Monday, January 27, 2020

The American Guild of Organists Presents The Music of H. Leslie Adams 3:30 pm Sunday March 15, 2020, St. Peter's Episcopal Church, Lakewood, OH

The American Guild of Organists

Cleveland Chapter


The Music of H. Leslie Adams
Sunday, March 15, 2020
3:30 pm
St. Peter's Episcopal Church
18001 Detroit Road
Lakewood, OH 44107

The program will include works for piano, voice, organ, and trumpet.
Featured arrtists are Nicole Keller, Tim Robson, Michael Miller, Etienne Massacote

Free and open to the public

On Sunday afternoon at 3:00 on March 15, 2020 the American Guild of Organists, Cleveland Chapter, will present a concert of music by the noted Cleveland composer, LESLIE ADAMS. St. Peter’s Episcopal Church, 18001 Detroit in Lakewood, OH will be the host. Included in the program will be works for organ, piano, trumpet, and voice. Artists include Nicole Keller, Tim Robson, Michael Miller, and Etienne Massacote.

This concert is free and open to the public.

H. Leslie Adams (b. 1932, Cleveland, Ohio) composers of opera "Blake" has worked in all media, including symphony, ballet, chamber, choral, instrumental, vocal solo and keyboard.  Adams' works have been performed by the Prague Radio Symphony, Iceland Symphony, Buffalo Philharmonic, and Indianapolis Symphony, and commissioned by The Cleveland Orchestra, Ohio Chamber Orchestra and Cleveland Chamber Symphony, among others.

Adams' earned degrees are from Oberlin College (BME) Long Beach State University (MA) and Ohio State University (PhD).  He is listed in New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians and Who's Who in America, among others. He was awarded the Cleveland Arts Prize 2015 Lifetime Achievement Award, is published by American Composers Alliance (BMI) of New York City, and his website is

Sunday, January 26, 2020

Harlem Chamber Players: Thursday, February 13 at 6:30 PM: 12th Annual Black History Month Celebration

The Schomburg Center presents

The Harlem Chamber Players'
12th Annual Black History Month Celebration 

Thursday, February 13, 2020 at 6:30 PM
Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture
515 Malcolm X Boulevard (Lenox Avenue & 135th Street)
New York, NY 10037
This venue is wheelchair accessible.

Click here for directions.
Click here to view and print a flyer.

This concert is part of the Harlem Renaissance 100 Celebration.

This concert is FREE and open to the public. RSVP is required.
Registration opens today at 8 AM.

American Variations....Beethoven/Langston Hughes arranged by Terrance McKnight
String Quartet in G Major....Florence Price
String Quartet No. 1....George Walker
Heaven Medley....Duke Ellington, Joseph Joubert, Hall Johnson
My God Is So High....arranged by Hall Johnson
Concert Variations on "Joshua Fit the Battle of Jericho"....Joseph Joubert
There is a Balm in Gilead....arranged by Joseph Joubert
Every Time I Feel the Spirit....arranged by Joseph Joubert

Terrance McKnight, host and performer
Kyle Walker, piano
Ashley Horne, violin
Claire Chan, violin
Amadi Azikiwe, viola
Wayne Smith, cello
Joseph Joubert, piano
Renay Peters Joubert, soprano

Celebrating the Harlem Renaissance:
100 Years of Arts and Culture
1047 Amsterdam Avenue at 112th Street

To celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Harlem Renaissance and the opening of Children’s Creations of Color: A Celebration of Black History Month, Harlem-based arts organizations join together to celebrate artists of Harlem from then, now, and tomorrow. Members of The Harlem Chamber Players -- violinists Ashley Horne and Jessica McJunkins, violist Nicole Wright and cellist Wayne Smith -- will join in this event. Other artists/participants include Harlem Opera Theater, representatives of the 369th Regiment Harlem Hellfighters and the Harlem Youth Marines.


Thank you to all who contributed to our Indiegogo Campaign in support of our season-end production of the Nathaniel Dett oratorio The Ordering of Moses. We are pleased to announce we reached our minimum goal at $20,095. The campaign is now closed, and we are seeking the rest of the funds for this event via other grant funders. Our intent now is to pay every single performer, including all 100 members of the choir, which will be Chorale Le Chateau. If you wish to support us, please feel free to donate via PayPal or by mail via the instructions below.

Donations of any amount are much appreciated.
Thank you to all who have supported us in the past.

You may also donate by check:
The Harlem Chamber Players, Inc.
191 Claremont Avenue #25
New York, NY 10027

Liz Player, Founder, Executive and Artistic Director
Carl Jackson, Associate Artistic Director and Director of Development
The Harlem Chamber Players, Inc. | 212-866-1492 |

Tom Quick: Black History Month Broadcast and Streaming No. 375 for thegrand@101 at 10:00 PM on February 9/2020

But Not Forgotten: Music by African-American Composers for Clarinet & Piano
Marcus Eley, clarinet
Lucerne DeSa, piano
Sono Luminus

Tom Quick is again broadcasting and streaming Black History Month programs of classical music from Wellington, Ontario, Canada aired on www.thegrand.com101 at 10:00 PM for two hours:


The Women’s Philharmonic:          The Oak.              Florence Price.  12.40
Conductor.  Apo Hsu.

Er-Gene Kahng:  Violin         Violin Concerto No.2   Florence Price.  14.20
Janacek Philharmonic,
Conductor. Ryan Cockerham.

Thomas Hanson:   Baritone.       Song to the Dark Virgin   Price.  1.55
Kuang-Hao Huang:  Piano.           My Dream.                        Price.  2.02

Northern Arizona Uni: Wind Sym:   Three Negro Dances.    Price.  4.00
Conductor. Patricia J. Hoy

Waka Hasegawa:  Piano         Forest Scenes “Characteristic Pieces”  Coleridge-Taylor. 17.40

Malcolm J. Merriweather:  Baritone.      To a Brown Girl.           Margaret Bonds.  2.06
Ashley Jackson:     Harp.                             Winter Moon.                       “            “        1.15
                                                                        Three Dream Portraits         “            “        7.00


Eliesha Nelson;       Viola.                            Viola Sonata.    Op. 69                         George Walker.  14.30
James Howsmon:   Piano.

Marie-Jose Lord:  Soprano                   Summertime.                             Gershwin.    3.15.  Can/Con.
Orchestre  Metropolitain:                    My Man’s Gone.                                “            4.05  Can/Con 

Marcus Eley:     Clarinet                       Night Fantasy.                             Dorothy Rudd Moore.   11.35
Lucerne DeSa:  Piano

Marie-Jose Lord:                                 He’s Got The Whole World in His Hands.     Trad.  3.10.  Can/Con
Ensemble Vocal Epiphanie:               Ma Maria             (Trad, African, Congo).                 3.20.  Can/Con

Saturday, January 25, 2020

A Black History Program - African American Legacies: Outstanding Moments in our History - 2/15/2020

African American Legacies: OutstandingMoments in our History 
February 15, 2020 3:00 PM

Knox Presbyterian Church
FREE admission!
AFRICAN AMERICAN LEGACIES – Outstanding Moments in our History is slated to be an event that should not be missed. If you appreciate Black History, are a lover of music, or enjoy the artistry of the spoken word, then this event is truly for you. Knox Presbyterian Church and the Georgia Laster Association of Musicians, Inc., a 501(c)(3) non-profit affiliate branch of the National Association of Negro Musicians, Inc.(NANM), have teamed together to to showcase some outstanding African-American, historical moments through the works of arranger and composer, Hall Johnson, the brilliance of soprano, Jessye Norman, the passion in the poetry of Maya Angelou and much more. All are welcome and admission is free.  For more information about both organizations, visit and

The Barnstable Patriot: Ghanaian American pianist and scholar William Chapman Nyaho performing Camille Saint-Saëns’ “Africa”

William Chapman Nyaho

Symphony, guests take audience on ‘Africa’ journey

John Malveaux: America’s Racial Progress Is Real. So Is the White Supremacy That Threatens It

Lawrence D. Bobo
(Photo by Aaron Salcido.)

John Malveaux of writes:

1-23-20 Dr. Lawrence D. Bobo (Harvard University) interviewed by LA Times writer Sandy Banks at Zocalo Public Square WHAT DOES THE RESURGENCE OF WHITE SUPREMACY MEAN FOR THE FUTURE OF RACE RELATIONS?  Listen to podcast

Friday, January 24, 2020

On An Overgrown Path: An African-American in Moscow [John McLaughlin Williams Conducted Novaya Russiya]

John McLaughlin Williams

On An Overgrown Path

Thursday, January 16, 2020

In 1938 Fritz Reiner conducted Henry Kimball Hadley's concert overture 'In Bohemia' at a memorial concert for the composer. Now a very powerful new video from Moscow of the Novaya Russiya Orchestra playing 'In Bohemia' conducted by John McLaughlin Williams - seen above - has appeared on YouTube. Today Hadley is a forgotten figure, but he once played a leading role in American music. In 1911 he became the founding conductor of the San Francisco Symphony, the first American-born musician to hold a major conducting position, and he was associate conductor of the New York Philharmonic from 1921 to 1927. As a major figure in the early years of Hollywood film music he conducted the New York Philharmonic for the soundtrack of Warner Bros' 1926 film Don Juan starring John Barrymore, which was the first movie with synchronized music. He composed the score for the 1927 Barrymore film When a Man Loves, and among his other compositions are five symphonies (listen to symphonies 2 and 4 here and here) and five operas.

This Moscow concert video intrigued me as today performances of Henry Kimball Hadley's music are very rare. So I asked John McLaughlin Williams for the backstory, which he provided as follows:

My agent is Lena Khandros of Momentum Artists. She made the gig happen. Lena is Ukrainian and Jewish by birth and a longtime citizen here. She worked her magic in ways unknown to me. An American organization called the Foundation for Cultural Engagement was greatly involved in making my appearance happen. The concert was under the auspices of the Moscow Philharmonic Society and the orchestra is Novaya Russiya, which is Yuri Bashmet's orchestra. The concert program was billed as "Hollywood Melodies" and it was conceived and largely programmed by the Ivanov Brothers, Mikhail and Andrey, who are famous Russian jazz musicians. The concert also featured three singers: Chuck Wansley (an American song stylist presently residing in Prague), Mariam Merabova (nationally famous over there as a blues singer), and Tatiana Pavlovskaya (world famous operatic soprano resident at the Mariinsky). The performance was in the famous Tchaikovsky Hall.

Though the program featured the Ivanov brothers, I was asked to provide a program opener and in keeping with the American orientation of the extant program, Hadley's showstopper came to mind immediately. The concert's first half began with that and continued with some famous Sinatra arrangements featuring Chuck. I did Morgen (from Strauss' Four Last Songs) with Tatiana (wonderful!) and also did some choice Mancini: Breakfast at Tiffany's, Charade, and his arrangement of Jesus Christ Superstar. Tatiana is a world-class singer: in fact, all these folks are famous in their own fields.

The second half featured the Ivanovs and was constructed like a detective story with music. This half began with Mancini's Pink Panther and went on to feature the big main title songs from James Bond films. The singers delivered these in various combinations along with copious extemporizations from the Ivanov brothers' and their two bandmates. All were excellent. The concert was sold out and was apparently a great success. There was a lot of P.R. for it and the entire concert will be available for online viewing. That's pretty much it. I got an opportunity and tried to make the most of it! I'm presently inquiring about future recording.
We can all learn from John's self-effacing observation that "I got an opportunity and tried to make the most of it". But this story raises two important questions. Why does Henry Kimball Hadley's music have to travel to Moscow to receive the attention it deserves? And why, despite the much-celebrated 'Sheku effect', does John McLaughlin Williams have to travel to Moscow to receive the attention he deserves?

John Malveaux: The lost neighborhood under New York’s Central Park

John Malveaux of sends this link:


A historically black village’s destruction made way for Central Park’s creation.

Sergio Mims: André J. Thomas will conduct the London Symphony Orchestra in a concert of gospel symphonic music in March

André J. Thomas

Sergio A. Mims writes:

The London Symphony Orchestra has just released a press release announcing that next month the conductor/composer/arranger Andre J. Thomas will conduct a concert of symphonic gospel music with the orchestra.

"On Sunday 1 March 2020, leading American gospel music specialist André J Thomas will conduct the London Symphony Orchestra in their first ever full concert of gospel symphonic music. The evening will bring together the full orchestra, a 400-strong choir comprising the London Adventist Chorale, with LSO Community Choir, Hannah Brine Choirs, Hackney Empire Community Choir, and Milton Keynes Community Choir with guest soloists, NaGuanda Nobles (soprano), Jason Dungee (tenor) and Brandon Boyd (piano)".
'André J Thomas said: “This concert brings together two forms of music that are indigenous to African Americans: the slave song as spiritual and the gospel song which came after emancipation and grew out of the spiritual. Now we’re putting that in symphonic setting, with full orchestra and choir. This is music of the soul, of a people who were so close to music. It’s music about their lives. As Africans, that’s a crucial part of our expression – in the African village everyone dances and sings. That extended itself to the time of slavery; add the religious element on top, and it creates something incredibly powerful'.
'Kathryn McDowell, Managing Director of the LSO added: “Every year LSO Sing, the umbrella title for our range of singing projects for vocal enthusiasts of all ages, gets stronger and stronger, with an ever-broadening repertoire. For our Christmas Concert in 2018 we added a gospel element, and received such a wonderful warm response from our audiences and had a great time performing the music that the Orchestra decided it was time to present a full evening with gospel music at the heart. I am delighted that this has come to fruition. It’s a pleasure to welcome André J Thomas to conduct, and a thrill that on stage we have the wonderful London Adventist Chorale under the leadership of Ken Burton, and most of all, that we will be bringing together four community choirs to raise the roof of the Barbican Hall.”
'The programme for the evening will be in two parts: opening the evening will be selection of well-known and less familiar spirituals, with André J Thomas’ own composition Gospel Mass – A Celebration of Love and Joy forming the second part of the evening'. 

Thursday, January 23, 2020

John Malveaux: Santa Monica Symphony Orchestra in "Hiawatha," "A Lincoln Portrait" & "Afro-American Symphony" at SGI Auditorium January 18

Samuel Coleridge-Taylor (1875-1912)

Aaron Copland

William Grant Still (1895-1978)

John Malveaux of writes:

January 18, 2020 Santa Monica Symphony Orchestra annual Martin Luther King Holiday Concert at SGI Auditorium in Santa Monica equaled or exceeded previous years. Maestro Guido Lamell opened with Overture to "Hiawatha" by Afro-British composer Samuel Coleridge-Taylor. KUSC radio host Rich Capparela was an effective narrator for "A Lincoln Portrait" by Aaron Copland. The second half featured all four movements of William Grant Still's "Afro-American Symphony No. 1". The special afternoon ended with an appreciative audience singing the traditional "We Shall Overcome" with added solo improvisations from four orchestra players. See pic 1 Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, pic 2 Aaron Copland, pic 3 William Grant Still.

Sergio Mims: Sheku Kanneh-Mason's New Decca Recording of Elgar's Cello Concerto Makes UK Album Chart history

London Symphony Orchestra
Sir Simon Rattle

Sergio A. Mims writes:

This weekend Gramophone Magazine announced that Sheku Kanneh-Mason's new Decca recording of the Elgar Cello Concerto with London Symphony Orchestra conducted by Sir Simon Rattle earned a place in the Top 10 of the UK Official Album Charts  it premised last week as No 8 on the charts and not since  Nigel Kennedy's recording of Vivaldi's Four Seasons in 1989 has a British classical musician earned a place in the Top 10 of the UK Official Album Charts album  The album also, not unsurprisingly, also landed as No 1 in the Specialist Classical Chart.

Friday, January 17, 2020 Santa Monica Symphony Performs William Grant Still's "Afro-American Symphony" 2 PM Saturday Jan. 18

Civil rights leader Martin Luther King is remembered with concerts, a parade and other events this holiday weekend.
Los Angeles Times
AFP/Getty Images

He had a dream

Santa Monica Symphony Orchestra’s annual MLK holiday concert remembers the civil-rights leader with a program that features Aaron Copland’s “Lincoln Portrait” narrated by KUSC’s Rich Capparela, as well as William Grant Still’s Symphony No. 1, “Afro-American.” SGI Auditorium, 525 Wilshire Blvd., Santa Monica. 2 p.m. Saturday Free.

The Inner City Youth Orchestra of Los Angeles performs inspirational music including an orchestral and choral setting of King’s 1963 “I Have a Dream” speech. Skirball Cultural Center, 2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd., L.A. 7 p.m. Saturday. Free; reservations recommended. (310) 440-4500.

Saturday, January 11, 2020

Lara Downes Music: What's new in the New Year!



2019... it was a year of milestones and marvels. Some high points:


My first No. 1 on the Billboard Chart!!
My album For Love of You debuted with two weeks at #1, and brought the music of Clara and Robert Schumann to so many ears and hearts - more in the NY Times and Boston Globe...


I hosted NPR's From the Top with a cast of ridiculously talented young musicians who are also spectacular human beings. Listen to the show! (I'm hosting again in May, stay tuned...)


My album Holes in the Sky brought me the miraculous gift of collaboration with artists including Judy Collins, Rhiannon Giddens, Simone Dinnerstein, Leyla McCalla... check out the constellation of goddesses HERE


I played with the Boston Pops, at Tanglewood, Washington Performing Arts, Ravinia, National Sawdust, Joe's Pub, and here and there and everywhere, and during my last trip of 2019, my trusty red suitcase gave up the ghost.



2020 starts with a series of recordings dropping TODAY! I am so happy to share with you these world-premiere releases of the piano works of Florence Price, whose music has enthralled me for many years. Ms. Price's story is a complicated one, as American stories usually are. She was a trailblazing, fearless, tireless, phenomenal woman who accomplished extraordinary things and wrote extraordinary music. Get my recording of her Fantasie Negre No. 4 today, and you can sign up HERE to be notified when new EPs drop later this month.


My album SOME OF THESE DAYS is coming in April. This project has been a long time coming in my heart and soul, and I can't wait for you to hear it.


I'm beyond thrilled to be making my debut this summer with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, playing Price's fabulous Piano Concerto (in its premiere performance with this iconic orchestra) as well as a world premiere of Paola Prestini's new concerto Let Me See the Sun, commissioned for me by the Ravinia Festival, the Louisville Orchestra and the Oregon Bach Festival.

Where you'll find me...

2020 is bound to be a year of change, and I hope that brighter, more peaceful days are in store for all of us.

In the meantime, let the music play...

You can find my schedule HERE, and I hope to see all of you soon on my travels.

To all of you, my warmest wishes for everything good in this New Year!

Many thanks to

My family - the phenomenal women of Holes in the Sky - My team at Cadenza Artists - Bonnie Barrett and Yamaha Artist Services - Sony Masterworks - Naxos of America - John Michael Cooper - Adam Abeshouse - Tad Wheeler/Tenderdyn Arts - 8va Music Consultancy - Noelle Panepento - Austere Visuals - The New York Times - The Boston Globe - WQXR - The San Francisco Ballet Orchestra - Washington Performing Arts - Ravinia - Oregon Bach Festival - The Louisville Orchestra - From the Top - Mondavi Center - Sphinx Organization - - and all my friends and colleagues who are fighting the good fight.

John Malveaux: July 1, 2020 concert BROTHERHOOD of MAN to include L.A. premiere of 'Bicentennial Symphony' by composer Roy Harris

Roy Harris

William Grant Still

John Malveaux of 

MusicUNTOLD is currently developing a July 1, 2020 concert titled BROTHERHOOD of MAN, to include Los Angeles premiere of composer Roy Harris 'Bicentennial Symphony'.  The symphony premiered in Washington DC with Maestro Murry Sidlin conducting the National Symphony Orchestra at the Kennedy Center in 1976 to celebrate the 200th birthday of our nation. It is the strongest musical statement on U.S. History, slavery, and race relations ever made by an American composer.  The work was written for orchestra with large chorus.  The chorus carries the larger part of the work with passages from the Preamble to the Constitution, the Gettysburg Address, and the Emancipation Proclamation as well as original passages. 

During a brief recent visit to the United States, Shawn Harris, elder son of Roy Harris, sent me ONE TENTH of OUR NATION with music composed by Roy Harris.  See Shawn Harris is a former popular music musician and producer who also served as president of Barry Manilow's publishing company before retiring from music in 2004.

The July 1, 2020 BROTHERHOOD of MAN concert second half will be devoted to 125th anniversary of William Grant Still. Concert location to be announced February 2020.