OUR CITY, YOUR ORCHESTRA: The Philadelphia Orchestra Connects with Communities at Iconic Cultural Locations and Black-owned Businesses

Posted on October 09, 2020

Small Ensemble Performances to be Recorded and Streamed Free to All

Partner locations include the National Marian Anderson Museum, Historic Belmont Mansion/Underground Railroad Museum, Harriett’s Bookshop, The Franklin Institute, NextFab, Taller Puertorriqueño, the Woodmere Art Museum, and Project HOME

(Philadelphia, October 9, 2020)—In its mission to deepen community ties while celebrating the diverse city it calls home, The Philadelphia Orchestra launches Our City, Your Orchestra,a series of FREE online concerts performed by small ensembles and recorded without audiences at Black-owned businesses and iconic cultural locations throughout the region. Partner locations include the National Marian Anderson Museum, Harriett’s Bookshop, the Historic Belmont Mansion/Underground Railroad Museum, The Franklin Institute, and more. Repertoire is chosen specifically for, and in collaboration with, each location to speak to its unique mission, and interviews with leaders at each venue also help to tell their stories. Performances will be available for free on a weekly basis on www.philorch.org/our-city-your-orchestra and www.facebook.com/philorch, beginning Monday, October 12, 2020, at 7 PM ET.

“We are Your Philadelphia Orchestra, dedicated to connecting through music and conversation with the residents and communities of our beloved city,” said Philadelphia Orchestra President and CEO Matías Tarnopolsky. “Particularly during this time of separation, we look forward to collaborating in this special way, always with the health and safety of all in mind, to share the inspiring stories of friends and neighbors at these vibrant Philadelphia institutions.”

The first performance, featuring Julia Li (violin), Christine Lim (violin), Che-Hung Chen (viola), Yumi Kendall (assistant principal cello), and Philadelphia vocalist Patrice Hawthorne, showcases the Historic Belmont Mansion/Underground Railroad Museum in Fairmount Park. Works include the spiritual “Go Tell It on the Mountain”; John Rosamond Johnson’s “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” known as the Black national anthem; and the first movement from Daniel Bernard Roumain’s String Quartet No. 5 (“Rosa Parks”). Built in the early 18th century, Belmont Mansion became part of Fairmount Park in 1869 and is now a museum dedicated to colonial history and the 19th-century network of people and places known as the Underground Railroad.

The second performance takes place at Harriett’s Bookshop in Fishtown, which opened in February 2020, and is named for famed abolitionist and political activist Harriet Tubman. Longtime Philadelphia resident Jeannine A. Cook founded Harriett’s to celebrate women authors, artists, and activists. Orchestra musicians Ohad Bar-David (cello) and Angela Zator Nelson (percussion), joined by Ajibola Rivers (cello), perform spirituals and works of cultural significance as well as Rivers’s own compositions and arrangements. The performance at Harriett’s also features Jas (ERA), a visual artist from Philadelphia who creates a custom painting in response to the music.

Juliette Kang (first associate concertmaster), Burchard Tang (viola), Priscilla Lee (associate principal cello), Joseph Conyers (acting associate principal bass), Samuel Caviezel (associate principal clarinet), Daniel Matsukawa (principal bassoon), and Jennifer Montone (principal horn) perform at The Franklin Institute, one of America’s most celebrated museums dedicated to the spirit of inquiry and discovery embodied by Benjamin Franklin. The program includes the first and fourth movements from Beethoven’s Septet, as well as Halloween-themed arrangements by Matsukawa in celebration of the museum’s upcoming Franklin Fright event for families.

Orchestra members Davyd Booth (piano) and Philip Kates (violin) also perform at the National Marian Anderson Museum, where opera singer and civil rights advocate Marian Anderson lived from 1924 to 1993. The musicians are joined by Jillian Patricia Pirtle (soprano), Tanisha Anderson (mezzo-soprano), and Gareth Haynes (piano). The Orchestra extends special thanks to Jacobs Music for its maintenance work on the home’s Steinway grand piano, on which Blanche Burton-Lyles, founder of the Marian Anderson Museum, played and entertained as a child.

Other upcoming performance locations include NextFab, Taller Puertorriqueño, the Woodmere Art Museum, and Project HOME with more locations to be announced. Our City, Your Orchestra is supported in part by the William Penn Foundation, with additional support provided through the PNC Arts Alive initiative and the National Endowment for the Arts.


Our City, Your Orchestra

Fall 2020


Monday, October 12 7:00 PM

 The Historic Belmont Mansion/Underground Railroad Museum

 Julia Li Violin

Christine Lim Violin

Che-Hung Chen Viola

Yumi Kendall Cello

Patrice Hawthorne Vocalist


Johnson “Lift Every Voice and Sing”

Roumain First movement (“I made up my mind not to move”), from String Quartet No. 5 (“Rosa Parks”)

Dvořák Fourth movement, from String Quartet No. 12 (“American”)

Traditional “Go Tell It on the Mountain”


 Monday, October 19 7:00 PM

 Harriett’s Bookshop

Ohad Bar-David Cello

Ajibola Rivers Cello

Angela Zator Nelson Percussion


Traditional “Motherless Child”

Bach/arr. Rivers Magdalena

Argov “Lech lamidbar”

Rivers Blues

Rivers Rumba, from Suite No. 2


 Monday, October 26 7:00 PM

 The Franklin Institute

Juliette Kang Violin

Burchard Tang Viola

Priscilla Lee Cello

Joseph Conyers Double Bass

Samuel Caviezel Clarinet

Daniel Matsukawa Bassoon

Jennifer Montone Horn


Program includes:

Beethoven Selections from Septet in E-flat major


Juliette Kang holds the Joseph and Marie Field Chair.

Joseph Conyers holds the Tobey and Mark Dichter Chair.

Samuel Caviezel holds the Sarah and Frank Coulson Chair.

Daniel Matsukawa holds the Richard M. Klein Chair.

Jennifer Montone holds the Gray Charitable Trust Chair.                                 


Monday, November 2 7:00 PM

 National Marian Anderson Museum

 Philip Kates Violin

Davyd Booth Piano

Jillian Patricia Pirtle Soprano

Tanisha Anderson Mezzo-soprano

Gareth Haynes Piano


Program TBA


About The Philadelphia Orchestra





Ashley Berke


[email protected]


Natalie Lewis


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Ashley Stahmer


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