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Boston Symphony Celebrates African-American Composers with Saturday Program

Tuesday Mar 19, 2019

The BSO's Germeshausen Youth and Family Concerts Conductor Thomas Wilkins makes his BSO subscription series debut in a special performance on Saturday, March 23 that celebrates the music of African-American composers Duke Ellington, Florence Price, and Adolphus Hailstork, as well as contemporary Puerto Rican composer Roberto Sierra.

The program begins with Hailstork's 1984 concert overture" An American Port of Call," inspired by the composer's home city of Norfolk, Virginia. After intermission, Mr. Wilkins leads the orchestra in what he calls "Symphonic Reflections" from Florence Price's Depression-era Symphony No. 3, excerpting and re-ordering three movements from the symphony.

Completing the program are two jazz-inspired works: Sierra's Concerto for Saxophones and Orchestra (2002) which was written expressly for soloist James Carter, who makes his BSO debut as soloist; and Duke Ellington's richly atmospheric symphonic poem "A Tone Parallel to Harlem" ("Harlem Suite").

For further information about the concert and the Boston Symphony Orchestra, visit


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