Barbara McAlister earns 2019 Governor’s Arts Award

03/08/2019 01:30 PM
Main Cherokee Phoenix
Barbara McAlister, Cherokee Nation citizen and CN Vocal Class instructor, performs a “welcome” at the Vocal Class’s spring recital in 2016 in Tahlequah. McAlister has been named a 2019 Governor’s Art Award honoree for being an acclaimed mezzo-soprano and vocal teacher. ARCHIVE
Main Cherokee Phoenix
Barbara McAlister
OKLAHOMA CITY – Cherokee Nation citizen and internationally acclaimed mezzo-soprano Barbara McAlister has been named one of 17 people to earn a 2019 Governor’s Arts Award, according to an Oklahoma Art Council press release.

After retiring from a long and distinguished international opera career, McAlister, of Muskogee, returned to Oklahoma where for years she has invested her time in teaching vocal performance to youth and adults in northeast Oklahoma, the release states.

According to the press release, she is a former adjunct professor at Northeastern State University who has raised funds for student recitals and master classes and has helped students audition successfully for professional operas and obtain full scholarships to Oklahoma City University and the University of Central Oklahoma, among others.

“It rendered me speechless when I was notified from Okla. Arts Council. It was such a surprise, and also humbling to me. I am so happy,” McAlister said. “By the way, I am very proud of them as fine arts instructor. I love what I am doing and feel blessed every day by my wonderful and talented students. Very blessed.”

The Oklahoma Arts Council will recognize the 17 honorees during the 43rd Governor’s Arts Awards on April 16 in Oklahoma City.

Gov. Kevin Stitt, also a CN citizen, will present the awards during a ceremony beginning at 4 p.m. in the fourth floor rotunda at the Oklahoma State Capitol. A reception will follow in the first floor rotunda outside the Betty Price Gallery. The event is free and open to the public.

“I am pleased to congratulate the 2019 Governor’s Arts Award honorees who come from all across our great state,” Stitt said. “I look forward to celebrating our honorees’ contributions to the arts in Oklahoma and recognizing their role in fostering a robust and impactful arts industry in our state.”

Oklahoma Arts Council Executive Director Amber Sharples said the 2019 honorees reflect the qualities that define Oklahomans.

“Hard working, selfless and devoted to causes greater than themselves, honorees deserve our thanks for their efforts in making the arts one of Oklahoma’s most robust assets,” Sharples said. “Those selected for awards have shown exemplary commitment to impacting lives through the arts in communities and schools across our state.”


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