John Jost Directs Concert of Haitian Music

January 20, 2012

A concert of Haitian orchestral and choral music will be presented Sunday, January 22, at 6:00 p.m. at United Presbyterian Church by Bradley Professor of Music John Jost and friends.  The church is located at the corner of Northmoor and Allen Roads in Peoria.  Admission is free; an offering will be taken.

The program will include new arrangements by Haitian composer Julio Racine of traditional Haitian tunes and Fantaisie tropical, a 15-minute work for piano and orchestra written by Justin Elie, who wrote for the NBC Symphony in the 1920's.  Joshua Russell, a piano instructor at Bradley and Illinois State who wrote his doctoral dissertation on Haitian piano music, recently performed this piece with the Dubuque Symphony and will be the featured soloist.  The Bradley Chorale will also perform, singing recent works by contemporary Haitian composers.

Guest conductor will be Jean Rudy Perrault, Director of Orchestra Activities and Professor of Violin at the University of Minnesota Duluth.  Mr. Perrault was a student of Dr. Jost when Jost taught violin in Haiti in the early 1970's.  He later won a scholarship to Temple University where he earned his bachelor's and master's degrees, and performed with Philadelphia and New York orchestras before coming to Minnesota.

Proceeds will go toward expenses of the Ecole Sainte TrinitĚŠ Summer Music Camp in Haiti.  The camp has been held every summer for the past four decades despite political instability, hurricanes, and the devastating earthquake two years ago.  This past July the camp took place in Cange, a tiny mountain town that serves as headquarters for Dr. Paul Farmer's Partners in Health hospital. Almost 300 young people attended the camp, coming mainly from the Sainte TrinitĚŠ program in Port-au-Prince but also from other Haitian towns.  Small music programs have been springing up around Haiti in recent years - there are at least 20 at present - many of which have received some type of pedagogical help from the Sainte TrinitĚŠ program.  Music continues to be a profoundly important part of Haitian life, a potent source of hope and expression.

For more information about the concert, contact John Jost at 309-677-2600 or at

To view the concert article in the Peoria Journal Star posted January 15, 2012, click here: