Buffalo Philharmonic’s free “Concert for Healing” brings city residents together

Posted on: July 28, 2022

Music Director JoAnn Falletta conducts the Buffalo Philharmonic, baritone Julian Cook, and soprano Sirgourney Cook at the orchestra’s recent “Concert for Healing” at Kleinhans Music Hall. The concert also featured BPO Assistant Conductor Jaman E. Dunn.

“The Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra played to the tune of healing Sunday night, offering a free concert [at Kleinhans Music Hall] dedicated to victims of the Tops shooting in May,” reports I’Jaz Ja’ciel in Sunday’s (7/24) Spectrum News 1 (Buffalo, NY). “The sounds brought all ages and races together, in direct contrast to the vision of the individual who infiltrated the city with hate. ‘He didn’t do what he really wanted to do … create this division where we would be filled with hate,’ … said [Music Director] JoAnn Falletta. ‘Instead, I think the community has come closer together in supporting, in helping, in vowing that this will never happen again in our city.’ Falletta worked with members of the East Buffalo [community], including Pastor Julian Cook of Macedonia Baptist Church, who sang baritone in the concert, to find the right time and place for the musical tribute…. ‘Healing can be accomplished by music, especially when we are listening to it together,’ Falletta said.… The program consisted of … pieces from all Black composers,” including Adolphus Hailstork, George Walker, William Grant Still, Valerie Coleman, Florence Price, Duke Ellington. “Falletta said … that she wants to make the healing concert an annual event … in East Buffalo.”