Events Calendar

African Pianism: A Tribute to J.H. Kwabena Nketia and Akin Euba

Eric Moe, Andrew W. Mellon Professor of Music, will perform a recital of solo piano works by J.H. Kwabena Nketia (1922–2019) and Akin Euba (1935–2020). Both Nketia and Euba served at Pitt as Professors of music in ethnomusicology and were Moe’s predecessors as the Mellon Professor. The recital video will be released to the Music at Pitt YouTube page on Thursday, February 11 at 7:30 p.m. Watch this space for a direct link to the performance.

Along with being leading scholars in African music, Nketia and Euba were renowned composers. Among their creative contributions is the development of a style of piano music they described as “African Pianism.” According to Nketia,

“African Pianism refers to a style of piano music which derives its characteristic idiom from the procedures of African percussion music as exemplified in bell patterns, drumming, xylophone, and mbira music. It may use simple or extended rhythmic motifs or the lyricism of traditional songs and even those of African popular music as the basis of its rhythmic phrases. It is open ended as far as the use of tonal materials is concerned except that it may draw on the modal and cadential characteristics of traditional music.”

Moe’s program will include representative works by each composer such as Euba’s Themes from Chaka (his opera) and Study in African Jazz 3, and Nketia’s Dagarti Work Song, Dagomba, and Volta Fantasy among others.

Eric Moe (b. 1954), composer of what the NY Times calls "music of winning exuberance", has received numerous grants and awards for his work, including the Lakond Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters and a Guggenheim Fellowship; commissions from the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, the Fromm Foundation, the Koussevitzky Foundation, the Barlow Endowment, and Meet-the-Composer USA; and residencies at the MacDowell Colony, Yaddo, Bellagio, the Camargo Foundation, the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and many others.

Moe studied composition at Princeton University (B.A.) and at the University of California at Berkeley (M.A., Ph.D.). More information is available at his website, ericmoe.net.

Thursday, February 11 at 7:30 p.m.

Virtual Event

African Pianism: A Tribute to J.H. Kwabena Nketia and Akin Euba

Eric Moe, Andrew W. Mellon Professor of Music, will perform a recital of solo piano works by J.H. Kwabena Nketia (1922–2019) and Akin Euba (1935–2020). Both Nketia and Euba served at Pitt as Professors of music in ethnomusicology and were Moe’s predecessors as the Mellon Professor. The recital video will be released to the Music at Pitt YouTube page on Thursday, February 11 at 7:30 p.m. Watch this space for a direct link to the performance.

Along with being leading scholars in African music, Nketia and Euba were renowned composers. Among their creative contributions is the development of a style of piano music they described as “African Pianism.” According to Nketia,

“African Pianism refers to a style of piano music which derives its characteristic idiom from the procedures of African percussion music as exemplified in bell patterns, drumming, xylophone, and mbira music. It may use simple or extended rhythmic motifs or the lyricism of traditional songs and even those of African popular music as the basis of its rhythmic phrases. It is open ended as far as the use of tonal materials is concerned except that it may draw on the modal and cadential characteristics of traditional music.”

Moe’s program will include representative works by each composer such as Euba’s Themes from Chaka (his opera) and Study in African Jazz 3, and Nketia’s Dagarti Work Song, Dagomba, and Volta Fantasy among others.

Eric Moe (b. 1954), composer of what the NY Times calls "music of winning exuberance", has received numerous grants and awards for his work, including the Lakond Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters and a Guggenheim Fellowship; commissions from the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, the Fromm Foundation, the Koussevitzky Foundation, the Barlow Endowment, and Meet-the-Composer USA; and residencies at the MacDowell Colony, Yaddo, Bellagio, the Camargo Foundation, the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and many others.

Moe studied composition at Princeton University (B.A.) and at the University of California at Berkeley (M.A., Ph.D.). More information is available at his website, ericmoe.net.

Thursday, February 11 at 7:30 p.m.

Virtual Event

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