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Members of the National Symphony Orchestra will perform in U Street, Shaw, Logan Circle, and around Howard University as part of the NSO’s free community engagement activities that will run Jan. 8-14, the symphony announced today.
At the request of 20 community organizations, musicians will perform in small chamber ensembles and lead educational activities around town. Many of the programs are going to be shaped by local residents.
Two of the signature events that week will be a “family day” at the Lincoln Theatre on Jan. 12, and a closing event with the entire orchestra at Howard University’s Cramton Auditorium on Jan. 14 feauring soprano Jessye Norman (a Howard grad), led by the NSO’s Music Director Christoph Eschenbach and Principal Pops Conductor Steven Reineke. On the program: the local premiere of an NSO co-commission, George Walker’s Sinfonia No. 4.
“NSO In Your Neighborhood” launched in 2012 (read our take here) and brought small chamber ensembles to small venues in town, meaning for about a week in January, it was pretty easy to walk into, say, Bloombars, and find a string quartet backing an MC.
The program is a collaboration between Howard University, D.C. public schools, Florida Avenue Baptist Church, the U Street Neighborhood Association, and the D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities, and is paid for with a grant from Irene Pollin, wife of the late Abe Pollin, CEO of Washington Sports and Entertainment.
Howard Theatre may host an opening event Jan. 8. Details are forthcoming.