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Seat plaque in the JMU Forbes Center

Your gift to name seats in the Forbes Center helps support scholarships for students in JMU's award-winning theater, dance and music programs. A gift to honor a loved one, friend or professor is one that will never be forgotten.

Name a seat today (online | by mail) or read some of the stories behind the seats below.

The Madison Association of Clarinetists

The Madison Association of Clarinetists on stage in the Concert Hall with their director and professor, Janice Minor (top row, center)

Curtains Up in the Concert Hall

The Madison Association of Clarinets Name a Seat to Honor Friendship, Support Future Dukes

The lights come up on stage in James Madison University’s Wilson Hall. As the musicians raise their instruments and begin to play, a chair squeaks. In the distance, a train roars by — or perhaps it’s the air conditioning turning on for what will be the first of several interruptions.

“I had a professor who said ‘Playing in Wilson Hall is like playing in a loaf of bread,’” says music performance major and clarinetist Laura Bridges (’12). “There is no sound quality.”

Acoustics now soar with the opening of the Forbes Center for the Performing Arts. The excitement is palpable among the members of the Madison Association of Clarinetists. Members of the student music organization speak in reverent, awed tones as they discuss the upgrade from Wilson Hall’s 80-year-old auditorium to the Forbes Center’s world-class Concert Hall.

“It’s captivating,” says Mark Givens (’11), who attended his first concert in the Forbes Center recently. “All the nuances and the special effects come out.”

It is in the Concert Hall that the clarinet may truly sing in the rich, round tones favorited by Romantic composers and Jazz musicians alike. It is here that students will become musicians. And the members of the Madison Association of Clarinetists are a permanent part of the transformation.

The 2010 MAC, which includes freshmen through seniors and two graduates from the Class of 2010, named a seat in the Forbes Center Concert Hall — right next to a seat named by the group’s director and professor, Dr. Janice Minor. The group’s gift helps provide scholarships to incoming music students.

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“I certainly would not have been able to attend JMU without the assistance provided to me by the School of Music,” says recent graduate Jackie Bryant (’10M), who helped lead the MAC fundraising effort. “It makes me proud that our fundraising is allowing another student to have the same amazing JMU experience that I had.”

The gift also reflects the group’s pride in the new building.

The Madison Association of Clarinetists

A plaque on the back of the seat commemorates the 2010 MAC. Name your seat today (online | by mail)

“It really gives me the sense that the College of Music is important to JMU, that the arts are important and valued here,” says Daniel Golden (’14). “My motivation to be a better performer and dedication to the program is completely different here.”

Naming a seat also honors the camaraderie formed between members of the clarinet studio, a tight-knit bond forged through grueling hours of rehearsal and a shared passion for the arts.

Says Dr. Minor, “We’re like a big family. No one knows what we’ll be doing in five years time, but for now, we have preserved our relationship for all time.”

Read more stories behind the seats >



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Name one seat for $1,000 or two seats for $1,500. A plaque on the back of the seat will recognize your gift. Please note seat sponsorship does not guarantee seat availability for performances.


For more information, please contact the Office of Annual Giving at (800) 296-6162 or (540) 568-3863.

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