Last fall, James Lee III started his academic year as a Fulbright Scholar in Brazil, where he hosted masterclasses and seminars at the State University of Campinas (São Paulo) and traveled through the country researching traditional Brazilian music. This spring, he finishes the year by returning to South America. From May 20 – 24, Lee serves as composer-in-residence at the Universidad Peruana Unión (UPeU) in Lima, Peru.
“I am pleased that we will be hosting Dr. James Lee,” observes Prof. Delmar Freire, Associate Director of the UPeU Conservatory. (Lee and Freire met in the 1990s when they both attended Andrews University in Berrien Springs, MI.) Lee will participate in composition techniques and piano masterclasses, and will return to the keyboard in a solo piano recital followed by an informal composer chat.
“This is my first trip to Peru,” Lee comments, “and it will be a wonderful opportunity. I’m looking forward to working with more South American students who are interested in studying composition. We’ll discuss the compositional process and, hopefully, I’ll also have a chance to see some new works written by some of the students. I’ll also play a musical role — something that I haven’t done in a while.” Lee’s residency-recital features music by J.S. Bach, Schubert, Mendelssohn, Liszt, Wallace Cheatham, and his own work Souls of Alkebulan. “I programmed these particular works because they are some of my favorite pieces; and, as a composer, they are also works that I will be able to get back into my fingers because I’m currently working on a few large scale works for piano which will premiere in the 2015-2016 and 2016-2017 seasons.”