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The Philadelphia Orchestra Presents Annual Martin Luther King, Jr., Tribute Concert at Girard College, January 15

January 3, 2018

Concert concludes Global Citizen’s Greater Philadelphia King Day of Service,

 the largest King Day event in the country


Philadelphia Orchestra broadcast partner WRTI 90.1 FM will air the concert live

Free tickets available beginning January 9 at philorch.org

(Philadelphia, January 3, 2018)––The Philadelphia Orchestra is proud to partner with Girard College and Global Citizen’s Greater Philadelphia MLK Day of Service for its annual Martin Luther King, Jr., Tribute Concert held at the Girard College Chapel on Monday, January 15, at 1:30 PM. Led by conductor Thomas Wilkins, the concert will mark the conclusion of the Greater Philadelphia Martin Luther King Day of Service, the largest King Day of Service event in the country. Tickets to the concert are free and will be available on philorch.org beginning on January 9 at noon. The program will also be broadcast live on WRTI 90.1 FM. The Martin Luther King, Jr., Tribute Concert is presented by PECO.

The 90-minute program will feature uplifting works, including Barber’s Adagio for Strings with a recitation of excerpts from Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech by speaker Charlotte Blake Alston; Ellington’s "King of the Magi" from the Suite from The Three Black Kings; Johnson’s “Lift Every Voice and Sing” and a work by Music Alive Composer-in-Residence Hannibal, “Hymn for the World.”

“It is a tremendous honor for The Philadelphia Orchestra to provide the soundtrack that closes out an incredible day of community service that so perfectly embodies the ideals of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.,” said Philadelphia Orchestra Director of Collaborative Learning Dr. Michael Albaugh. “This opportunity to pay tribute to Dr. King, who fought to bring people of all backgrounds together as one community, is of paramount importance to our global society today and to The Philadelphia Orchestra’s mission to unite people through the power of music. We look forward to this event each year as an important component of our HEAR initiative, which brings art into our communities and makes music and arts education accessible to all people.”

“Global Citizen is thrilled to partner again with the world renowned Philadelphia Orchestra for the finale of the 23rd annual Greater Philadelphia Martin Luther King Day of Service at Girard College,” said Todd Bernstein, President of Global Citizen and Founder and Director of the King Day of Service. “This extraordinary annual musical celebration of Dr. King’s legacy is made even more special by the rich diversity of the audience, who come from all backgrounds and ages.” 

The Philadelphia Orchestra is proud to collaborate with PECO on this event. PECO has proudly supported the Orchestra’s programs and events for nearly 20 years. This year’s sponsorship of the concert expands PECO’s support of the Orchestra’s innovative programming and the many Martin Luther King Day of Service activities throughout the Greater Philadelphia region. 

The Philadelphia Orchestra’s Martin Luther King, Jr., Tribute Concert, first presented in 1991, reflects the beliefs and convictions of the famed civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and combines the traditions of African-American culture and Western classical music. The concert pays tribute to Dr. King’s vision of a society free of prejudice and racial divisions, and his belief in the power of music to effect change. For more information on The Philadelphia Orchestra, visit philorch.org.

Girard College is a college preparatory boarding school for students in grades 1 through 12 from families with limited financial resources, each headed by a single parent or guardian. Endowed by the will of Stephen Girard in 1831, Girard College has educated generations of students since it opened in Northeast Philadelphia in 1848. In keeping with its founder’s commitment to life-changing opportunities, all students are awarded full scholarships to attend Girard College. Visit girardcollege.edu for more information.

PECO, founded in 1881, is Pennsylvania’s largest electric and natural gas utility. Headquartered in Philadelphia, PECO delivers energy to more than 1.6 million electric customers and more than 516,000 natural gas customers in southeastern, Pennsylvania. The company’s 2,500 employees are dedicated to the safe and reliable delivery of electricity and natural gas as well as enhanced energy management conservation, environmental stewardship and community assistance. PECO was named 2017 Best Mid-size Employer in Philadelphia by Forbes Magazine. The company also has an estimated annual economic impact of $4.3 billion in Pennsylvania, supporting more than 8,700 local jobs and producing $732 million in labor income. PECO is a subsidiary of Exelon Corporation (NYSE: EXC), the nation's only Fortune 100 utility and leading competitive energy provider. For more information visit PECO.com, and connect with the company on Facebook and Twitter.

 Martin Luther King, Jr., Tribute Concert

January 15 at 1:30 PM — Monday afternoon — Girard College Chapel

Thomas Wilkins Conductor

Charlotte Blake Alston Speaker
Philadelphia High School for Creative and Performing Arts Chorus

        B. Lauren Thomas, Director

Immaculata University Choir

        Dorina C. Morrow, Director

Boyer                                                   Silver Fanfare
Coleridge-Taylor                                    “Danse nègre,” from African Suite
Traditional                                            “John the Revelator”
Rutter                                                   “The Lord Is My Shepherd”
Ellington                                               “King of the Magi,” from Suite from The Three Black Kings
Still                                                       Fourth movement from Symphony No. 1 (“Afro-American”)
Hannibal                                               “Hymn for the World”
Barber                                                  Adagio for Strings
Smallwood                                            “Total Praise”
Johnson                                               “Lift Every Voice and Sing”

The concert is free, but tickets are required and will be made available on January 9 at noon at philorch.org. The concert will also be broadcast live on WRTI 90.1 FM. 

The Martin Luther King, Jr., Tribute Concert is presented by PECO 

Hannibal’s work as Music Alive Composer-in-Residence is generously supported by

New Music USA and Carole Haas Gravagno.


About The Philadelphia Orchestra

About HEAR


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Ashley Berke




Amanda N. Conte