The sights and sounds of Africa fill the air when Professor Paschal Yao Younge, a multi-talented and interdisciplinary musician, scholar, composer, author of “Music and Dance Traditions of Ghana: History, Performance and Teaching and accompanying 10-DVD set, Dance-Drumming Ceremonies of Ghana, and performer presents world percussion music and dance forms internationally, focusing on styles from Africa and the African Diaspora. Paschal has shared the stage with many international performing artists and groups such as: Ju Percussion, Nexus, Azaguno, Percussion Ensemble Chung Ang, Cie Cameleon, Abbos Group, Satriya Budaya, Global Rhythms World Music Ensemble, Micheal Burritt, Glen Velez, Tomoyuki Okada, Halim El-dabh, Akin Euba, Choi Jong Sil, Thomas Lang, Tomohiro Yahiro, Dudu Tucci, Liam Teague, Lalo Davila, Shrinivas Krishnan, Tony Royster, and others.
Professor Younge is the Director of Annual International Summer Program in African Interdisciplinary Arts and co-Artistic Director of the African Ensemble at Ohio University. Younge served as the Chairman of the World Percussion Committee of Percussive Arts Society (PAS) 2004-2007) and also directs, Azaguno, a multi-ethnic ensemble that focuses on research, preservation and performance of African, African-American, Caribbean and Latin American Music and Dance Styles. Azaguno represented the United States at the Opening Ceremony of the 2002 World Soccer Cup competition in Seoul, South Korea. Prior to coming to Ohio University, he taught at West Virginia University where he served as Director of the World Music Center and African Music Studies and also at University of Ghana, where he was Principal Music Instructor and Director of several ensembles including brass bands, choirs and other instrumental groups. Younge’s compositions include several vocal and instrumental works for orchestras, brass bands and choirs. The Hong Kong Chinese Orchestra performed his recent work, “Africa Meets Asia” arranged for Chinese and African instruments by Simon Kong Su Leong in November of 2011. Younge offers pertinent experience in teaching and coordinating in the areas of intercultural and interdisciplinary performance, advising and supervising of creative work at the university level, directing productions, participation in public programming and outreach, and designing and developing sub-Saharan African, African American, Asian, Caribbean, Latin and other world fine arts curricula. Other research interests focus on intercultural and multicultural music education and curricula issues, music and dance performance practices of the Black Atlantic, sub-Saharan Africa: Brass Band and Choral Music, Creative Performance Issues, Dialogue and Interaction in World Percussion Music. His research on the later, “Dialogue and Interaction in World Percussion Music” was presented at the 2006 International Percussion Festival and Workshop in Sacheon, South Korea. The “Alcate Technique: An Intercultural Pedagogy of Teaching and Understanding African Rhythmic Concepts and Organizational Processes in Drumming” is also one of his recently developed intercultural approaches to helping western and classically trained musicians understand African drumming concepts and procedures.
Paschal was born at Dzodze, a village in the Volta Region of Ghana to Augustine and Catherine Younge, both musicians. His parents introduced him to western and traditional Ghanaian musical instruments at an early age of 3. It was no surprise that by age 8, Paschal had learned to play the organ and violin, accompanied the church choir with traditional African instruments and also participated in community cultural groups. Throughout his life, Paschal has continued to study and teach other western musical instruments such as the trumpet, French horn, trombone, tuba, alto saxophone and clarinet in addition to various traditional Ghanaian musical types and instruments. He continues to further his understanding and knowledge of African cultures through performance, teaching and research.
Younge holds a Professional Music Education Diploma from the National Academy of Music, Winneba, Ghana; A Special Advanced Diploma in African Music and Dance with Distinction from the University of Ghana, Legon; Master of Music in Music Education, and Doctor of Education in Curriculum and Instruction from West Virginia University. As a specialist in African choral and brass band music, clinician in other sub-Saharan African musical arts, world percussion and advocate of intercultural, interdisciplinary and multicultural music, Professor Younge has presented and performed at several festivals, concerts and conferences internationally in over 35 States/Provinces in the US/Canada and 16 countries internationally. Professor Paschal Yao Younge is also a recipient of several awards including Marion Anderson/Alvin Ailey Award for Outstanding Achievements in the Arts, Award for Excellence in Scholarship and Outstanding Achievement and Excellence in Service at West Virginia University.
Specialties: Author, Educator, Performing Artist (World Percussionist) African Choral Music, African Brass Band Music, Intercultural and Multicultural Music Education Curricula Dev., Development/Consultant of International Education Abroad Programs
Music of Africa, African Ensemble I, African Ensemble II, Introduction to World Music, Multicultural Percussion and Movement Methods, African Music and Related Arts