The Barcelona Symphony Band takes part in La Mercè today and pays homage to the black composer Amanda Aldridge

23-Sep-2020 – Aleix Palau

The festivities have begun for La Mercè and, like every year, L’Auditori de Barcelona will contribute to the festival with the gift of concerts for the city as well as holding open days inside their buildings.

This evening is the turn of The Barcelona Symphony Band, under the hand of the principal conductor and band leader, José R. Pascual-Vilaplana, we will be taken on a journey encapsulating Catalan composers and those from further afield. Among the performance pieces, one that stands out is the Three Arabian Dances by the British composer, Amanda Aldridge (1866-1956). Aldridge, whose father was Afro-American and mother was Swedish, was an opera singer, teacher and composer. She left a notable musical legacy; through her musical scores and her teaching, training well known figures such as Marian Anderson and Roland Hayes.

Aldridge’s music will share the stage with works by Gershwin, Cesarini, Pep Ventura and Enric Casals.

With regard to the Barcelona Symphony Orchestra, Kazushi Ono will conduct a programmes that makes a firm commitment to Catalan musical heritage with music by two of our great composers: Ferran Sor and Carles Baguer. Beethoven’s Second will complete the programme.

The Museu de la Música de Barcelona will also join La Mercè festival with a free open day tomorrow, Thursday 24, offering an exceptional opportunity to enjoy one of the best collections of musical instruments in continental Europe.


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