Archive for Monday, June 17, 1991


June 17, 1991


Kansas University Concert Series officials will need at least two weeks to decide which performances can be rescheduled and which need to be canceled because of the Hoch Auditorium fire, officials said today.

Concerts and rehearsals in the department of music and dance and productions presented by Student Union Activities also will be affected by the loss of Hoch.

"It's devastating for us," said Peter Thompson, dean of the School of Fine Arts. "With all the problems Hoch faced, it served a tremendous number of needs on this campus.''

The Concert and New Directions series had seven events scheduled in Hoch for 1991-92, including a September concert by opera stars Frederica von Stade and Jerry Hadley. Ten other events, including three New Directions and four Chamber Music Series events, were scheduled for other venues the Crafton-Preyer Theatre in Murphy Hall, Liberty Hall, Swarthout Recital Hall and the Haskell Indian Junior College auditorium.

TODAY officials began examining contracts looking for ways to reschedule the Hoch events, Thompson said. The possibility of relocating the concerts to sites in Johnson County or Topeka was discussed.

"Obviously that could benefit our inter-city cooperation, but I'm not sure it would benefit our patrons," Thompson said.

The Concert Series has received about 100 orders for season tickets so far, said Charla Jenkins, director of public relations for the Concert, Chamber Music and New Directions series. Seat assignments wouldn't have been made until after July 1, the deadline for resubscribers to retain their seat locations.

Jenkins said officials had no plans to cancel the entire Concert Series. Jacqueline Davis, the director of the Concert Series, was expected to return to Lawrence on Wednesday.

Members of the music and dance department also will be searching during the next two weeks for new venues for its December Vespers program and its spring orchestral and choral concert.

"WE'LL FIND a way to do Vespers," said Stephen Anderson, chairman of the music and dance department. "We're looking at this positively.''

The department also needs to find rehearsal spaces for the university's band and orchestra, Anderson said. Both groups used Hoch to rehearse because of space restrictions in Murphy Hall, where the department's music offices and classrooms are located.

Anderson also said the department may explore outdoor spaces for concerts. Vespers and the spring concert were the only two department concerts scheduled in Hoch next year, he said.

The Lied Center for the Performing Arts, a 2,020-seat facility now being built on West Campus, would have replaced Hoch as a performance venue starting in the fall of 1993.

Organizers at Student Union Activities were in the midst of setting up forums and rock and comedy concerts for the fall, said Brad Roosa, a senior at KU and the live-music coordinator for the group.

JUST LAST Friday he signed the first band, Jesus Jones, for a fall concert and was talking to three others. SUA also was having discussions with representatives for Dana Carvey for a Parents Day comedy concert.

The loss of Hoch, with its 3,000 seats, could mean bands with bigger drawing power won't find it profitable to play at KU.

"I imagine the forums could move and other events that aren't based on making money," Roosa said. "None of our events are based on making money, but with some bands, Hoch was the only way we could recover costs.''

Roosa, who today also was reserving space for events in the Kansas Union, said SUA will try to schedule outdoor concerts.

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