Andrea Vos-Rochefort

Clarinetist and Teaching Artist

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Miami University: Daniel Pearl World Music Days

The Daniel Pearl World Music Days concerts inspire audiences with a sense of unity and purpose, reaffirming our commitment to international friendship by taking a stand against divisive forces. It is part of an international network of concerts that use the power of music to spread a commitment to tolerance and humanity.

This year our program is based on the topic of the Summer Reading Program: the 1960s and the Civil Rights Movement. The 1960s were times of turbulent changes, and to start the program we will perform the world premiere of a new composition based on the protest song “We Shall Overcome,” which became a key anthem of the Civil Rights Movement. This new work is written by Roger Davis, a prominent composer and faculty member of the Department of Music, and received the title of “WE HOLD THESE TRUTHS."

The piece will be followed by Three Black Kings by Duke Ellington. Three Black Kings was the last major work written by Duke Ellington. As he lay dying in his hospital bed in 1974, he gave his son, Mercer, final instructions on how it was to be completed and orchestrated. The first movement with its African rhythmic motifs, depicts Balthazar, the Black king of the Nativity; the second is concerned with Solomon, King of Israel; and the third celebrates, with warm “down-home” feeling, Martin Luther King, Jr., Ellington’s good friend whose triumphs are celebrated in the inspiring finale. At its premiere, The New York Times noted “…with its crescendo of gospel rhythms and its expressionist symbols of marches and martyrdom…moves the spectator” and The Daily News hailed the work as “An intensely moving vision…” Our rendition will be based on the version for jazz ensemble with symphony orchestra, with Jeremy Long - our saxophone professor - as soloist for the first time with the Miami Orchestra. 

The concert will conclude with the Symphonic Dances from West Side Story by Leonard Bernstein, one of the landmarks of the 1960s. West Side Story was originally a Broadway musical inspired by Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. The movie released in 1961 was nominated for 11 Academy Awards, winning in 10 categories. This year we celebrate Leonard Bernstein’s centennial with this tribute to his art.

Earlier Event: September 14
Masterclass: Ithaca College
Later Event: October 25
Kate Alexandra and Friends