MTSU to promote arts offerings under single brand

MTSU to promote arts offerings under single brand

Middle Tennessee State University announced plans Nov. 16 to better promote its arts programs, including dance, music, theatre and visual arts, and increase public awareness and participation in its varied offerings.

MTSU Provost Brad Bartel, left, and College of Liberal Arts Dean Mark Byrnes applaud during the unveiling of the new MTSU Arts logo. (MTSU photo by Andy Heidt)

University Provost Brad Bartel and Liberal Arts Dean Mark Byrnes, appearing at a ceremony on the stage of the T. Earl Hinton Music Hall in the Wright Music Building, unveiled a new brand for the combined marketing effort, MTSU Arts. It will be used in marketing of events by schools and departments within the College of Liberal Arts.

The announcement coincided with an announcement on the release of “Angels in the Architecture,” a CD by the MTSU Wind Ensemble under the direction of Dr. Reed Thomas. The recording is the first and only by a Tennessee collegiate ensemble on the world’s largest classical-music label, Franklin, Tenn.-based Naxos, and its Wind Band Classics subsidiary.

“We are fortunate to have excellent fine arts departments, all within the College of Liberal Arts, which work throughout the year to schedule, plan and promote these events,” Byrnes said. “By combining and coordinating their events into a single brand, MTSU Arts, we can be more effective in our advertising, marketing and promotion.”

WMOT-FM (89.5), the University’s 100,000-watt public radio station, will be the broadcast home of MTSU Arts. WMOT will promote MTSU Arts events and seek opportunities to include MTSU Arts in its programming.

“WMOT’s strong emphasis on classical music on weekdays, jazz music at nights and varied styles on the weekend perfectly complements this effort,” the provost said.

Bartel said the University values community interaction and participation and sees stronger promotion of the arts as an opportunity to bring more people to campus.

Members of the MTSU Wind Ensemble perform during the MTSU Arts unveiling. (MTSU photo by Andy Heidt)

“We hope to build our audience–and awareness of the fine work by our students and faculty–under this brand,” he said.

The MTSU Arts branding effort will begin in earnest in January. The effort will include:

  • more focused promotion of students and faculty and works, as illustrated by the Wind Ensemble’s CD release announcement;
  • a wider variety of print and digital events calendars and tools to promote MTSU Arts offerings on campus;
  • the anticipated January launch of a centralized site,, which will be a calendar and reference tool for the MTSU Arts efforts; and
  • creation of strategic community partnerships to increase civic involvement and ties to MTSU Arts programs and offerings.

“We have many great events on campus, and we want to make it as easy as possible for members of the public to learn about them and attend them,” Bartel said. “The breadth and depth of our student and faculty creativity is one of MTSU’s most appealing assets.”

Those events include the free Nov. 17 performance by the MTSU Wind Ensemble (7:30 p.m. at the Wright Music Building), as well as concerts by the MTSU Symphony Orchestra on Nov. 20, the MTSU Jazz Ensemble on Nov. 21 and the MTSU Singers on Nov. 22. Click on the “Concert Calendar” link at for details.

The Theatre and Dance Program’s production of “Underwear: The Musical” started Nov. 15 and continues through Saturday, Nov. 19. Shows start at 7:30 p.m. at Tucker Theatre. Details are available at

(click for high-resolution download)

Recent offerings included theatre productions of “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow”; the dance program’s creation of “Exodus,” a student research project exploring forms of human departure, including the Underground Railroad and the Holocaust; and the Todd Art Gallery’s “Ave Atque Vale” (“Hail and Farewell”) exhibit.

Bartel noted that MTSU has multiple and robust arts offerings available to the public for low or no cost.

“MTSU is an engine for cultural transformation for Murfreesboro and middle Tennessee,” he said. “Our hope is MTSU Arts will help our community be more aware of the richness of these experiences.”