July 31, 2019 at 7:00pm
*Concert moved to Thursday, August 1, 2019 at 7pm at the DCR’s Hatch Shell.
African American spirituals—revered today as essential anthems of the American experience—sing of oppression while glorifying freedom. Boston Landmarks Orchestra performs a selection of songs and spirituals by African American composers. We Need to Talk by Fred Onovwerosuoke shines light on race relations through the prism of music and poetry. The songs will be followed by a concert suite of excerpts and narration from Jerome Kern’s 1927 musical Show Boat. The musical introduced racial themes in forward-looking ways on the Broadway stage. Today it remains a beloved classic of American musical theater, while provoking both admiration and controversy.
The program features the One City Choir, a large symphonic choir comprising committed and passionate singers from all of Boston’s 23 neighborhoods and surrounding communities. The choir takes its name from the words of Boston civic leader Hubie Jones, who has advocated that “Boston can be one city through arts and culture.”
The concert is the culmination of a series of discussions and outreach events focusing on the history of race relations on the Broadway stage, and the role that African American music has played in shaping American culture. A panel discussion will be announced shortly, and will feature Emmett G. Price III, Dean and Executive Director of the Institute for the Study of the Black Christian Experience at Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary, Landmarks Orchestra board member and former Boston Public Schools Executive Director for the Arts Myran Parker-Brass, as well as Milton Wright, retired District Court Judge, Landmarks Orchestra Trustee and Music Director of Black Nativity.
Boston Landmarks Orchestra | Christopher Wilkins, conductor
One City Choir | David F. Coleman, Choirmaster
Coro Allegro | David Hodgkins, Artistic Director
Members of New England Spiritual Ensemble
Sirgourney Cook, soprano
Jennifer Ellis, soprano
Carolyn Saxon, soprano
Myran Parker-Brass, mezzo-soprano
Tai Oney, countertenor
Jonas Budris, tenor
Matthew DiBattista, tenor
Davron S. Monroe, tenor
Alvy Powell, bass-baritone
Milton Wright, bass
William Grant Still Festive Overture
George Walker Lyric for Strings
Traditional Didn’t My Lord Deliver Daniel
Traditional, arr. Bonds Joshua Fit the Battle of Jericho
Traditional, arr. Bonds I Got a Home in that Rock
Traditional, arr. Bonds He’s Got the Whole World in His Hand
Traditional, arr. Michael Tippett Deep River (from A Child of our Time)
R. Nathaniel Dett The Chariot Jubilee (1919)
Fred Onovwerosuoke “We Need to Talk” from A Triptych of American Voices: A Cantata of the People
Jerome Kern Show Boat in Concert
American Sign Language (ASL) Team: Adrianna Neefus (Coordinator), Sho Grant, Christopher Robinson, Erin Sanders-Sigmon, and Shana Gibbs (Coach)
Deep River Program Book
Rain Date: Thursday, August 1, 2019. If it rains on August 1 as well, the concert will be held at First Church in Cambridge 11 Garden St, Cambridge, MA 02138.