This season at New England Conservatory, 30+ concerts demonstrate just how vital music is to human struggle, and what revolution in artistic expression sounds like. Programs range from roots music to Beethoven, fight songs to anti-war anthems. Join our year-long exploration of how music speaks truth to power!
Erica Azim, one of the first Americans to study the Shona Mbira (often miscalled the "thumb piano") with masters of the instrument in Zimbabwe, will perform with South African ethnomusicologist Patricia Sandler. Over the past 30 years, Azim has endeavored to deliver the music of the Shona Mbira and its highly unique and complex traditional repetoire to those unfamiliar with it. Her work has earned her the respected title of gwenyambira, a skilled performer qualified to play at traditional ceremonies, and has allowed her to tour regularly with masters like Ambuya Beauler Dyoko, Cosmas Magaya, Mondrek Muchena, and Ephat Mujuru.
This two day residency will include today's free public concert as well as a panel discussion on music and world conflict tomorrow. Also included during her time at NEC will be a small workshop on the Shona Mbira with interested NEC students.
photo by Alex Weeks