports. The reports called for vastly increased flexibility in access, financing for, and accreditation of colleges in America. It called the creation of new kinds of colleges to serve a student body more diverse in its needs.

After he left URI, Newman became president of the Education Commission of the States, a national organization, that advises states on education policy. More recently, he served as director of the Futures Project: Policy for Higher Education in a Changing World at Brown University.

Individuals who wish to contribute to the Frank Newman Scholarship Fund should contact Tom Zorabedian, Senior Development Officer at URI, at 874-2853.