Clef Notes Chicagoland Journal for the Arts
Harris Theater for Music and Dance will present the world premiere of the newly commissioned work by Daniel Bernard Roumain, Jean and Susanne, on Monday, December 7, 2015. The work was created specifically for the Harris’ second annual holiday concert between the nationally celebrated Chicago Children’s Choir and the most important ensemble of musicians of color in the world, Sphinx Virtuosi. Exemplifying the Harris’ commitment to “diversity at the highest level of excellence,” the performance is already a local holiday favorite. The evening will feature a unique blend of genres and traversing time periods as they perform well-known and beloved holiday favorites. Families will also be able to enjoy a cup of hot chocolate or holiday tea prior to the performance to get into the holiday spirit, provided by Tea Gschwendner.
“Presenting the Chicago Children’s Choir and Sphinx Virtuosi is such a highlight of the holiday season for us here at the Harris. Nurturing and exposing talent is a principle mission of ours, and these young artists are the best of the best,” said Michael Tiknis, Harris Theater’s president and managing director. “Commissioning Daniel Roumain to create Jean and Susanne for this world premiere was perfect – his naturally collaborative spirit and style lends itself to the platform behind this particular concert: talented musicians coming together to share their gift and celebrate the light and life of the holidays.”
Daniel Bernard Roumain’s collaborations span Bill T. Jones and worlds of Philip Glass and Savion Glover, proving that he is “about as omnivorous as a contemporary artist gets” (New York Times). DBR’s acclaimed work as a composer and a violinist has spanned more than two decades and has earned him praise and recognition via artistic residencies with such prestigious institutions as the Brooklyn Academy of Music, The Harlem School of Arts, UCLA, University of Houston, and many more.
The diversity of the acclaimed Chicago Children's Choir reflects the true cultural landscape of the city. The ensemble has performed with or for a long list of celebrities including Andrea Bocelli, Al Green, Luciano Pavarotti, Quincy Jones, Yo-Yo Ma and more. And Sphinx Virtuosi, comprised of 18 of the nation's top Black and Latino classical soloists, is one of the nation's most dynamic professional chamber orchestras,. Its primary goals to encourage, develop, and recognize classical music talent in the Black and Latino communities, Sphinx programs reach over 100,000 students, as well as live and broadcast audiences of over two million annually.
Single tickets now available for the upcoming concert. Visit www.HarrisTheaterChicago.org or call the Harris Theater Box Office at 312.334.7777 to learn more.
Musicians of Sphinx Virtuosi (photo by Nan Melville).