For Immediate Release
Endowment Honors Beloved Music Educator
HARLINGEN, TEXAS- APRIL 1, 2011 – A new scholarship endowment established at The University of Texas at Brownsville will honor the founding director of the South Texas Chorale, Dianne Brumley.
The announcement came at the final concert of the South Texas Chorale held at the Arts Center in late March. The chorale performed with the university Master Chorale and the South Texas Festival Orchestra.
Following Brumley’s announcement of retirement last spring, The South Texas Chorale Foundation Board also decide to “close their doors” and leave a lasting legacy of the chorale and its founding director, through the Dianne Brumley Endowed Scholarship for Music at UTB/TSC.
“Dianne’s commitment and contribution to music and music education in South Texas goes unmatched by anyone,” said Dennis Mitchell, president of the South Texas Chorale Foundation Board. “We take so much satisfaction in honoring her and knowing her dedication is being recognized in a way that continues what she worked so hard to accomplish for so many years.”
The board plans to make its first contribution to the endowment through funds left when the chorale closes their budget.
This is the first scholarship endowment for future choral directors at the university, where Brumley continues her work as the director of Chorale Studies and professor of music education.
“There is nothing that could have been done that would be more meaningful,” Brumley said. “I am so grateful and I felt what we, in the South Texas Chorale, have done together has been important for the community and to perpetuate that through the support of education for future choir directors is tremendous.”
Brumley has been a leading figure of choral music in the Rio Grande Valley for more than 35 years, working in both Harlingen and San Benito school districts. In 1991, Brumley brought together Mitchell, along with a handful of other community members to pitch the idea of starting a local chorale group to provide a new musical venue for the community.
“We have been absolutely blessed to have come so far. We had a great run building into, at its apex a 92-voice group and a 47 piece accompanying orchestra,” Mitchell said. We have had so many supporters through the years, especially Dianne, who gave so much of her time and experience.”
In 2003, Dianne helped build what is now an 80-member chorale group at UTB/TSC. Under her direction, her students have received world-wide recognition for their vocal skills. In 2007, the group made its first international trip to perform in Ireland. The group again traveled overseas in 2009 to perform in Rome, Vatican City, Assisi and Lucca in Italy. Most recently, they were one of two groups chosen in a blind audition to perform at the Texas Music Educators Association annual convention in San Antonio.
“Scholarships are our most powerful tool we can offer students to help them graduate in a timely fashion,” said Dr. Sue Zanne Urbis, chair of the Music Department. “For the South Texas Chorale to honor Dianne Brumley for her continued leadership and devotion for education and teaching is very special. She has a true passion for music education and it comes out in the way she teachers.
“You can see the respect she has for her students and her craft and the respect they in turn have for her,” she said. “This is a great opportunity for students to now carry on her life’s work.”
Brumley will continue to serve as the director of the university’s Master Chorale and as a member of the faculty of the Department of Music.
For information on giving to UTB/TSC or to create an endowment, go to www.utb.edu/giving, or call the Office of Development at (956) 882-4324.