The OU School of Music will host a benefit concert to raise money for the Women’s Resource Center in Norman in April.
The concert, “Celebration, Unity and Community,” will feature musicians from across campus and Norman. They will play classical music pieces from marginalized composers, according to a press release.
“Ninety-nine percent of the program is actually going to be female composers, which is incredible,” said Dan Schwartz, associate professor of oboe. “We were hoping to get as many female composers as possible.”
The benefit is free to anyone who wants to come, but Schwartz said he hopes it will raise thousands of dollars for the Women’s Resource Center through donations. There will be ways to donate with cash or check at the entrance to the concert, and a QR code on the program to take people to the Women’s Resource Center donation page, he said.
Schwartz said he likes to explore ways to help the community through music with his students. The Oboe Studio also held a benefit concert for international students trapped by the travel ban a few years ago, Schwartz said.
“It was a really easy decision to choose the Women’s Resource Center,” Schwartz said. “They do such incredible work for the community, and they provide all their services free.”
The Women’s Resource Center was founded in 1975 and provides victims of domestic violence, sexual assault and rape with resources to help them. The nonprofit center is partially funded by events and individual donations throughout the year, according to its website.
The concert’s finale will be a group-piece composed by the Oboe Studio. Each student composed their own piece and then worked together to combine them into one composition, Schwartz said.
This illustrates a “meaningful way of having individual voices come together for a larger, greater purpose,” Schwartz said.
The Oboe Studio’s fall project has yet to be determined, but will likely be influenced by events that are happening in the world, Schwartz said.
The free concert will be at 8 p.m. April 11 in the Sharp Concert Hall at the Catlett Music Center.