Cooper Music Center
The beautiful Frank and Gladys Cooper Music Center was made possible by a gift from the estate of the late Gladys L. Cooper of Tipton, California-- the last of a series of generous gifts to Point Loma.
Born on a farm in Northern Vermont, Gladys Cooper was converted at a Methodist revival meeting when she was eleven years of age. In 1907 she moved to California to seek a teaching position--a career in public education that spanned 20 years, 15 of which were spent in services as a principal and supervisor. In 1909, she met Frank Cooper who soon after their marriage was converted to Christianity as well.
The Coopers first became acquainted with Pasadena College (as Point Loma was known before its move to San Diego) in 1911 when they hired a few students from the college to help run their feed and fuel business. Remarking on their encounter with these young men, Mrs. Cooper said, " God sent some wonderful fellows who could quote scripture and pray the glory down. They invited us to camp meeting and college affairs and we liked what we heard and the people we met."
In 1912, Mr. and Mrs. Cooper joined the Mary Street Church of the Nazarene in Pasadena and four years later began to serve as song evangelists, traveling and participating in revival meetings throughout California.
Continuing their evangelistic work, the Coopers began a cattle ranching business in the Central California Valley in 1919. Eventually, they acquired and developed hundreds of acres of ranch property and began breeding Hereford cattle in 1931. The couple's expert knowledge and management led to the development of a highly-valued thoroughbred strain of Hereford breeding stock. After Mr. Cooper's death, Mrs. Cooper began showing her prized cattle in California State Fairs, eventually establishing herself as the foremost woman breeder in the Hereford Association on the West Coast.
From the earliest days of their life together, the Coopers dedicated themselves to the work of the Lord and to faithful stewardship of any resources that came into their possession. In her signed autobiography, The Romance of Serving, given to Ryan Library at Point Loma Nazarene University, Mrs. Cooper has written, " Point Loma College--Carry the Message!" The desire of Frank and Gladys Cooper to assist in the training of Christian musicians as they share the Good News will surely be realized through this generous gift to Point Loma.
The construction of the $7.3 million dollar Cooper Music Center began in November 1994. It was dedicated in November 1995.
CHESTER C. CRILL PERFORMANCE HALL
Learn More about Crill Performance Hall - includes seating chart
The centerpiece of the CMC is the Chester C. Crill Performance Hall - a 378-seat auditorium consisting of a full stage, stage support area, and orchestra pit. This state-of-the-art performance hall has been made possible due to a generous gift from the late Dr. Chester C. Crill and his wife, Alice.
Dr. Crill joined the faculty in 1947 as the chair of the division of fine arts after having served at Roberts Wesleyan College and Bethany Peniel College. He organized the A Capella Choir (now the Concert Choir) and directed it for 27 years, conducting 25 performances of Handel's Messiah with Choral Union.
Dr. Crill served as minister of music at Bethany First Church of the Nazarene and at Bresee Avenue Church of the Nazarene in Pasadena. A graduate of Greenville College and the University of Oklahoma, an honorary doctorate of music was bestowed upon him by Pasadena College in recognition of the stature he had attained as an educator and choral director.
Named in honor of a man who gave his entire life to Christian higher education, the beautiful performance hall will continue his commitment to quality in music education with recitals and concert performances for years to come.