Your Cart UMS
Friday, January 17, 2025 7:30 PM
Saturday, January 18, 2025 7:30 PM // Lydia Mendelssohn Theatre

Etienne Charles: Earth Tones

Performance
Photo by Jason Henry
 

Trinidad-born jazz musician, composer, and storyteller Etienne Charles continuously searches for untold stories and the sounds with which to tell them.

His lush trumpet sound, varied compositional textures, and pulsating percussive grooves soothe and excite listeners while referencing thought-provoking and challenging subjects in his music. His illuminating San Juan Hill: A New York Story was commissioned by the New York Philharmonic to open David Geffen Hall at Lincoln Center, cementing his reputation for creating meaningful multimedia works that connect music with place and history. Earth Tones, which receives its world premiere in April 2024, is a multimedia jazz performance featuring original compositions that draw attention to people and regions that are, or soon will be, severely affected by climate change.

The performance invites us into a sensory journey that includes sounds, stories, and musical idioms from at-risk coastal communities, with images and short films of disappearing mangrove swamps, coral reefs, oyster beds, seagrass, sand dunes, and mud volcanoes. Featuring musicians from the very communities most at risk, the performance balances blunt reality, eternal optimism, and surrealism, ultimately offering an exhortation to address climate change’s impact on our future.

Meet the Artist

Etienne Charles

Thank You to Our Sponsors

Order 2024/25 Season Tickets

Etienne Charles: Earth Tones
Lydia Mendelssohn Theatre
Season Ticket packages now available
Individual event tickets on sale Aug 1

CHOOSE A PERFORMANCE:

Order 2024/25 Season Tickets Or call the ticket office at 734-764-2538

* Student, Senior and Group Discounts may be available

 

 

Friday, January 17, 2025 7:30 PM
Saturday, January 18, 2025 7:30 PM

Lydia Mendelssohn Theatre

Etienne Charles: Earth Tones

Performance
Order 2024/25 Season Tickets
Season Ticket packages now available
Individual event tickets on sale Aug 1

Trinidad-born jazz musician, composer, and storyteller Etienne Charles continuously searches for untold stories and the sounds with which to tell them.

His lush trumpet sound, varied compositional textures, and pulsating percussive grooves soothe and excite listeners while referencing thought-provoking and challenging subjects in his music. His illuminating San Juan Hill: A New York Story was commissioned by the New York Philharmonic to open David Geffen Hall at Lincoln Center, cementing his reputation for creating meaningful multimedia works that connect music with place and history. Earth Tones, which receives its world premiere in April 2024, is a multimedia jazz performance featuring original compositions that draw attention to people and regions that are, or soon will be, severely affected by climate change.

The performance invites us into a sensory journey that includes sounds, stories, and musical idioms from at-risk coastal communities, with images and short films of disappearing mangrove swamps, coral reefs, oyster beds, seagrass, sand dunes, and mud volcanoes. Featuring musicians from the very communities most at risk, the performance balances blunt reality, eternal optimism, and surrealism, ultimately offering an exhortation to address climate change’s impact on our future.

Meet the Artist

Etienne Charles

Thank You to Our Sponsors

PRESENTING SPONSOR

  • An anonymous gift supporting programming in climate change and a sustainable environment.

Buy Tickets

Etienne Charles: Earth Tones
Lydia Mendelssohn Theatre
Season Ticket packages now available
Individual event tickets on sale Aug 1

CHOOSE A PERFORMANCE:

Order 2024/25 Season Tickets

Or call the ticket office at 734-764-2538

* Student, Senior and Group Discounts may be available

Etienne Charles

Trinidad born Etienne Charles is a performer, composer and storyteller, who is continuously searching for untold stories and sounds with which to tell them.

His lush trumpet sound, varied compositional textures and pulsating percussive grooves enable him to invoke trance, soothing and exciting listeners while referencing touchy and sometimes controversial subjects in his music.

A 2015 Guggenheim Fellow and 2022 Creative Capital Awardee, he researches his compositions by travelling to the regions on which he is focused, meeting with musicians and cultural leaders then observing and participating in rituals to be fully immersed into the cultures that he is studying.

As an Afro-descendant, his work is actively connecting the diaspora and drawing lines to regions at the roots of migrations. Highlighting marginalized communities and engaging with them has been his mission, evident with projects such as Carnival: The Sound of a People Vol. 1, San Jose Suite, Creole Soul, and Folklore.

A firm believer in music and performance as a tool for provoking thought and dialogue, Charles’ themes speak to the status quo while drawing parallels to history. With his latest commissioned project, San Juan Hill, he goes a step further by exploring the storied New York neighborhood to bring the culture of San Juan Hill to the mainstage.

His concerts engage, enlighten, educate and enrich audiences with energized multidisciplinary performance utilizing original composition, thematic improvisation, dance, short films and spoken word to create a holistic experience.

In June 2012, he was written into the US Congressional Record for his musical contributions to Trinidad & Tobago and the World. In 2013, his album Creole Soul reached #1 for three weeks on the Jazzweek chart and was eventually named #3 Jazz Album of the year by Jazzweek. Also in 2013 he received the Caribbean Heritage Trailblazer award from the Institute of Caribbean Studies (Washington, DC). In 2016 he was the recipient of the Michigan State University Teacher Scholar Award, the Jazz at Lincoln Center Millennial Swing award and was a featured panelist and performer at the White House for a Caribbean Heritage Month Briefing. He made his debut as producer and songwriter on the album Petite Afrique by Somi (Sony/Okeh 2017) which won Outstanding Jazz Album at the 2018 NAACP Image Awards.

Learn more at etiennecharles.com.