Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Western Piedmont Symphony Concert of African American Composers 8 PM Nov. 7, Hickory, NC

[Le Mozart Noir: Music of Joseph Boulogne, Chevalier de Saint-Georges; Tafelmusik Orchestra; Jeanne Lamon, conductor; CBC Records SMCD 5225 (2003)]

John Gordon Ross is Conductor & Music Director, Western Piedmont Symphony, and is on the faculty of Lenoir-Rhyne University. He has issued this release via the Center for Black Music Research at Columbia College Chicago:
“The Western Piedmont Symphony will present a concert of African-American composers on Saturday, November 7
th at 8 p.m. in P.E. Monroe Auditorium on the campus of Lenoir-Rhyne University in Hickory, NC. The concert features composer/pianist Anthony M. Kelley, member of the theory/composition faculty at Duke University, and recent UNC School of the Arts graduate Jarae Payton, soprano.

The concert will begin with the American premiere (perhaps the live performance premiere?) of Coleridge Taylor Perkinson’s Mop Mop based on the iconic drum solo of Max Roach. Arrangements with the estate of the late composer and his publisher Lauren Keiser Music Publishing and particularly the production assistance of Joe Derhake have helped to make this performance possible.

Following Mop, Mop, the orchestra will perform the Symphony in D Major by Joseph Boulogne, Chevalier de Saint-Georges also used as the overture to his opera L’amant anonyme in 1780. The Chevalier’s music has recently enjoyed increased popularity with the release of the television film Le Mozart Noir on CBC and Radio Canada. Our thanks for the assistance of Tafelmusik, the Toronto-based ensemble led by Jeanne Lamon for their making this music available.

Closing the first half of the program is Chicago/Cleveland based composer Delores White’s Give Birth to the Dream featuring the orchestral debut of young American soprano Jarae Payton. We anticipate Ms. White will be present for the performance and will attend the final rehearsals.

Following intermission, Anthony M. Kelley will appear as piano soloist in Africamerica: Sound Images for Piano and Orchestra. Dr. Kelley composed this work while serving as Meet The Composer’s New Residencies composer for the Richmond Symphony and other local partners. It was premiered by Donal Fox in 2000 with the Richmond Symphony Orchestra. It has also been performed previously by its composer including a performance last season with the Duke University Symphony Orchestra lead by Harry Davidson. Ticket information is available at by calling the Western Piedmont Symphony at 828-324-8603. [Coleridge-Taylor Perkinson (1932-2004) and Le Chevalier de Saint-Georges (1745-1799) are profiled at]

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