The Arnetts give final performance

Joe and Tawana Arnett

Joe and Tawana Arnett

Jennifer Rahn, Publicity

What do Billy Joel, Sweeney Todd, The Boy from Oz and Carly Simon have in common? They are all music and composers, along with many others, that the Robson Ranch choir will be performing at the spring concert on May 16 and 17. Joe and Tawana Arnett have pulled out all the stops for this last concert that they will be directing before they retire from the Robson Ranch Music Club at the end of May.

The couple, who met at Baylor University, has spent their lives involved with music. While Tawana focused on being a piano accompanist, Joe concentrated on conducting. Professionally his career included being a junior and senior high school choir director; he also directed several large church choirs. Although Tawana worked for many years as a legal assistant, she was able to arrange her work schedule to serve as an accompanist for Joe’s many concerts at the schools and churches.

When the Arnetts retired to Robson Ranch from Colorado in 2003 they thought their careers in music were completed. Joe was approached by former resident Gordon Summers about organizing a Veterans Day concert. As a former Marine, Joe was willing to arrange a small concert that included about 30 singers. They practiced at the Grill and performed in the gym because the clubhouse had not yet been built. Joe and Tawana assumed this Veterans concert would be the only one. However, the singers enjoyed the experience so much, and the community was so receptive, they arranged a spring concert. The following year a Christmas concert was added to the venue. Since that first performance in November of 2004 until today, the choir has grown to over 80 members giving three concerts each year. The performances have grown to include instrumentalists to assist Tawana at the piano, video highlighting the songs and some staging. After 11 years of researching new music, finding creative themes for three separate concerts and spending untold hours auditioning and preparing the choir, the Arnetts are ready to lay down the baton. Like many of us they want to be more available for grandchildren’s activities and take opportunities to travel.

Their talent, dedication and enthusiasm have been a tremendous gift to our Robson community. The choir will continue under new direction, but all of us in the Music Club and in the community are grateful for the manner in which Joe and Tawana have contributed to the quality of life here at Robson Ranch. Plan to attend the spring concert on May 16 and 17 to express your appreciation to two people who have helped make Robson Ranch a great place to live.