Latin IS America Festival brings culturally blended lineup to MSU, Lansing community

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Musical premieres, a Latin soul string quartet, percussive and choral ensembles, a children's ballet troupe dancing to the works of Mexican composers, a Cuban musicologist and a Tejano panel discussion and dance party are among the cutting edge lineup for the second annual Latin IS America festival at Michigan State University.

Organized by the MSU College of Music, the 10-day festival takes place April 9-19 at various campus locations and celebrates the blending of Latin American and U.S. cultures through musical, artistic, and scholarly exploration. Events showcase nationally and internationally renowned guests in intimate, dramatic venues, including the Cook Recital Hall, Fairchild Theatre, the Hart Recital Hall, and Demonstration Hall. Festival organizers will also go on the road to Detroit for one encore event.

“We’re pleased to build on the success of last year’s festival and to make Latin Is America an annual event for mid-Michigan and beyond,” says James Forger, dean of the MSU College of Music. “We hope to continue to broaden the festival’s reach and to enhance understanding of culture and community through the talents of outstanding artists and scholars.”

Latin IS America evolved from a collaboration of university personnel, students, and scholars who saw the need to acknowledge the effect that Latin American and U.S. cultures have on one another.

“We’re truly beginning to live in a world that transcends boundaries,” says Forger. “Music, art, and scholarly thought are the tools we have to develop deeper understandings of other cultures and to create new ways of life.”

All performances and activities through Latin IS America are open to the public. The festival is supported through a grant from the MSU Office for Inclusion and Intercultural Initiatives and coordinated by the MSU College of Music.

The festival offers a variety of free and ticketed events. For detailed information and tickets visit LatinISamerica.msu.edu.

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