Imani Winds & Cory Smythe, Piano – Revolutionary AKA The Civil Rights Project
Imani Winds has never shied from activism. From its very founding, the ensemble has been dedicated to expanding the wind quintet repertoire, exploring non-European musical traditions, and recruiting culturally and racially diverse collaborators. Revolutionary aka the Civil Rights Project puts this dedication in the forefront, reflecting the past, present, and future of the movement which still surges on.
Following an arrangement of Sam Cooke’s anthem “A Change is Gonna Come,” Imani Winds performs several commissions from the past dozen years. Frederic Rzewski’s Sometimes, commissioned by and premiered at Duke Performances in 2015, celebrates the legacy of John Hope Franklin. Vijay Iyer’s Bruits takes on race relations and gun violence in America and features pianist Cory Smythe, known for his collaborations with Tyshawn Sorey and Hilary Hahn, among others, while Jason Moran’s Cane — a reference to his ancestral home near the Cane River in Louisiana — treats the impact of slavery within his own family history. Imani founder Valerie Coleman’s Bronzeville, also featuring Smythe on piano, commemorates poet Gwendolyn Brooks, setting three of her poems to incidental music.
Sam Cooke, arr. John Clark: “A Change Is Gonna Come”
Frederic Rzewski: Sometimes
Vijay Iyer: Bruits (for Wind Quintet & Piano)
Jason Moran: Cane
Valerie Coleman: Bronzeville (for Wind Quintet & Piano)