What would motivate a Los Angeles real estate mogul to give tens of millions of dollars to the College of Fine Art’s School of Music, aspiring to see it become the finest in the world? In a word: love.
Alan Fox and his wife, Daveen, gave $20 million to the School of Music in honor of Alan’s 100-year-old father, master teacher and legendary French horn player Fred Fox. The Foxes’ connection to the UA is through associate professor of music Daniel Katzen, who is a former student of Fred Fox’s.
If this is no ordinary gift, Alan Fox is no ordinary son. He is founder and president of real estate investment firm ACF Property Management and author of several books on building relationships, creating joy, and finding happiness.
Even though Fred Fox has played the French horn for more than 50 years he is “always, always thinking about how to do it better,” says his son. “He’s an amazing teacher and I think that should be recognized.”
Considered a legend in his field, Fred Fox is sharp — and still teaching. Trained at the Juilliard School, he has performed as a solo horn player with the National Symphony Orchestra, the Minnesota Orchestra, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and Paramount and RKO studios in Hollywood.
In his honor, and with gratitude for the gift, the UA’s music school has been renamed the Fred Fox School of Music.
“The Tucson community and arts patrons locally, regionally, and nationally will enjoy the fruits of this remarkable support,” says College of Fine Arts Dean Jory Hancock.
The School of Music, which has offered instruction since the late 1800s, is the academic home to more than 500 students. Its music graduates have gone on to international careers as educators, recording artists, industry professionals, and more. This is the second time in five years that it has received a major philanthropic gift from a music enthusiast. In 2012, the late Sanford Bolton gave more than $3 million to support the Sanford and Phyllis Bolton Guitar Studies Program, one of the nation’s top classical guitar programs.
Music education builds students’ minds and requires total concentration, says Fred Fox, who recently taught a master class on campus.
“The end result will be that they will be more effective at whatever they choose to do,” he says. “I am very happy to have my name associated with such a wonderful music school and look forward to great things from the students enrolled there.”