Wednesday, September 23, 2015

John Malveaux: Pope's Speech at White House

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

John Malveaux of 

To loud applause, the pontiff said: “To use a telling phrase of the Reverend Martin Luther King, we can say that we have defaulted on a promissory note and now is the time to honor it.”

John Malveaux

John Malveaux: Associate Prof. Karen Walwyn will preview 'Journey to New Lands' from 'Mother Emanuel' during the 150th Anniversary 13th Amendment

Karen Walwyn

John Malveaux of 

Steinway Artist and Howard University associate professor Karen Walwyn will preview 'Journey to New Lands' from her unfinished monumental work titled 'Mother Emanuel' during the 150th Anniversary 13th Amendment to US Constitution Abolition of Slavery CONCERT, November 21, 2015, DAR Constitution Hall, Washington DC.  'Mother Emanuel' is a multi movement work for solo piano that depicts the journey across the seas to enslavement through the recent tragedy of June 17, 2015 at Mother Emanuel Episcopal Church in Charleston South Carolina.  'Journey to New Lands' is the first movement of 'Mother Emanuel'. Dr. Walwyn will also perform movement 4, 'Dance', from the Florence Price suite, 'In the Land O Cotton'. See

John Malveaux

Monday, September 21, 2015

John Malveaux: 13th Amendment Abolition of Slavery CONCERT

John Malveaux of 

President Lincoln and his generation secured the passage of a series of transformational Amendments—the Thirteenth, Fourteenth, and Fifteenth—that many scholars have rightly described as our Nation’s “Second Founding.” These Amendments gave our Nation what President Lincoln promised at Gettysburg— “a new birth of freedom.”

MusicUNTOLD will present an invitational & free 150th Anniversary 13th Amendment US Constitution Abolition of Slavery CONCERT, Saturday, November 21, 2015, DAR Constitution Hall, Washington DC. See

The United States Senate and House of Representatives passed resolutions supporting the SECOND FOUNDING-150 Anniversary of 13th, 14th, & 15th Amendments.

John Malveaux Michael Abels composed 'Delights & Dances,' which receives its world premiere recording on this CD, for the Harlem Quartet

Delights & Dances
Harlem Quartet
Chicago Sinfonietta
Mei-Ann Chen
Cedille Records CDR 90000 141

Cedille Records recently spotlighted its release Delights & Dances:

Cedille Records

Delights & Dances, the Chicago Sinfonietta’s first recording with its new music director, award-winning conductor Mei-Ann Chen, does what this singular ensemble does best: it captivates listeners of all ages and diverse ethnic backgrounds through irresistible music and superb musicianship. On Delights & Dances, the Chicago Sinfonietta, a standard-bearer for racial diversity in the orchestral world, works its magic through a one-of-kind program featuring music for string quartet and orchestra, with guest artist, the Harlem Quartet.

The album takes its title from Michael Abels’ witty, soulful, and infectiously rhythmic Delights & Dances, which receives its world premiere recording. The greatly admired contemporary African-American composer wrote the work for the Harlem Quartet, an ensemble of first-place laureates of the Sphinx Competition for outstanding young black and Latino string players. A New York Times review of the work’s 2007 premiere, presented at Carnegie Hall, described the piece as “an energetic arrangement . . . which incorporates jazz, blues, bluegrass and Latin dance elements” — and which the Harlem Quartet “played with panache.”

Comment by email:
Thanks Bill.  As always, your coverage is greatly appreciated!  Best,  Jim
James Ginsburg

Pianist Richard C. Alston will receive the 'NubianUnion's Legend Award' November 23, 2015 at The Alger House in Greenwich Village

Richard C. Alston

Classical Pianist Richard C. Alston writes that Unity Missionary Investors and The Nubian Center have voted to offer him the honor of its NubianUnion's Legend Award, and he has accepted.  Richard will be one of several people to receive the award at the annual holiday gala on November 23, 2015 at The Alger House in Greenwich Village.

By Marvin Mills (@Van_M3

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Sergio A. Mims: Afro-Venezuelan Maestro Rafael Payare makes Royal Festival Hall debut in London Oct. 8, 2015 with All-Russian Program

Rafael Payare

Sergio A. Mims writes:

Came across this info that Rafael Payare will be conducting the Philharmonia Orchestra in a concert of Tchaikovsky and Rachmaninov at the London Southbank Centre on Oct. 8

Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky: Fantasy Overture, Romeo & Juliet (vers. standard, 1880)
Sergey Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto No.4
Sergey Rachmaninov: Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini
Modest Petrovich Mussorgsky: Pictures at an Exhibition orch. Ravel

An all-Russian extravaganza focusing on Rachmaninov's final works for piano and orchestra.
The pieces are performed by Daniil Trifonov as part of his Rachmaninov Piano Concerto Cycle.
They are framed by two of the most popular works in the repertoire, conducted by Rafael Payare, making his Royal Festival Hall début.

Philharmonia Orchestra
Rafael Payare conductor
Daniil Trifonov piano

Michael Mosoeu Moerane, Born 20 September 1904, South African-Basotho Composer, First Black Music Graduate of a South African University

Michael Mosoeu Moerane

South African Music; Fatse la heso (My Country) (11:18); National Symphony Orchestra of the South African Broadcasting Corporation; Peter Marchbank, Conductor; Marco Polo 8.223709 (1994)

Guest Author: Christine Lucia

Christine Lucia is a "Fiction and non-fiction writer, and music professor" as detailed at her website, Prof. Lucia is the Guest Author of the Michael Mosoeu Moerane Biography at She is fully responsible for the extensive research required for the Biography. We gratefully acknowledge her generous contribution. 

Michael Mosoeu (‘Mike’) Moerane was a composer, pianist, teacher and conductor. He was born on 20 September 1904 in Mount Fletcher (South Africa) to an evangelical priest, Jacane Moerane and his wife Sofi. His younger siblings included Epainette, who became the wife of ANC leader Govan Mbeki and mother of future South African President Thabo Mbeki. The family lived on their own farm, which was taken away from them in the white South African government’s land reforms of the mid-20th century. The family was Sesotho-speaking, and Sesotho was the language of most of Moerane's song texts and the one that he later insisted his own children speak at home.   

Moerane registered for a Bachelor of Music degree part-time in 1930 through the University College of South Africa, passing eleven subjects over five years. Meanwhile, he married, his first children were born, he taught full-time, and he began composing. In 1941 he completed the B.Mus. degree - the first African composer in southern Africa to do so and one of the first B.Mus. graduates at Rhodes University (a College of Unisa) - with a ‘Composition Exercise’ called Fatše la Heso (Sesotho=My Country). He received help with its composition and orchestration from Rhodes’ head of music, Austrian-born composer Friedrich Hartmann.   

Not all of Moerane’s output of 60-70 works has survived and much of what does is unpublished. He focused on choral music in tonic solfa notation and his first publications in the 1930s, by Lovedale Press, were Liphala (Sesotho=Horns) and an arrangement of Nobody Knows the Trouble I’ve Seen. (He made several other arrangements of spirituals.) In 1936 he wrote a set of 10 solo piano pieces in staff notation called Album for the Young (lost), and throughout the 1940s, 50s, and 60s he continued writing much music for choir and a few instrumental or piano pieces (lost). His best-known choral works, frequently prescribed at choral competitions in South African and Lesotho are Ruri (Sesotho=Truly), Sylvia, Della, and Matlala.

Fatše la Heso
This 10-minute tone poem is scored for full orchestra including triple woodwinds, 4 horns, 3 trombones, 3 trumpets, tuba, cymbals, triangle, piano & harp. The composer told Percival Kirby that it “is built mainly around three traditional African themes - a war song, a work song and a lullaby” and that it was accompanied by what he called “a more or less adequate analysis”. The folksongs pull it in a tonal direction while the harmonic language is modernist and the orchestration romantic. As a student work by a largely self-taught composer who did not grow up in a compositional or orchestral environment, Fatše la Heso is extraordinary. The external examiner of Moerane’s portfolio, composer William Henry Bell from the South African College of Music in Cape Town, told Hartmann ”he never had expected such a work to be written in South Africa, and less so by a Native” [sic]. The work was premiered by the BBC Symphony Orchestra in England in 1944, conducted by pianist Clifford Curzon. The first recording of the work by the BBC in 1944, conducted by Clarence Raybould was destroyed. Dean Dixon premiered the work in New York and Paris, and a commercial recording by the South African National Symphony Orchestra (SANSO) conducted by Edgar Cree in 1973. The last recording (shown here) was made in 1994 by Peter Marchant and the SANSO.

Moerane lived his life between Lesotho and South Africa, his movements often dictated by political involvement and harassment by the authorities. Moerane joined the Non-European Unity Movement in 1943, which was more radical and uncompromising than the ANC (this seems to reflect his personality) and believed in a policy of non-collaboration with any government structure. Probably as a result of his views, he had little time for parastatals such as the South African Broadcasting Corporation, who are often responsible for what little information about his life is officially available.

He thought of himself as Basotho, a staunch Protestant and a classical musician. (He hated jazz: in Queenstown his next-door neighbor was Todd Matshikiza, composer of the musical King Kong, whom he scorned.) Moerane’s six children were all brought up musically and several of them learnt the piano, at which Moerane was very proficient, and his youngest son, Thabo (1947-2006) even more so. Moerane was a strict teacher and conductor and occasionally adjudicated competitions where his songs were prescribed. He spent his last years at home in Tsifadimali, Lesotho, and died in hospital in Bloemfontein, South Africa on 27 January 1980. He is buried in Tsifadimali.

The Southern African Music Rights Organisation, of which Moerane was a member, has an incomplete catalogue of Moerane’s music. [A more complete list is available on Michael Mosoeu Moerane's web page at]

By Dr. Philip J Rogers (@DrPhilipJRogers)

Saturday, September 19, 2015

John Malveaux: 150th Anniversary 13th Amendment US Constitution Abolition of Slavery Concert

John Malveaux of 

MusiciUNTOLD post concert to celebrate 150th Anniversary of 13th Amendment on community calendar of Classical WETA 90.9 FM in Washington DC as initial public announcement in the Capitol. See
John Malveaux Unique string group Sphinx Virtuosi to come to CLC [College of Lake County] stage

Sphinx Virtuosi consists of 18 young black and Latino men and women string players invited to travel and perform. (Sphinx Virtuosi / Handout)

September 16, 2015

Sheryl DeVore

Sphinx Virtuosi is about opportunities — both for the audience and for the young professional musicians who comprise the acclaimed touring group, said Abigayl Venman, director of artistic affairs for the Sphinx Organization, based in Detroit.
Starting a six-week tour this month, 18 of the nation's finest black and Hispanic string instrumentalists of high school and college age will come to CLC Sept. 25 and later head to Carnegie Hall, where they have been welcomed for seven consecutive years.


In a return engagement to CLC, the ensemble will perform a program titled "Inspiring Women," a collection of works written by women or inspired by great women, including Jennifer Higdon, a contemporary and Pulitzer Prize-winning composer. "It's a piece she wrote for a full orchestra and reworked for a string ensemble," Venman said.
Another piece was written by composer Daniel Bernard Roumain and in honor of Rosa Parks, a civil rights activist in the 1950s.
"The second movement is particularly great," Venman said. "There's clapping involved and a lot of different rhythms and string effects to create different sounds. It makes you want to move, to dance. It's really energetic."


Sphinx Virtuosi

When: 7:30 p.m. Sept. 25

Where: James Lumber Center, College of Lake County, 19351 Washington St., Grayslake

Tickets: $12-$30

Information:; 847-543-2000

Copyright © 2015, Lake County News-Sun

Friday, September 18, 2015

Patrick D. McCoy: Washington Life Magazine: Perfect Pitch: Highest Honor [Tenor George Shirley Among Recipients of National Medal of Arts]

President Obama bestowing upon legendary tenor George Shirley the National Medal of Arts in the special ceremony held in the East Room.  Shirley is the first African-American tenor to sing a leading role at The Metropolitan Opera (Photo by Kadesh DuBose/KmBd Studios™)

Famed author Steven King was among the 2014 National Medal of Arts Recipients at The White House. (Photo by Kadesh DuBose/KmBd Studios™)

Acclaimed actress Sally Field is presented the 2014 National Medal of Arts by President Obama at The White House. (Photo by Kadesh
DuBose/KmBd Studios™)

Just before receiving his official honor at The White House, medal recipient George Shirley was in attendance at a private breakfast hosted in celebration of the occasion by the Coalition for African Americans in the Performing Arts. Pictured: Alvy Powell, Terri Allen, George Shirley and Pamela Simonson. (Photo by Debra Johnson)

George Shirley, Sally Field and Stephen King were among those honored with the National Medal of the Arts at The White House.

By Patrick D. McCoy

The skies of downtown D.C. were overcast, but nothing could dim the festivity that shined in the artistic achievements of several greats honored in the East Room for the National Medal of Arts ceremony  at The White House. How befitting it was for elegant orchestral music greet guests as they arrived for ceremony. The East Room seemed to bustle with great anticipation as the invited guests awaited the arrival of the afternoon’s honorees.

The National Medal of Arts is the highest award given to artists and arts patrons by the United States government. It’s awarded by the President of the United States to individuals or groups who “are deserving of special recognition by reason of their outstanding contributions to the excellence, growth, support and availability of the arts in the United States.”

Following presentation of the National Medal of Arts was the presentation the National Humanities Medals.  Recognizably present arts leaders for the ceremony were NEA Chairman Jane Chu and Aaron Dworkin, founder of Sphinx and now Dean of the University of Michigan School of Music. There were eleven recipients of the National Medal of Arts.  They were: visual artist John Baldessari, theater director Ping Chong, actress Miriam Colón, The Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, actress Sally Field, visual artist Ann Hamilton, author Stephen King, folk singer Meredith Monk, the University Musical Society, author and educator Tobias Wolff and operatic tenor George Shirley.  Presented the medals by President Obama, there was a sense of joy and adulation experienced by each recipient receiving the nation’s highest honor recognizing accomplishments in the arts.

Cypress Creek Mirror: Houston Choral Society & Prairie View A&M University Concert Chorale in 'Shout for Joy' of Adolphus Hailstork 7:30 PM Sat., Oct. 3

Dr. Adolphus C. Hailstork (b. 1941),
Eminent Scholar at Old Dominion University
is featured at
(Photo provided by Rose Grace)

Dr. Betty Devine

Dr. A. Jan Taylor

Cypress Creek Mirror

The Houston Choral Society (HCS), in one of the most highly anticipated collaborations of the season, joins forces with the renowned Prairie View A&M University Concert Chorale to present Shout for Joy. The concert will be conducted by Dr. Betty Devine, HCS Artistic Director and Dr. A. Jan Taylor, Director of Choral Music Activities at Prairie View A&M University, on Saturday, October 3, 2015, at The Foundry United Methodist Church. Dr. Taylor will present a pre-concert lecture titled “African American Spirituals: The Choral Arrangements” at 7:00 PM that provides an insightful look at African American spirituals and the impact they have had on American music. The concert begins at 7:30 PM.
The 100+ voice joint choir begins The Houston Choral Society’s 28th season with Dr. Adolphus Hailstork’s opening piece “Shout for Joy.” Hailstork said, “I wanted to capture the feeling of a great European festival anthem while using African-American sounds.” The choir also performs four African American Spirituals arranged by Robert Shaw, Jestor Hairston, and Moses Hogan. 


Dr. Adolphus Hailstork, professor of music and Composer-in-Residence at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia, will be attending the concert as a guest of The Houston Choral Society.


Tickets are available online at Tickets may also be purchased at the door. 

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Dean Toni-Marie Montgomery of the Bienen School of Music at Northwestern University announces Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Center for the Musical Arts

Dean Toni-Marie Montgomery

Mary B. Galvin Recital Hall

Ryan Center for the Musical Arts

Shirley Welsh Ryan Opera Theater

David and Carol McClintock Choral and Recital Room

Toni-Marie Montgomery, dean of the Henry and Leigh Bienen School of Music and the first African-American dean at Northwestern University, is pleased to announce the opening of the School’s new Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Center for the Musical Arts.

This $117 million, lakefront facility is home to faculty and administrative offices, practice rooms, classrooms, and three state-of-the-art performance spaces: David and Carol McClintock Choral and Recital Room, a 120-seat rehearsal and performance space; Shirley Welsh Ryan Opera Theater, a flexible black-box theater seating 150; and Mary B. Galvin Recital Hall, a 400-seat recital hall that offers audience members stunning views of the Chicago skyline.

The Ryan Center for Musical Arts will be formally dedicated on Thursday, September 24, at 4:00 p.m. CDT. To watch a live stream of the event, visit

Angela Rye of IMPACT Strategies will receive an award during the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation’s 45th Annual Legislative Conference Sept. 18, 2015

Angela Rye, Esq.


(WASHINGTON, DC)—On September 18th, Angela Rye, Principal of IMPACT Strategies, will receive an award for her significant mentorship contributions at the 7th Annual Evening of Excellence during the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation’s 45th Annual Legislative Conference.

Rye is being recognized for her unyielding commitment to creating opportunities that have opened doors for the next generation. Rye’s dedication to mentorship is more evident through IMPACT, which she and a select group of colleagues founded as a resource and pipeline for minorities ages 21-40 by providing programming focused on civic engagement, economic empowerment, and political involvement. By continuing to develop lasting mentoring relationships with young men and women who have come to Capitol Hill and the Greater Washington DC area, Rye has demonstrated the importance of support circles.

"I am humbled to be honored by Southern Company during The Congressional Black Caucus Foundation's Annual Legislative Conference, which has been tremendously important to my development as a professional in DC” said Angela Rye, Principal of IMPACT Strategies. “I have benefitted greatly from the relationships I have with my mentors and so many of them are CBC members. I am grateful for the wisdom and guidance I receive through each of my personal life and work experiences during my journey in the legal profession and as a political consultant. I believe it is imperative that I pay it forward with the next generation of leaders.”

Previous honorees of the Evening of Excellence are actress, Alfre Woodard, TV personality Judge Glenda Hatchett, chairman and CEO of BET Networks, Debra Lee, writer and creator of "The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl, Issa Rae, founder and president of the National Action Network, Rev. Al Sharpton and U.S. Congresswoman Barbara Lee.

More information about Southern Company is available at:

IMPACT Strategies is a classic political consulting and government relations boutique firm with a cutting edge approach to achieving our client’s goals in the Nation’s Capital and beyond.


John Malveaux: The career of George Walker will be synopsized during the 150th Anniversary 13th Amendment US Constitution Concert Sat., Nov. 21, 2015

Washington Post: Composer George Walker, a Washington, D.C. native, who was the first black composer awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Music at his home. (Frank Schramm)

John Malveaux of 

Educator, pianist, composer George Theophilus Walker was born June 27, 1922 in Washington, D.C. He is the first American composer of African descent to receive a Pulitzer Prize for his composition LILACS in 1996. George Walker is the foremost celebrated, living and working American composer today.
The career of George Walker, who is currently working on a symphony, will be synopsized during the 150th Anniversary 13th Amendment US Constitution-Abolition of Slavery CONCERT, Saturday, November 21, 2015, DAR Constitution Hall, Washington DC. Please see   

Dominique-René de Lerma: Mary Batten Bland: A single, "I Want To Be A Woman," and an album, URBAN FUNK, are now available through CD Baby. [Digital only]  Albums available by download only

Urban Funk, Vol. 1 & 2

by Ed Bland

Dominique-René de Lerma: New Albums of Music of Ed Bland have been announced by Mary Batten Bland:

Dear Friends --
As some of you know, I have been trying to set up the family music business that Ed envisioned. He laid the foundation before his death and I'm following through by making some of his music available for digital download. A single, "I Want To Be A Woman," and an album, URBAN FUNK, are now available through CD Baby.

"I Want to be a Woman" is the only pop song Ed and I wrote together. We wrote it in the early 80s and it was recorded by singer Betty Barney, who had a powerful Aretha Franklin type voice. Sadly, Betty passed away some years ago. This is the first time this song, which is a feminist anthem, has been released. 

URBAN FUNK contains 25 tracks. The first 12 are the last pieces Ed composed. He conceived of them as a dance suite. The other 13 pieces comprise a variety of jazz and funk styles with colorful titles like "Baboon Booty," "Skunk Hollow Blues," "Slam Dunk," and "Vasco's Collards," named for my brother's special collards that he cooked every Christmas. All the titles are Ed's. He was fond of animal and food titles.
You can get the entire album or individual tracks. The song is also on the album.

Here are the links:

I Want to be a Woman -

Please feel free to share with anyone you think would be interested in Ed's music.

Many thanks,

Comment by email:
Thanks so very much for the mention of my husband Ed Bland's CD Baby releases.  
Best regards,  Mary Batten Bland

Sergio A. Mims: The Times of London: As Marshall said, this was just the beginning for Chineke!, but what a beginning.

Sergio A. Mims alerts us to the 4-star review of the Chineke! Orchestra debut in The Times of London:

The Times of London

Chineke! Orchestra/Marshall at Queen Elizabeth Hall

Rated to 4 stars
In a city that is 55 per cent black, Asian and minority ethnic, that has five symphony orchestras and four conservatoires, we still see only one or two players of colour in most performances of classical music. 


Here were 60 players of colour: soloists, chamber musicians, educators, students and orchestral players from the CBSO, Philharmonia, BBC Symphony
Orchestra and Opera North; from orchestras in South Africa, America, Austria and Germany; from the London and Manchester colleges, Oberlin and the Juilliard; from Nigerian, Sri Lankan, Trinidadian, Guyanese, Ghanaian and Jamaican heritage. Brought together by the double-bassist Chi-chi Nwanoku, led by American virtuosa Tai Murray and conducted by Wayne Marshall, they played
Coleridge-Taylor’s Tchaikovskian Ballade for Orchestra with bold lyricism and brilliant gadfly trills. Philip Herbert’s tender 1999 Elegy: In memoriam Stephen Lawrence was tinted in hues of grey and silver by the reduced strings. 
In Beethoven’s Seventh Symphony everything fell into place, galvanised from below by the timpanist Paul Philbert and from above by the flautist Eric Lamb, both fine Beethovenian stylists. Clarinets, oboes and bassoons warmed into their roles and the strings eased into the sob and shrug of the Allegretto. As Marshall said, this was just the beginning for Chineke!, but what a beginning.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

John Malveaux: Constitution Day-DAR Constitution Hall

John Malveaux of 

We celebrate Constitution Day and Citizenship Day September 17, 2015. See MusicUNTOLD will present a classical concert to celebrate the 50th Anniversary 13th Amendment to US Constitution Abolition of Slavery, November 21, 2015 at DAR Constitution Hall. South Korean composer Joo Poong Kim original poem set to music will receive a world premiere by American soprano Jumi Kim. See
John Malveaux

Sphinx at Carnegie Hall: Sphinx Virtuosi bring Inspiring Women program to New York City audiences Wednesday, October 14, 2015 at 6:00 P.M.

                          Photo by Nan Melville 

Next month, the SPHINX VIRTUOSI will take the stage at Carnegie Hall! 
Wednesday, October 14, 2015 at 6:00pm 
Isaac Stern Auditorium / 
Perelman Stage at Carnegie Hall 

Co-presented by Bloomberg and the Sander and Norma K. Buchman Fund

We invite you to join us at this special performance! To purchase tickets, go to, call CarnegieCharge at 212-247-7800, or visit the Carnegie Hall Box Office at 57th Street and 7th Avenue. 

General admission tickets are $25. For box seating and gala levels, see the box below.

Use the Friends of Sphinx promotional 
code to receive a 40% discount on tickets! 
This dynamic professional chamber orchestra, led by the Catalyst Quartet, is excited to bring a unique program to the people of New York. INSPIRING WOMEN will offer a collection of works written by women composers along with those inspired by great women. The performance will include the New York premiere of  Gabriela Lena Frank's Cuentos Errantes, with the composer at the piano and a featured performance by Hannah White (Violinist, Sphinx Competition Junior Division 1st Place Laureate). 


Help Sphinx transform lives by supporting this celebration of artistic excellence and diversity with Box Seat tickets or a Gala Level sponsorship!
Sphinx Virtuosi at Carnegie Hall box seat tickets are $250.
To reserve, please contact 
Therese Goussy at or 313-877-9100, ext. 713

With a Gala level sponsorship, you will be invited to join Sphinx for our exclusive Afterglow reception with a strolling dinner, drinks, and the opportunity to mingle with the Sphinx Virtuosi. You can also receive special benefits including a reserved table at the Afterglow and a framed photo with Sphinx artists. 
For more information or to purchase tickets,
please see the Gala invitation or Sphinx web page.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015 Composer Tania León Joins Panel for PUBLIQ Access Concert, 9/26

The website of the Afro-Cuban composer and conductor Tania Justina León (b. 1943) is; she is also profiled at

Broadway World

September 11, 2015

ChamberMusicNY, a non-profit presenting organization, is pleased to announce that composer Tania León has joined the post-concert panel discussion as a moderator for our opening night concert Saturday September 26. The concert is co-presented by the award-winning ensemble PUBLIQuartet, and is the annual showcase of the composition competition PUBLIQ Access. Free tickets are available via this link for Will Call at the concert.
Ms. León, (b. Havana, Cuba) is highly regarded as a composer and conductor and recognized for her accomplishments as an educator and advisor to arts organizations. She has been profiled on ABC, CBS, CNN, PBS, Univision, Telemundo, and independent films.
León's opera Scourge of Hyacinths, based on a play by Wole Soyinka with staging and design by Robert Wilson, received over 20 performances throughout Europe and Mexico. Commissioned by Hans Werner Henze and the city of Munich for the Fourth Munich Biennale, it took home the coveted BMW Prize. The aria "Oh Yemanja" ("Mother's Prayer") was recorded by Dawn Upshaw on her Nonesuch CD, "The World So Wide."
Commissions include works for Ursula Oppens and the Cassatt Quartet, Nestor Torres, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, New World Symphony, Koussevitzky Foundation, Fest der Kontinente (Hamburg, Germany), Cincinnati Symphony, National Endowment for the Arts, NDR Sinfonie Orchester, American Composers Orchestra, The Library of Congress, Ensemble Modern, The Los Angeles Master Chorale, and The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, among others.

Her works have been performed by such orchestras as the Gewaundhausorchester, L'Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, the China National Symphony, and the NDR Orchestra. She has collaborated with authors and directors including John Ashbury, Margaret Atwood, Rita Dove, Jamaica Kincaid, Mark Lamos, Julie Taymor, and Derek Walcott.

Chicago Sinfonietta Announces 'Tap In. Turn Up.' as first concert of The 28th Season, Naperville Oct. 3, Chicago Oct. 5, 2015, Roberto Sierra's 'Fandangos'

Chicago Sinfonietta
Tap In. Turn Up.
Featuring The Firebird Suite

Roberto Sierra

Chicago-based Clinard Dance Theatre and
tap-prodigy Cartier Williams
Chicago Sinfonietta to open 2015-2016 season

Wentz Concert Hall, Naperville, October 3
Symphony Center, Chicago, October 5

CHICAGO (September 15, 2015) – The Chicago Sinfonietta proudly announces Tap in. Turn Up. as the first concert of their 2015-2016 Season.  Percussive rhythms of dancing feet will punctuate the sounds of classical works in Chicago Sinfonietta’s season opener Tap in. Turn Up., featuring Chicago-based flamenco troupe Clinard Dance Theatre and acclaimed Washington, D.C based tap-prodigy Cartier Williams. This concert also marks the first event in a yearlong celebration of the Sinfonietta’s founder Paul Freeman who passed away in July.  Entitled Paul Freeman: Season of Celebration, this series of events will honor the memory of Maestro Freeman through gatherings and musical tributes including a special “moment of sound” at the top of Tap In, Turn Up. The Chicago Sinfonietta performs Tap In. Turn Up. twice: first, in the western suburbs at Wentz Concert Hall of North Central College, Naperville, Saturday, October 3 at 8 pm, and then again in its downtown Chicago home venue of Symphony Center, Monday, October 5 at 7:30 pm

This global twist on classical masterworks begins with the Spanish sounds of Grammy® Award nominee Roberto Sierra’s Fandangos paired with contemporary flamenco movement followed by excerpts from Stravinsky’s The Firebird: Suite accompanied by the staccato rhythms of tap dancing. Then, all of the dancers unite in a joyful performance set to Alexander Borodin’s Prince Igor: Polovtsian Dances to conclude the first half of the concert. In a spectacular grand finale, the entire orchestra joins together in a sultry Arabian Nights performance of Rimsky-Korsakov’s Scheherazade.

“What better way to start our 2015-16 season than with a concert that celebrates the beauty of rhythm both aurally and visually?” stated Sinfonietta Music Director Mei-Ann Chen. Tap in. Turn Up. offers a new way of hearing, and viewing, well-loved classical works, and highlights the creative continuity to be found across the arts. Audiences are sure to enjoy the combined artistry of the Sinfonietta’s musicians and Chicago’s own talented flamenco troupe, with tap star Cartier Williams.”

In keeping with the concert’s rhythmic theme, before the concert and at intermission, audiences will have the opportunity to learn simple tap steps and body percussion from members of the Chicago Human Rhythm Project. Audience members are also encouraged to step in to a video booth set up during intermission and after he concert to share a story about Paul Freeman and the Sinfonietta as part of its “1,000 Stories Project”. Throughout the year, the videos will be collected and used to create a special tribute to premiere at Chicago Sinfonietta’s Ball in June of 2016. Maestro Freeman will continue to be celebrated with special events and musical dedication throughout the season—including two world premiere works created in his memory.

Chicago Sinfonietta presents “Tap In. Turn Up.”

Saturday, October 3 at 8:00 p.m.
Wentz Concert Hall of North Central College, 171 E. Chicago Avenue, Naperville

Monday, October 5 at 7:30 p.m.
Orchestra Hall of Symphony Center, 220 S. Michigan Avenue, Chicago

Single tickets range from $48-$60 for concerts at Wentz Concert Hall and $18-$99 for concerts at Symphony Center, with special $10 pricing available for students at both concerts.  Tickets can be purchased by calling the Chicago Sinfonietta box office at 312-236-5429 or online at

Fandangos featuring Clinard Dance Theatre

Excerpts from The Firebird: Suite featuring Cartier Williams

Prince Igor: Polovtsian Dances featuring Cartier Williams and Clinard Dance Theatre


Mei-Ann Chen, conductor
Clinard Dance Theatre, flamenco dance
Cartier Williams, tap dance

For over 28 years, the Chicago Sinfonietta has pushed artistic and social boundaries to provide an alternative way of hearing, seeing and thinking about a symphony orchestra. Led by Music Director Mei-Ann Chen since 2011, each concert experience blends inventive new works with classical masterworks, each from a diverse array of voices, to entertain, transform and inspire.  Learn more at

The Chicago Sinfonietta is grateful to its supporters including PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, BlueCross BlueShield, Nicor, Chicago and Naperville Magazines, WLS ABC7, Arte y Vida Chicago, Chicago Reader and WXRT plus Tap in. Turn Up. Prelude sponsors. Macy’s, Korn Ferry, Clarity Partners LLC, Inquest and Chin Up. Thanks also to the Fairmont Hotel and the Hotel Arista for downtown and Naperville guest artists accommodations, and to Southwest Airlines for artist travel.

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