They Still Want To Kill Us and Lowak Shoppala’ – Chickasaw History and Culture
This episode of Classical Music In Color shows just how rich and colorful our classical music world can be. Composer Jerod Impichchaachaaha’ Tate reveals the history and culture of the Chickasaw Nation in the soundtrack to Lowak Shoppala’ Fire and Light. You can see a theatrical production of it here. Daniel Bernard Roumain revels in the sunshine after the storm with They Still Want To Kill Us.
Here are links to the items mentioned in the Coda.
That Time He Wouldn’t Sing: Ryan Speedo Green
Bass-Baritone Ryan Speedo Green says he’s happy to talk about his background as a juvenile delinquent before he started singing opera. He gets the opportunity every time he’s engaged as an Artist In Residence. This time it’s for the Texas Opera Alliance.
Here are a few more:
The Baytown Symphony has appointed it’s first African American Conductor in Orchestra’s History.
The Harlem Chamber Players are commemorating the 100th anniversary of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre. Adolphus Hailstork composed “Tulsa 1921 – Pity These Ashes, Pity This Dust”. The free online program will stream on Juneteenth – June 19, 2021.
The people at the University of Minnesota Music Library realized they didn’t have much in the way of music from BIPOC musicians and composers. Now they’re attempting to diversify their collection.
Good Intentions, Early Music And Artina McCain
As we move closer to the end of the pandemic, there’s hope that live, in person, performances will start again. When they do happen, many mainstream classical much groups are hoping to show off a little more diversity than in 2019. NIMAN, The National Instrumentalist Mentoring and Advancement Network is one group looking to add some color to the nation’s orchestras when they return from the virtual space. Dr. Artina McCain is hoping to go on tour with her Gold Medal winning album Heritage. Black musicians performing Early Music are looking at increasing the numbers in their ranks. Also on the show, The Oberlin Conservatory’s questionable apology, the Fall River Symphony performing a season of music by Black composers and there’s information about a huge number of competitions listed in the Musical America 2021 GUIDE TO TOP COMPETITIONS.
The March-April 2021 edition of Classical Music In Color is posted here in two parts.
CELEBRATION and LOVE
On this, the February 2021 edition of Classical Music In Color we hear from two next/new/now classical music creators. Joseph Phillips about his mono-opera The Grey Land and Will Liverman, Baritone, about his new album, Dreams Of A New Day. Two men who’s work is the personification of the first Black History Month since the death of George Floyd.
There is also information about music scholarships for the younger set.
Tyshawn Sorey, Lawrence Brownlee and 2020’s Grip on 2021
Even though 2020 still has a grip on 2021, there are attempts to move in a different direction in this new year. Much of what we learned how to do during the pandemic year of 2020 is now (almost) muscle memory. In this, the January 2021 edition of Classical Music In Color, listen to Video Chat Variations – Autoschediasms by composer Tyshawn Sorey’s. It’s a “new age” way of composing music with Alarm Will Sound’s Alan Pierson. Then stay tuned for a fun interview with Tenors Lawrence (or is it Larry?) Brownlee and Michael Spyers about their new album of Rossini duets, Amici e Rivali. Also, hear about the first ever prize being offered for Opera Librettists.
Also take note:
The San Francisco Conservatory of Music (SFCM), San Francisco Symphony, and the President’s Advisory Council on Equity and Inclusion at SFCM have extended the deadline to apply for their Emerging Black Composers Project to February 1, 2021.
Also take note:
D-Composed photo by: Ally Almore
2021 brings with it the trauma from 2020. In the classical music community this transition comes with hope and some joy that classical music composed and performed by Black classical musicians will be recognized more so than ever before.
On This Podcast:
Breathing Free is the name of a visual album from Heartbeat Opera encompassing a chorus of inmates from various prisons, and the music and words of Black American composers and poets, like Florence Price, Langston Hughes, Harry T. Burleigh.
For the children in your life:
A book with music and a smart phone app called Wild Symphony by Dan Brown.
Opera Starts with Oh! An online interactive program from Opera Lafayette.
Where Are The Black Female Composers by Nate Holden
You may download the podcast here.