Briefly in the Arts

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Guitarist Jack Petersen, who played in Floyd Graham’s Aces of Collegeland, will perform Saturday at the Floyd Graham Society’s 40th anniversary meeting.
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Graham Society to hear a former Ace of Collegeland

The 40th anniversary meeting of the Floyd Graham Society, during the University of North Texas’ homecoming, will feature a performance by guitarist Jack Petersen.

The meeting will be from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at the Denton Country Club, 1213 Country Club Road in Argyle.

Petersen grew up in Denton and graduated from Denton High School. He attended UNT and played in Professor Floyd “’Fesser” Graham’s Aces of Collegeland, but Petersen did not graduate. The lack of a degree didn’t keep Berklee College of Music in Boston from hiring Petersen to form a jazz guitar program there.

In 1976, Leon Breeden lured him back to Denton as the resident artist in jazz at the College of Music. Petersen taught at UNT until 1988, when the University of North Florida hired him. He taught there until his retirement. Petersen is actively playing and traveling these days, doing concerts and educational presentations across the country.

At the meeting, Petersen will play some Les Paul showcase pieces and then some jazz with UNT jazz faculty members Dan Haerle, Fred Hamilton and Ed Soph. The UNT Three O’clock Lab Band, directed by Brad Leali, will play the first hour for dancing. The Floyd Graham Memorial Scholarship recipient, Drew Zaremba, a member of the One O’clock Lab Band, will be featured with Petersen and the faculty trio.

Admission costs $30 per person. Reservations must be made by 5 p.m. Wednesday. For reservations, call 940-565-0804.


Church offers Alternative Gifts Fair next weekend

The First United Methodist Church Alternative Gifts Fair will include a little something for early-bird shoppers.

Early birds can donate $5 to shop from 5 to 9 p.m. Friday at the church, at 201 S. Locust St. 

Other shoppers can get in free from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 4.

“The annual Alternative Gifts Fair has two purposes, to make money for missions and to provide an alternative to holiday shopping for gift giving,” said Janet Fisher, chairwoman of the Alternate Gifts Fair Committee. “All money collected will go to the missions programs of the church.”

There will be opportunities to buy fair trade food and merchandise made by artisans in developing countries as well as items donated by artisans in the First United Methodist congregation, Fisher said.

As gifts for the person who has everything, outreach groups will promote “shares,” or opportunities to donate money to honor someone.


Guyer High stages ‘Damn Yankees’

Guyer High School’s Theatre Arts Department will present the musical Damn Yankees next weekend.

The musical, with a book by George Abbot and Douglass Wallop and music and lyrics by Richard Adler and Jerry Ross, is a retelling of the Faust legend.

Middle-aged baseball fanatic Joe Boyd trades his soul to the Devil, also known as Mr. Applegate, for the chance to lead his favorite team to victory in the pennant race against the New York Yankees. Leaving behind his loving wife, Meg, he is changed to young baseball sensation Joe Hardy. With the “help” of Applegate, Joe transforms the hapless Washington Senators into a winning team, only to realize the worth of the life and love he’s left behind.

The department is putting baseball bleachers on the stage, using the family dress patterns of theater teacher and director Eleshia Crotwell to outfit the actresses in authentic 1950s designs, and borrowing dance ideas from the great Bob Fosse. Guyer performers had a workshop with Fosse expert and Broadway dancer Ben Hartley last August.

Performances will be at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday and Nov. 8-10 in the Guyer auditorium, 7501 Teas¬ley Lane. Tickets cost $10.

The musical will be screened by the Dallas Summer Musicals High School Musical Theatre Awards on Nov. 2.

— Staff report

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