June 25, 2012

NEWS RELEASE: Shamarr Allen and the Underdawgs to tour as cultural ambassadors to Turkmenistan & Kazakhstan


June 14, 2012 – (New Orleans) Shamarr Allen and the Underdawgs to represent New Orleans and the United States as cultural ambassadors on international tour presented by U.S. Embassies in Turkmenistan and Kazakhstan from June 27-July 15, 2012.

“It was an amazing experience,” says Shamarr Allen of his experience last year as cultural ambassadors for the United States in Kazakhstan & Kyrgyzstan. “People in Central Asia told us the crowds were going to be different than what we were used to here in the United States; that they would properly sit in their seats and not get up out of them. Well, we got them up and dancing in the aisle every show!”

Shamarr Allen and the Underdawgs have been on a remarkable run since last year’s State Department tour: Shamarr was featured on one of the 2012 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival’s posters, the band recently returned from a 10-day tour of Brazil including performances in São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Paraty, they performed at iconic New Orleans events including the New Years Eve Fleur de Lis drop on the riverfront and the Lundi Gras meeting of the Kings of Rex and Zulu. They have also performed at major sporting events including the NCAA’s Final Four & the BCS Championship games in the Mercedes Benz Superdome and at the following festivals: New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, Essence Festival, Satchmo SummerFest, DeLuna Fest (Pensacola, FL), Tropical Heatwave (Tampa, FL), Carnaval on the Mile (Coral Gables, FL) and the Almaty International Jazz Festival (Almaty, Kazakhstan).

“The band and I are pretty excited to represent the United States and to show the people of Turkmenistan and Kazakhstan our unique blend of music which we call “hip-rock”. Our new New Orleans music blends pop, jazz, hip-hop and today’s rock sounds. We are blessed and this is truly an honor.” Shamarr Allen & the Underdawgs push music to unexpected places. “I grew up playing jazz,” says the trumpeter, “But I listened to rock, rap, pop, and everything else, so all that gets wrapped up in what we do. I want our music to resonate with my generation.”

“Music truly is an international language and it doesn’t really matter where in the world we play or whether they speak English or not; they get the music.”

June 25 – Depart U.S.
June 26 – Arrive Turkmenistan
June 27 – Workshop at the National Conservatory
June 28 – Music presentation in Gokdere
June 29 – Performance at Balkan Velayat State Drama Theater, Balkanabat
June 30 – Music presentations in Turkmenbashy & Avaza
July 1 – Rest Day in Ashgabat
July 2 – Workshop/performance at the Institute of Culture & Performance at Chief of Mission Residence the Embassy’s official 4th of July reception in Ashgabat
July 3 – Program day in Dashoguz/ Public Performance at N. Andalyp Music and Drama Theatre
July 4 – Shamarr’s birthday & Public Performance at Mukamlar Palace
July 5 – Workshop and interaction at American Councils/IREX & Music 


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