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Contemporary Music Festival

Music & Justice - Discussion and Concert

7:30pm on Saturday, April 12, 2014

Presented as part of SHSU’s annual Contemporary Music Festival, the School of Music in partnership with the Global Center for Journalism and Democracy presents Music & Justice, an evening of discussion and music focused on wrongful conviction.

The evening will include:

  • Screening of "In Their Own Words," a film of interviews with exonerates produced by The Innocence Project, a national litigation and public policy organization dedicated to exonerating wrongfully convicted individuals through DNA testing.
  • Panel Discussion moderated by Don Teague, FOX 26 News Anchor.

Don Teague, Fox 26 News Anchor

Panelists include:

Anthony GravesAnthony Graves who was wrongfully convicted of murder, and served 18 years behind bars.

Jeff BlackburJeff Blackburn is the founder of and chief counsel to the Innocence Project of Texas. In 2009, he handled the case of Timothy Cole, a young man who died in prison after being falsely accused of rape, and obtained the first posthumous DNA exoneration in Texas history.


Dennis LongmireDennis Longmire a faculty member at SHSU in Criminal Justice and Criminology specializing in corrections, the death penalty, and public perceptions of crime and criminal justice.


Brandi GrissomBrandi Grissom, the managing editor of the Texas Tribune, who has covered stories related to wrongful conviction and incarceration.


  • The Innocents music performance with percussionist-composers John Lane (School of Music faculty member) and guest artist, Allen Otte. Their collaborative music work will feature spoken word and non-traditional instruments (rocks, pots, pans, trash cans, etc.) used as percussion instruments combined with electronic audio tracks.  The music, broken into short continuous movements, deals with a variety of issues related to wrongful conviction.   
  • Coming Together and Attica music performance: Guest artists from Bent Frequency, a professional contemporary chamber music ensemble based in Atlanta, Georgia along with SHSU Faculty members John Lane, Amanda Pepping, Daniel Saenz, and Masahito Sugihara will contribute to the theme by performing two pieces by composer Frederic Rzewski, Coming Together and Attica. The two music selections are inspired by the 1971 uprising of prison inmates of the Attica, NY Correctional Facility. Described as the bloodiest prison confrontation in American history, the riots tragically concluded with the deaths of forty-three individuals, including ten hostages.

The performance and discussion takes place starting at 7:30pm on Saturday, April 12, 2014 in the Gaertner Performing Arts Center at 815 17th Street, Huntsville, TX.  More info at 936.294.2339.



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