U of A's RefleXions Music Series is Back in 2022 With New Fall 'Tertulia' Events

The U of A's RefleXions Music Series is back this fall with new "Tertulia" events in October and November.
Photo by RefleXions Music Series

The U of A's RefleXions Music Series is back this fall with new "Tertulia" events in October and November.

The U of A’s RefleXions Music Series is back this fall with RefleXions Music Tertulia, a series of events featuring regional, national and international citizen-artists presenting their music, their advocacy and action for creative justice. 

The RefleXions Tertulia events will be centered around “Las Cuatro Estaciones del Latin Jazz,” or “The Four Seasons of Latin Jazz,” a piece written by internationally acclaimed Cuban composer and pianist Pepe Rivero. 

“Las Cuatro Estaciones del Latin Jazz” is a recontextualization of Antonio Vivaldi’s “Four Seasons,” influenced by the flavors, cultures and rhythms of New York, Havana, Rio de Janeiro and Buenos Aires. 

“Our team knew this project was special and deserved the involvement of our diverse communities, both within the university and the Northwest Arkansas region,” said Lia Uribe, founder and executive director of RefleXions Music Series and associate professor in the Department of Music.

“We felt compelled by how ‘Las Cuatro Estaciones del Latin Jazz’ challenges ideas of belonging, placemaking, re-creation and co-creation, and by the many opportunities and calls for action that the RefleXions Tertulia series of events will offer to all of us artists, educators, audiences, leaders and advocates for inclusion and diversity in the arts,” she added.

Thanks to an Artists 360 Community Activator Grant, a program of Mid-America Arts Alliance supported by the Walton Family Foundation, the Tertulia events are all free and open to the public. 

The events kick off in October and so far include:

  • RefleXive Conversations
    Monday, Oct. 3, from noon to 1:15 p.m. in the U of A Honors College Lounge, room 130 of Gearhart Hall. Please RSVP online
  • Honors College House Concert and Reception
    Tuesday, Nov. 1, at 6 p.m. in the U of A Honors College Lounge, room 130 of Gearhart Hall. Please RSVP online and arrive early to reserve your seat.
  • Las Cuatro Estaciones del Latin Jazz
    Wednesday, Nov. 2, at 7 p.m. in the Walton Arts Center’s Starr Theater in Fayetteville.

About Reflexive Conversations 

As part of RefleXions Tertulia’s community and audience engagement efforts, U of A’s Lisa Corrigan and Lia Uribe will be hosting RefleXive Conversations, covering topics related to the core of the Tertulia: gender equity in music, creative justice, placemaking and belonging. 

“These conversations will not only prime our future audience for the Tertulia musical events, but also will provide them opportunities to contextualize the upcoming music events before they happen, while reflecting on social realities that affect who has access to art and in what capacities,” Uribe said.

This first RefleXive Conversation, a partnership with the U of A’s Center for Multicultural and Diversity Education, will be held from 12-1:15 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 3, in the Honors College Lounge, room 130 of Gearhart Hall, with lunch offered to attendees. The event is free and open to the public, but registration in advance is required; please fill out and submit this online attendance form.

“These conversations will offer opportunities to improve the justice literacies of the campus community by connecting them with music and feedback that sharpen their skills at producing equitable and just outcomes. Public universities are public goods and this kind of event helps community members practice artistic and democratic deliberation,” said Corrigan, an award-winning author, director of the U of A’s Gender Studies Program and professor in the Department of Communication.

About the Musical Events 

Both the Nov. 1 Honors College House Concert and the Nov. 2 “Las Cuatro Estaciones del Latin Jazz” performance will feature classically trained and fluent jazz improvisationist, pianist, composer and arranger Pepe Rivero. 

Rivero has won acclaim for revisiting classical composers in arrangements such as “Los Boleros de Chopin” and “Beethoven en su Salsa.” He tackled one of the most beloved and well-known numbers in classical music, Vivaldi’s “The Four Seasons,” on a dare, and will bring “Las Cuatro Estaciones del Latin Jazz” to Northwest Arkansas during both Tertulia musical events this fall.  

Together with Rubén Darío Reina (violin), Adi Meyerson (bass) and Fernando Valencia and Ivanna Cuesta (percussion), Rivero will present Latin-jazz-inflected selections from the classical canon in the first Honors College House Concert since COVID-19 shuttered campus in 2020. 

Then, the following night, the full “Las Cuatro Estaciones del Latin Jazz” will be performed at the Walton Arts Center. Rivero said he’s excited for participants to experience this musical journey. 

“I like to imagine Vivaldi getting on a boat and coming to the Americas, and rewriting ‘The Four Seasons’ while he’s here,” Rivero said. 

“Think spring in Cuba, inflected by rumba and guajira; summer in Brazil, sampling sambabossa nova and forró; fall in Buenos Aires, with some direct quotations from renowned Argentinian composer Astor Piazzolla’s ‘Four Seasons of Buenos Aires’; and winter in New York City with music that speaks of extreme weather – very cold, pure jazz,” he added.  

Rivero also joked that he likes to “disarrange,” emphasizing that “I’ve never conceived music as two things, popular music and classical music – those divisions are not real in my mind. To me, there is just music.” 

U of A Department of Music faculty Er-Gene Kahng and Pecos Singer and students Grace Clark and Dayton Strick will also join the performances. 

Additional Events are Forthcoming

In the spirit of RefleXions Music Series, Tertulia will also present a panel discussion with artists and regional arts organizations about the social impact of the arts, podcast episodes in collaboration with KUAF, masterclasses, a jam session, more RefleXive Conversations with the community and open spaces for dancing, singing, community celebration, healing and togetherness. 

All events will be free and open to the public, with more dates and times announced soon.

Visit reflexionsmusic.org for more information. 

About the RefleXions Music Series 

Uribe said that the RefleXions Music Series is a celebration of music, musicians, advocates; and audiences; a space to foster creative justice and diversity through opportunities to reflect, learn, grow, change and teach. RefleXions Music Series propagates sound and messages; expresses the highest standards of music and artistic interpretation; reverses the dynamics of Eurocentric standards; carefully considers contexts, intersectionality, relationships and crossroads with other disciplines; and celebrates, represents and includes diverse identities. 

Additionally, the RefleXions team is a collective of Northwest Arkansas individuals from different backgrounds that bring unique perspectives and commitment to the highest standards of scholarship, research and aesthetic diversity in the arts: Erika Almenara, Rogelio Garcia-Contreras, Ronda Mains, Catalina Ortega, Miroslava Panayotova, Lia Uribe, Jessica Vansteenburg and Leigh Wood. 

RefleXions is also supported by the U of A’s Fulbright College of Arts and SciencesDepartment of MusicHonors College, the Arkansas Global Changemakers, the Center for Multicultural and Diversity Education and KUAF 91.3 Pubic Radio, and has collaborated with art leaders from the Walton Arts Center, CACHE, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, IDEALS Institute, Northwest Arkansas Council and Might-T-By-Design. This year RefleXions is adding the Walton Arts Center and the Arkansas Philharmonic Orchestra as new community partners, and RefleXions Music Tertulia events are partially supported by an Artists 360 Community Activator Grant, the U of A Chancellor’s Grant for the Humanities and Performing Arts Initiative, and the Women’s Giving Circle Grant. 

About the University of Arkansas: As Arkansas' flagship institution, the U of A provides an internationally competitive education in more than 200 academic programs. Founded in 1871, the U of A contributes more than $2.2 billion to Arkansas’ economy through the teaching of new knowledge and skills, entrepreneurship and job development, discovery through research and creative activity while also providing training for professional disciplines. The Carnegie Foundation classifies the U of A among the top U.S. colleges and universities with the highest level of research activity. U.S. News & World Report ranks the U of A among the top public universities in the nation. See how the U of A works to build a better world at Arkansas Research News.


Lia M. Uribe, RefleXions Music Series founder and executive director
Department of Music
479-575-4138, luribe@uark.edu

Andra Parrish Liwag, senior director of communications
Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences
479-575-4393, liwag@uark.edu


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