News + Events

FHU to Celebrate 40 Years of Makin' Music​

Henderson, Tenn. - Mar 20, 2017

Freed-Hardeman University is preparing for the 40th anniversary of Makin' Music, a campus-wide musical event set for April 7-8. This year’s show, "Makin' Music 40," will reminisce and reflect on the program’s past with performances in Loyd Auditorium on the FHU campus.

Makin’ Music is an annual production by FHU students. Competing clubs create and perform seven-minute shows. Since 1978, the students have competed for the Sweepstakes Trophy in five categories: lyrics, blocking and staging, vocals, costume and set design and entertainment value. Hosts and hostesses, emcees and a showband are incorporated between the competing shows.

In celebration of the 40th anniversary show, returning Makin’ Music participants from 1978 to 2016 also will perform. They will be featured during the show in different ways. Approximately 70 returning hosts and hostesses will sing with current students in the opening number, the closing number and in smaller groups throughout the show.

The audience can expect many surprises involving alumni in this year’s Makin’ Music show. Student coordinator Cody Nicholson said, “There are so many different things that will be occurring in this year’s production that I hope will give people the experience they're looking for when they come. We are doing everything in our power to make this the biggest, most enjoyable, Makin' Music yet.”

Fellow student coordinator, Lanae Hodnett, said, “It’s going to be incredible! There are a lot of nods to past shows that the audience will appreciate, as well as creative club shows and talented hosts and hostesses with the showband that will capture everyone’s interests.”

With the help of Tony Allen, who has been producing the show for 11 years, Nicholson and Hodnett direct the program and supervise every group involved with Makin’ Music. Nicholson is a senior exercise science major from Chapmansboro, Tennessee, and Hodnett, is a senior marketing major from Buford, Georgia.  

Clubs competing this year are Phi Kappa Alpha, Sigma Rho, Theta Nu, Xi Chi Delta, and Chi Beta Chi. Clubs create shows that are completely student run and organized. Directors from each club write the lyrics, match them to music, create choreography, design costumes and teach their casts the shows.

Along with the clubs, hosts and hostesses provide musical entertainment. They are directed by Peggy Weaver, a Jackson, Tennessee, resident who has been involved with the program since she attended FHU as a student. The hosts and hostesses are Madison Darby, a senior English major from Ramer, Tennessee; Elisabeth Hibbett, a sophomore social work major from Henderson, Tennessee; Meredith Goodman, a senior nursing major from Selmer, Tennessee; Anna Farley, a senior nursing major from Jackson, Tennessee; Logan Foote, a senior marketing major from Florence, Alabama; and Brett Simpson, a senior exercise science major from Knoxville, Tennessee.

A venue for alumni, friends, students and parents to meet, eat supper and reminisce is planned for Saturday evening in Heritage Commons and Bader Green on campus. The FHU Associates will serve drinks and desserts, and Mid-South Youth Camp will sell brown bags that include two hotdogs, chips and a drink from 5:00pm to 6:30pm.

A photo booth with props will be available for those who want to capture the moment with friends and family. FHU asks that any pictures posted to Twitter include the hashtag #MM40, so that they may be projected on a screen during the festivities. Campus radio station WFHU 91.5 FM will broadcast from Heritage Commons with music from 1978-2017.

Saturday afternoon will end with the traditional club walk to Loyd Auditorium at 6:30pm. The clubs will begin in front of the library while those in attendance line the sidewalk. Selected alumni carrying balloons will also participate in the club walk prior to Saturday’s 7:30pm show.

Makin’ Music is set for April 7 at 7:30pm and April 8 at 2:00pm and 7:30pm. Tickets can be purchased up to the day of the show; however, Allen advises purchasing tickets early because they may be sold out before show time. Advance purchases may be made at

Additional information may be found at