spanish symposiumLocal and world-renowned talent will come together to perform a concert of Latin American music at the University of Arkansas – Fort Smith at 3 p.m. Nov. 4 in the theater of Windgate Art & Design, located at 535 N. Waldron Road.


Flutist and vocal artist Francine van Dam from the Netherlands will be joined by guitar player and UAFS former instructor William Reyes, Andrew Thompson on bass, and Symphony of Northwest Arkansas percussionist Fernando Valencia. The concert is free and open to the public.


The concert, titled “Cuando Tenga La Tierra: Latin American Music and its Protest Song,” will include traditional Latin American songs as well as key pieces of the repertoire generally known as “protest songs.” The concert coincides with a course titled “The Social and Protest Song in Spanish” taught this semester by Dr. Rosario Nolasco-Schultheiss, assistant professor in the Department of World Languages.


“Well before Bob Dylan won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2016, the genre known as social and protest song had long been firmly established in the world that speaks Spanish. The Nobel to Dylan both ratified and affirmed the high literary value of song writing, of those songs that propel and give voice to civil resistance, while telling a version of history challenging the official,” Nolasco-Schultheiss said. “At times incorporating foreign rhythms, the genre, often classified under different names, has continued to flourish and develop up to the present, with contemporary artists such as Calle Trece, Lila Downs and Taina Asili, who are expressing current anxieties faced by the Spanish speaking communities locally and globally.”


Additionally, studio art students Jessica Medeiros and Nathan Myers are designing a backdrop for the concert to complement the “immediacy and transient quality of the sound” played during the concert, according to Don Lee, associate professor of art.


A native of the Netherlands and now a resident of France, van Dam has an extensive career as soloist and educator. She has performed across the Americas and has promoted Latin America music throughout the world. She has also worked as band leader, composer and arranger, producer and policy developer for the Dutch National Art Institute, as well as consultant for various subvention boards in her country of origin. For more information on van Dam, visit her website.


The concert will serve as the closing event for the Spanish Teachers Symposium held at the same location.


The event is sponsored by the Windgate Charitable Foundation and the World Languages and Art Departments. For more information contact Dr. Rosario Nolasco-Schultheiss at, 479-788-7970.


About the University of Arkansas - Fort Smith

The University of Arkansas – Fort Smith is the premiere regional institution of Western Arkansas, connecting education with careers and serving as a driver of economic development and quality of place in the greater Fort Smith region. Small class sizes, dedicated faculty and staff, affordable tuition rates, and a diverse on-campus culture allow UAFS students to fully explore their areas of interest in ways that prepare them for post-graduate success academically, professionally, and personally. To find out what makes UAFS just right for you, go to the UAFS website.


Article by John Post, Director of Public Information
Date Posted: 
Thursday, October 19, 2017
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