Virginia Symphony Orchestra explores “Songs of Freedom” with spirituals, William Grant Still score

Posted on: February 1, 2018

The Virginia Symphony Orchestra’s “Songs of Freedom” concert on February 2 will examine how spirituals were used by communities along the Underground Railroad to communicate, inspire hope, and serve as disguised protest. The concert will take place at Tidewater Community College’s Roper Performing Arts Center in downtown Norfolk. Virginia Symphony Resident Conductor Benjamin Rous will lead the orchestra in songs including “Go Down Moses” and “Wade in the Water” as well as movements from William Grant Still’s Afro-American Symphony. The concert is part of the orchestra’s #VSOatRoper series, which aims to provide engaging, educational concert experiences that further dialogue on issues important to the community, and audience members are encouraged to use their smartphones to participate in the conversation via social media throughout the event. Professor Maureen Elgersman Lee of Hampton University and Cassandra Newby-Alexander of Norfolk State University, whose work the program draws on, will both speak at the concert.

Posted February 1, 2018