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The KSO Performs Music By Three Classical Music Pioneers: Beethoven, Florence Price & George Walker



On the February Masterworks concert, the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra will perform music by three pioneers in Classical music: George Walker, Florence Price, and Ludwig van Beethoven.

American composer, George Walker, was a man of many firsts. He was the first African-American composer to win the Pulitzer Prize for music (1996), the first student of color to graduate from the Curtis Institute of Music (1945) and the first African- American musician to perform with the Philadelphia Orchestra. The KSO will perform one of his most popular works, Lyric for Strings

Florence Price was the first African-American woman to have a composition performed by a major symphony orchestra (Chicago Symphony Orchestra). She studied composition at the New England Conservatory and her works fuse together European traditions with influences from spirituals and the blues, creating a musical language that's uniquely her own. The Knoxville Symphony Orchestra welcomes violinist Bella Hristova, who will perform the newly-discovered Violin Concerto No.1 by Price.

Ludwig van Beethoven was a pioneer in expanding the "boundaries" of classical music. He changed the structure and expectations of symphonic form and incorporated extramusical ideas into his works, making them much more significant than pure entertainment. The Symphony No.3 is considered to be the first piece where he truly challenged what audience members expected to hear in the concert hall.

The Knoxville Symphony Orchestra, led by Maestro Aram Demirjian, performs on Thursday and Friday, February 20th and 21st at 7:30pm, as usual in the magnificent TN Theatre in downtown Knoxville. Tickets and information at http://knoxvillesymphony.com