Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Richard Alston: Classically Black is 4-part YouTube Series based on 1996 PBS New Jersey Documentary

Richard Alston: Classically Black

Richard Alston
Le Chevalier de Saint-Georges (1745-1799), Thomas "Blind Tom" Wiggins (1849-1908), Samuel Coleridge-Taylor (1875-1912), William Grant Still (1895-1978), R. Nathaniel Dett (1882-1943), Florence B. Price (1887-1953), Margaret A. Bonds (1913-1972), George Walker (b. 1922), Ulysses Kay (1917-1995), Hale Smith (1925-2009), Paul Freeman (1936-2015), George Augustus Polgreen Bridgetower  (1780-1860)José Silvestre White  (1835-1918) and James DePreist  (1936-2013)

Richard Alston writes:

Hello and Good Morning Bill,
During the Summer of 1996, I was invited by Karen Smyles, a producer at PBS NJN to participate as musical advisor and performer in a documentary. I was performing lecture/recitals dedicated to piano compositions by composers of African Descent. Ms. Smyles wanted to produce a documentary on composers and instrumentalist of African descent past and present . This is the documentary "Classically Black." It tells the story of the talent, artistry and struggle that composers and performers have gone through and still go through to have their music brought to the classical music world. Previously portions of this documentary were posted on YouTube. This is the entire "Classically Black'" documentary in 4 parts. This would not have been possible without Victoria Timpanaro of the Media Production Technology Department of Essex County College, Newark, NJ for restoring this documentary and putting it in a format for YouTube. The following composers, instrumentalists, conductors and commentators are featured:
Le Chevalier De Saint Georges, Thomas Green Bethune "Blind Tom" Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, William Grant Still, R.Nathaniel Dett, Howard Swanson, Florence Price, Margaret Bonds, George Walker, Raoul Abdul, author "Blacks In Classical Music," Harry Smyles, oboist/Co-Founder, "Symphony of the New World", Sanford Allen, violinist, Clarence Cameron White, Ulysses Kay, Hale Smith, Noel Da Costa, Paul Freeman, CBS Black Composers Series recordings, George Bridgetower, Jose White, Dean Dixon, Everett Lee, Henry Lewis, James DePriest, Symphony of the New World, Benjamin Steinberg, Marian and Clarissa Cumbo, Jerome Ashby, Henry Scott, Natalie Hinderas, Andre Watts, Oscar Petty, Jonathan Holland, Andre Raphel Smith   
It was a great honor serving as musical advisor and performing piano compositions by these composers of African Descent. 
Richard Alston
Part One
Part Two
Part Three
Part Four


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