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Jacobs School of Music students perform chamber works of black composers

Feb. 21, 2014

Compositions by Kay, Capers, Adams, Coleridge-Taylor, Lomax, Dundee and Perkinson

Compositions by Kay, Capers, Adams, Coleridge-Taylor, Lomax, Dundee and Perkinson 

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BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – The Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, in collaboration with  the IU African American Arts Institute and the IU Archives of African American Music and Culture, will present the Extensions of the Traditions concert at 4 p.m. this Sunday, Feb. 23, in Auer Hall. The event is free and open to the public.

This year's concert features chamber works of composers from various countries of the African diaspora.

Durand Jones, a graduate saxophone major at the Jacobs School, organized the program as part of his research assistant assignment with the African American Arts Institute. "When we programed this concert, we wanted to show the range, depth and diversity that black composers throughout the world have to offer," he said.

The program will feature American Neo-Classical composer Ulysses Kay's "Three Fanfares for Four Trumpets," English composer Samuel Coleridge-Taylor's "Five Negro Melodies for Piano Trio," the woodwind quintet "Special Ops" by IU student composer Corey Dundee, and H. Leslie Adams’s cantata "Hymn to Freedom," which will be conducted by Jacobs student Ronald Nash.

In 1988, while pursuing his doctoral studies in music composition at the University of Michigan, William C. Banfield launched the Extensions of the Tradition concert series for the purpose of presenting and introducing works by composers of the African diaspora to the general public.

With the appointment of Banfield as director of the IU Soul Revue, an ensemble of the African American Arts Institute, the series moved to Indiana University.

Through the collaborative efforts of the African American Arts Institute, the Jacobs School of Music and the Archives of African American Music and Culture, Extensions was launched at IU in 1993.

In 1996, an album of Banfield’s compositions, “Extensions of the Tradition,” was released (INNOVA 510, American Composers Forum). In the album liner notes, Banfield explains, "Extensions of the Tradition is an attempt to take my own cultural materials from traditional [black] vernacular languages and … comment musically on what those traditions might mean for the vitality of our community today."

The Archives of African American Music and Culture has installed an exhibit of photographs, scores and other composer memorabilia in the Jacobs School of Music’s William and Gayle Cook Music Library through the month of February, which is African American History Month.

For more information, contact Sabine Justilien at 812-855-5427 or