Arts Campus News Society & Culture

Musician, philanthropist John Legend to speak at UGA

Athens, Ga. – The University of Georgia University Union Student Programming Board will present “An Evening with John Legend,” a lecture and performance by the Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter on April 17 at 8 p.m. in the Tate Student Center Grand Hall.

Legend will speak about his philanthropy work with Teach for America and his advocacy for equal access to education for all children. He also will perform several of his songs.

Born John Stephens on Dec. 28, 1978, in Springfield, Ohio, Legend was a child prodigy whose grandmother taught him to play the piano. He grew up singing in church choirs and attended the University of Pennsylvania, where he directed a coed a cappella group.

After graduating, Legend worked for a consulting group and performed in New York nightclubs. He became an in-demand session musician and songwriter, working with such artists as Alicia Keys, Twista and Janet Jackson. His career accelerated when he was introduced to then up-and-coming hip-hop artist Kanye West, and the two musicians collaborated on one another’s demos.

Legend released three multi-platinum albums between 2004 and 2008 and secured nine Grammy Awards in a four-year period, including best new artist in 2004. His new album is due later this year.

Well-known for his extensive philanthropy, Legend has performed concerts and lent his name to charitable efforts in support of equal access to educational opportunity, HIV/AIDS awareness, disaster relief and advocacy for troops and veterans.

Elizabeth Hansen, senior coordinator for student activities and organizations in the Tate Student Center, said the University Union seized the opportunity for this rare lecture appearance.

“The chance to hear an artist the caliber of John Legend speak on a variety of topics he is highly involved in, giving students the chance to ask him questions and listening to a few songs is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” she said.

Tickets are $5 in advance and $12 day of show for students with valid UGACards who pay activity fees on the Athens campus; non-student tickets are $12 in advance and $22 day of show. Tickets are available at the Tate Student Center cashier window Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

For more information, call 706/542-6396 or see

The University Union Student Programming Board is a registered student organization within the UGA Division of Student Affairs.