Ethno USA Residency

Ethno USA Residency

JM International (JMI), Folk Alliance International (FAI) and the North Carolina Folk Festival announce their second year of partnership to bring the global international musical exchange program, Ethno USA, to the North Carolina Folk Festival in Greensboro in September 2024. Ethno has been established in the U.S. in 2019 via a partnership between JM International and Folk Alliance International (FAI).

Ethno USA 2024 will welcome approximately 30-40 musicians from around the world (between the ages of 18-30 years old) along with 4-5 artistic mentors for an 11-day residency where the group will create a repertoire of traditional songs from around the world played by a unique ‘Ethnorchestra’, comprising of musicians and instrumentation that changes each year based on recruitment.

Check out these videos from the 2022 edition of Ethno USA to get a feel of what is to come!

Ethno USA will invite back inspiring guest mentor Billy Two Rivers, the local Tuscarora-Lumbee drum keeper. Professor James Shields, lore keeper of the ‘Underground Railroad’ that passed through Greensboro during the times of slavery, will also share the history and knowledge of that time period of U.S. history with the group. Other traditional,  international and North American guest mentors who will share their knowledge and music with the musicians at Ethno USA 2024 are to be confirmed. 

Participating musicians will get to experience a vast diversity of musical traditions both from the U.S. and other parts of the world. Together they will arrange 12-14 songs from as many different countries and cultures. At Ethno, participants bring with them a song or a piece of music which they teach to the group through a series of workshops during the 11-day residency creating an exciting repertoire that will be performed at the NC Folk Festival. All teaching at Ethno is peer-led and collaborative. Besides the formal peer-to-peer workshops, there will be plenty of opportunities to share music, cultural traditions and jam all night long. 

The residency culminates in 2 Main Stage performances at the NC Folk Festival on Friday, September 6th and Saturday, September 7th. These performances will be recorded live by veteran recording engineer and L.A.-based producer Barry Goldberg. On Sunday, September 8th, Ethno USA will present a country delegation-led performance that will showcase traditional, original and newly-arranged songs created during the residency. 

Ethno USA’s ‘Ethnorchestra’ will also include a community concert, open to all, that is slated to take place on Thursday, September 5th at a location in Greensboro (to be determined). 

Prior to the performances, Ethno USA will also deliver community concerts and conduct master classes at local universities and local elementary schools. An amazing experience for all, as the school children who attend the Ethno workshops will be invited to sing and dance with Ethno USA on the main stage!

For more information, please read our Ethno USA 2024 brochure: link

Applications due June 30, 2024