The annual Wright State University Arts Gala, which has raised more than $1.75 million for arts scholarships during its 15-year history, is scheduled for Saturday, March 28, with an impressive program featuring student performances in theatre, dance, motion pictures, music and visual arts.
The event will showcase the efforts of Wright State fine and performing arts students and educators who have been recognized for their achievement by Academy Award–winning actor and Wright State supporter Tom Hanks. Hanks and Amanda Wright Lane, great grand-niece of the Wright brothers, are co-chairs of Rise. Shine. The Campaign for Wright State University, a $150 million fundraising campaign that promises to further elevate Wright State’s prominence by expanding scholarships, attracting more top-flight faculty and supporting construction of state-of-the-art facilities.
“Wright State is training the artists of tomorrow. I know because I’ve worked with some of Wright State’s alumni, and they’re among the best in their fields,” Hanks said about Wright State’s arts students. “Wright State not only has one of the most outstanding arts programs in Ohio, but one of the best in the entire nation.”
The 6:30 p.m. to midnight event in the Creative Arts Center is presented by the College of Liberal Arts. The popular black-tie-optional Arts Gala is regarded as one of the area’s premier events, drawing over 700 patrons each year. Co-chaired by Joe and Kelly Lehman, who’s son Evan will be the guest conductor on the Wind Symphony Concert at 7pm in the Shuster Hall, encourage everyone to come see the amazingly talented student artists that will be performing all night.
Because of the on-going renovations and expansion to the Creative Arts Center, guests at this year’s ArtsGala will get a sneak preview of a world-class fine and performing arts center in the making. Come marvel at the inspiring talents of Wright State’s students and celebrate the dramatic transformation of the Creative Arts Center, as it becomes an elegant showplace for arts education and performance.
“We are so excited about this ArtsGala, coming off of the huge record breaking attendance and scholarship proceeds from last year. Our students are so eager to showcase their tremendous skills, and we are pleased to be sharing our expertise and talent with the broader community. This ArtsGala launches us into our huge Creative Arts Center modernization and expansion project. So come experience history — the last time you will see the CAC the way it used to be – and share in our students’ excitement and success.” said Kristin Sobolik, Ph.D., dean of the College of Liberal Arts.
“Receiving the ARTSGALA scholarship during my time at Wright State was a beautiful gift. The support was inspiring, pushing me to excel academically and artistically. I would like to thank the ARTSGALA community for their generosity and their investment in me.” —Megan Spencer, Art Alumna ‘13
“I came to Wright State setting out to become the best artist that I could be. I knew I had talent and passion, but I needed a place where my gifts could be strengthened by quality training. Here I was met by incredible teachers and amazingly talented students who inspire me daily and give me tools to perfect my craft. This encouraging environment draws greatness out of anyone with a dream, and the ARTSGALA scholarships gives us the support we need to grow and t hrive. Thank you!” — Jasmine Easler, Acting
“It took me over a year to decide to come to Wright State, but when I did, it was clear that I had made the right choice. Being awarded the ARTSGALA scholarship was the first of many game-changing moments for me here at WSU and such an unbelievably motivating and empowering experience! I am forever grateful for the people who make it possible.” — Stephen Monath, Music
“I knew from the moment I stepped onto campus that Wright State was where I was meant to be. In my short time there I learned continuously, discovered beauty in all the forgotten places, and grew more than I ever believed possible for myself. I’ve always dreamed of pursuing a career in theatre. With support from ARTSGALA I was able to make my dream a reality. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for all that you give and for changing my life!” —Regina Villaver, Theatre Alumna ’13
“I am grateful to be part of such a supportive arts community. I was honored to be selected as an ARTSGALA Scholarship recipient during my time at Wright State. Receiving this support was not only encouraging but also very rewarding as it allowed me to be more focused on my art.” —Ross Hale, Art Alumnus ’13