Austin/ Arts & Culture
AI Assisted Icon
Published on April 02, 2024
World Premiere of Darden Smith's "Western Skies" to Enliven UT Austin on May 4Source: Matt Sturtevant, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The University of Texas at Austin's musical landscape is about to be taken by storm with the world premiere of Darden Smith's "Western Skies" on May 4. Smith, the talented musician and 2023-24 Songwriter-in-Residence, will showcase his work at the McCullough Theatre at 7:30 p.m., offering attendees an opportunity to traverse the terrains of Texas through his songs and stories.

Securing the inaugural spot for the Songwriter-in-Residence, an initiative backed by UT President Jay Hartzell's strategic plan developed in 2022, Smith is all set to bring the house down. Tickets for the special evening will be available starting April 5, according to Texas Performing Arts, with Texas Inner Circle members getting a pre-sale peek come April 3.

"Western Skies" isn't just another concert. It's a multi-sensory experience where Smith's evocative tunes are complemented by a visual tapestry of photographs and videos developed with theatrical collaborators. Among them, are director Rod Caspers and dramaturge Liz Frankel, to name a few. The one-night affair will also see Smith flanked by a four-piece band, enhancing the production's soul.

As reported by Texas Performing Arts, the roots of "Western Skies" are traced back to road trips Smith took through West Texas, the landscape fueling his creativity. It's this connection of place and sound that has defined Smith's 35-year career, producing 16 albums that resonate with distinct Texan flair.

This residency program fits snugly into the University's greater scheme, marrying campus life with Austin's renowned live music vibe. With "Western Skies," the initiative promises to be a fitting tribute to the state's rich cultural tapestry.