In the words of Leo Day, dean of the School of Church Music at Southwestern Seminary, he and his faculty strive to “train all skillfully to perform masterfully so that we worship passionately.” This goal is now even more attainable thanks to the Oneta and Curtis Tally Collaborative Keyboards Classroom, which was unveiled during a special ribbon-cutting ceremony, Jan. 18.

The classroom in Cowden Hall features 13 keyboards, music-inspired art, a special screen allowing for unique interaction between students and professors, and a portrait of the room’s generous donors. The room had previously been in need of renovation, and when Oneta and Curtis Tally, long-time friends of the seminary, learned of the need, they volunteered to provide funds to renovate and restore the space. The ribbon-cutting ceremony was the climax of such an effort.

“After much prayer about this classroom, in which the old pianos were failing on many levels, God has brought much peace,” Day says. “The result of God’s answer to prayer through Oneta and Curtis Tally means that our students will be educated in the finest facility by our dedicated professional music faculty. Students will graduate from Southwestern, gain employment, and begin to train others as they pursue music studies on the highest level. We do all of this for the sake of sharing the Gospel through music.”

The Tallys are long-time residents of Justin, Texas, and have partnered with Southwestern for many years. The couple’s particular appreciation for the seminary’s School of Church Music began in the 1970s.

Recognizing the unique opportunity Southwestern offers students to be equipped for music ministry, the Tallys began supporting Southwestern in 1975 and have established the E.C. and Faye Tally Endowed Scholarship and the Oneta and Curtis Tally Steinway Piano Maintenance Endowment Fund to offset maintenance costs for Southwestern’s Steinway pianos. They also funded the Tally Faculty Office in Mathena Hall. For their generous partnership with Southwestern through the years, the Tallys received the B.H. Carroll award in 2017.

Aside from the ribbon-cutting, the Jan. 18 ceremony for the Keyboards Classroom featured prayer and Scripture reading. The Tallys, Day, and Southwestern President Paige Patterson all participated in the event.

“Thank you, Mr. and Mrs. Tally, for walking with us,” Day says. “Your generosity will be remembered always. Philippians 1:5 reminds us that we need generous partners like the Tallys, who are critical to the cause of proclaiming the name of Jesus all over the world.”