Rooms in Robinson Auditorium to be named after nine Arkansas artists | Rock Candy

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Rooms in Robinson Auditorium to be named after nine Arkansas artists

Posted By on Thu, Oct 13, 2016 at 11:08 AM

Nine Little Rock artists and patrons deemed by the Little Rock Convention & Visitors Bureau as having made "a lasting impact through their contribution to the arts," as CVB President and CEO Gretchen Hall stated, are to be honored with rooms named after them in the newly renovated Robinson Auditorium. (Though the Little Rock CVB's press release announces the rooms are to be named after "nine prominent Little Rock natives," it should be noted that William Grant Still was born in Woodsville, Miss., and grew up in Little Rock. Lawrence Hamilton was born in Ashdown, Ark. and grew up in Foreman, Ark. and Stella Boyle Smith, who was born in Farmington, Miss., moved to Little Rock in 1922.)

Those individuals, named in a press conference this morning following remarks from Hall and from Little Rock Advertising and Promotion Commission Chair Capi Peck, are as follows:
click to enlarge Gail Davis as Annie Oakley
  • Gail Davis as Annie Oakley

Meeting Room A will be named after Gail Davis (b. 1925). Davis, an inductee into the National Cowgirl Hall of Fame who starred in 32 feature films, gained fame as the pigtailed sharpshooter in the TV Western series "Annie Oakley," which ran from 1954-1956. 


Lawrence Hamilton
  • Lawrence Hamilton

Meeting Room B will be named after Lawrence Hamilton (b. 1954 in Ashdown, Ark.). Hamilton, the former director of the Philander Smith College Choir, spent his career as a Broadway performer, vocal coach and music director. He performed at the Vatican for Pope John Paul II and for President Reagan at the White House.

Art Porter, Sr.
  • Art Porter, Sr.

Meeting Room C will be named after Art Porter, Sr. (b. 1934) and his son Art Porter, Jr. (b. 1961). Porter, Sr., a jazz pianist who taught at Parkview High School and Philander Smith College, influenced the musical life of President Bill Clinton, who later introduced the "Art Porter Bill," which allowed underage musicians like the young Art Porter, Jr. to play in night clubs if chaperoned by a legal guardian. 

Art Porter, Jr.
  • Art Porter, Jr.

Meeting Room D will be named after Ben Piazza (b. 1933), the Broadway director, actor and playwright who starred in films ranging from "The Blues Brothers," "Endgame" and "The Hanging Tree," and appeared on television in episodes of "The Twilight Zone," "Gunsmoke" and "Dallas." 
click to enlarge Ben Piazza
  • Ben Piazza

The Grand Ballroom is to be named after Dr. William Grant Still (b.1895 in Woodville, Miss.), the composer of "The Afro-American Symphony," the first symphony written by an African-American to be performed by a major orchestra. Still also composed "Troubled Island," an opera with a libretto by Langston Hughes that was debuted by the New York City Opera in 1949.

click to enlarge Dr. William Grant Still
  • Dr. William Grant Still

The registration area outside the ballroom will commemorate the contributions of Florence Price (b. 1887), a contemporary of Still's who became the first African-American woman to write a symphony that would be performed by a major symphony orchestra, "Symphony in E Minor," performed in 1933 by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. 
click to enlarge Florence Price
  • Florence Price

The terrace that overlooks the Arkansas River is to be named after Stella Boyle Smith (b. 1893), the founder of the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra and of a charitable trust that provides scholarships to aspiring students of music in Arkansas. 

Finally, the Patron's Lounge and VIP area adjacent to the auditorium's performance hall is to be named after Barry Travis (b. 1937), the former Little Rock CVB director who retired in 2006 after a 35-year career with the bureau. 


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

From the ArkTimes store

Favorite

Comments

Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

More by Stephanie Smittle

Readers also liked…

  • Federal judge wants John Goodson to explain class action maneuvering

    A show-cause order filed Monday by federal Judge P.K. Holmes of Fort Smith indicates class action attorney John Goodson has some explaining to do about the move of a class action complaint against an insurance company from federal to state court with an instant pre-packaged settlement that has been criticized as a windfall for Goodson.
    • Dec 22, 2015
  • Judge anticipates punishment of lawyers in Fort Smith class action case

    Federal Judge P.K. Holmes of Fort Smith issued a 32-page ruling yesterday indicating he contemplates punishment of 16 lawyers who moved a class action lawsuit against an insurance company out of his court to a state court in Polk County after a settlement had been worked out.
    • Apr 15, 2016
  • John Goodson and others add lawyers for hearing on forum shopping

    Lawyers facing federal court sanctions for forum shopping a class action insurance case have brought in new legal guns from out of state to fight potential sanctions.
    • May 26, 2016

Most Shared

Most Recent Comments

Blogroll

 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation