The Barbara Crouch Lies Scholarship honors the 1956 graduate and is awarded to a voice or music education major.
“I received a phone call telling me that an anonymous donor had contributed a scholarship in my name. What a surprise! What a wonderful gift,” Lies said. “My own college education was made possible by many anonymous gifts. I received scholarships from funds given by people I never knew, or people I knew who never revealed themselves to me.”
The Kiwanis Club and the Rotary Club in Chickasha, the McDowell Music Club, the First Christian Church in Chickasha, people in Apache and Marlow and scholarships from OCW are a few that I did know of. One day my voice teacher, Mrs. Virginia Anderson, told me that someone had arranged for me to have a proper suit and other items of clothing! All of these gifts were given in quiet, openhearted generosity by people who never expected my thanks or repayment. I decided in my heart that the best thanks I could give these donors was to work hard, to honor my OCW alma mater, and to achieve as much as I could in my career as a professional singer. After graduation from OCW, I attended The Juilliard School of Music in New York City on a scholarship. I also received financial assistance from friends of OCW whom I had met, and who became like family to me. Again, I determined to do my best.
“The opportunities for singers in New York at that time were varied, exciting, and plentiful. Perhaps, the highlight of my solo career was my appearance as the Countess in a concert version of the last act of “Pique Dame” with the New York Philharmonic Orchestra under the direction of Andre Kostelanetz at Philharmonic Hall. A close second was as mezzo-soprano soloist in the Bach Mass in B minor at Carnegie Hall with conductor Martin Josman. Also, there were solo appearances with orchestra in Town Hall, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, a solo concert with pianist Margaret McConnell, also an OCW graduate, on WNYC-TV, and many other appearances as soloist in the surrounding areas. In addition to these were several summers of musical theatre in the northeast, and two exciting seasons at Milwaukee Melody Top as resident supporting actress/singer. There were recordings and tours of the country with The Riverside Singers, a six-voice cappella madrigal group, which was especially rewarding, as were the recording sessions with The Robert Shaw Chorale. It was a very exciting time for singers,” Lies said.
“Throughout my life I never walked alone -- my faith, my parents, and my friends sustained me. Kind donor, I am deeply honored to know that your generous and selfless gesture will allow some deserving student to benefit from this gift in my name. Thank you to those who made my education possible. Thank you for the love and support of so many friends who helped make my life a dream-come-true. I can’t help singing . . . Cheer OCW!" Back to Gallery