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Grammy-winner John Legend to speak at UT Arlington's Graduation Celebration

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Monday, March 21, 2011

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Media Contact: Bridget Lewis, Office:817-272-3317, Cell:214-577-9094, blewis@uta.edu

ARLINGTON - UT Arlington honors the Class of 2011 with a spectacular Graduation Celebration on Friday, May 13, featuring remarks by Grammy Award-winning superstar John Legend.

John Legend

John Legend

The annual event will be held at the Levitt Pavilion in Founder’s Square, 100 W. Abram St. in downtown Arlington. Festivities begin at 8 p.m.

The year-end bash is open to the public. UT Arlington President James D. Spaniolo and Kate Aoki, an architecture graduate student representing the Class of 2011, also will speak.

A Texas-sized fireworks show, food and a special surprise for graduating students are also on the menu.

Tickets are not required to attend Graduation Celebration, but reserve seating is available for graduating students and their families at www.utagraduationtickets.com. Tickets will be available in mid-April.

Legend emerged on the national music scene with his 2004 album Get Lifted, which sold 3 million copies and included two Top 30 hits: “Used to Love U,” and “Ordinary People,” which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard charts.

The Ohio-native describes his style as “very soulful, rooted in gospel but with hip-hop beats and unique, witty lyrics, more ‘major’ than ‘minor,’ more of a feel-good, upbeat sound.”

Legend has earned nine Grammy Awards, including three this year. In 2007 he received the Starlight Award from the Songwriters Hall of Fame.

A 1999 graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, Legend returned in 2009 to give the commencement speech at his alma mater. His message was “Finding Your Truth: Living a Soulful Life.”

In case of inclement weather, Graduation Celebration will move to Texas Hall on the UT Arlington campus.

The University of Texas at Arlington is a comprehensive research institution of 33,800 students in the heart of North Texas. Visit www.uta.edu to learn more.

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The University of Texas at Arlington is an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action employer.