The Dillard University Female Ensemble consists of 12 ladies from across the United States with diverse majors. The Ensemble is sought after to perform throughout the university, the New Orleans community, and the United States. In 2023, the Ensemble performed at the Martin Luther King, Jr Lecture at Brown University (Providence, Rhode Island), the Black Methodists for Church Renewal College Fund Luncheon (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania), and the Syracuse Jazz Festival (Syracuse, New York). Because of their excellent performance, the Ensemble will headline the 2024 Syracuse Jazz Festival.
The ladies are the nucleus of the larger Dillard University Choir. They are spiritually aware and devoted to singing jazz, classics, and new selections by aspiring composers, along with spirituals. Featured selections this year will be music from and inspired by The Color Purple. The Ensemble’s unique arrangements and interpretations are recognized and praised by musicians nationwide.
The Ensemble is under the direction of Professor Samuel Carver Davenport, associate professor of music and concert choir director. Professor Davenport is in his 48th year as director of choral music at Dillard University and is the longest-serving choral director among all Historically Black Colleges and Universities.