Thursday, February 10, 2011

Thomas Wilkins Conducts Louisiana Philharmonic in 'Identity, History, Legacy: La Societe Philharmonique' Feb. 10 & 11

[TOP: “Guest conductor Thomas Wilkins directs the LPO's performance 'Identity, History, Legacy: La Societe Philharmonique' Thursday at St. Louis Cathedral and Friday at the Slidell High Theater.” (Photo: Times-Picayune)] BOTTOM: Edmond Dede; Hot Springs Music Festival; Richard Rosenberg, Conductor; Naxos 8.559038 (2000)]

Edmond Dédé (1827-1903) is profiled at, which also describes a concert in New Orleans on May 10, 1865 at which Samuel Snaer, Jr. conducted the premiere of Edmond Dédé's Quasimodo Symphony.

Published: Wednesday, February 09, 2011
By Sharon Edwards, The Times-Picayune, Tammany Talk columnist
“In the early 19th century, more than 20,000 free men and women of color were part of New Orleans’ social milieu.” “And what would a free person of color do for entertainment in pre-Civil War New Orleans? To answer that question, the Slidell Symphony Society presents the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra in concert Friday, Feb. 11 at 7:30 p.m., at Slidell High School, 1 Tiger Drive.

The performance, 'Identity, History, Legacy: La Société Philharmonique,' will put the spotlight on a prominent mid-19th century orchestra composed of free men of color that performed in New Orleans. It will include a typical program of that orchestra, which often included a dramatic reading. The concert premiers Thursday, Feb. 10, 7:30 p.m. at St. Louis Cathedral.”

“According to Alfred Lemmon, director of research at the Historic New Orleans Collection's William Research Center, the concert will show the contribution of people of color to the development of the musical arts in New Orleans.” “It’s the first such orchestra in the country, and it wasn’t until six years later before a second orchestra was founded, in New York, he said. 'It was a very large orchestra, even by orchestral standards of the time,' Lemmon said. Sources suggest that as many as 100 musicians performed at a time"
“Two of the pieces that will be performed Friday were written by La Société Philharmonique members, Lemmon said. Those are 'Samuel Snaer’s piece, a song written for piano and tenor, and the other, an orchestral piece by Edmond Dede. It was a piece he wrote while in France, but dedicated to one of his cousins who lived in the 7th Ward.'”
“Guest conductor Thomas Wilkins, music director of the Omaha Symphony, will lead the orchestra.” “The concert is the fifth installment of the 'Musical Louisiana: America’s Cultural Heritage' series, supported by the National Endowment for the Arts.” “For ticket information, visit or call 504.523.6530.”

1 comment:

Dani said...

It's nice to see the LPO getting a little bit of exposure! :)