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Santo Named Acting Director of Latin American Center

Joseph Santo has been appointed acting director of the Latin American Center for Graduate Studies in Music at the Benjamin T. Rome School of Music of The Catholic University of America. He succeeds Emma Garmendia, Ph.D., founder of the center, who retired in May. She has been named director emerita.

Santo, a member of the theory and composition division of the School of Music since 1986, had been Garmendia's assistant in the center for the past two years. His experience, command of the Spanish language and contacts within the Spanish-speaking community ensure his ability to carry on the center's mission, which is to offer graduate degrees to talented students from Ibero/Latin American countries.

Santo, of Silver Spring, Md., has been a music educator for more than 30 years and has completed 25 years as a member of Music Educators National Conference. He also serves as vice president of the Council for Higher Education in Music and is the representative from the School of Music to that organization. Santo is an active composer whose works have been performed frequently in the Washington, D.C., area. Recently CUA's faculty piano trio performed his ‘‘Prólogo y Canto.’’

The Catholic University of America is the only institution in the United States to offer concentrations in Latin American music in degree programs. The Latin American Center for Graduate Studies in Music at the Benjamin T. Rome School of Music was founded in 1984 in full cooperation with the Organization of American States and the Inter-American Music Council. It has educated more than 60 students from 16 countries. Many have returned to important positions in institutions in their own countries.

Santo said he will work to increase the center's presence within the Latin American/Iberian community of diplomats and staff residing in Washington.

‘‘I want to establish close collaboration and contact with local embassies,’’ said Santo.

He will also continue to bring performers and lecturers to campus to present Ibero/Latin American music of the past and present. This year, concerts are planned with works by Argentinian, Brazilian, Cuban, Ecuadorian and Puerto Rican composers as well as traditional and newly composed music for bandoneón.

This week, percussionist Luis Garay will talk about and demonstrate percussion music of Latin America and the Caribbean. The event takes place at noon Thursday in Ward Recital Hall on campus.

In March composer Joäo Ripper, an alumnus and dean of the School of Music of the Universidade Federal de Rio de Janeiro, will lecture on nationalism in Brazilian music at the end of the 20th century.

A new course in world music is being offered for the spring semester. Participating in it will be Robert Stevenson, Ph.D., a world-renowned musicologist and professor emeritus at UCLA. The center recently announced the winners of the 1998-99 convocation of the Robert Stevenson Prize for Research in Latin American Music, sponsored under the auspices of the School of Music, the Center and the Inter-American Music Council together with the Inter-American Music Friends.

The center's specialized library, a resource for students and faculty, continues to receive donations of scores, recordings, books and periodicals.

For information on the center's events and other area events related to Ibero/Latin American music, go to the Web site at http://www.lamc.cua.edu.

 

 

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Revised: June 3, 1999

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