The Randy Owen Center for the Performing Arts (ROC) will be a space that all JSU students can call home. It is designed to inspire a love of arts in all students, engage with lifelong learners seeking to elevate their passions, and enrich the JSU campus community. It will serve as a source of hope and inspiration for the music and arts community. This center will also enable JSU to address the needs of our students, whose performances are essential for their professional preparation by supplying them with a professional concert hall.
The Center will pay tribute to Randy Owen, JSU graduate and lead singer of the award-winning band Alabama. The $25 million project will be located at the corner of Church Street and Roebuck Waters Drive. It will feature a 1,000-seat concert hall that includes a balcony, mainstage support areas, a recording studio, and more. The center will also include the former First Baptist Jacksonville, renovated to become General Education Classrooms, Maker Spaces and Studios, Music Technology spaces, a Creative Collective design space, a recital hall, event spaces and a Randy Owen Museum and Archives.
Governor Kay Ivey and the Alabama State Legislature appropriated $15 million for the new construction of the ROC, and Jacksonville State University has launched a campaign to raise funds for the project. Since the campaign’s launch in March of last year, we have raised almost $5 million.
To help celebrate the spirit of giving by the ROC’s namesake, JSU also has plans for new campus initiatives and outreach programs in the fine arts for the JSU Community.
These Programs Include...
- The ROC Concert Hall will become the home of a Family Concert Series (themed, shorter performances).
- The popular Tubaween Concert will be performed annually in the Concert Hall each October; the event includes a costume competition in which children will receive prizes.
- Regional and state music and arts competitions will be hosted at the ROC. The Center's rooms will also be available for conferences and other events.
- Honor Band camp, a short residential music camp for musicians in regional schools, will be hosted at the ROC.
- A song-writing competition for high school students in the region will be hosted, with workshops and recordings of the winners.
- The College of Arts and Humanities has re-launched Kaleidoscope: Festival of the Arts, a series of arts programming sponsored by JSU and held every spring. Many Kaleidoscope events will be held at the ROC.
- The Gamecock Arts Summer Program (GASP), a residential summer program featuring camps in visual arts, creative writing, film, theater, and music, will be housed at the ROC.
- Kids Summer Series in the Arts, a free arts education program once a week in the summer will host sessions mid-day, so that JSU may partner with the Summer Meal Program.
- Underserved children and families will be able to take advantage of reduced rates for select events hosted at the ROC.
- The Creative Collective Classroom and design space will provide opportunities for our students to gain professional experience assisting non-profits with branding, marketing, social media, etc. This new facility brings visibility to our experiential learning approach and expands it to include majors in music, film, and English, as well as art.
- With the Museum and archives, we will provide additional internship experiences for history and art history majors. We will also house the JSU Gallery Director and some of the art collection in this facility.
- Maker Space & Studios provide shared maker areas with access to 3D printer, large format printer, and specialized equipment, so that JSU students have another space and studios available for creation of art.
- Music Technology: The common meeting/classroom space and four practice/recording rooms will support our music technology minor and anticipated Music Industry major. We are currently developing that new major.
- JSU Music Academy will continue to provide music lessons to children and others in the community.
- Student organizations will be able to schedule seminar rooms, classrooms, and event space in this facility.
- Through The Shakespeare Project, professional development is provided to drama and English teachers in regional schools; those workshops will be delivered in the ROC.