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Young People’s Concerts, In-School Tour Bring Harlem Renaissance to NYC Schoolkids

Posted January 31, 2018

Duke Ellington jazz rhythms and Langston Hughes poetry are echoing through the floors and corridors of David Geffen Hall. Why? This week’s Young People’s Concert and Young People’s Concerts for Schools, which are all about the Harlem Renaissance.

For the kids who will come with their classmates to Young People’s Concerts for Schools, Wednesday through Friday, the concert will cap a curriculum, created by the Philharmonic’s Education department, that they’ve been studying with their teachers. For many, this curriculum was further enriched by in-school concerts by the Philharmonic’s Teaching Artist Ensemble in November at schools in all five boroughs. The concerts featured music by some of the same composers on this week’s program, such as Ellington and William Grant Still.

“We had a great time exploring the Harlem Renaissance with our students,” said Teaching Artist Laura Weiner, who crafted the in-school concerts with fellow Teaching Artist Stephen Dunn. “They danced, scatted, and clapped to the irresistible music of Duke Ellington!” Joining Weiner (horn) and Dunn (trombone) in the ensemble were Julietta Curenton (flute), Kathryn Curran (clarinet), and Robert Fleitz (piano/keyboard).

Check out video from the Nov. 15 concert, at Manhattan’s P.S. 199, and more video and reactions on social media:

(Photo: Jennifer Taylor; Video: Chris Lee)