Classical Music, Liberal Arts Compose Alumna’s Noted Devotion

Jacqueline Mills with her violin 1
Jacqueline Mills ’18 toured Spain and Portugal with the Kalamazoo Junior
Symphony Orchestra this summer with Kalamazoo College Music Chair
Andrew Koehler.

Jacqueline Mills ’18 has an inspiring story of how a liberal arts education continues to benefit her life after Kalamazoo College as her appreciation of music has blossomed from an interest into a lifelong passion.

Before majoring in chemistry at K, Mills began playing violin at age 9. During her middle school years, she developed a music outreach program, V is for Violin, where she would visit her former pre-school to play the violin and introduce children to the world of classical music.

“A lot of young people knew rap, pop and other genres of music, but this was a time when arts programming seemed to be on the decline in schools,” Mills said. “The lack of music programming in public schools was one of the reasons I had to seek out alternative weekend programs to develop my musical talents further.”

As Mills progressed, she didn’t expect music to play the role it did in her college years, instead anticipating it to be more of a side interest or outlet.

“My mindset was that I had just spent 10 years playing the violin and I didn’t want to waste it, so I decided to try out,” Mills said.

That tryout was for the Kalamazoo Philharmonia, an ensemble of students, faculty, amateur musicians and professional musicians of various ages that performs three concerts a year under Music Director and K Music Department Chair Andrew Koehler, who immediately and enthusiastically accepted her to the group and with whom she also took violin lessons.

Later, her study abroad experiences in Perth, Australia, were significant because she interned at the Aboriginal School of Music. On this site, Aboriginal students learn about a variety of music genres.

“I wasn’t in an orchestra in Australia, but it was still nice to have that connection to music,” Mills said. “I was learning about their culture and other instruments they have. It reignited a deeper understanding of music in me that I wanted to pursue further, in the sense that music can be a part of my life forever even if it’s not my profession.”

By the time she had returned to K, Koehler had recognized in Mills her growing enthusiasm for music.

Kalamazoo College Music Chair and Kalamazoo Junior Symphony Orchestra Director Andrew Koehler leads the orchestra in a classical music performance at a cathedral
Kalamazoo College Music Chair Andrew Koehler,
who is the music director of the Kalamazoo Junior
Symphony Orchestra, leads the orchestra in a
performance.

“Jacqueline was always a really thoughtful, observant, self-aware kind of musician,” Koehler said. “These are qualities that I feel are really essential to good music making. When you’re in the practice room, you’ve got to be thinking about what is working and what is not and ask, ‘How can I bridge the gap?’ Jacqueline studied chemistry here at K, so music wasn’t necessarily going to be the central thing that drove her. Yet she was really a gifted violinist. Like every K student, she was busy and had to fight to make time for music, but she always carved out the space to make sure that she kept improving, day by day and year after year.”

Additionally, by this time, Koehler was leading the Kalamazoo Junior Symphony Orchestras (KJSO), a group representing around 42 schools in 23 area communities. KJSO has a tradition of self-funded touring for performances that started in Europe in the 1960s and it was planning a trip to perform in South Africa during Mills’ senior year.

“She and I were still working on private lessons and she was playing in the Philharmonia,” Koehler said. “She had spent her junior year in Australia, so I floated the idea to her of going with us to South Africa. I said, ‘One doesn’t get to go to South Africa every day. Is there any chance you might be interested?’ And she was.”

But that was just the first time Mills would tour and perform with KJSO. This past summer, after she took the initiative to approach Koehler about the trip, she toured Spain and Portugal with the group where they had two performances.

“With the South Africa experience cemented in her mind, when she heard through the grapevine about this new tour, and was already enjoying being more established and working a job, she actually contacted me this time,” Koehler said. “Of course, I was over the moon. I’m always delighted for any opportunity to make sure a K alumna is still finding ways to make music. And it was just such a beautiful opportunity to reconnect with Jacqueline in particular.”

Mills admitted there was a bit of a spoken language barrier in Spain and Portugal that she hadn’t encountered in South Africa, but fortunately, music is a universal language.

“It was a unique experience, in South Africa and Europe alike, to be both a tourist and a performer,” Mills said. “It was harder in Spain because I don’t speak the language, so trying to communicate about our concerts was difficult. But it doesn’t matter what your nationality is. If you’re playing well, the music will resonate.”

KJSO performed for a small crowd in a concert hall in Madrid before moving on to Salamanca, where, Koehler said, it seemed the whole city turned out to pack a historic cathedral.

“There was an intensity to the experience,” Koehler said. “It was just so special to be in this amazing place, playing music that combines some American composers, a Portuguese composer and, of course, a Spanish composer. There was a kind of a cultural ambassadorship that we were trying to achieve with the program, and sharing it with this audience that was wildly enthusiastic and cheering us on, is just something that we will long remember.”

Mills’ story is significant for Classical Music Month, which first was instituted in September 1994 by President Clinton. His proclamation stated, “Classical music is a celebration of artistic excellence. This month we exalt the many talented composers, conductors and musicians who bring classical music to our ears. Music is a unifying force in our world, bringing people together across vast cultural and geographical divisions.”

In her professional life, Mills has worked in a lab as a quality control chemist. She’s also performed some research involving sickle cell disease. She now works with the City of Detroit in an adult education program called Learn to Earn, which aims to break intergenerational poverty and position job seekers on a pathway to the middle class. Yet she always wants her career to allow her time to bring classical music to the ears of children and people around the world.

“In the short term, I would like to join a community orchestra,” Mills said. “But long term, I hope to start a nonprofit or foundation to provide instruments and classical training to underrepresented children as a way to celebrate and invite youth into the fine arts. From my experience, having continued access to instruments and private lessons at a young age can be half the battle and I want to provide that support to my community. I would also like V is for Violin to pick up where I left off by going into pre-schools and elementary schools and introducing kids to the world of classical music; showing them that it’s not a dead art confined to a specific race and gender. Music is a universal language that can take you anywhere, and if I can do it, they can do it, too.”

Koehler said he’s proud not only of K’s music majors, but all K students like Jacqueline who go on to make music a permanent fixture in their lives.

“Of course, it’s very rewarding to work with students who really dive all the way with us into the musical field,” Koehler said. “But no less valuable, in terms of what we offer to a liberal arts campus and in terms of what we aspire to in our teaching, is to see students who hold space for music as part of a fuller, truly human existence. My hope for those who have played in the Philharmonia or any of our ensembles, no matter what path they go on, is that music remains a part of their experience, as it has for Jacqueline.”

College Singers Plan Spring Tour

College Singers Performing at Light Fine Arts
The Kalamazoo College Singers, seen here performing
in October 2019, will present their spring tour
this month with a concert in Bellaire and two in Traverse City.

The Kalamazoo College Singers, under the direction of Assistant Professor of Music Chris Ludwa, will present their spring tour this month with a concert in Bellaire and two in Traverse City, all on the weekend of April 29-May 1. The performances are: 

  • 7:30 p.m. Friday, April 29, at Church in the Hills, Bellaire, Michigan 
  • 7:30 p.m. Saturday, April 30, at Central United Methodist Church, Traverse City, Michigan 
  • 1 p.m. Sunday, May 1, at First Congregational Church, Traverse City, Michigan 

The program is titled “More Light, More Love” and will present songs from a variety of sources and styles from the Renaissance to Aretha Franklin, including music inspired by ancient poets such as Rumi and modern composers of American Indian heritage. The music is designed to uplift, inspire and mend the hearts and minds that have been so isolated for the past several years. Some pieces include piano while others are a cappella, and audiences will enjoy music by smaller ensembles as well as soloists. Singers come from as far away as Kenya and as close as Traverse City, reflecting the College’s diverse population and vibrant study abroad emphasis. 

COVID-19 pushed the College Singers, like many ensembles, into virtual mode for the better part of a year and a half. Musically, the result was that many groups got stronger. Almost all that have returned to in-person singing are appreciating the beauty of live performances even more. The ensemble is made up of 30 singers whose majors range from music to physical science and from political science to psychology. An academic class, the College Singers seeks to foster love for a wide range of music, awareness of social justice, and a deeper appreciation for the power of communal singing.   

No tickets are needed for performances, but a free-will offering will be taken to help defray the tour bus expense for the ensemble. More specific questions can be directed to Ludwa at cludwa@kzoo.edu.  

Music Department Concerts Feature Guest Artists

Guest pianist Natalia Kazaryan
Pianist Natalia Kazaryan will perform Saturday with the Kalamazoo Philharmonia.

The Kalamazoo College Department of Music has two upcoming concerts scheduled featuring renowned guest artists. 

First, the Kalamazoo Philharmonia will feature a pianist and a piece she recorded with the Philharmonia that is included in an upcoming independent film. Together, they will perform Rachmaninoff’s 2nd Piano Concerto, which was chosen for Sounds of Silence, at 7:30 p.m. Saturday in Dalton Theatre. 

The film, due out later this year, revolves around a pianist at an international competition and her struggles with the pressures of her art. The concerto was chosen for the movie because it was the first work of Rachmaninoff after a long compositional drought brought on by bad reviews of his First Symphony, mirroring the struggles of the character herself. 

The Philharmonia, with Conductor and Music Department Chair Andrew Koehler, unites students, faculty, amateur musicians and professional musicians of a variety of ages to perform symphonic music. Tickets for this concert will be available at the door. Students are $2 and adults are $5. Kalamazoo College students will be admitted free.  

The second guest concert will feature Spektral Quartet, a three-time Grammy-nominated group known for interactive concert formats in up-close atmospheres. The group will perform at 7:30 p.m. Monday at Stetson Chapel. 

The performance will spotlight nine new works: a string quartet composed by Bernard Rands, plus a series of short pieces written by Chicago Composers’ Consortium (C3) members in response to Bernard’s new work. C3 composers include Larry Axelrod, Kyong Mee Choi, Timothy Dwight Edwards, Kathleen Ginther, Martha Horst, Timothy Ernest Johnson, Laura Schwendinger and Elizabeth Start. 

Attendees can purchase tickets on the Connecting Chords Music Festival website and at the door by paying what they can with suggested pricing of $20 for adults, $15 for seniors and $5 for ages 25 and younger. All seats are general admission.  

Masks and proof of vaccination will be required for admittance to both performances. For more information, email Susan.Lawrence@kzoo.edu or call 269.337.7070. 

Concerts to Feature Winds, Jazz and Vocals

British vocal group Apollo 5 in winter concerts
Apollo 5, an international award-winning British vocal
ensemble, will join the Kalamazoo College Singers,
Kalamazoo Male Chorus and Bach Festival Chorus in
one of three concerts this month featuring K students.

Three upcoming concerts in the Dalton Theatre at K will invite audiences to explore Paris, time and love. 

First, the Academy Street Winds will present “French Ties” at 8 p.m. this Friday. This free concert invites audience members to enjoy an evening of exquisite music from the French tradition, directed by Music Professor Tom Evans.  

Songs will evoke the experience of visiting a café in Paris and strolling through various parts of the city, including Latin Quarter Saint-Germain-des-Prés, art and music center Pigalle, Père Lachaise cemetery and old market place Les Halles, complete with bells which are heard throughout Paris. The concert will close with Cirque du Soleil, arranged by Victor Lopez. 

At 8 p.m. Saturday, Evans and the Kalamazoo College Jazz Band will take audiences on a “Time Warp” through the stages of jazz, from New Orleans, swing, Latin, hard bop and more. Audience dancing is encouraged at this free concert. 

Finally, experience “Love Is (Volume 5)” with the Kalamazoo College Singers, Kalamazoo Male Chorus and Bach Festival Chorus, joined by special guests Apollo 5, an international award-winning British vocal ensemble. This eclectic tribute to love will be at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 22.  

“Love Is (Volume 5)” will be in person and livestreamed on YouTube. Tickets for this event range from $5-$29 and can be purchased at kalamazoobachfestival.org

Audience members are required to wear a mask over the nose and mouth and show proof of vaccination for all music department events. 

For more information, contact the music department at 269.337.7070 or susan.lawrence@kzoo.edu

Humanities Grant Boosts Experiential Learning Project

Portrait of Humanities Project Leader Shanna Salinas
Associate Professor of English Shanna Salinas

A major grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation will provide new learning opportunities for Kalamazoo College students and faculty seeking solutions to societal problems and promote the critical role of the humanities in social justice work.

The $1.297 million three-year grant will provide funding for the College’s Humanities Integrated Locational Learning (HILL) project, which is building student coursework rooted in K’s commitment to experiential learning and social justice to address issues such as racism, border policing, economic inequities, homelessness and global warming, while examining history, how humans share land, and the dislocations that bring people to a communal space.

The project was envisioned by Associate Professor of English Shanna Salinas (Co-PI), Arcus Center for Social Justice Leadership Assistant Professor of Sociology Francisco Villegas (Co-PI) and Professor of English Bruce Mills. HILL will invite K faculty to build curricula that foreground how power structures produce destabilizing dynamics and the collective response(s) of affected communities through the development of course materials, collaborative faculty-student research and community engagement, the development of program assessments and the sharing of oral histories tied to partnering projects and organizations.

Portrait of Humanities Project Leader Francisco Villegas
Arcus Center for Social Justice Leadership Assistant Professor of
Sociology Francisco Villegas

Each class within the curriculum will fit into one of two cluster programs: the first focuses on hubs outside of Kalamazoo such as New Orleans, St. Louis and San Diego; the second looks within Kalamazoo with themes relevant to the city such as prison reform and abolition, and migrants and refugees. Both cluster programs will contribute to a digital humanities initiative for publishing, archiving and assessing coursework and partnerships. Each will provide opportunities for immersing students in local heritage, cultures, landscapes, opportunities and experiences.

Salinas and Villegas will co-direct the HILL initiative. The three sites outside Kalamazoo—New Orleans, St. Louis and San Diego—were chosen for their current or historical dispersion of people from their homeland, as well as dislocated communities with strong histories of social justice movements. About 15 to 20 students at a time will go to those cities to further their experiential learning. Salinas added that faculty and students will first put in research and legwork related to their collaborative partnerships with a year of concentrated work. Then, by about December 2022, they will be ready to conduct in-person learning, first in New Orleans.

Portrait of Bruce Mills
Professor of English Bruce Mills

In addition to co-directing the project, Salinas will also serve as the curriculum coordinator for New Orleans. “We hope that students will develop an understanding of place as a living entity with a storied history and people who are a part of that location,” Salinas said. “We want students to learn what it means to be a part of a particular place. We want them to contend with histories, and meet the residents and people who inhabit the spaces we study with a real sense of generosity and purpose. We want to change students’ understanding about how they approach space and operate within it.”

Villegas plans to build on his strong connections within Kalamazoo County in leading the cluster focused on issues inside Kalamazoo. As a member of an exploratory taskforce (and now advisory board chair), he helped Kalamazoo County launch a community ID program in 2018, allowing residents, including those otherwise unable to get a state ID, to obtain a county ID.

“I think the grant speaks to the Mellon Foundation seeing promise in the kind of work we are imagining,” Villegas said. “It’s encouraging that they are willing to invest so greatly in such a project. They’re also recognizing the ethics of the project. They’re trusting that we’re going to engage with cities, including our home city, with a sense of respect and with a recognition of furthering community agendas already in place rather than imposing our understandings to other spaces. Most importantly, we’re invested in thinking about how students can consider the humanities in these projects as a way of producing nuanced understandings toward addressing very big problems.”

Mills will lead the digital humanities portion of the initiative. He noted that one measure of success for participating faculty will be how HILL shows the enduring dimensions of its partnerships with the digital project playing a large role.

“When you create classes, writing projects, oral histories or collaborate on community projects, these efforts often get lost when they just go into a file or a paper or are not passed along in local memory,” Mills said. “The digital humanities hub is an essential part of this initiative because faculty, students and city partners will have a site for a collective work to be published or presented. Community members will have access to it. That means the work being done will not disappear.”

Beau Bothwell tenure
Associate Professor of Music
Beau Bothwell
Portrait of Esplencia Baptiste
Associate Professor of
Anthropology and Sociology
Espelencia Baptiste
Portrait of Christine Hahn
Professor of Art and Art History
Christine Hahn

In addition to Salinas, Villegas and Mills, Associate Professor of Music Beau Bothwell and Professor of Art and Art History Christine Hahn will be curriculum coordinators for St. Louis and San Diego respectively. The first four courses that will be offered in the HILL project are Advanced Literary Studies (Salinas, English); Missionaries to Pilgrims: Diasporic Returns (Associate Professor Espelencia Baptiste, Anthropology and Sociology); The World Through New Orleans (Bothwell, Music); and Architecture Urbanism Identity (Hahn, Art and Art History).

The Mellon Foundation’s grant to K is one of 12 being issued to liberal arts colleges as a part of the organization’s Humanities for All Times initiative, which was created to support curriculum that demonstrates real-world applications to social justice pursuits and objectives.

“Kalamazoo College’s commitment to social justice is most profoundly realized through students’ opportunities to connect the theoretical with hands-on work happening in our communities,” Kalamazoo College President Jorge G. Gonzalez said. “We’re grateful for the Mellon Foundation’s generous support, which will enable us to build on our foundation of experiential education and demonstrate to our students how the humanities have a practical role in fostering positive social change.”

The Mellon Foundation notes that humanities thought and scholarship efforts influence developments in the social world. However, there’s been a sharp decline in undergraduate humanities study and degree recipients nationwide over the past decade despite students’ marked interest in social justice issues. The initiative targets higher student participation in the humanities and social justice while building their skills in diagnosing cultural conditions that impede a just and equitable society.

“The Humanities for All Times initiative underscores that it’s not only critical to show students that the humanities improve the quality of their everyday lives, but also that they are a crucial tool in efforts to bring about meaningful progressive change in the world,” said Phillip Brian Harper, the Mellon Foundation’s higher learning program director. “We are thrilled to support this work at liberal arts colleges across the country. Given their unequivocal commitment to humanities-based knowledge, and their close ties to the local communities in which such knowledge can be put to immediate productive use, we know that these schools are perfectly positioned to take on this important work.”

Begin Your Holiday Season with a Bach Festival Concert

Stetson Chapel During a Bach Fest Holiday Season Concert
The Kalamazoo Bach Festival Chorale will perform in two holiday season concerts titled
Holidays with the Kalamazoo Bach Festival, including a virtual option, on Sunday,
December 5.

UPDATE: All in-person concerts are canceled on December 5. Bach Fest is moving to an all virtual live-stream only concert at 4 p.m. The concert will remain available on our YouTube Channel for 30 days after the initial concert. If you have already purchased in-person tickets, please check your inbox or junk folder for an email with more details about how you can exchange or get a refund for your ticket purchase.

Begin your holiday season with an annual concert featuring nearly 50 musicians including Kalamazoo College alumni, singers from the at-large community, professional musicians, and a great line-up of soloists.

The Kalamazoo Bach Festival Chorale will perform in two concerts titled Holidays with the Kalamazoo Bach Festival, including a virtual option, on Sunday, December 5. The ensemble, led by K Assistant Professor Chris Ludwa, unites people of diverse backgrounds and ages to provide them with the joy of making music, while exploring messages of hope, racial equity and inclusion.

The performances, a more than 50-year tradition, feature holiday music favorites, including carols from over two hundred years of music history, all performed in Stetson Chapel. Local favorites and special community guest artists will join in the two 70-minute shows, one at 2 p.m. and the other at 4 p.m. The 4 p.m. concert will also be available through a live stream.

Tickets are available online at prices from $5 to $29 for the in-person concert. The virtual broadcast will be available through YouTube for $19. For more information, call the Bach Festival ticket office at 269.337.7407.

International Percussion Highlights Music of Different Cultures

Taiko drummers music concerts
The International Percussion concert scheduled for November 17 will feature K’s Taiko drummers
along with other international percussion groups.

Experience the music of different cultures at Kalamazoo College’s Dalton Theatre on Wednesday, November 17.

The Department of Music’s International Percussion ensemble will perform its fall concert, titled “Collage,” at 7 p.m. as it features a Caribbean steel drumming group with instructor Jean Raabe, a Japanese Taiko drumming group with instructor Carolyn Koebel and a West African drumming group with instructor Nathaniel Waller.

The ensemble unites individuals with varied musical backgrounds from K, nearby institutions and the general community. The concert is free and the public is invited. All attendees must wear masks to comply with the College’s COVID-19 policies.

For more information on this event and others sponsored by the Department of Music, visit music.kzoo.edu/events.

Concerts Offer Sweet Treats for Your Ears

Image says Academy Street Winds, Thomas G. Evans Conductor, 8 p.m. October 29 at Dalton Theatre Fall Concerts
The Academy Street Winds will perform in one of two concerts
sponsored by the Kalamazoo College Department of Music this weekend.

Don’t just eat candy and trick or treat this weekend—enjoy something sweet for your ears when the Academy Street Winds performs a free fall concert at 8 p.m. Friday in Dalton Theatre. 

Audiences are encouraged, but not required, to wear costumes for “Trick or Tweet, a Howl-o-Ween Concert.” The Academy Street Winds is a wind ensemble providing a performance outlet for woodwind, brass and percussion students. Community musicians joined the ensemble in winter 2016 to expand the group’s sound and capabilities. 

The group, conducted by Music Professor Thomas Evans, performs one concert each term, playing exciting arrays of challenging band music. The ensemble’s programs are coordinated around diverse themes, which allow for performances of much-loved pieces, both classic and contemporary. 

In a bonus free performance, K’s music department will present “Music for Two Trumpets and Piano,” with trumpeters David Bernard and Keith Geiman, and pianist Tina Gorter at 7 p.m. Saturday at Dalton Theatre. 

The three formed their double trumpet and piano trio in 2019, and have been entertaining audiences with their diverse repertoire of music from living composers. After more than a year off, the trio has reunited to perform virtuosic trumpet and piano music. 

To comply with the College’s rules regarding indoor gatherings, please wear a mask to both concerts. For more information on concerts and other music department events, visit music.kzoo.edu

Conductors Fight Social Injustice with ‘Awake, Arise!’

Awake, Arise production fights injustice
A team of composers including Kalamazoo College Assistant Professor of Music Chris Ludwa are targeting social injustice and racial inequities with “Awake, Arise!”

Based on a tune originally written during the plague, “Awake, Arise!” revitalizes a 500-year-old melody with the words of Black authors, activists and artists who breathe new life into the music of Johann Sebastian Bach. The result is a dramatic musical composition calling on audiences to acknowledge injustice and work together to change the world.

Bach’s cantata “Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme” is a work that would be performed during Advent in preparation for the arrival of Christmas and the birth of Jesus. It premiered in 1731 in Leipzig, and is based on a hymn written by Philipp Nicolai in the wake of the plague in the 16th century. The original text encourages the preparation for Jesus’ arrival, encouraging us to “Wake up, as the voice calls to us.”

Like many ancient texts, the words of the original cantata refer to prophesies and promises of what is to come: a better life, salvation or freedom. As the world suffers massive death and despair from a pandemic in 2020 and 2021, stark inequities and injustice between people of different races which have always been present are so evident that they cannot nor should not be ignored, and must now be addressed by everyone.

“Just as Bach was known to reset his own music and that of others, it is time to breathe new life into this seminal work, giving it a voice that resounds the call to equity of 2000 years ago and of 60 years ago,” said Kalamazoo College Assistant Professor Chris Ludwa, one of the composers behind “Awake, Arise!”  “In reflecting on the countless Christmas hymns and songs that sing of a new day to come, our brothers and sisters of color have waited long enough.”

Ludwa collaborated with Everett McCorvey, a fellow voice professor from the University of Kentucky; and Rhea Olivaccé, a soprano soloist with an international career and a professor of voice at Western Michigan University; to use the words of Langston Hughes, Maya Angelou, WEB DuBois, Martin Luther King Jr., Amanda Gorman, Valyn Turner and others in providing a response to these hymns and songs in a dialogue about the Black experience, in contrast to what it is perceived to be.

The result is a new arrangement of Bach’s immortal cantata, performed in English, implementing the language of hope from great authors and activists of color. This new work is presented with spoken word artists interspersed between movements, underscoring the urgency of texts we may have failed to read with clear eyes. The world premiere in March 2021 featured a 17-piece orchestra comprised of musicians of color from the United States and the United Kingdom, a diverse body of 20 singers and three internationally acclaimed soloists against the backdrop of the Lincoln Memorial and a multimedia display of visual artists of color.

The premiere of the filmed performance united Olivaccé, tenor Lawrence Brownlee and bass soloist Kyle Ketelsen, along with Concert Master Ilmar Gavilan, spoken-word artists, and a chorus and orchestra of diverse musicians that is now available on YouTube.

The goal is to make this new version of the cantata available to choirs of all kinds that they might become better allies against injustice, a particularly important aspiration given how dominant white culture is in the performing arts world.

“How often have people of color sung these spirituals praying for a fair shot, only to be answered with a gun shot,” Ludwa said. “How often have those of us who are white sung the lyrics of these familiar tunes, only to follow it by ignoring the message to ‘Wake up, and arise?’”

Watch the April 11 performance on YouTube, and contact Ludwa for more information about the musical composition at cludwa@kzoo.edu or 231-225-8877.