Meryl Norton Hearst Visiting Artist Series

The School of Music was proud to host the 2022-2023 Meryl Norton Hearst Visiting Artist Series. The series included visits by the following artists. 

About the Hearst Series

This series was made possible with the support of the Meryl Norton Hearst Chair --belonging to what used to be called the College of Humanities and Fine Arts at UNI.  This Chair was created by an endowment from James Hearst in honor of his wife.  James Hearst was a local poet, who served as a professor of creative writing at UNI from 1941 until his retirement in 1975. As a paraplegic since age 19, following a diving accident, James met his UNI students in the basement of his house in Cedar Falls, because UNI was not at that time accessible to wheelchair users.  But his injury did not limit his amazing contributions. He won numerous awards for his poetry, including the “Iowa Bicentennial Artist’ Recognition Award, and the Iowa Library Association’s 1977 Johnson Brigham Award for the “most outstanding contribution to literature.”  When he and his wife passed away, they left their house on Seerley Boulevard to the town of Cedar Falls in order to create the Hearst Center for the Arts.  In addition, they also created an endowment at UNI, the Meryl Norton Hearst Chair, which sponsors our departmental performance series this year.  We are very grateful to the Hearst estate for this ongoing contribution which allows the various departments in the Humanities and Arts to invite nationally recognized speakers and performers to our campus.