World-renowned composer, producer, cellist and kora virtuoso Tunde Jegede brings a new vision to contemporary African and Western classical music. A renaissance man of the harp-lute with over twenty years experience, his work is a unique synthesis of classical, jazz and traditional music and embodies the legacy of the idiom; African Classical Music.
Tunde Jegede’s work has changed the face of classical and contemporary music in Europe and Africa. He is one of the only composers in the world to be steeped in both Western and African music who is rooted in two cultural musical legacies. Tunde Jegede studied both Western classical music and the Griot Tradition of West Africa from a very early age, attending the Purcell School of Music in London and learning from a Master of the Kora in the Gambia, Amadu Bansang Jobarteh.
This unique cultural inheritance has since informed his work as a composer and multi-instrumentalist, creating links between European classical music and that of Africa. With his music he has created a set of mirrors between the old and new world, between compositions for solo cello and kora. Tunde Jegede is, in himself, a dialogue between contemporary classical music and a renewed vision of an oral tradition rooted in Malian culture – the Griot vision. He is truly a C21 renaissance man.
Tunde Jegede is the founder of several ensembles including the Art Ensemble of Lagos and the African Classical Music Ensemble. He is also the curator of Living Legacies, Gambia’s first traditional music archive, and the director of New Horizons, an educational initiative to develop young musicians in Nigeria. Over the last few years Tunde has been the Artistic Director of the MUSON Centre, one of West Africa’s only music conservatoires that specialises in classical music. He consequently set up the NOK Foundation, a charitable organisation dedicated to raising consciousness through music, arts and culture.