Signs of the time: University of Memphis Centennial Celebration banners are rapidly
appearing on light poles around campus. (Photo by Rhonda Cosentino)
Grammy-Award winning artist Aaron Neville and the Rudi E. Scheidt School of Music
are ready to say “Happy 100th!” to the University of Memphis as the school launches into its year-long centennial
celebration with a kick-off extravaganza Sept. 30 at the Cannon Center for the Performing
Arts. This is one of many signature centennial events scheduled for the next 16 months
— more are listed below.
U of M faculty, staff and students are being offered a very limited number of $12
tickets for the event Sept 6-16 weekdays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the on-campus Harris
Box Office. Call 678-1651 for more details.
The evening of entertainment will include performances by the University of Memphis
Symphony Orchestra, the Wind Ensemble, Southern Comfort Jazz Orchestra, Sound Fuzion,
the University Singers and the U of M Opera.
The program will also feature the debut of two original compositions, “Centennial
Fanfare” and “Presidential Portraits,” written by longtime U of M music professor
Grammy Award-winning artist Aaron Neville will be among the many performers at the
Sept. 30 Centennial Celebration kickoff event at the Cannon Center in downtown Memphis.
Neville has had a successful career as a solo artist and as a member of the Neville
Brothers. His hits include “Tell It Like It Is,” “Don’t Know Much,” “All My Life”
and “Everybody Plays the Fool.”
Regular price tickets are $28 and $20, plus fees, available through Ticketmaster and
at the Cannon Center box office.
Tigers Around Town: You may feel “on safari” Sept. 10 if you visit the U of M campus: 100 tigers are
set for “release” as part of the U of M Alumni Association’s “Tigers Around Town”
centennial celebration. The Association offered 100 of the uniquely designed, life-size
tiger statues to alumni, businesses and fans for sponsorship. The statues will be
unveiled at noon in the Student Plaza adjacent to the Administration Building.
The family event will include hot dogs, soft drinks, inflatable bouncers and entertainment
by the Soul Outsiders.
Each tiger statue, based on the measurements of mascot TOM II, stands about 6 feet
high, 3 feet wide and weighs around 600 pounds. While the pose for each statue is
the same, some of the Mid-South’s finest artists showed off their talents to make
each Tiger distinctive.
Each sponsor selected a year between 1912 and 2012 for their Tiger.
“Each tiger will represent one of the 100 years of the University,” said Tammy Hedges,
executive director of the Alumni Association. “A historical fact about the U of M
for that year will appear on a plaque that accompanies each statue.”
After being displayed on campus through 2011, the statues will appear at locations
around the greater Memphis area beginning in early 2012.
The Memphis Tigers take on SMU Sept. 24 at 11 a.m. at the Liberty Bowl in the annual
Homecoming weekend will again include a huge campus parade, this year set for Sept.
23 at 5:30 p.m. followed by a pep rally with Larry Porter at 6:30 p.m. The parade
will be around the exterior of the U of M campus with parking available at the Southern
and Central Ave. parking lots. President Shirley Raines and athletic director R.C.
Johnson are special guests for the event, which includes marching bands, Pouncer,
floats and cheerleaders. Food for the event is provided by Huey’s Restaurants.
Noted Memphis historian Jimmy Ogle will lead several tours of the University of Memphis
community. See story for details.
Jimmy Ogle neighborhood lecture and tours: Noted Memphis historian Jimmy Ogle will present a “University Neighborhoods” lecture Sept. 14 at 2 p.m. in the University Center Beale
Room. He will also lead several “University of Memphis: Know Your Neighborhood” walking
tours: Sept. 21, separate tours at noon and 1:30 p.m., assemble at south entrance
to the Administration Building; Sept. 25, separate tours at 2 and 3:30 p.m., assemble
at south entrance to the Administration Building.
Banned Books Week: Banned Books Week returns to campus from 1 to 2:30 p.m. daily in the McWherter Library.
Tiger Blue Goes Green: The University’s largest annual sustainability event, Tiger Blue Goes Green, is scheduled
for Oct. 4 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the Student Plaza. It will include dozens of
booths and activities designed to increase “green” awareness. For more information,
Song of Silk with Peking Opera: The U of M’s Confucius Institute helps the University celebrate its centennial with
the “Song of Silk” concert Oct. 4 at 6:30 p.m. at Rose Theatre. The program includes
the Peking Opera, Chinese dance solos, instrumental music, folk songs, art songs and
piano performances. For more information, call 678-3166.
Memphis Research Expo: U of M researchers get into the act with the Memphis Research Expo, set for Oct.
6 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the FedEx Institute of Technology. The Expo will showcase
the research and work done by leading scientists from the U of M, the University of
Tennessee Health Science Center and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Admission
is free. Call 678-1041 for more details.