Event supports students through Impact

By Victoria Winkelman

SMU’s Meadows School of the Arts will present its 28th annual “Meadows at the Meyerson” concert at 8 p.m. Tuesday, April 20 in the Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center, 2301 Flora St. in Dallas. The event will feature five works highlighting Latin American and Spanish music, performed by the critically acclaimed Meadows Symphony Orchestra under the direction of conductor Paul Phillips. The event supports talented Meadows students through the Meadows Impact Scholarship Fund.

Paul Phillips conducting the Meadows Symphony Orchestra at Meadows at the Meyerson.
Photos by Kim Leeson

While in-person tickets will not be publicly available due to the pandemic, the concert will be livestreamed, and virtual attendance is free. Advance registration to watch online is required; please visit https://blog.smu.edu/meadows/meyerson-2021/ to register.

The annual spring concert also honors a community leader. This year, the honoree is civic leader, philanthropist and alumna Mary Anne Sammons Cree, ’51. The honorary chair is Linda Perryman Evans, and the event chairs are Somer and Doyle Glass. SMU President R. Gerald Turner and Algur H. Meadows Dean Samuel Holland will provide remarks at the event.

The program opens with “Danzón No. 4” (1996) by Mexico City-based composer Arturo Márquez, the first musician to receive the prestigious Gold Medal of Fine Arts of Mexico. The music references the formal, stately dances of early European colonists before giving way to the more uninhibited, fast-paced rhythms of traditional Caribbean dances. Next on the program is “El Amor Brujo” (Love, the Magician), written in 1914-15 by Spanish composer Manuel de Falla, a ballet telling the story of a young gypsy woman haunted by the ghost of her dead husband. The featured soloist will be award-winning mezzo-soprano Angelica Mata, a native of Sinaloa, Mexico, who will earn a Performer’s Diploma from SMU Meadows in May 2021.

Next on the program is Maurice Ravel’s “Pavane for a Dead Princess.” The composer said it was not a funeral lament for a dead child, but an evocation of a pavane that a little princess might, in former times, have danced at the Spanish court. 

The concert concludes with two short works by Argentinian composer Astor Piazzolla, Tangazo and Milonga del Ángel, both of which are intriguing blends of tango, jazz and classical music.

“It is a special joy to honor Mary Anne Sammons Cree, who has given so much to the arts, cultural and educational landscape of North Texas over a lifetime of philanthropy,” said Dean Holland. “And, in the year of COVID-19, the Meadows School is proud to present an exquisite live (and livestreamed) program of Latin American and Spanish music performed by the incomparable Meadows Symphony Orchestra. We look forward to our return to the Meyerson stage after such a challenging year. It promises to be a great experience all around.”

Event honoree Mary Anne Sammons Cree is a civic leader and philanthropist who was born in Dallas and grew up in Oak Cliff and Highland Park. Her long-standing involvement with SMU includes serving on the Meadows School Executive Board and Meadows Museum Advisory Council; commissioning Wave, the first large-scale outdoor sculpture by Santiago Calatrava in the U.S., for the Meadows Museum; and establishing The Rosine Smith Sammons Lecture Series in Media Ethics in honor of her mother, who graduated from SMU in the 1920s with a degree in journalism. 

Proceeds from the event will benefit the Meadows Impact Scholarship Fund to provide vital financial assistance to undergraduate and graduate Meadows students, including those from underrepresented populations.

The concert will be livestreamed, and virtual attendance is free. Advance registration to watch online is required; please visit blog.smu.edu/meadows/meyerson-2021/ to register. 

For more information, call the Meadows development office at 214-768-4189.