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Cincinnati Symphony and Pops Orchestras Celebrate Black History Month

Music teaches us in the harmonious blending of different notes, different voices, different instruments…we find comfort, satisfaction and joy.

The Cincinnati Symphony and Pops Orchestras are proud to celebrate National Black History Month highlighting the achievements and contributions of classical music’s great Black musicians, artists and composers. Throughout this month, we encourage you and your family to explore the many music icons of the past and present.

We invite you to also join us throughout our CSO and Pops season to celebrate African-American culture and heritage at these exciting upcoming concerts:

Sunday, February 5, 2012, 5:00 p.m. Greater New Hope Missionary Baptist Church presents CSYO Chamber Orchestra in concert, 3655 Harvey Avenue, Avondale – CSO Assistant Conductor, William White presents a cross-cultural music experience with members of the Cincinnati Symphony Youth Orchestras (CSYO). This 45-minute program includes Magnificat, a beloved new work composed by Mr. White for soprano and chamber orchestra. Founded in 1964, the CSYO program has grown from one ensemble with approximately 80 students to three ensembles with over 200 students from over 30 area schools in 3 states. FREE AND OPEN TO THE PUBLIC. FOR MORE INFORMATION, CALL 513.744.3333.

Saturday, February 18, 2012, 4:00 p.m., Zion Baptist Church and the Cincinnati Symphony Volunteer Association Multicultural Awareness Council presents CSYO Nouveau Chamber Players Winter Recital, 630 Glenwood Avenue, Avondale – Meet and hear the 2011-2012 CSYO Nouveau Chamber Players as they present their first recital of the season. Composed of African-American middle and high school string students, these students successfully auditioned for the group and perform locally. The recital is sponsored by the Queen City Chapter of The Links Incorporated Signature Arts Program, Classics through the Ages. FREE AND OPEN TO THE PUBLIC. FOR MORE INFORMATION, CALL 513.744.3254.

Sunday, March 25, 2012, 7:00 p.m., The Music of Ray Charles featuring Ellis Hall and the Cincinnati Pops at Music Hall, Historic Over-the-Rhine – Fusing R&B, gospel, country and pop, Ray Charles gave us enduring hits such as “I Can’t Stop Loving You,” “Hit the Road Jack,” “Georgia on My Mind” and so many more. Join the tribute to this American icon that has thrilled audiences from the Kennedy Center to the Hollywood Bowl. FOR TICKETS AND MORE INFORMATION, CALL 513.381.3300.

Saturday, April 21, 2012, 2:00 p.m., CSO Classical Roots at Music Hall, Historic Over-the-Rhine – Don’t miss this exciting second annual concert at Music Hall featuring acclaimed tenor and creative chair, Rodrick Dixon, Bi-Okoto Drum and Dance Theatre, Triumph Dance Company of the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center and a community mass choir. Cincinnati Pops Conductor John Morris Russell returns to the podium with a dynamic program of Spirituals, gospel, and contemporary works celebrating the African-American experience. FOR TICKETS AND MORE INFORMATION, CALL 513.381.3300.

Want to learn more about great Black composers and artists? Here are a few websites to help get you started:

You can read more about African-Americans’ achievements in classical music in the following books available at your local public library:

  • Abdul, Raoul, Blacks in Classical Music: A Personal History, 1978.
  • Brooks, Tilford, America’s Black Musical Heritage, Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri, 1984.
  • Caldwell, Hansonia L., African American Music: A Chronology 1619-1995. Los Angeles: Ikoro Communications, 1996.
  • Roach, Hildred, Black American Music: Past and Present, Second Edition, 1992.
  • Southern, Eileen, The Music of Black Americans, A History, Third Edition, 1997.

The websites and books listed are for informational and educational purposes only. The CSO does not recommend or endorse any specific opinions or other information that may be mentioned or referenced on the links provided. While CSO strives to provide users with the highest-quality related resources, we cannot and do not ensure the quality or accuracy of the content to which we link.

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