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April 2021 | The Sound of 13

Garrett McQueen
Garrett McQueen
Garrett McQueen.

Mondays, Apr. 5–26, at 7pm on 90.5 FM & STREAMING | Hosted by Garrett McQueen, The Sound of 13 is a 13-week series of programs recognizing the significant influence and contributions of Afro-Americans to classical music through the lens of the 13th Amendment.The 2020 killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and so many other Black citizens led many in America to reckon anew with race… including classical music institutions and their patrons. Radio and podcast host Garrett McQueen opens a historical and contemporary conversation of race and classical music with the 13th amendment as the guide in a new series that will be heard on WKAR, called The Sound of 13. The 13-episode program will air Mondays at 7pm, having started March 22, and end June 14, just before the Juneteenth celebration on Saturday, June 19.

Garrett McQueen is a professional bassoonist who has performed with symphonies and in venues across the country. He is also an accomplished instructor and has performed in multiple Broadway musicals and television series. Garrett is a strong advocate for the diversification of classical music and the advancement of Black musicians in the field. He is the creator of and co-host of Trilloquy, a weekly podcast and arts initiative that affirms the "classic" aspects of compositions from all cultures in an effort to decolonize so-called "classical music."

Apr. 5
This week, explore the large ensemble work, Amen!, by composer Carlos Simon, who said, “My intent is to re-create the musical experience of an African American Pentecostal church service that I enjoyed being a part of while growing up in this denomination.”

Apr. 12
Although he never went to the continent of his ancestors, the pull remained strong for the Black American composer William Grant Still. In this episode, we hear his tone poem Africa along with works by Michael Mosoeu Moerane & Coleridge-Taylor Perkinson.

Apr. 19
Enjoy works by Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, a Black composer of the Romantic era; and Valerie Coleman, who left the all-Black quintet Imani Winds due to a slew of composing commissions heading her way.

Apr. 26
Going deeper into how George Gershwin borrowed from Black culture to create Porgy & Bess while Florence Price floats on for a journey in her Mississippi River Suite.

The Capital Region’s source for classical music, local news and NPR. The station operates 24 hours per day and is available online at wkar.org.

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