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Barry Switzer prepares for performance as 2014 Oklahoma Senior Follies King

As he prepares for his upcoming role as King of the 2014 Oklahoma Senior Follies, Barry Switzer reflects on his love of classical music and musical theater, much of which came from listening to his three children learn piano throughout their childhoods.
by Heather Warlick Modified: June 8, 2014 at 10:00 pm •  Published: June 8, 2014

Barry Switzer is more than just a legendary sports figure. This weekend, the coach will take stage instead of the field, as the 2014 Oklahoma Senior Follies King.

As Switzer, 74, prepares for the upcoming performances, he reflected on his love of music, theater and how his kids helped make him a classical music aficionado.

“I’ve heard classical music since they were 8 years old playing it,” he said of his children, Greg, Doug and Kathy.

All three took piano lessons throughout their childhoods.

“We had three pianos in my home at one time for them.”

Greg Switzer, the eldest son, is an accomplished songwriter and pianist. As a young man, Greg was also an all-around athlete.

“He played football and he could bench press the damn piano,” Switzer said. “But he was a classically-trained artist.”

From listening to and enjoying his children’s talents grow, Switzer became intimately familiar with the melodies of many composers.

When attending international piano competitions, Switzer said he always knew as much Rachmaninoff, Grieg, Liszt, Beethoven, Bach and Chopin as the pros.

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by Heather Warlick
Life & Style Editor
Since graduating from University of Central Oklahoma with a Bachelor's Degree in Journalism, Staff Writer Heather Warlick has written stories for The Oklahoman's Life section. Her beats have included science, health, home and garden, family,...
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