Hollywood, CA (PressExposure) September 20, 2012 -- Iconic and Grammy Award-nominated a cappella ensemble SWEET HONEY IN THE ROCK will present their first ever orchestral collaboration, "Symphony 10: Affirmations for a New World," with music composed by William C. Banfield and lyrics written by the ensemble members: Ysaye M. Barnwell, Carol Maillard, Nitanju Bolade Casel, Aisha Kahlil, and Louise Robinson. The performance will be conducted by Banfield, in collaboration with the Sphinx Virtuosi (America's most celebrated and influential African-American and Latino youth orchestra ensemble), and The Chicago Children's Choir (directed by Josephine Lee), at the prestigious Harris Theater for Music and Dance, Millennium Park, Chicago, IL, on Thursday, October 4, 2012 at 7:30 PM.
In addition, to "Symphony 10: Affirmations for a New World, the Harris Theater engagement will also feature individual performance sets by SWEET HONEY IN THE ROCK and the Sphinx Virtuosi.
"Symphony 10: Affirmations for a New World," was co-commissioned by the National Symphony Orchestra (Christoph Eschenbach, Music Director), and the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Washington, DC; the Minnesota Orchestra, (Osmo VÃ¤nskÃ¤, Music Director), Minneapolis, MN; and the Harris Theater for Music and Dance, Chicago, IL. The work premiered with the National Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Thomas Wilkins and the Morgan State Choir, (directed by Eric Conway), at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC. The Minnesota Orchestra presented the work at Orchestra Hall in Minneapolis, which was conducted by Mark Russell Smith with the Vocal Essence Choir (directed by Philip Brunelle). Both were presented in late April 2012.
SWEET HONEY IN THE ROCK and Banfield began collaborating on "Symphony 10: Affirmations for a New World," five years ago. The final thirty minute work comprises five movements including: "A Higher Note" by Aisha Kahlil, "Dreams," by Carol Maillard, "The Day the World Awoke," by Nitanju Bolade Casel, "Discourse of Change," by Ysaye M. Barnwell and "Yes," by Louise Robinson.
"Symphony 10: Affirmations for a New World", is a labor of love and one of the most challenging and adventurous projects we've undertaken as a group," stated Ysaye Barnwell. "It has been a dream to one day blend our unique sound, artistry, and lyrics with a symphony orchestra, and we're very fortunate to have fulfilled it by partnering with such a gifted and talented composer as Bill Banfield," she added. "We thank the Harris Theater for Music and Dance, the National Symphony Orchestra and the Minnesota Orchestra, for co-commissioning, "Symphony 10: Affirmations for a New World", and we are delighted to be performing it in Chicago."
Banfield cited some of the musical inspiration and concept for the score by offering, "Symphony 10: Affirmations for a New World," affirms every human power we have: love, imagination, fear and courage, will to change, dreaming, to ask the question and to touch someone else's soul. It is stepping out as the text asks for 'a higher note,' to redefine the traditions in our art that need new fueling."
For more information regarding tickets, visit: http://www.harristheaterchicago.org or call 312.334.7777
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