September 8, 2021
Story by Joe Vinduska
Photos by TwinSauce
Barton at Fort Leavenworth Music Instructor Colvin Hooser spends most of his days educating his students on everything from fundamental principles to the history of rock and roll, but in his spare time this summer he was able to volunteer as a member of the pit orchestra for the “Theater in the Park” organization as a bassist and guitarist.
Director of Learning Services for Barton Community College at Fort Leavenworth Erika Jenkins-Moss said she supports Hooser’s involvement.
“I think it’s a great way for us to build relationships,” she said. “Barton is here because of our local community, which is not only Fort Leavenworth, but reaches out around this whole section of the state, so any chance we have to contribute in other ways outside of our campus is a positive thing.”
Hooser said he enjoys giving his time back to the community by contributing to such an enriching and fun medium. He performed in two shows this summer, “Curtains” and “Newsies.”
“Musical theater is an interest of mine because of the skills involved and the way that the musicians fit into the process,” he said. “The ability to be flexible and follow the musical director as they follow the action on stage can be as challenging as the music itself.”
Hooser has always been connected to music.
“After childhood career dreams, music is the only thing I ever wanted to do,” he said. “I have been fortunate enough to be part of the music business for most of my adult life in various ways including performing, arranging, composing, working in recording studios, designing and installing sound systems, retail and repairs. Even when I thought about leaving music, an opportunity would present itself that pulled me back.”
Hooser said performing is an exciting and fulfilling activity.
The best part of performing is when the ensemble, whether an instrumental group or the cast of a musical, becomes greater than the sum of its individual parts,” he said. “You can physically feel the ‘lift’ of the energy, which is amazing in rehearsal, but breathtaking in performance.”
Hooser will be in action again soon and has made a name for himself as one of the many shining stars in Barton’s music department.
“I have enjoyed my teaching and performing experiences at Barton,” he said. “I have particularly enjoyed the opportunity to perform with the faculty and students at the Great Bend campus. I am looking forward to playing with other faculty again at the Faculty Recital on September 16.”
Theatre in the Park takes place in Shawnee Mission Park in Shawnee Mission, and celebrated its 52nd season in 2021. With almost 35,000 people attending annually, the organization has been widely popular for many years and draws people from all over the Johnson County and Kansas City areas. For more information on Theatre in the Park visit theatreinthepark.org. For more information on Barton Community College at Fort Leavenworth visit fl.bartonccc.edu.