Virginia Commonwealth University

VCU Jazz Students Participate in International Partnership Exchange

Recent Performance - Thursday, March 28, 2013

VCU Africa Combo and University of KwaZulu-Natal Jazz Legacy Ensemble (Durban, South Africa) performed Thursday, March 28, 2013 at 8pm at the Vlahcevic Concert Hall, W.E. Singleton Center for the Performing Arts, 922 Park Avenue. The performance included the western-hemisphere premiere of newly commissioned works by students and faculty from both universities.

Performers: Sakhile Simani (trumpet), Linda Sikhakhane (tenor sax), Sebastian Goldswain (guitar), Lungelo Ngcobo (piano), Ildo Nandja (bass), and Sphelelo Mazibuko (drums) with UKZN director Prof. Neil Gonsalves (piano); and Trey Sorrells (alto sax), Brendan Schnabel (tenor sax), Victor Haskins (trumpet), Chris Ryan (guitar), Justin Esposito (bass), C.J. Wolfe (drums) with director Prof. Antonio Garcia (trombone). Both ensembles will also perform with guest saxophonist Plunky Branch.

The concert was part of the international exchange program between University of KwaZulu-Natal and VCU Jazz Studies.

The Virginia Commonwealth University Department of Music’s Jazz Program has received an International Partnerships Major Initiatives Award to bring American and African citizens together in musical and personal understanding. Over the next year, the project will connect students and faculty of the Jazz Studies Programs at VCU and the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN) in Durban, South Africa. The grant commissions four new musical works to be recorded and released on a joint CD.

During summer 2012, six VCU students traveled to UKZN with Professor Antonio J. Garcia, head of the VCU’s Jazz Studies Program for the initial phase of the exchange. Below are reflections about experiences abroad from VCU students Victor Haskins (trumpet), Trey Sorrells (alto sax), Brendan Schnabel (tenor sax), C.J. Wolfe (drums), Chris Ryan (guitar), and Justin Esposito (bass).

Read more about VCU Music's visit to South Africa