Cherry Duke is joined by Esequiel Meza, Jr., piano, to perform songs in English, Italian, German, French, and Spanish by African American and African Diaspora composers on the University of Texas at El Paso Faculty Recital Series.

The contributions of Black classical composers have been historically overlooked in the United States. But there is a nearly endless supply of exciting, touching, gorgeous music by African American and African diaspora composers, and this program delivers a delicious sampling of them. Below is a brief video of highlights from the concert.

This program was curated by Professor Cherry Duke, mezzo-soprano, as an outgrowth of her research on “Diversity in Vocal Repertoire,” supported by a 2021 Career Enhancement Award from the UTEP College of Liberal Arts.

COMPOSERS featured include Harry T. Burleigh, Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, Howard Swanson, William Grant Still, Joseph Bologne, Robert Owens, Carmen Brouard, Mariela Rodríguez, Florence Price, Margaret Bonds, Rosephanye Powell, Undine Smith Moore, and Jacqueline Hairston.

US PREMIERES: The artists are pleased to present two songs which (to their knowledge) have never previously been performed in the United States: Selections from Reflets d’âme by Haitian-Canadian composer Carmen Brouard, and Three Afro-Cuban Songs by Cuban composer Mariela Rodríguez.

For information about booking “Life & Death” at your venue, contact Cherry Duke.