Oklahoma City Philharmonic, championing recently rediscovered works by Jack Kilpatrick

Posted on: May 7, 2021

“Although he hasn’t lived in Oklahoma long, Alexander Mickelthwate has become a super fan of one the state’s composers,” writes Brandy McDonnell in Thursday’s (5/6) Oklahoman. “The Oklahoma City Philharmonic music director will conduct the orchestra Saturday in performing a work by the late Jack Frederick Kilpatrick (1915-1967), a prolific Stilwell native who infused the majority of his works with Cherokee folklore and traditions—and whose entire body of work was lost for decades and then rediscovered by sheer happenstance…. The OKC Philharmonic’s … Saturday … program [will feature] Kilpatrick’s ‘Concerto for Flute’ with Samuel Barber’s famed Adagio for Strings, Aaron Copland’s beloved ‘Appalachian Spring’ and Hannah Lash’s contemporary Concerto for Harp. … Mickelthwate opted to open the orchestra’s 2019-20 Classics season … with Kilpatrick’s ‘An American Indian Serenade,’ as well as a medley spotlighting Native American performers…. The conductor originally planned an even grander showcase for Kilpatrick’s newly rediscovered works … but the COVID-19 pandemic forced him to reimagine the season…. He opted instead to put Kilpatrick’s flute concerto on Saturday’s ‘American Stories’ concert [featuring] the OKC Philharmonic’s principal flutist, Valerie Watts…. ‘In my opinion, [Kilpatrick] should be celebrated like Copland or Bernstein,’ Mickelthwate said.” Read about works by Native American composers being commissioned and performed by orchestras in the current issue of Symphony magazine.