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Three IU Jacobs School of Music alumni unite for Brothers in Achievement Scholarship

May 18, 2018

Brownlee, Roberts, and White with Dean Gwyn Richards

Left to right: Lawrence Brownlee, Quincy Roberts and Richard White with Jacobs Dean Gwyn Richards

Print-Quality Photo

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – The Indiana University Jacobs School of Music is pleased to announce the Brownlee, Roberts and White Brothers in Achievement Scholarship, established through the generosity of alumni Lawrence Brownlee (M.M Voice ’01), Quincy Roberts (B.M. Voice ’02) and Richard White (M.M. Tuba ’99, D.M. Tuba ’12).

All three went on to very successful careers after graduating from Jacobs: Brownlee as a world-renowned tenor, Roberts as an accomplished entrepreneur and White as a classical tubist.

Aligning with Indiana University’s commitment to diversity, special consideration for awarding of the scholarship will be given to underrepresented populations, including but not limited to financially challenged students and/or students with diverse cultural experiences. The scholarship will begin being awarded on an annual basis in 2019.

Brownlee, Roberts and White gravitated toward each other immediately after meeting at IU more than 20 years ago and are now friends for life. “I met Larry and Richard when I first arrived at IU in 1997; they were second-year grad students, and I was just starting my bachelor’s,” said Roberts. “Larry and I were in the same voice studio, studying with Virginia Botkin. We all became great friends rather quickly and joined the same fraternity, Kappa Alpha Psi, which was founded at Indiana University in 1911. Our relationship is a true brotherhood built on achievement.”

“Both guys were in my wedding, and I consider them two of my closest friends on the planet,” said Brownlee. “Our relationships are intertwined like brothers, which started with music and was strengthened through the fraternity.”

“The brotherhood for us is real,” said White, adding, “I hold my experience at IU very dear to my heart. The combination of a top-notch music education coupled with the extraordinary friendships built during my time in Bloomington is invaluable. I am motivated to pay it forward with this scholarship with hopes that it helps someone else reach their educational goals at Jacobs.”

All three feel a strong commitment to their alma mater.

“At Jacobs, students are exposed to world-class performances, have world-class resources and get world-class instruction from world-class musicians,” Brownlee said. “That kind of instruction prepares them with what they need to be successful.”

“The Jacobs School has a long history of greatness,” said Roberts. “The world’s finest musicians are cultivated there.”

White added, “It’s a miracle school—where the impossible is always made possible. Simply put, there is no better option.”

The trio is also passionate about helping future generations of serious musicians reach their potential.

“It is important for me and my friends to give back as others have done for us,” said Brownlee. “We all benefited from scholarships to further our educational pursuits, and we felt a responsibility to provide the same opportunity for others.”

Said White, “I strongly believe in Winston Churchill’s quote ‘We make a living by what we do, we make a life by what we give.’ With all that I am and all that I have, I love the IU Jacobs School of Music, and I am forever grateful. I hope this gift spreads that love.”

About the donors

Named 2017 Male Singer of the Year by both the International Opera Awards and Bachtrack, Lawrence Brownlee has been hailed by the Associated Press as one of “the world’s leading bel canto tenors.” One of the most in-demand singers around the globe, he has performed with nearly every leading international opera house and festival as well as numerous major orchestras. He also serves as artistic advisor at Opera Philadelphia, helping the company to expand its repertoire, diversity efforts and community initiatives, and is a champion for autism awareness through the organization Autism Speaks. His primary teacher at the Jacobs School of Music was Costanza Cuccaro.

Quincy Roberts, bass, studied voice primarily with Roger Havranek and Paul Kiesgen at the Jacobs School. An accomplished entrepreneur, philanthropist and classical singer, he is the CEO of Roberts Trucking, a commercial construction materials logistics firm headquartered in Dallas, Texas. He was named as a 2017 finalist for the world-renowned Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award. Other notable recent accomplishments include the Dallas Black Chamber of Commerce Quest for Success Award, Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Business Program’s Highest Job Growth Award and the coveted Dallas Business Journal's 40 under 40 Award. An advocate for community financial literacy and entrepreneurship, Roberts serves as mentor to several startup companies and emerging entrepreneurs.

Tubist Richard White has more than two decades of performing on the world’s classical music stages, with some of its most celebrated ensembles. He is currently in his sixth season as principal tubist of the New Mexico Philharmonic. He also enjoys playing in the duo Diversity Matters, with pianist Pamela Viktoria Pyle, in addition to teaching at the University of New Mexico, where he is associate professor of tuba/euphonium and associate director of the Spirit Marching Band. Also a motivational speaker, White has presented in Mexico, South America, Europe, Southeast Asia and across the United States. He studied tuba at Jacobs with Dan Perantoni.

Learn about the many ways you can put unique opportunities, offered only by the Jacobs School of Music, within reach for talented and deserving students. You may also contact the Jacobs School of Music development office to speak with a development professional about ways to connect your passion for the Jacobs School with an opportunity to make a meaningful difference.

Linda Cajigas
Assistant Director of Communications
IU Jacobs School of Music
812-856-3882 |