Joy features a mashup of musical styles and eras. This far-flung program celebrates the many paths available to musicians—all held together by the common threads of joy and catharsis.
Palaver celebrates the joy and catharsis that music can give us in a program featuring bassist Kebra-Seyoun Charles, winner of the 2022 Sphinx Competition. In a mashup of musical styles and eras, we combine string orchestra classics by Grieg and Bartok with fiddle tunes and Nina Simone. At the heart of this program is John B. Hedges’ Raise Hymn, Praise Shout, a concerto for bass and strings originally commissioned by the Sphinx Organization in 2014. This piece is rooted in African American church music traditions, with the soloist “lining out” hymns and leading the “congregation” (string orchestra) in song. To connect more spontaneously with the audience and each other, Palaver will play much of the program from memory.