Message of hope: Gateways Music Festival musicians record “Lift Every Voice and Sing”

Posted on: July 1, 2020

“For 27 years, Gateways Music Festival’s mission has been to connect and support professional classical musicians of African descent and enlighten and inspire communities through the power of performance,” reads an unsigned Thursday (6/25) article at New York classical radio station WQXR. “Through a series of more than 50 orchestra and chamber music concerts in Rochester, NY, Gateways creates a space where black musicians are heard, affirmed, and celebrated. WQXR and the classical music world broadly have a long way to go to reach true equity and inclusion for all people of color. But Black musicians have been engaged in classical music since before Beethoven composed his first piece. Classical music is not white—period. And at WQXR we want to hear classical music that is from and for all people in all its richness and diversity of tone and color. This special performance of ‘Lift Every Voice and Sing’ was recorded by members of the Gateways Music Festival Orchestra from their homes and put together by WQXR to send a message of hope and unity to communities throughout the world.”