Music teacher Er-Gene Kahng featured on PBS show ‘Now Hear This’
From left, pianist Karen Walwyn, U of A professor Er-Gene Kahng and host Scott Yoo examine archival materials in the University Libraries’ Special Collections Division.
Er-Gene Kahng, a professor in the U of A’s music department, recently appeared on the PBS show’s “Florence Price and the American Migration” episode. Now listen to this. While filming for the show began in May 2021, the episode premiered on April 15.
At the start of his journey, Now listen to this host, Scott Yoo arrived in Arkansas in order to learn more about African-American composer Florence Price. During this time, he met with Kahng and pianist Karen Walwyn to discuss Price’s works housed in the U of A Special Collections Archive.
Kahng, who has championed Price’s work throughout her career, said she was thrilled to have the opportunity to share Price’s story and honor his legacy.
“Learn about [Price’s] Life and work have inspired me to find my own courage and inner strength,” Kahng said. “The effort to preserve and record his works has motivated me to continually develop as an artist.
During the show, there is a discussion of the origins of Price’s music and the story behind his pieces. Kahng remembers the filming process as being an intimate, yet relaxed and organic atmosphere that allowed him to share Price’s story. Kahng said her favorite memory was when she was with Yoo and Walwyn as they unloaded the original manuscripts from the archive onto a viewing table.
“I was surprised that we had to shoot this scene multiple times,” Kahng said, “because I hadn’t thought about how important this scene would be in setting the stage for our filmed conversation.”
The full episode of “Florence Price and American Migration” on Now listen to this is available to stream on the PBS website.