Faculty & Friends Series Opens with Tribute to Nina Simone

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

The Department of Music Faculty & Friends Concert Series will open August 28 with “Revolution & Revival,” a tribute to Nina Simone that features A Sign of the Times jazz band and the Madison Park String Quartet. The concert will take place at 7:30 pm in Rowe Recital Hall.

A Sign of the Times (ASOTT) is a Charlotte-based non-profit organization dedicated to preserving the legacy of the African Diaspora through music, dance, and the spoken word. Music Director and trombonist Tyrone Jefferson has performed and recorded with musicians such as James Brown, rap pioneer Public Enemy, hip-hop artist L.L. Cool J, and gospel artist Heather Hedley and has performed in Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Europe, Japan, Morocco, and the Caribbean, as well as at prominent venues such as the Apollo Theater and Lincoln Center in New York City. Saxophonist Will Campbell, director of the Department of Music Jazz Studies program, will join the 10-piece ASOTT jazz ensemble.

The Madison Park String Quartet was founded in Charlotte in 2008 by violinists Kari Giles and Jenny Topilow of the Charlotte Symphony and UNC Charlotte music faculty Kirsten Swanson, violist, and Mira Frisch, cellist.

The “Revolution & Revival” program includes the String Quartet in G Major by Florence Price, an African American composer whose work went largely unplayed and unpublished until well after her death in 1953, as well as jazz and R&B standards and original compositions by Jefferson. Jefferson has also created three new arrangements for the combined jazz and string quartet ensemble of songs made famous by North Carolina-born jazz vocalist Nina Simone: “Revolution,” “Backlash Blues,” and “Feeling Good.”

Tickets are $10 for the general public and $8 for seniors, students, veterans and active military, and UNC Charlotte faculty, staff, and alumni.