Ghanaian Master Drummer Sowah Mensah to Work with Rockport Students

Nathaniel Kirby

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During the week of March 4th, Sowah Mensah, a Ghanaian master drummer, is visiting Rockport to work with music students. During the week, students in Orchestra, Chorus, and Jazz Ensemble II will be learning traditional Ghanaian songs in their regular music classes. Students will be exposed to a style beyond the standard European tradition, in hopes of exploring a wider variety of music and bridging cultures. In addition, Sowah will be leading a percussion master class during U blocks of that week. All students and teachers are welcome to come on Monday to try it out, but anyone interested in performing in the concert will need to commit to U block rehearsals on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.

Sowah and his son will be performing at the Shalin Liu on Wednesday, March 6th. On Thursday, March 7th, the Rockport High School Orchestra, Chorus, Madrigal Choir, U block Percussion Ensemble, and Jazz II will join Sowah in a performance at the John Lane Auditorium at the school.

Sowah Mensah is a professor at Macalester College and the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota. He is also the director of the African Music Ensemble at the University of Minnesota. Sowah has performed extensively in the United States, as well as Latin America, Africa, and China. Beyond performance, Sowah is an accomplished composer and arranger. For a full biography, visit his website here.

EDIT: Due to the snow day on Monday, please note that the percussion ensemble will be meeting after school instead of during U blocks.