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Lighthall wins Gallaher Memorial Music Performance Competition

lighthall-M-(1).jpgSummer Lighthall of Burlington won the 31st annual A. Frank and Bethel C. Gallaher Memorial Music Performance Competition at Morehead State University.

The award, presented each spring to a junior music major, includes a $1,000 cash prize and the honor of performing at the Caudill College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences Academic Honors and Awards Convocation.

Lighthall is a junior music education major. She recently appeared in the MSU Opera production of “The Pirates of Penzance,” in the leading female role of Mabel. She has been a semi-finalist in the Mid-South Regional Competitions of the National Association of Teachers of Singing. She is a member of the Sigma Alpha Iota women’s music fraternity and is active in several of the Department of Music, Theatre and Dance ensembles.

The Gallaher competition, endowed in 1987, was named for the late Ashland businessman A. Frank Gallaher and his wife, Bethel, who were the parents of the late Dr. Christopher Gallaher, former chair of MSU’s Department of Music.

The Gallaher family made their living as business owners in Ashland. In the late 1940s they began with a drive-in restaurant, then started a market, the Ashland Food Fair and later Gallaher’s Pharmacy. Neither parent was a professional musician but they shared a love for music and encouraged their children to explore music. As a result of this encouragement, two of three children became professional musicians. The third became active in the family business.

All full-time junior music majors, with at least a 2.75 grade point average, may compete for the Gallaher Scholarship. To participate, a student must perform from memory a work that is eight to 10 minutes in length. Preliminary auditions are held in December with the final competition in April.

Contributions to the A. Frank and Bethel C. Gallaher Memorial Music Performance Competition may be made through the MSU Foundation Inc., by calling 606-783-2033 or visiting

Additional information on the competition is available by calling the Department of Music, Theatre and Dance at 606-783-2473 or visiting