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April 16, 2009

Media Contact: Hannah Buchanan
Public Affairs Specialist
News and Information
The University of Texas at Tyler

Steve Lopez, Author of The Soloist, to Speak at UT Tyler

The Soloist book cover

Award-winning journalist and author Steve Lopez will serve as the keynote speaker at UT Tyler’s 2009 Freshman/New Student Convocation, Dr. Peter Fos, provost and vice president for academic affairs, announced.

His non-fiction book, The Soloist: A Lost Dream, An Unlikely Friendship, And The Redemptive Power of Music, has been made into the 2009 film, The Soloist, starring Jamie Foxx and Robert Downey Jr. It will premiere nationwide Friday, April 24.

A copy of the book, which is based on columns Lopez wrote for The Los Angeles Times about his friendship with a downtown Los Angeles musician, has been given to every incoming freshman as part of the university’s 2009 Freshman Summer Reading Program.

Lopez will discuss the book at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, Aug. 25 at the UT Tyler R. Don Cowan Fine and Performing Arts Center.

“Our 2009 Summer Reading Program Book Selection Committee members felt that Lopez’s story was engaging and fearlessly shared his own emotions and insights,” said Dr. Robert Sterken, UT Tyler assistant provost for international programs. “The committee has worked extremely hard since last fall to represent the UT Tyler community. We are grateful for the support on campus for the book selection process and for this program.”

Lopez joined the staff of the Los Angeles Times in May 2001 after four years at Time Inc., where he wrote for Time, Sports Illustrated, Life and Entertainment Weekly.  Prior to Time Inc., Lopez was a columnist at the Philadelphia Inquirer, the San Jose Mercury News and the Oakland Tribune. His work has won numerous national journalism awards for column writing and magazine reporting.

A California native, Lopez is also the author of three novels. He and his wife, Alison, have two sons and a daughter.

For more information, contact Sterken, 903.565.5908 or rsterken@uttyler.edu.

One of the 15 campuses of the UT System, UT Tyler offers excellence in teaching, research, artistic performance and community service. Nearly 90 undergraduate and graduate degrees are available at UT Tyler, which has an enrollment of more than 6,000 high-ability students at its campuses in Tyler, Longview and Palestine.


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