Wu Man and friends entertain at Southern
November 01, 2007
From L-R, Wu Man and friends include Dr. James Makubuya, an associate professor of music at Wabash College in Indiana; Wu Man, an internationally known pipa (2,000 year old Chinese lute-like instruement) virtuoso; and Lee Knight, musician and folk singer from North Carolina. They put on quite a show at Missouri Southern State University in Joplin, November 1, playing solo and in concert. Wu Man called them mainly "pluckers," but she called attention to their "toys." Makubuya, a Ugandan, plays an endongo (eight-string bowl lyre), akogo (thumb piano), adungu (bow harp) and endingidi (one-string tube fiddle). He incorporates a running commentary on the culture of Baganda. Knight enjoys his banjo, dulcimer, mouth bow and Cherokee flute. Environmental consciousness was also part of his folk repertoire as he called attention to the incredible pollution in the Smoky Mountains of North Carolina caused in part by the Tennessee Valley Authority's coal-fired power plants operating without scrubbers. Their two-hour show, a part of Missouri Southern's China Semester, was open to the community without charge.

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