Texarkana College trustees commend choral music program’s Carnegie Hall performance

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TEXARKANA — At Texarkana College’s board meeting, Trustees applauded the success of TC’s choral music program for their performance at Carnegie Hall in New York City on March 19, 2022, with MidAmerica Productions, a private producer of choral concerts that brings together conductors, choirs, soloists, and orchestral musicians for performances at some of the world’s greatest venues. TC music instructor, Marc-Andre Bougie, conducted his award-winning composition, ‘Requiem,’ at the concert performed by a massed choir made up of seven ensembles including students from the TC choir, members of the Texarkana Regional Chorale, the Shreveport Chorale and five other groups from around the nation. 

Bougie said this is his fourth guest conductor appearance at Carnegie Hall with MidAmerica Productions, but the most special one so far.

“The additional challenge of presenting my original work on the most famous stage in the world along with the New York debut of the piece has been extra special to me,” said Bougie. “I am so grateful our TC students were able to take part in the production, it is a chance of a lifetime for many of them and a moment of pride for our music program and aspiring musicians from around our region. “

Bougie serves as an associate professor of music at TC and is the music director and conductor of the Texarkana Regional Chorale and Orchestra. In addition, he is a highly sought-after conductor, composer, and educator in North America and abroad. 

TC president Dr. Jason Smith said that Bougie has helped put TC and the Texarkana region on the map for superior music instruction and performance.

“When it comes to excellence in music performance and instruction, Marc-Andre Bougie is the standard,” said Smith. “Our students and community have benefitted so much from his visionary musical leadership and captivating performances and has taken TC’s music program to new heights. We are so proud of his achievements and the work he has done to foster awareness of performing arts in our region.”

At the meeting, Trustees also learned that Bougie has been named as an Honorary Composer/Conductor with MidAmerica Productions. He joins a roster of only three other distinguished conductors from around the nation. 

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“I feel privileged to have become part of the amazing heritage of MidAmerica Productions through this appointment. It is probably the most significant recognition of my musical work since the beginning of my composing and conducting career close to 30 years ago,” said Bougie. “It has become clear to me that the next phase of my career will involve both aspects of my conducting and composition training, and I could not be more excited about what is yet to come!”

In other board business, Trustees heard a report from VP of Instruction Dr. Donna McDaniel recommending the closure of two computer technology courses that have demonstrated low enrollment over the last 10 years. 

“TC Administration recommends that the college close the Associate of Applied Arts degree with a concentration in Computer Programming and the Associate of Applied Arts degree with a concentration in Computer Networking due to continued decline in enrollment in the two programs,” said Dr. McDaniel. “This recommendation comes after careful deliberation by college administration, faculty, and staff regarding the impact on students and the institution. However, after years of lagging enrollment, even after a complete program redesign two years ago, we must address the issue.”

Dr. McDaniel said that there is a teach-out plan in place to allow students currently enrolled in the program to complete coursework to earn their credentials.

“Effective Fall 2022, no new and/or transfer students will be allowed to enroll in the program,” said McDaniel. “Students previously enrolled in the programs will be provided an opportunity to complete during the teach-out time frame to be completed by the spring semester of 2024. In the future, TC may consider offering similar non-credit courses through TC’s Community and Business Education division.”

Trustees voted in support of the recommendation to close the programs with the understanding that administration will continue to monitor student and community needs for the programs.

From Texarkana College Communications