UMD Celebrates African Culture With Music

Posted at: 03/29/2013 8:15 AM
Updated at: 03/29/2013 9:08 AM
By: Brittany Falkers

Immerse yourself in rich African culture through music all next week with the University of Minnesota. 

The UMD Department of Music's presents Shades of Africa Music Festival is scheduled from April 2 - 6, 2013.  

"We're celebrating Africa in its various forms," Director of Orchestras and festival coordinator Jean "Rudy" Perrault said.

This series of concerts celebrates the rich diversity of composers and performers of African decent.  The festival will feature world-class artists in a variety of settings: solo recitals, choral, traditional, classical, orchestral and popular.

"The Shades of Africa is basically to reflect all of the different facets of Africa and all of the influences from Africa on different traditions," Perrault said.

Shades of Africa Music Festival schedule:

Tuesday, April 2, 2013 | 7:30pm -Weber Music Hall

Offrandes Vodouesques: Chantal Lavigne, soprano & Dr. Jeanne Doty, piano
Part of Shades of Africa Music Festival
Ms. Lavigne received a Master degree in music from the Universite de Montreal.  Dr. Doty recently retired as Associate Professor of Music at the University of Minnesota Duluth, where she taught piano, piano-related courses, pedagogy, and chamber music.  
Adult $15 | Senior $12 | UMD Faculty/Staff $5 | Student $5  

Wednesday, April 3, 2013 | 7:30pm -Weber Music Hall

Twin Cities Community Gospel Choir
Part of Shades of Africa Music Festival
This Minnesota community choir gathers singers of various musical experience, ethnic backgrounds, and ages to celebrate music and spirituality through the rich tradition of African American religious music.  The choir strives to share the “Good News” of gospel music with diverse audiences, leaving them energized, hopeful, and filled with spirit.

Adult $15 | Senior $12 | UMD Faculty/Staff $5 | Student $5  

Thursday, April 4, 2013 | 7:30pm -Weber Music Hall

Ovation Guest Artist Series Concert: Catalyst Quartet - “American Voices”
Part of Shades of Africa Music Festival

Hailed by the New York Times at their Carnegie Hall debut as “invariably energetic and finely burnished…playing with earthy vigor,” the Catalyst Quartet is comprised of top Laureates and alumni of the internationally acclaimed Sphinx Competition for young Black and Latino string players. Inspired by music’s ability to transform, the Catalyst Quartet seeks to change the way classical music is perceived through diverse programming and inspiring new and young audiences with dynamic performances of cutting-edge repertoire by a wide range of composers. Founded by the Sphinx Organization, the Catalyst Quartet combines a serious commitment to diversity and education with a passion for contemporary works.

Adult $19 | Senior $17 | UMD Faculty/Staff $5 | Student $5

Friday, April 5, 2013 | 7:30pm - Weber Music Hall

Sowah Mensah, Master Drummer with the UMD Percussion Ensemble
Part of Shades of Africa Music Festival
Special guest artist Sowah Mensah, ethnomusicologist, composer and a Master Drummer from Ghana, West Africa along with the UMD Percussion Ensemble.

Adult $15 | Senior $12 | UMD Faculty/Staff $5 | Student $5  

Saturday, April 6, 2013 | 7:30pm - Weber Music Hall

“Dance Africa” - Joshua Russell, piano with the UMD Symphony Orchestra
Part of Shades of Africa Music Festival
Performing works from composers of African descent with guest soloist Joshua Russell, piano.  Dr. Russell is widely regarded as an expert on the piano music of Haiti and recently performed at the Haitian Embassy in Washington, D.C.
Jean R. Perrault, conductor

Adult $8 | Senior $7 | UMD Faculty/Staff $5 | Student $5 | UMD Student $3

Tickets: 218-726-8877 or z.umn.edu/shadesofafrica Remember to ask about discount pricing on attending multiple performances! (Buy tickets for 2 or more concerts and get up to $5 OFF each ticket.)