royal hartigan ensemble brings unique musical and cultural experience to st. michael’s college: a week of jazz, african drumming, world music, and civil rights sounds of african drumming, tribal chants and jazz rhythms filled mccarthy arts center during a week-long visit from the royal hartigan ensemble……’i think royal is one of the best jazz musicians in the scene today,’ (music professor paul) leclair says
…..’both the jazz and the african drumming are really amazing,’ (student mike) germano says…..’royal hartigan has a real variety of talents. it’s surprising how he can make the hardest things seem so simple.’ (student sakora) salih says she saw the group when they were at st. michael’s a couple of years ago. ‘i’m impressed each time i see them,’ she says. ‘i really enjoy watching royal and the rest of the band members, and i learn something new from them every time. it is a pleasure to have this experience in my class,’ salih says. ‘i’m pleased to be able to have a presence like this on the st. michael’s campus.’
leclair says the ensemble provided a unique experience for everyone. ‘their message was very very powerful,’ he says. ‘every single one of them dedicated their time to students who wanted to spend time with them.’ leclair says the music department could not take the st. michael’s community to new york city for a musical experience, so it brought a new york city experience to st. michael’s.
‘more important than the music was the personal connection,” leclair says. “they were such role models and they really demonstrated some challenging music.’
‘……..one of the things hartigan says he enjoys most about performing at places like st. michael’s is, “making the music and creating a strong and wonderful artistic experience for other people as well as interacting and connecting with other students.” hartigan says his music is about a spiritual connection. he says he wants individuals to be able to leave with a better spiritual understanding of themselves. if audience members left his performances with one thing, he says he would want them to leave having a heightened and deepened goodness in spirit about themselves.’