The U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, in partnership with American Voices, announced today that the Birmingham, Alabama-based Acoustic Rock/Americana group Act of Congress will tour Asia this fall as part of the American Music Abroad series. Act of Congress will tour Thailand (September 2-10), the Philippines (Sept. 11-17), Palau (Sept. 18-21), and Timor-Leste (Sept. 23-29). Tour activities will include public concerts, master classes, lectures, demonstrations, workshops, media outreach, and collaborations with local musicians.
The American Music Abroad program sends American bands overseas to engage with audiences and communities, especially underserved youth. The program builds on Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton’s vision of “smart power,” which embraces the full range of diplomatic tools, including music, to engage people and create opportunities for greater understanding.
This season’s 12 participating American Music Abroad groups were selected from a pool of nearly 300 applicants to travel to more than 40 countries to promote cross-cultural understanding through music. The 2012-2013 season will feature a variety of American musical genres, including urban/hip-hop, bluegrass, country, Americana, classical/jazz, rock/blues, and Hawaiian slack key guitar/hula.