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Nicholls Music Event in Library Brings People From Campus, Community

THIBODAUX, La. —  Ricardo Devoto was having a normal Tuesday in the International Student Services office when he heard something unexpected.

The MBA student and graduate assistant said he heard music coming from down the hall and decided to go to the Ellender Memorial Library’s stairwell to check it out. He was surprised to see the Department of Music and library collaboration performance had drawn a crowd of more than 50. 

“It was really nice,” Devoto said. “I know some of the students from working in International Student Services, and I know the effort they put into music. It was nice to finally get to hear them play.”

The concert, which happened during the lunch hour on Nov. 16, featured a bass clarinet trio, two string quartets, and the chamber choir. Research and Instruction Librarian and Outreach Coordinator Dr. Rob Stephens, who helped organize the performance, said he was happy with how it turned out.

“The event was everything we wanted it to be — it filled the library with amazing music, it was an opportunity for the Music Department to showcase their students, and it was really well attended,” Stephens said. “We want the library to be a cultural hub on campus, so it is essential to have this kind of enriching event for students.”

Zachary Rodrigue, a music major, was one of the students getting to showcase his talents in the choir. He said he never expected to perform in a library, as it is normally a quiet place.

“That definitely went against the norm, but it was enjoyable,” he said. “I think all of the groups sounded good in the space, and I’m glad so many people came.”

Library Director Elizabeth Batte said she was happy to see people from all over campus and the community come to support the performers.

“Part of the library’s function is to serve as a place that enriches, educates, and entertains,” she said. “This allowed us to do all of that and support the Music department, as well as, its students. I want students to feel welcome and celebrated here and this event definitely did that.”

Like Devoto, history major Noah Domangue showed up to support his friends. He said he has enjoyed sharing in each others’ culture with the international students and was excited to hear them play in the string quartet. 

“Classical music and stringed instruments like that are not something I have been able to experience much in life,” he said. “I really enjoyed it — it put me in a happy mood, especially after some of the trying times this semester.”

The music was soothing and peaceful, and he said he could have imagined its impact on people in the library.

“If I was on the second floor, I think you would have been able to faintly hear it and I think it would have been really calming for studying,” Domangue said. “I think it also would have been nice for someone who needed a break to come get a cup of coffee and check it out. I think it would be really good for something like finals week when people are stressed out.”

Dr. Stephens said he does hope it becomes a regular tradition in the library, and the library and music department are working on a potential performance for the holidays. Then more events will be scheduled for next semester. 



CONTACT: Rob Stephens, Research and Instruction Librarian/Outreach Coordinator, rob.stephens@nicholls.edu or 985-448-4633

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