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National Anthem Auditions Turn Out the Talented

September 27, 2011 / by / 0 Comment

Singing the national anthem before sporting events is a tradition that gained footing during World War II, when baseball stadiums became large-scale displays of patriotism. Today, it is as much a part of those events as the seventh-inning stretch or the halftime show. On Monday night, GCU held open auditions for anthem singers for this year’s men’s and women’s basketball games. With Ben Campbell and Matt McAllister from the KNIX morning show as guest judges, the Arena became a scene out of “American Idol.”

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GCU Arena Hits ‘Home Run’ in Its First Concert

September 26, 2011 / by / 0 Comment

GCU Arena announced itself as a game-changer for the University on Friday night with a knockout staging of its first concert, a Christian rock show featuring Casting Crowns. From the aroma of popcorn inside the main entrance as music fans arrived to the encore played by the headline act at about 11:20 p.m., the new facility and its staff delivered in a big way, receiving kudos from all corners. “The Arena’s staff was A-1 and on its game all day,” said Melanie Hall, Casting Crowns’ road manager.

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Praise God and Pass the Sunscreen: A Summer on the Road

September 21, 2011 / by / 0 Comment

After 58 nights, 14,000 miles and thousands of GCU-branded coconut sunscreen bottles, Trevor Roberts and Spencer Fehrenbacher claim they have seen it all. The duo returned to GCU in mid-August after a summer of touring the country promoting the University, handing out scholarships and checking out some of the hot Christian bands that will be performing at GCU Arena in its first year. “It was a lot of fun,” said Roberts, who is already back out on the road for 30 dates of the Third Day tour, which comes to campus on Nov. 20. “We were able to speak in front of thousands of people at a time, sharing our campus with them and getting people interested in attending GCU.”

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Symphony’s Maestro Brings Encouraging Words

September 21, 2011 / by / 0 Comment

Insisting that “there’s never a good time or a bad time to be in the arts,” Phoenix Symphony music director Michael Christie gave an insightful talk Tuesday night at Ethington Theatre, sharing career tips with the student audience. Christie, only 37, is already in his eighth season as the symphony’s maestro. A former trumpet player from Buffalo, N.Y., he went to school at Oberlin (Ohio) College and his career took off from there. When he won a conducting competition in Finland as a college junior, his path became clear.

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Stage Is True Love for GCU Sophomore

September 08, 2011 / by / 3 Comments

For GCU sophomore Elizabeth Pabst, the theatre has always called to her. “Ever since I was little, I’ve loved it,” she says. “I used to gather all my friends and we’d put on plays from an early age. Even now, I get my nieces and nephews together for performances.” Her true venture onto the stage, though, came in high school. She always had played sports but didn’t have the time to do both. So she hung up her soccer cleats and threw herself wholeheartedly into theatre, and she hasn’t looked back.

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For Laughs, You Can’t Beat ‘You Can’t Take It With You’

September 06, 2011 / by / 1 Comment

“You Can’t Take It With You,” the Pulitzer Prize-winning play that opened the Ethington Theatre Series over the weekend, is every bit as entertaining as last year’s opener, the musical “The Pirates of Penzance.” And, just as “Pirates” was bolstered by first-rate performances from several GCU alumni, the comedy by Moss Hart and George S. Kaufman has a show-stealing turn by 1990 graduate Michael Hegeman. Friday night’s premiere played to a nearly sold-out theatre.

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Meet Hap Hopper, GCU’s Chairman of the Boards

September 02, 2011 / by / 0 Comment

Basketball fans know Hap Hopper by his work. “If you’ve seen the boards at the US Airways Center during a Suns game, you’ve seen Hap,” says Cathey Moses, vice president of event planning and marketing at GCU. As GCU’s new digital systems director, Hopper is the one responsible for everything Antelopes fans will see on the high-definition video screens in GCU Arena. The screens were created and installed by Atlanta-based Innovation Sports Marketing.

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Alumnus Returns to Ethington Stage for Season Opener

August 30, 2011 / by / 1 Comment

Any actor can dream of Broadway. Mike Hegeman dreams of a small, 300-seat theatre in west Phoenix — more than 20 years after he performed there as a college student. Forgive him, then, for pinching himself when the curtain is raised Friday on “You Can’t Take It With You,” the Pulitzer Prize-winning comedy that opens the Ethington Theatre Series for 2011-12 at GCU.

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Two for the Road: 5,000 Miles Down, 5,000 to Go

July 15, 2011 / by / 0 Comment

Traveling the country in a van for GCU isn’t a bad way to spend the summer, as Spencer Fehrenbacher and Trevor Roberts are discovering while hitting some of the biggest festivals in Christian music. They’re at the halfway point, and this weekend they’ll be in Rapid City, S.D.

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Growing Dance Program Plans ‘Second First Year’

July 12, 2011 / by / 0 Comment

Start-ups are never easy, as GCU’s director of dance, Susannah Keita, has discovered. Building a dance program from the ground up has been difficult, and yet already there have been rewards. What a difference a year can make.

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