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Chapman commemorates 150th anniversary

The school will hold a kickoff celebration on Friday – but the real celebration begins May 6.

BY OC METRO STAFFPublished: March 03, 2011 10:07 AM

Chapman University on Friday is holding a 150th anniversary commemoration ceremony – it's a precursor to the school's larger birthday celebration, set to begin May 6.

Friday's event will include a look back at Chapman's early beginnings – the school was founded as Hesperian College on March 4, 1861 – and will include a number of offerings.

Among the day's activities: Chapman President Jim Doti will recite, from memory, Lincoln's Gettysburg Address. (Hesperian was founded on the day of Lincoln's first inauguration.) In addition, the celebration will feature live music from faculty, students and alumni; and a 15-piece brass ensemble will perform the new "Fanfare 150," which was commissioned for the anniversary year from Shaun Naidoo, Chapman assistant professor of music.

Visiting British violin star Jack Liebeck also will perform; the 150th anniversary poem, commissioned from Anna Leahy, associate professor of English, will be recited for the first time; and university officials will reveal more about planned anniversary celebrations this year.

On the ticket so far: Chapman's "Birthday Party" will start May 6 and will feature an open house, free lectures and performances, tours, a pop concert, and a fireworks show.

Friday's event is free and open to the public, but it is mainly geared toward the Chapman community. It all kicks off at 9:30 a.m. at the Fish Interfaith Center.

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