Aerial photo of Lorton Performance Center on the campus of TU on April 13, 2011. TOM GILBERT/Tulsa World

I studied piano at the University of Tulsa for three years while in high school. Thanks to my teacher, Jean Gentry Waits, I became quite a good pianist.

It would, however, never have come to fruition without their influence. This was a direct manifestation of TU's focus on excellence in the arts.

Today, when I think of TU, I always remember (and quite frankly marvel at) the extraordinary music faculty. In addition to Mrs. Waits, there was Bela Rozsa, Tosca Berger Kramer and many others, all of whom contributed greatly to Tulsa's arts scene.

So, it’s nearly inconceivable to me that TU is abandoning its roots (and its community) for a better bottomline.

Lorton Hall’s (sublimely) special artistic energy, built up over the years, will quickly dissipate, leaving in its wake a barren cultural wasteland and taking a big chunk of the heart of the city along with it.

Now talented Tulsa students will have to leave town to study; the question is will they ever return to share their gifts?

The TU trustees should be asking serious questions of themselves, before selling off a sizable chunk of the city’s soul simply for the sake of adding a few extra dollars to its (already sizeable) endowment fund.

I hope the law of karma doesn’t ultimately limit the trustees' (own) accessibility to the ethereal and vibrant world of the arts; this, lest they be re-born in some unanimated cultural netherworld, devoid of music and the other humanities.

Michael Moore, Kailua Kona, Hawaii

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