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Duke Energy Honors Leadership Speaker Series: William Henry Curry

Main Parlor, 1st Floor Main Building

Mon Feb 24th, 2014

06:30 p.m. - 08:00 p.m.


Celebrating Black History Month

William Peace University is pleased to host William Henry Curry, Resident Conductor with the North Carolina Symphony, for a discussion on The Emancipation's effect on music, as part of WPU's Black History Month celebrations. Dr. Charles S. Duncan, WPU's Associate Dean of Academic Affairs and Professor of English, will moderate.

Maestro William Henry Curry is entering his 18th season with the North Carolina Symphony and serves as the artistic director for the Rex Healthcare Summerfest Series and all North Carolina Symphony summer programs. Maestro Curry has also served as music director of the Durham Symphony Orchestra since 2009.

A native of Pittsburgh, Maestro Curry started conducting and composing music at age 14. His first major appointment was at age 21, when he was named assistant conductor of the Richmond Chamber Orchestra. He also served as resident conductor with the Baltimore Symphony and Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra. Maestro Curry was appointed associate conductor of the Indianapolis Symphony in 1983, a post he held until 1988, the same year he was named winner of the Leopold Stokowski Conducting Competition and performed in Carnegie Hall.

Maestro Curry has conducted over 40 orchestras, including appearances with the Chicago, Cleveland, Houston, National, Detroit, Denver, American, Atlanta, Shreveport and San Diego Symphonies, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Israel Camerata Jerusalem Orchestra, as well as the orchestras of Indianapolis, New Jersey, Bangkok and Taiwan and with the New York City Ballet in their famed Balanchine production of The Nutcracker.

Opera engagements include the Houston Grand Opera, Chicago Opera Theater and New York City Opera. In 2009/10, at the invitation of the U.S. Department of State, Maestro Curry spent two weeks in Taiwan presenting master classes in conducting and leading concerts of American music. His final performance was filmed and shown throughout the country on Taiwan’s Public Television Service. He has conducted the Charlotte Symphony and North Carolina Dance Theatre's production of The Nutcracker in multiple performances during the past two seasons.

Maestro Curry is also a composer, and his works have been played by many of America’s finest orchestras. The Indianapolis Symphony premiered his work Eulogy for a Dream. The late William Warfield of Porgy and Bess fame narrated the North Carolina premiere to an enthusiastic audience and critical acclaim in January 2002.

Dr. Charles S. Duncan is in his sixth year as a professor of English at William Peace University. He joined the WPU community as an assistant professor in 2001 before earning tenure in 2007. In 2013, he was named Associate Dean of Academic Affairs.

During his time at WPU, Duncan has taught courses in 19th Century American Literature, Introduction to Short Fiction, Non-Fiction Writing, Freshman Composition, Independent Research in English, Professional Writing, Technical Writing and Advanced Creative Writing among others.

He is also heavily involved in campus administration, serving as the Moderator of the Faculty and Chair of the Faculty Executive Council among other roles.

Duncan's professional research has focused on Charles Chestnutt, who was a mixed race author, essayist, political activist and lawyer, best known for his novels and short stories exploring complex issues of racial and social identity in the post-Civil War South. Duncan's research has also focused on 19th Century Western North American authors. He has presented papers at prestigious schools around the world including Cambridge and acted as guest lecturer at Duke University.

He was awarded the Sylvia Lyons Render Award for Outstanding Contribution to Chestnutt Stuides and is a board member for the Charles Chestnutt Research Association starting in 1998. Duncan has also won William Peace University's McCorkmick Distinguished Teaching Award and the Stockard Research Award.

Duncan earned his Ph.D. in English at Florida State University in 1994 where he was an instructor for five years.

Come Celebrate Black History Month at William Peace University!

Event Time: 6:30 P.M.

Event Location (UPDATED): Leggett Theatre

Tickets: Free & Open to the Public. Tickets Required.

Click Here for Registration & Tickets