The Langston Hughes Project "Ask Your Mama: Twelve Moods for Jazz" will play at WSU in April.
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Langston Hughes Project a coup for Connoisseur Series
Mar 25, 2008 3:00 PM | Print

A multimedia touring production of deceased American poet and playwright Langston Hughes at his best — insightful, wise, poignant, funny and soulful – will jazz up the Wichita State University campus April 2.

The Langston Hughes Project "Ask Your Mama: Twelve Moods for Jazz" is a College of Fine Arts Connoisseur Series bonus event with the WSU Office of Multicultural Affairs as co-sponsor.

"Ask Your Mama" will open at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 2, in Miller Concert Hall.

Langston Hughes

Its mood is set in an 800-line suite of poems written by Hughes in the 1960s that reflect the writer's vision of the global struggle for freedom during the early years of the decade.

Illustrated by voice and accompanied by music from the nationally known McCurdy/Wright Consort, it will be lit up by on-screen visual illustrations of Hughes' Harlem Renaissance world by such collaborators and contemporaries as Gordon Parks, Jacob Lawrence and Romare Bearden.

Music director and composer Ron McCurdy orchestrates the original musical based on music cues suggested by Hughes.

McCurdy is chairman of jazz studies and a professor in the Thornton School of Music at the University of Southern California. He has served as president of the International Association of Jazz Educators and as director of the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz at USC.

He has also served as professor of music, chair of Afro-African American Studies and director of jazz studies at the University of Minnesota.

In demand as a guest clinician, soloist, speaker, director of honor jazz ensembles and choirs throughout the United States and Canada, McCurdy received his undergraduate degree from Florida A & M University and his master's and doctoral degrees from the University of Kansas.

For more information, contact Tom Fowler, director of jazz studies, (316) 978-6155 or, or John O. Bello-Ogunu, director of multicultural affairs, (316) 978-6187 or
Created on Mar 25, 2008 3:00 PM; Last modified on Apr 3, 2008 11:56 AM
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