YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) — Youngstown State University’s Pipino Performing Arts Series wrapped up for the season on Saturday night.
Grammy-winning artist Karim Sulayman sang for a crowd of mostly fellow musicians.
“You just have to bring quality art to this field,” said Dana School of Music principal Joe Carucci.
Sulayman won a Grammy in 2019 for Best Classical Vocal Solo.
“For the Pipino series, we always try to give students a chance to work with the guest artists,” said Kivie Cahn-Lipman, a cello professor at YSU.
Music students like Jae Mack had the opportunity to work with Sulayman during a master class.
“When a teacher gives a public lesson, sort of partially speaking to an audience, partially working one-on-one with the student in front of an audience,” Cahn-Lipman said.
“We worked on how to interpret my songs, things that I can do with my voice to make certain parts of the song more interesting,” Mack said.
The performers said they were thrilled to be back on stage after a pandemic hiatus.
“It’s great to connect with people live and make music on the spot,” said pianist Yi-Heng Yang.
“No matter how big the audience, COVID was a reminder that we’re supposed to love what we do. I think taking it away from us reminded us that we’re here for a reason,” Sulayman said.
But sharing their wealth of student knowledge has been a rewarding experience.
“I love working with students, I’m at an age now where I have a certain amount of knowledge and it wouldn’t be right for me to keep it all to myself,” Sulayman said.