University of Vermont

James Marsh Professors-at-Large Program

P Sowah Mensah Biography

Biography: P. Sowah Mensah

Director of the African Music Ensemble, Macalester College
Adjunct Faculty and Director of the African Music Ensemble
University of St. Thomas

mensah bioProfessor Mensah has served as the Director of the African Music Ensemble at Macalester College since 1987 and as an adjunct faculty member and Director of the African Music Ensemble at the University of St. Thomas since 1991. During the past three decades Professor Mensah has become a world-renowned scholar and performing artist. He is a highly acclaimed ethnomusicologist, composer, educator, and musician. Professor Mensah is also heralded as a “Master Drummer” from Ghana, West Africa. He has appeared throughout the United States, China, Latin America, and Africa. Over his career, Professor Mensah has scored dozens of major compositions, and led numerous clinics and workshops. Professor Mensah received a General Diploma in Music and a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Ghana, and a Master of Art degree with an emphasis in Ethnomusicology from the University of Minnesota.

April 17, 2011: UVM Orchestra with Sowah Mensah

March 14, 2011: Music and Dance From Africa - featuring the Macalester African Music Ensemble with Ghanaian Dancer, Patience Boni, Directed by Sowah Mensah.

[Marsh Professor Poster (PDF)] [Alternative Poster (PDF)]

Listen to samples of Sowah Mensah's traditional music from Ghana:

Dagara Welcome Song (Ghanian xylophone called "gyil")

Adenkum/Gourd Galore (Singing with accompaniment of simple gourd, rattle, and bell)

Bes (xylophone)

Kpanlogo for 2 (a social dance of the Ga people of Ghana)

Last modified April 16 2011 04:10 PM

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