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234 W. Hancock Ave, Athens, GA 30601

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“The Mask You Wear” is a musical composition collaboratively created by composer Julien Berger and composer and lyricist Cassie Chantel. Supported by the Athens Hip Hop Harmonic, this work blends classical saxophone quartet music with multi-genre vocalist and recording artist Chantel’s riveting lyrics. This event will include a live performance of the piece, featuring saxophone quartet Mixed Media with Chantel, and a discussion with the composers and moderator Nkululeko Zungu.

Berger is an Athens, GA-based composer and saxophonist whose music is rooted in storytelling. Julien is influenced by contemporary wind ensemble music, saxophone chamber and solo music, and other contemporary styles, such as hip hop, jazz, and pop. His aim is to connect with audiences with his music across the boundaries of genre and style.

Leading with the story-telling element of classic hip hop while being as unorthodox as today’s rap/pop music, Chantel is an artist whose body of work cannot be categorized with generic labels. The tone of her voice defies gender and sexuality stereotypes with its ambiguous depth and transcends into her image. Known for embodying both feminine and masculine energy, Chantel gives a fresh perspective to the music industry.

Zungu will moderate a discussion with Julien and Cassie, discussing the creative and collaborative process behind this piece. Zungu is a South African-born Black composer whose passion for music started in Cape Town, South Africa where he was surrounded by many styles and genres of music. His own expression is influenced by soundscapes and introspective art that can be found in music exploring avant-pop, trip-hop, electronic music, and spiritual styles. He can be seen performing under the alias 'Kuza.

This event is presented by the Hugh Hodgson School of Music, the Athens Hip Hop Harmonic, and the Willson Center for Humanities and Arts. It is part of the Willson Center's Global Georgia public events series.

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