Arts & Culture

UK Marks 10 Years of Showcasing Music Around the World


LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 31, 2015)  Join the University of Kentucky School of Music for the 10th anniversary of the UK World Music and Dance Concert 7:30 p.m. Thursday, April 2, in the Singletary Center for the Arts Recital Hall. The concert is free and open to the public.

The event was started in 2005 by emeritus Professor Han Kuo-Huang. In honor of his legacy, the School of Music will present a special concert featuring music and dance from around the world with a sonic journey that spans the Bluegrass to Bali and beyond.

The concert will begin with the rare opportunity to hear the dynamic sounds of the Balinese “marching gamelan” called gamelan bebonangan, featuring fast syncopated rhythms, interlocking melodies, weaving movements and powerful gongs. Following this, the program journeys to Zimbabwe for the entrancing sounds of the Shona mbira (thumb piano) performed by the MbiraCats from the University of Cincinnati College and Conservatory of Music, led by Stefan Fiol.

Next will be virtuosic solo pieces on two representative Chinese string instruments. First, Luyin Shao, a doctoral candidate in musicology and ethnomusicology at UK, will play on the pear-shaped pipa and then Qi Yu will perform on the guzheng zither. These international musicians have studied these instruments from a young age and majored in music performance in their home countries.

Next the program will return “home” and feature music from the UK Bluegrass Ensemble, led by Ellyn Washburne, a UK musicology graduate student.

The concert will also highlight the talents of exchange students from the Arts College of Inner Mongolia University and include selections of overtone throat singing, horsehead fiddle pieces, Mongolian choir music and traditional bowl dance. The concert will conclude with a Korean samulnori piece performed by the UK Korean Ensemble, led by Donna Kwon, assistant professor of ethnomusicology.

The UK School of Music at the UK College of Fine Arts has garnered national recognition for high-caliber education in opera, choral and instrumental music performance, as well as music education, composition, theory and music history.

For more information about these events, call 859-257-4912 or contact Donna Kwon by email at

MEDIA CONTACT: Whitney Hale, 859-257-8716;