In recognition of our nation’s historically underrepresented African American composers, on Saturday, June 19 at 7 p.m. the Music Conservatory of Westchester will present a Juneteenth celebration concert including musical performances by the music school’s faculty and an opportunity to learn more about the featured composers.
The program will be presented with limited in-person seating in the conservatory’s Recital Hall as well as streamed live for the greater public to enjoy.
The White Plains community music school is dedicated to its ongoing work in awareness and action toward racial diversity and inclusion within its student community as well as in the repertoire taught at the conservatory. This concert is a major step toward promoting equity and recognizing and celebrating composers whose work is rarely performed.
“The conservatory’s diverse community represents more than 30 different nationalities and ethnicities,” said Executive Director Jean Newton. “We believe that the music we teach and listen to should reflect this, and aim to expand awareness and appreciation of our rich heritage of composers of color.”
Juneteenth, also known as African American Freedom Day, is a day to celebrate one of the final acts of emancipation of slaves in the United States on June 19, 1865. It marks the day that Union Major Gen. Gordon Granger landed in Galveston, Texas and stated that all slaves were free. This announcement took place two years after President Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation freed slaves in Confederate states.
The Conservatory’s Juneteenth Celebration will feature music by prominent composers such as Adolphus Hailstork and Herbie Hancock. In addition to musical performances by the Conservatory’s world-class faculty, the Juneteenth event will include a question-and-answer session with the performers talking about the various composers and stories behind the music.
Visit https://musicconservatory.org/community/ to reserve in-person seats or access the live-streamed link to the Music Conservatory of Westchester’s Juneteenth Celebration. Seating in the Recital Hall is limited due to COVID-19 safety protocols. Admission is free.
The Music Conservatory of Westchester is located at 216 Central Ave. in White Plains. For more information, call 914-761-3900.