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June 29, 2012

Meet the Women of In Process…

The woman of In Process...: Life may not be the party we hoped for, but while we are here we might as well dance! Photo by Anton and Images Studio

Sing out! Let your voice be heard
Learn from the ancestors’ stories
About how they fought the battle
For our families and freedom,
Name the wrong and never falter
Sing out, and let your voice be heard
—chorus from “Sing Out!” by Pam Rogers with collaboration from Tia Adé, Nketia Agyeman, and Paula Pree, 2003

 Based in Washington, D.C., In Process… is an a cappella ensemble of four women, each of whom brings her own voice, style, and experience to create shared harmony and rhythm in the African American oral tradition. Formed after a 1980 performance workshop with the GRAMMY-award-winning a cappella group Sweet Honey in the Rock, In Process… now boasts more than fifty alumni and a collective sound that bridges the gap between generations.

 “It is amazing,” says In Process… member Paula Pree, “how the lyrics of ‘Sing Out!’ represent what our singing is all about. We address issues that affect people around the world, celebrate those who have traveled before us, and remember through song.”

In addition to crafting a distinct musical identity, the quartet’s goal has always been to provide strength and hope through music. From contemporary social issues to personal struggles for love and respect, the women utilize spiritual song for transformation and healing, “for a world continually in process.”

The bond between members remains the strongest component ensuring success for the talented female group. “I was so nervous the first time I auditioned,” recalls Pree, “but I was invited into the circle, no questions asked. After that, I never missed a workshop.” Along with Pree, members include Tia Adé, Nketia Agyeman, and the Smithsonian’s own Pam Rogers.

In Process…will perform on the Red Hot Stage of the Creativity and Crisis: Unfolding The AIDS Memorial Quilt program, at 6 p.m., Saturday, June 30.

Click here for more information about In Process…

Katie Cardenas is an intern working on the Creativity and Crisis: Unfolding The AIDS Memorial Quilt program. She is a recent graduate of Vanderbilt University, where she studied Anthropology, Global Health, and Spanish.

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