Tahlequah Daily Press

June 11, 2013

Musician lends talents to nonprofit organizations

By RENEE FITE
Special Writer

TAHLEQUAH — Volunteering can be enriching, rewarding and just plain fun.

Often, a person who chooses to volunteer has been doing so since they were  child, along with parents or other family members.

Tahlequah newcomer Shawn Arthur is someone who learned the value of volunteering at home.

“I was raised in a home that believed in the volunteer spirit, so it comes naturally,” Arthur said.

His mother was always doing something for someone or for the church or school. As kids, he and his siblings were always helping.

“I think it comes as a natural expression of one’s Christian duty,” Arthur said.

For almost three years he has called Tahlequah home, and anyone who has met him knows his quick smile, caring nature and just how fun spending time with him can be. He is also a classically trained pianist and accomplished accompanist, conductor and singer.

In December, Arthur was quick to say, “yes” when asked to participate in the first Tahlequah High School soccer team music fundraiser and was a crowd-pleaser, helping to raise about $2,500 for the team.

Arthur moved here from the west coast, and has generally lived in metropolitan areas.

“I am, by nature and birth, a ‘big-city’ guy and those who know me would never conceive of me living in a small town,” said Arthur. “Nor would I have until I visited a few times, fell in love with all things Tahlequah and decided to move here. I would imagine that I will die here.”

Retirement is for those ready to die or rich enough to travel, he said.

“Neither yet apply, I don’t think,” he said.

He is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Mormon, where he volunteers in the Sunday School and serves as choir director.

Just prior to moving to Oklahoma from California, he served on the Board of Directors of the Redlands Symphony Orchestra and was chairman of the board of directors of the Step by Step Parolee Re-Entry Program.

In Tahlequah he has volunteered two seasons with the Northeastern State University Opera workshop with Dr. Shannon Unger, and the Tahlequah Community Playhouse where he is currently a board member and president-elect, and fundraising committee chairman.

Arthur is excited about directing the TCP fall musical, “The Drowsy Chaperone.” Show dates are Sept. 20-22 and 27-29. For audition information, visit TahlequahCommunityPlayhouse on Facebook.

 

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