AKIN EUBA: A Giant of Musicology and Composition Passes
“Professor Akin Euba was an expansive thinker in the world of musicology, – not just African. He was a theorist of immense world scope but with unparalleled devotion to Africa’s unique voice. Without a doubt he not only coined the term, ‘African Pianism,’ he led the debate to define what it entails. He will be missed!” – Fred Onovwerosuoke.
Akin Euba ( April 28 1935 – April 14 2020)
Born on 28 April 1935 in Lagos, Nigeria, Euba studied composition with Arnold Cooke at the Trinity College of Music, London, obtaining the diplomas of fellow of the Trinity College London (Composition) and fellow of the Trinity College London (Piano).
He was awarded a Rockefeller Foundation Fellowship in 1962. He received B.A. and M.A. degrees from the University of California, Los Angeles, where he studied with Mantle Hood, Charles Seeger, Professor J. H. Kwabena Nketia, Klaus Wachsmann, and Roy Travis. He holds a Ph.D. in ethnomusicology from the University of Ghana, Legon (1974). While at Legon, Euba’s doctoral work was supervised by Professor Nketia, and his dissertation is entitled “Dundun Music of the Yoruba”.
He was professor and director of the Centre for Cultural Studies at the University of Lagos, and has also served as a senior research fellow at the University of Ife (now Obafemi Awolowo University) in Nigeria. He served as head of music at the Nigerian Broadcasting Corporation for five years. He was a research scholar and artist in residence at IWALEWA House, the African studies center of the University of Bayreuth in Germany between 1986 and 1992.
He was the Andrew Mellon Professor of Music at the University of Pittsburgh between 1993 and 2011 and he is the current Andrew W. Mellon Professor, Emeritus in music. He is the founder and director of the Centre for Intercultural Music Arts, London (founded in 1989), and director emeritus of the Centre for Intercultural Musicology at Churchill College, University of Cambridge.
Euba’s scholarly interests include the musicology and ethnomusicology of modern interculturalism. He has organized regular symposia on music in Africa and the Diaspora at Churchill College, Cambridge as well as the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing. These events have featured such notable composers and scholars as J. H. Kwabena Nketia and Halim El-Dabh. With his Elekoto Ensemble, he has brought together musicians from Nigeria, China, India, Germany, Malta, and the United States.
His compositions involve a synthesis of African traditional material (often from his own ethnic group, the Yoruba people) and contemporary classical music. His most ambitious composition is the opera Chaka: An Opera in Two Chants (1970), which blends West African percussion and atenteben flutes with twelve tone technique.
Find a list of his expansive collection of works, below:
Burna Boy To Perform At “One World: Together At Home” Concert.
Global Citizen and the World Health Organization (WHO), together with several celebrities, are hosting a special concert just for you.
The event, tagged One World: Together At Home, will kick off today, Saturday, with the aim of celebrating and supporting healthcare workers, and will feature real experiences from doctors, nurses and families around the world.
The event will feature Burna Boy, Idris and Sabrina Elba, Chris Martin, David Beckham, John Legend, and lots more, while Jimmy Fallon, Jimmy Kimmel and Stephen Colbert will host the event.
SAVE THE DATE: 18 APRIL 2020
One World: #TogetherAtHome is a historic, global broadcast to support the fight against #COVID19.
Watch here @WHO ðŸ‘‰ https://t.co/OKTI6rJRMg pic.twitter.com/TlwiOgiE5I
Sauti Sol to Release Fifth Album in June
‘Midnight Train’, the anticipated fifth album from award-winning afro pop band, Sauti Sol, will be released on June 5, 2020. Fans of the band had the opportunity to pre-add singles such as ‘Brighter Days’, ‘Suzanna’ and ‘Disco Matanga’ to their playlists before the official launch.
Recorded between Los Angeles, California, Johannesburg, South Africa and their hometown Nairobi, Kenya, ‘Midnight Train’ demonstrates the bands songwriting and producing skills with electric energy and new rhythms. The album’s theme is centered around enjoying the journey of life but also embracing the hustles and the trials that come with it.
The band, made up of vocalists Bien-Aimé Baraza, Willis Chimano and Savara Mudigi, and guitarist Polycarp Otieno described the album as wholesome, inspirational and uplifting and offers much needed social commentary while not losing its global appeal. “There is a lot of maturity in the album,” states Polycarp. “We have come of age and we express how people should perceive us freely after 11 years as professional singers. Every song speaks to an issue that is relatable to everyone.”
The upcoming album is the group’s first major label record with Universal Music Africa. One of its tracks, ‘Disco Matanga’ (Yambakhana), the official soundtrack to Netflix’s first African Original series, Queen Sono, is the most recent collaborative release to come in the form of Sho Madjozi and Black Motion.
“They were on our list of musicians we wanted to collaborate with, and it finally came to pass,” explains Polycarp. “We love South African music and it is one of the sweetest artistic heritages on the continent.”
Other notable features on the album include American singer and songwriter India Arie on a sensual track ‘My Everything’, and Burna Boy on ‘Time Flies’.
Bien explains that ‘Time Flies’ is inspired by Burna Boy’s meteoric rise to fame. “A lot can happen in a year with dedication.”
Vanderbilt Professor of African American and Diaspora Studies and French, is Vanderbilt’s winner of the 2020 Southeastern Conference Faculty Achievement Award.
The awards, now in their ninth year, recognize faculty members from each of the 14 Southeastern Conference universities who have excelled in teaching—particularly at the undergraduate level—and research.
“As a prolific and renowned scholar, Professor Sharpley-Whiting has distinguished herself as a leading international authority on race and gender in Europe, the French Atlantic world and comparative black cultural movements,” said Interim Chancellor and Provost Susan R. Wente. “She is a dedicated member of the Vanderbilt community, multi-faceted intellectual and sought-after commentator whose interdisciplinary and transnational work influences our university, academia and the public domain.”
Sharpley-Whiting is currently researching Men I’d Like to Have Known, a biographical study of four African diasporic figures across French historical movements.
Her extensive body of published work includes four single-authored monographs in leading presses for her fields: Bricktop’s Paris: African American Women Expatriates in Jazz-Age Paris and The Autobiography of Ada Bricktop Smith, or Miss Baker Regrets (SUNY Press, 2015); Pimps Up, Ho’s Down: Young Black Women, Hip Hop and the New Gender Politics (New York University Press, 2007); Negritude Women (University of Minnesota Press, 2002); and Black Venus: Sexualized Savages, Primal Fears, and Primitive Narratives in French (Duke University Press, 1999).
She has also edited volumes on topics as varied as Barack Obama, Frantz Fanon, black feminism and black France. Several of these books are critical examinations of the scholarship in an area and are widely used in graduate and undergraduate classrooms and thus influence generations of students. Most notable among them is the Norton Anthology of Theory and Criticism, a foundational book in courses on literary criticism, for which she serves as a lead editor. She is also editor of the journal Palimpsest.
She is a sought-after commentator for media interviews on her scholarship and served as an expert testimony witness before congressional hearings on stereotypes and degrading images of women.
Sharpley-Whiting, chair of the African American and Diaspora Studies Department, has played a large role in building the department’s curriculum, faculty and majors. She has taught a wide variety of undergraduate courses at Vanderbilt, consistently creating new courses on topics as varied as “Black Paris – Paris Noir: The African Diaspora and the City of Light,” “Slavery and Public Memory,” “Mystery, Murder, and Mayhem in Black Detective Fiction: Race, Mixed Race, and ‘Passing,’” and “Black Diaspora Women Writers.”
“Tracy is a prominent scholar and much-admired teacher who is advancing critical conversations on race, gender and culture,” said John Geer, Ginny and Conner Searcy Dean of the College of Arts and Science. “I am delighted for her recognition and grateful for Tracy’s significant contributions to the College of Arts and Science, the university and her field.”
On campus, she is chair of the editorial committee of Vanderbilt University Press and has served on many other committees and boards, including the Diversity and Inclusion Task Force and executive committee of the Robert Penn Warren Center for the Humanities. She has also served on the executive council of the Modern Language Association.
Her achievements are recognized both nationally and internationally, and she is the recipient of several awards, grants and fellowships, including The Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Fellowship in Italy and the Camargo Foundation Fellowship in France.
The SEC Faculty Achievement Award winner for each of the 14 institutions receives a $5,000 honorarium. These awards are part of SECU, the academic initiative of the Southeastern Conference.
MCU Fans Freak Out Over Chadwick Boseman’s Dramatic Weight Loss
Chadwick Boseman received universal praise for his lead performance in Black Panther. After that (and appearing in Avengers: Infinity War and Endgame), the wheels began turning on Black Panther 2. Ryan Coogler is returning to write and direct, with the film set to show how T’Challa grows into his role as the king of Wakanda. But a recent video has fans worried that Boseman might be seriously unwell.
The actor posted a clip on Instagram about his partnership with Operation 42, an organization set up to help hospitals in African-American communities during the Coronavirus pandemic. His message was as follows:
“Celebrating #JackieRobinsonDay with the launch of Thomas Tull’s #Operation42, a donation of 4.2 million dollars in personal protective equipment (PPE) to hospitals that service the African American Communities who have been hit the hardest by the Covid-19 pandemic. Thank you, Jackie, for refusing to accept the world as it is, for showing us that we can make a difference.”
It’s a laudable message, but many of the comments expressed concern about what appears to be dramatic weight loss, with Boseman apparently having shed all of the muscle he built up for his MCU appearances. Some argue that this must simply be for a new role he’s playing, some say he’s just naturally skinny when he’s not preparing for an action part, and some think he’s at death’s door.
Here’s a selection of the responses:
Is Chadwick Boseman okay?? He just posted on Instagram, and he looks like he lost major weight 😥
— KATIE (@katieliza92) April 16, 2020
Just watched Chadwick Boseman’s Charity message on IG, he has lost a lot of weight I mean like 80 pounds or more and he’s a big guy I hope its for a part & not health related.
— Dava (@glasgowman) April 16, 2020
I had a look at Boseman’s upcoming projects to see if there were any roles that might warrant this physical change and the only potential candidate I can see is Yasuke. This is a movie by Narcos co-creator Doug Miro, in which he’ll play the real-life African man who served under Oda Nobunaga, famed for being the only person of non-Asian origin to become a full samurai (sorry, Tom Cruise).
So, let’s not rush to assume that he’s ill. Still, it would be nice if we could get some confirmation that all’s well in the world of the Black Panther star.
Videovision Entertainment Makes Hit SA films available online for free
Videovision Entertainment, South Africa’s leading film production and distribution company, has announced together with Anant Singh that they have made ten of their most iconic South African films available to watch for free online during the lockdown period.
On their official website acclaimed director Singh said ,”For the first time in the modern age, South Africa and the entire world faces a health threat of unprecedented proportions, with uncertainty and concern. While our President implemented measures to quell the rapid spread of the COVID-19 with the 21-day lockdown, we felt it important to offer some of our films to our nation for free viewing online. We have selected films that are firm favourites among South Africans.”
It’s an impressive list of some of the finest cinematic work produced in our country. They hope that these movies will both “ entertain and inspire viewers”. In no particular order you can choose to watch the following movies this weekend:
SARAFINA!, based on the stage musical, it is an inspirational film about the youth uprising of 16 June 1976, and stars Leleti Khumalo, John Kani, Robert Whitehead, Miriam Makeba, Somizi Mhlongo and Whoopi Goldberg. BONES, South Africa’s Number One Box Office Comedy Hit YESTERDAY, the first South African film nominated for an Oscar starring Leleti Khumalo and directed by Darrell James Roodt. 2010 – ONCE IN A LIFETIME, which focuses on the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa and the excitement and jubilation that this global event brought to South Africa and the African continent. RED DUST, an intense, courtroom drama on the backdrop of South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission, starring Oscar winners Hilary Swank and Chiwetel Ejiofor with Jamie Bartlett. CELEBRATING MANDELA ONE HUNDRED, traces Madiba’s life from his roots in the Transkei, to becoming one of the greatest leaders the world has seen. COUNTOWN TO FREEDOM, documents the ten days leading up to our democratic elections and culminates with Nelson Mandela’s inauguration as President, and includes exclusive access to Nelson Mandela as he took the final steps on his walk from prisoner to president. A HERO FOR ALL, follows the activities of President Mandela from the run-up to South Africa’s first democratic elections and throughout his presidency. PALJAS, based on the classic Afrikaans book and directed by Katinka Heyns, explores the life of a Karoo family whose lives are changed for the better when a travelling circus leaves behind a clown. AHMED KATHRADA: A MAN FOR ALL SEASONS, follows struggle veteran Ahmed Kathrada’s extraordinary life journey as an activist, a Rivonia trialist, a Robben Island prisoner through to his post-prison activities and the founding of the Ahmed Kathrada Foundation. The films can be accessed on the Videovision Entertainment portal on Vimeo at https://vimeo.com/showcase/6915595.