MLK Jr Tribute Concert

Yannick Nézet-Séguin - Conductor

Rubén Rengel - Violin

Charlotte Blake Alston - Speaker

Philadelphia High School for CAPA Choir

B. Lauren Thomas - Director


Price - Fourth movement from Symphony No. 1

Eötvös - The Saqqara Bird

Mendelssohn - First movement from Violin Concerto

Barber - Adagio for Strings

Brahms - Academic Festival Overture

Brahms - “Wie lieblich sind deine Wohnungen,” from A German Requiem

Dandridge - “I Know I’ve Been Changed”

Smallwood - “Total Praise”

Johnson - “Lift Every Voice and Sing”

Monday, January 21, 2019

1:30 pm Girard College

The Philadelphia Orchestra, in partnership with Girard College and Global Citizen's Greater Philadelphia Martin Luther King Day of Service, is proud to present its 29th annual Martin Luther King, Jr., Tribute Concert held at the Girard College Chapel.  Led by Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin, the concert concludes the Greater Philadelphia Martin Luther King Day of Service, the largest King Day of Service event in the country.  

The 90-minute program shines a light on inclusivity, showcasing works by African American composers like Richard Smallwood's “Total Praise”; spirituals such as “Lift Every Voice and Sing” and “I Know I've Been Changed,” performed by the Philadelphia High School for Creative and Performing Arts choir; The Saqqara Bird by Melody Eötvös, a work selected from the Orchestra's showcase for works by women composers earlier this season; plus the first movement of Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto featuring Rubén Rengel, winner of the 2018 Sphinx Competition, which recognizes and develops classical music talent in the Black and Latinx communities. The Orchestra will also perform Barber's Adagio for Strings with a recitation of excerpts from Dr. King's “I Have a Dream” speech by speaker Charlotte Blake Alston––a stirring arrangement that has become an event staple for the past 14 years.

The concert is free but tickets are required. Seating will be general admission and is first come, first served. Tickets do not guarantee entry and there is a limit of four per household. Doors will open at 1 PM.

The concert will be broadcast live on WRTI 90.1 FM and available online at

This concert is presented by PECO with additional support from the Annenberg Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts.