Berea’s Final Fall Convocation Features Poetry and Blues


Glenis Redmond, an award-winning poet, and veteran blues musician Scott Ainslie will perform at a Berea College convocation on December 1 at 3 p.m. in Phelps Stokes Auditorium. Their performance “Southern Voices: Black, White and the Blues” intertwines Redmond’s powerful spoken-word poetry with Ainslie’s soulfully melodic music in its celebration of American diversity and African roots. Ainslie will perform these pieces on vintage instruments, showcasing an historically accurate adaptation of the American blues.

Redmond has won numerous awards including The Carrie McCray Literary Award in Poetry, a study fellowship from the Vermont Writing Center and scholarships to the Atlantic Center for the Arts. She has performed throughout the United States, England, and Italy, and her publications include “Backbone,” a full-length book of poetry, “Mama’s Magic,” a video of performance poetry and an audio recording of poetry titled “Coming Forth.” Glenis also shares her poetry in performances, residencies and workshops with audiences at schools, juvenile detention centers, universities, coffeehouses, performing arts centers and educational television.

Ainslie has spent 40 years studying and playing traditional music, visiting and documenting senior musicians in America’s old-time banjo and fiddle music, Blues and gospel traditions. He has released four albums, a teaching DVD on the guitar techniques of Delta Blues legend Robert Johnson, and a book on Johnson’s music “Robert Johnson/At The Crossroads” (Hal Leonard, 1992).

Other upcoming Berea College events include:
• December 2 & 3: Berea College Christmas Concert.
• December 11: Mid-year recognition service for graduates

This performance is co-sponsored with the music and English, theatre and communication departments and is free and open to the public. For more information about this Berea College convocation please visit. www.berea.edu/convocations.

Categories: News, People, Programs and Initiatives
Tags: Blues, Convocation, music, poetry

Berea College, the first interracial and coeducational college in the South, focuses on learning, labor and service. The College only admits academically promising students with limited financial resources—primarily from Kentucky and Appalachia—but welcomes students from 41 states and 76 countries. Every Berea student receives a Tuition Promise Scholarship, which means no Berea student pays for tuition. Berea is one of nine federally recognized Work Colleges, so students work 10 hours or more weekly to earn money for books, housing and meals. The College’s motto, “God has made of one blood all peoples of the earth,” speaks to its inclusive Christian character.