On the occasion of what would have been his 80th birthday, the Manhattan School of Music (MSM) and The ELMA Music Foundation, in partnership with the Hugh Masekela Heritage Foundation, will, on April 4th, announce the establishment of the Hugh Masekela Heritage Scholarship at MSM in honor of the legendary South African musician, activist and life-long advocate, and embodiment, of African identity, heritage and expression.
The scholarship will allow six South African students to pursue Bachelor of Music degrees at Manhattan School of Music, one of the world’s leading music conservatories, and Masekela’s alma mater. The scholarship, which will cover tuition and all living expenses for each of the six scholarship recipients for their full four years of study, will be announced at the Jazz Foundation’s annual gala in New York, which this year will honor Hugh Masekela’s life and legacy.
Masekela, who died on January 23rd, 2018, studied classical trumpet at the MSM from 1960 to 1964.
A principal goal of this new endeavour is to ensure that the Hugh Masekela Heritage Scholarship be awarded to South African students who have faced significant social, educational, cultural, or economic challenges, and who have a demonstrated interest in the advancement of music consistent with Mr. Masekela’s legacy and vision.
“We are enormously grateful for this scholarship grant and deeply honoured to be working with The ELMA Music Foundation and the Hugh Masekela Heritage Foundation to provide an educational and musical home to six South African students whose presence at the School will stand testament to Hugh Masekela’s vision and talent,” said James Gandre, MSM President.
“He is one of MSM’s most distinguished alumni, and this is an apt extension of both his musical legacy and the important work that he did during his lifetime on social initiatives benefiting South Africans. The Hugh Masekela Heritage Scholars will be warmly welcomed to a vibrant community of aspiring young musicians who come to the School from 45 countries around the world.”
“We are especially thrilled to honour the legacy and work of this renowned musician and freedom fighter by establishing with Manhattan School of Music and the Hugh Masekela Heritage Foundation an important new scholarship in his name,” said Tarik Ward, Director, Music Programs, The ELMA Philanthropies. “This scholarship not only honours the great artist’s legacy but also nurtures the next generation of South African musicians and upholds his vision to preserve and promote African heritage, culture, and identity.”
“It is with gratitude and appreciation that we at the Hugh Masekela Heritage Foundation enter into this partnership with The ELMA Music Foundation and Manhattan School of Music,” said Prof Louis Molamu, Chairperson of the Hugh Masekela Heritage Foundation. “We look forward to forging ahead into an exciting musical scholarship reflective of Hugh Masekela’s extensive, voracious and prodigious musical appetites and his passion for inter-generational creative collaboration.
“My biggest obsession is to show Africans and the world who the people of Africa really are.” – Hugh Masekela
The Hugh Masekela Heritage Foundation will work with MSM to promote the scholarship opportunity in South Africa.
To apply, students should visit apply.msmnyc.edu/apply to complete an application.
Applications are accepted from 1 September to 1 December 2019.