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Soulful singing group Sweet Honey In The Rock appearing at UGA’s Hodgson Concert Hall

Sweet Honey in the Rock — an iconic, women-led African American vocal ensemble — remains among the most vibrant, versatile, and relevant musical collectives in music today. Three-time Grammy Award nominees, they express their experience as Black women through song, movement, and American Sign Language. Revered for their live performances inflected with gospel music, spirituals, and blues, they remain outspoken ambassadors of empowerment and education as they tour throughout the world. They will appear at Hodgson Concert Hall Friday, April 12 at 7:30 p.m.

 

Since its 1973 inception in Washington, DC (founded by Dr. Bernice Johnson Reagon as part of the D.C. Black Repertory Theater Company with Carol Maillard, Louise Robinson and Mie), Sweet Honey in the Rock has continuously evolved into international ambassadors of a cappella vocal and lyrical excellence and musical missionaries of equality, empowerment and education, peace, love, solidarity, and nondenominational spirituality. Revered most for their live performances, the women have recorded 24 albums, several specifically for children. 

 

Sweet Honey in the Rock has performed in many of the world’s most prestigious venues on almost every continent for royal command concerts and festivals. In 2015 alone, they embarked on four U.S. Embassy tours with performances and community outreach in Ethiopia, Peru, Jamaica, and Swaziland (and also toured Belize in 2014). In Swaziland, they were one of the headliners of the internationally acclaimed 9th Annual Mountain Bushfire Music Festival (which attracted 20,000 people) and were featured at the 11th Annual Festival of Voices in Hobart, Tasmania, as part of a tour that also included Launceston, and Melbourne and Sydney in Australia. Their February 2016 appearance at New York’s historic Carnegie Hall (with noted guest artists trumpeter and bandleader Terence Blanchard and violinist Regina Carter) holds the distinction of being their 32nd occasion to perform there.

 

Recent milestones and accomplishments include being commissioned by the Alvin Ailey American Dance Company to compose a score for its 50th anniversary 2008 program, “Go In Grace.” In 2012, they debuted their first orchestral collaboration, writing original lyrics for composer William Banfield’s “Symphony 10: Affirmations for a New World,” a thirty minute work that was co-commissioned and presented by the National Symphony Orchestra (Christoph Eschenbach, Music Director), and the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Washington, DC; the Minnesota Orchestra (Osmo Vänskä, Music Director) at Orchestra Hall in Minneapolis; and the Harris Theater for Music and Dance, Millennium Park with the Sphinx Orchestra (conducted by Mark Russell Smith) in Chicago.

 

The group also had the honor of performing at the national memorial service for Nelson Mandela at the National Cathedral in Washington, DC. In acknowledgement of their efforts, Sweet Honey in the Rock was recently presented a distinguished award by the Search For Common Ground Organization and the Keeper of the Flame award by the National Delta Sigma Theta Sorority at its 100th anniversary celebration. Also, not surprisingly, they are a favorite group of President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama, having performed by request at the White House.

 

Sweet Honey in the Rock, which has been the subject of two PBS television specials (including an episode of American Masters), is a beloved performance ensemble that in its 50-year history has maintained a resilient spirit and found a way to successfully fuse the talents of the 24 women that have graced the Sweet Honey in the Rock stage into their patented sound without ever skipping a beat. Ever evolving, the soul survivors once even expanded to six vocalists before settling back to four, all in the name of retaining its adventurous spirit, keeping up with the times and reaching greater numbers of like-minded spirits. Fans stay abreast of their travels on Facebook, Twitter and at www.sweethoneyintherock.org.

 

SUPPORTED BY

 

Rhonda Lucile Hicks

 

This performance features American Sign Language interpretation.

 

BUYING TICKETS IS EASY

 

Securing tickets for UGA Presents performances and other events couldn’t be easier. There are three ways to choose from:

  1. Purchase tickets online 24/7 at pac.uga.edu.

  2. Call the Performing Arts Center Box Office at (706) 542-4400, Mon.-Fri., 10:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.

  3. Visit the UGA Performing Arts Center Box Office, Mon.-Fri., 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (5 minute parking is available in the drop off circle at the Performing Arts Center for purchasing or picking up tickets.)


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