KCC to present Black History Month Gala Concert Feb. 1

A decorative text slide promoting KCC's Black History Month Gala Concert.

Kellogg Community College Music Program faculty and guest artists will kick off Black History Month with a concert event featuring works created or inspired by African American composers and poets.

KCC’s Black History Month Gala Concert will begin at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 1, in the auditorium of the Davidson Visual and Performing Arts Center, located on campus at 450 North Ave. in Battle Creek. The concert is free for students and $5 for the general public.

Dr. Romeo Phillips, Kalamazoo College’s first tenured African American professor, will present a pre-concert lecture beginning at 7 p.m. with accompanist Bertha Barbee-McNeal.

Musical performances will feature guest artists Keiwon Lambert and James Smith. KCC music faculty will be performing selections ranging from spirituals to jazz and opera. KCC faculty members performing include vocal instructor Carmen Bell, staff accompanist Paula Harris and Music Area Coordinator and Director of Vocal Music Dr. Gerald Case-Blanchard. Additionally, artwork by Battle Creek artist and former KCC student Jaziel Pugh will be on display in the Davidson lobby.

The works to be featured in the concert come from the minds of such foundational and varied artists as Langston Hughes, Margaret Bonds, Moses Hogan, George and Ira Gershwin and Dr. Dominic Dousa.

The Gershwin opera “Porgy and Bess” will be the highlight of the show. The story of the struggles and joys of a black neighborhood in Charleston, South Carolina, has given the world some of the classics of the Great American Songbook. The audience will hear some of those works, including the famous love duet, “Bess You Is My Woman Now,” and the beautiful lullaby “Summertime.”

For more information about the event, contact Dr. Case-Blanchard at blanchardg@kellogg.edu or calling 269-565-7859.

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