Conductor and retired congressman, together in Philadelphia jazz-and-Mozart concert

Posted on: August 17, 2017

“Who’d have thought that retired congressman Barney Frank and longtime Philadelphia orchestral conductor James Freeman would take a journey into jazz? Together?” writes David Patrick Stearns in Monday’s (8/14) Philadelphia Inquirer. “Freeman’s Chamber Orchestra First Editions, which is beginning its third season, announced Monday that Frank will narrate the Gunther Schuller piece Journey into Jazz for three performances Oct. 6-8 at venues in and around Philadelphia.… Frank and Freeman are old friends from their years as Harvard University students. Frank was a member of the U.S. House of Representatives (D., Mass.) from 1981 to 2013. In 1987, he became the first openly gay member of Congress. Freeman had further studies at Tanglewood, and Vienna’s Akademie für Musik, and became professor of music at Swarthmore…. The program is not out of character for Freeman, who for decades championed a wide range of modern music as conductor/founder of Orchestra 2001. The mandate of First Editions is pairing early Mozart pieces with modern works, which in this concert will also include Gabriel Globus-Hoenich’s newly commissioned work for jazz quintet and a string orchestra. The Mozart works include Piano Concerto No. 12 with soloist Andrew Hauze and Symphony No. 29.”

Posted August 17, 2017

Photo of Barney Frank by Steven Senne