A Musical Exploration of Power and Resilience

Michael Mwenso headshot and text Michael Mwenso's Songs of Black Hope and Resistance

The Miami University Performing Arts Series launches an important virtual series, Michael Mwenso’s Songs of Black Hope and Resistance >>, in collaboration with jazz leader and activist Michael Mwenso. Four carefully curated episodes offer a robust, yet easy, opportunity to experience the music that has fueled Black efforts for freedom and equality.

The series consists of: 

  • Four 30-minute episodes available on demand
  • Brief background information with links to additional resources
  • Spotify playlist to supplement each episode
  • Reflection and writing prompts

For faculty, this series may present a much-needed extra-credit opportunity for the end of the Fall 2020 semester. It's message is vital and timeless, so it will be available throughout the 20-21 school year as a free resource to students, faculty and staff.

Delve deep into the music that has propelled change, continues to advance our nation's consciousness, and will continue to serve as the guiding force towards healing.

Performing Arts Series director Patti Hannan Liberatore felt a need and desire to take action through the arts during the events of the Summer of 2020. Alum and event producer Jono Gasparro, feeling the same need, connected Miami with Mwenso and the premiere New York City music venue Joe’s Pub to create a virtual, musical response. The videos were shot with Mwenso’s friends and collaborators through July and August almost as love letters to each genre of music explored and the legends of that sound who had gone before.

The Performing Arts Series will be working with Michael Mwenso and a group of interdisciplinary artists over the next year to provide additional access and connections around arts and artists of color. Faculty staff and student groups can get in touch with the Series to work with us on related projects moving forward