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Grammy-Winning Composer Visits Music Students At Tulsa's Memorial High School

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Photo courtesy of Tulsa Symphony. Photo courtesy of Tulsa Symphony.
Photo courtesy of Tulsa Symphony. Photo courtesy of Tulsa Symphony.
TULSA, Oklahoma -

More than 100 band and choir students at Memorial High School lined up to talk to one of their favorite musicians face-to-face Thursday morning.

Grammy-winning composer and conductor Eric Whitacre took part in a Q&A session with students and music educators, which included musical demonstrations on the piano.

Whitacre is in Tulsa to perform with Tulsa Symphony on Saturday, Jan. 13. The famed musician has worked with leading orchestras, bands, and choral groups worldwide. He is also known for his groundbreaking Virtual Choirs concept, which has united singers across the globe in a way which no other composer has done.

When Memorial High School choral director Kevin Pearson found out Whitacre would be in town, he contacted Tulsa Symphony Education Director Dr. Dave Carter, asking if Whitacre might be able to spare an hour to come speak to his students. Pearson said he knew it was "a long shot."

Tulsa Symphony got in touch with Whitacre, who immediately agreed, saying, "That's why we do what we do."

Students asked questions about pursuing music as a career as well as Whitacre's creative process and his upcoming projects.

Whitacre described his journey to becoming a composer, encouraging students to do what they love.

"Be yourself. Truly be yourself," Whitacre told the students.

After the Q&A session, students were able to take photos with the award-winning composer.

Two students won free tickets to Saturday's concert featuring Whitacre, donated by Tulsa Symphony.

If you are interested in attending Tulsa Symphony's concert, "An Evening with Eric Whitacre," visit tulsasymphony.org or call (918) 584-3645. The concert begins at 7:30 p.m. and tickets start at $15.

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