EMORY, Va. (WJHL) — An Emory & Henry College graduate named Michael Austin made waves in the Opera performance industry, and on Sunday, he visited his alma mater to pay tribute and showcase his work.

According to a release from the college, the event “marks a high point in the McGlothlin Center’s fall season but also serves as a testament to the institution’s commitment to excellence in the arts.”

During the event, Emory & Henry officials presented Austin with the ‘Legacy of the Arts Award’ to honor his work over the years. The release said Austin’s career has “elevated the institution’s reputation for artistic excellence.”

Jane Harter, a committee member for the Legends and Legacy of the Arts, told News Channel 11 that the concert has been in the works for several years.

“Today we have a concert that we have been planning for about three years,” she said. “He is a world-famous opera singer, tenor [who] lives in Berlin, Germany, and has sung all over the world.”

Austin is from Wytheville, Virginia, and graduated from Emory & Henry in 1975, the release said. He made a name for himself in the Opera world through his portrayal of Othello, performing 15 times at the Festival Belle Ile en Mer in France, earning global critical acclaim.