Starting Thursday, May 20th, Bronx Arts Ensemble will present a virtual concert series introducing students to classical music and orchestral instruments through a diverse set of programs, including folk songs from many cultures, music by contemporary New York composers, and classics like Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy.” It features BAE teaching artists Evelyn Petcher and Thomas Martin (violin), Wil Dannenberg (french horn), and Kika Wright (bassoon), who both perform and share historical and cultural information about each piece in engaging, interactive ways.

The four concerts explore themes of identity, hope, unity, and social change, and how music has been used to express each of these in different cultures and moments in history.

All concerts are free and open to all and will premiere on BAE’s Facebook and YouTube.

View Concert Schedule Below:

Thursday, May 20 at 1:00 PM – “Why Music?features an introduction to the violin, french horn, and bassoon, and explores the importance of music as a personal or cultural expression, from Dvorak’s “New World” Symphony to the Cuban hit song “El Manisero” by Moises Simons. It is appropriate for elementary and middle school audiences.

Thursday, May 27 at 1:00 PM – “Music of Homecelebrates local New York composers and music that explores themes of home and identity, from the joy of classic jazz tunes, to the longing for a better home expressed in Harry Burleigh’s setting of “Deep River” and Leonard Bernstein’s Broadway hit “Somewhere.” It is appropriate for audiences of all ages.

Thursday, June 3rd at 1:00 PM – “Music for Unityexplores how music can bring people together, in celebration, solidarity, and struggle, through repertoire like the African American spiritual “Balm in Gilead,” Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy,” and “7 PM,” a new work by BAE artist Evelyn Petcher based on the nightly applause during NYC’s April 2020 lockdown. It is appropriate for late elementary through high school audiences.

Thursday, June 17th at 1:00 PM – “Music for Social Changeshows how music has been used all over the world in many cultures as a vehicle for social change, whether as a public expression of protest (“We Shall Overcome”), an expression of outrage (Shostakovich, String Quartet No. 8), or a way to imagine a better world (Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy,” now an anthem for hope and change worldwide). It is appropriate for late elementary through high school audiences.

*Concert series made possible by the generous support of the Baisley Powell Elebash Fund*

About Bronx Arts Ensemble
Since 1972, our artists have embraced dozens of Bronx neighborhoods, performing a broad spectrum of styles for diverse instruments. In 1993 BAE launched our Arts-in-Education programs, helping to fill an educational void in Bronx public schools. These programs have expanded beyond music into movement, theater and art, delivered during and after school in over 40 public schools. BAE continues to develop and integrate our core programs, impacting new audiences and lifting up Bronx arts and culture.

For more information, please visit https://www.bronxartsensemble.org