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trumpet Louis Armstrong's Comic Masks

The KU Interdisciplinary Jazz Studies Group Presents:

An evening of jazz studies: Alderson Auditorium, September 25, 2003

6:30 PM Pre-Lecture Concert by KU Jazz Combo

7:30: Robert G. O'Meally, Zora Neale Hurston Professor of Literature, and Director of the Center for Jazz Studies, Columbia University.

"Louis Armstrong's Comic Masks"

Sponsored by the KU Center for Research and KU College of Liberal Arts and Sciences


Robert G. O'Meally is Zora Neale Hurston Professor of Literature at Columbia University, where he has served on the faculty for fourteen years. Beginning in 1999, he has been the Director of Columbia's Center for Jazz Studies. He is the author of THE CRAFT OF RALPH ELLISON (1980) and LADY DAY: THE MANY FACES OF BILLIE HOLIDAY (1991), and editor of THE JAZZ CADENCE OF AMERICAN CULTURE (1998), which was awarded the ASCAP--Deems Taylor prize in December 1999. He also edited LIVING WITH MUSIC: RALPH ELLISON'S ESSAYS ON JAZZ (2001). He is the principle writer of SEEING JAZZ (1997), the catalogue for the Smithsonian's exhibit on jazz painting and literature. He co-edited two volumes, HISTORY AND MEMORY IN AFRICAN AMERICAN CULTURE (1994) and THE NORTON ANTHOLOGY OF AFRICAN AMERICAN LITERATURE (1996). He wrote the script for the documentary film called LADY DAY and for the documentary accompanying the Smithsonian exhibit, DUKE ELLINGTON: BEYOND CATEGORY (1995). O'Meally was also nominated for a Grammy, for his work as co-producer of the five CD box-set called THE JAZZ SINGERS (1998). Other music projects include writing the liner notes for a Sony/Columbia recent re-release of Louis Armstrong's HOT FIVES AND SEVENS (2000), for a Duke Ellington box-set called THE DUKE (Sony/Columbia, 2000), which received five stars from DOWNBEAT MAGAZINE, naming it as "one of the best recordings of the century," and for a Branford Marsalis recording, ROMARE BEARDEN REVEALED (Marsalis Music, 2003). He lives in New York with his wife Jacqui Malone and their sons Douglass and Gabriel.

An evening of jazz studies is organized by the KU Interdisciplinary Jazz Studies Group, whose members include: Chuck Berg, Professor, Film/Video; C.C. Herbison, Instructor, Department of African and African-American Studies; Dan Gailey, Associate Professor and Director of Jazz Studies; William J. Harris, Associate Professor of English; Clarence Henry, Assistant Professor, Ethnomusicology; Paul Laird, Associate Professor of Musicology; Roberta Freund Schwartz, Assistant Professor, Music and Dance; and Sherrie Tucker, Assistant Professor, American Studies.