R-MC’s Center of the Performing Arts Gala: If You Missed it

Anna Darling, Features Editor

Friday, April 29, the Performing Arts Gala gathered to listen to and watch the Randolph-Macon College students perform. The event hosted donors, trustees, alumni, and faculty, all bustling and excited for the night to come. During the dinner party, the Jazz Band played many improvised instrumentals, which could be nicknamed “evaluator rock band music.” The songs included many solos, especially from the piano and drums.

Hosted outside, the weather was a perfect, comfortable temperature. After signing in, individuals met and mingled, with lots of smiles on faces and stories on lips. Food and drinks were placed on the sides of a large tent-roof to block the sun and speakers faced the gathering area for everyone to hear. For a few minutes during the party, actors from the upcoming production, “Peter and the Starcatcher” came to perform a scene, which entertained the crowd pleasantly.

The cast of “Peter the Starcatcher” performing for donors Friday, April 29. (Anna Darling)

With wine in hand and excitement in hearts, the party moved inside for the Concert Choir and Chamber Singers. Both groups took turns singing, with beautiful harmonies bouncing off the walls and blissfully landing into the audience’s ears. An honorable mention: the performance of D. von Kampen’s “I am Possibility.” James Doering’s piano performance matched with the Chamber Singers’ voices, making the most wonderful mix. Directly following Doering’s performance, Mark and Liz Stewart and President Bob Lindgren all made short speeches thanking the donors and praising the arts department. Afterward, the LUXE Show Choir presented their production, “A Mother’s Love.” With many quick changes, funny quips, intense choreography, and boisterous singing, the Show Choir closed out the show with a bang. After cutting a ribbon to celebrate the new renovations, the crowd ran out to congratulate the performers, ending the first night of the Gala.

Saturday, April 30, the R-MC Ensemble took to the stage. The director, Brian Coffill, introduced the company and explained they would be using “flexible instrumentation” due to their not-so-ordinary combination of instruments. The ensemble played close to 10 songs, including the Alma Mater, a salute for Ukraine, and a song from the R-MC archives, dating back to 1921. One song, “The Loop” by Allison Logging-Harris, included a video of a metro car moving along the tracks and a heartbeat accompanying the company. Snippets of the show are listed below:

Sounds from Ensemble Stage

Charles Ives’ “March Intercollegiate”

Clara W. Schumann’s “Prelude and Fugue in D Minor OP. 16, No. 3”

Omar Thomas’ “Shenandoah”

Gustav Holst’s “Brook Green Suite, H. 190”

Joanne Harris’ “Dimension”


Allison Loggins-Hull’s “The Loop”


Lewis & Weaver’s “Jacket Pep”

Next, following the Show Choir’s second performance of “A Mother’s Love,” the Chamber Ensemble took to the halls of the Performance Center to play for those chatting and preparing for “Peter and the Starcatcher” in the lobby. Below shows the creative minds at work as students are perched along the stairs and different levels of the new area.


To end the second day of the Gala, the theater department presented “Peter and the Starcatcher.”

Sunday, May 1, The Richmond Symphony Orchestra presented their production “Mozart and More” in Brockwell Auditorium. Many people gathered to hear works from Joseph Haydn, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Anne Clyne, and Alberto Ginastera. Conductor Nicholas Hersh did a wonderful job leading the orchestra through the whole performance with much passion and enthusiasm. If you would like to know more about what the Richmond Symphony is performing, go to https://www.richmondsymphony.com/.

To end the weekend’s Gala, Show Choir poured their hearts out one last time in the final performance of “A Mother’s Love” to an incredibly exuberant audience, cheering loudly throughout the show. This whole weekend, the arts departments at R-MC shined. Each group worked very hard all semester and did not disappoint. Thank you, students, professors, and staff for all the work you put in to perform. The R-MC community appreciates you greatly. And thank you to all donors, trustees, and alumni who supported these opportunities.