2024 Lotus Blossoms Residency with Chinobay

Photos of Kalimbas made by kids at Grandview Elementary. Photo of Chinobay.

For over 25 years, Lotus has connected south-central Indiana with musicians from around the world through its Lotus Blossoms spring programming.

“One of the goals of the Blossoms program is to help communities make a lasting connection with visiting artists,” Lotus Executive Director Katarina Koch said. “This is done through classroom and community visits and artist residencies that include learning about an artist’s culture, instruments, language and more.”

This year’s Lotus Blossoms Residency Artist was Ugandan musician and educator Chinobay. Chinobay has toured in more than 75 countries, showcasing Africa in his original compositions. 

Chinobay worked with two Title I MCCSC schools: Grandview 3rd graders and Highland Park 2nd graders, for three kalimba (finger piano) workshop sessions at each school during his week-long residency.

His residency culminated with school performances during which students joined him on stage to help him perform songs.

“I truly enjoyed the residency because so often we only see the Lotus performers from the stage, and we never get to engage with them,” Lisa Voss, music teacher at Grandview Elementary said.  “This residency provided an ENTIRELY DIFFERENT experience for the kids that will not be easily forgotten, and I truly hope that we can do this again in the future.”

Chinobay also engaged community members with a lecture/demonstration at the Lincoln Street Boys & Girls Club, and at Hearthstone Health Campus retirement community in Bloomington.

During his week-long engagement for the 2024 Lotus Blossoms, Chinoby connected with 885 children and 118 adults.

Every spring, Lotus Blossoms connects students, families, and communities with performing artists from all over the globe. Serving South Central Indiana since its inception in 1996, Blossoms has reached more than 150,000 students and community members and has amplified the diverse voices of over 50 international artists.

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