Black History Month program at Lanier Library Feb. 15

Published 2:16 pm Friday, February 11, 2011

The Lanier Library will host a special program in recognition of Black History Month on Tuesday, Feb. 15 at noon.
The program will feature music by the 19th-century African American classical guitarist and composer Justin Holland, performed by classical guitarist Jhon Akers, and will include important contributions from members of Tryon’s African American community.
Born to free black parents in Norfolk, Va., in 1819, Justin Holland became one of the most important black musicians of his time and was the first African American to become recognized for his contribution to classical guitar music.
Holland studied guitar under Mariano Perez in Boston and was a student of music theory under Simon Knable before attending Oberlin College in Ohio for a further two years of study, including learning to play the flute. He later became a teacher and his method of teaching classical guitar was published in 1876.
Dr. Jhon Akers has studied Holland’s works and put together this program. He performs concerts and recitals regularly in the local area and teaches modern languages at Wofford College in Spartanburg.
In addition to music, the program will include his recital of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream!” speech by Tryon’s own Fred Counts, and an exhibition of rag dolls by Tryon’s African American doll makers and artists, Pee Dee Wingo and Sherril Miller.
The program is one of the Lanier Library’s Brown Bag Lunch series. It is free and everyone is welcome.
– article submitted