Langston Hughes and the Harlem Renaissance

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Sunday, March 25, 2012

Langston Hughes, one of America’s great poets, gave jubilant voice to the lives of African Americans. His poetry has inspired settings by dozens of composers; we hear some of that music and learn about the world that inspired him.

Program details (song, composer/poet and performers):

The Negro Speaks of Rivers
Margaret Bonds / Langston Hughes
Thomas Hampson, baritone; Vlad Iftinca, piano.

My People from Genius Child: A Cycle of 10 Songs
Ricky Ian Gordon  / Langston Hughes
Harolyn Blackwell, soprano; Warren Jones, piano.

I’m Just Wild About Harry from Shuffle Along
Eubie Blake / Noble Sissle
Al Jolson, singer with orchestra.

I, Too
Langston Hughes recites his poem.

I, Too from Three Dream Portraits
Margaret Bonds / Langston Hughes
Kevin Maynor, bass; Eric Olsen, piano.

Bound No’th Blues from Dreamer: 7 Poems of Langston Hughes
Erik Santos / Langston Hughes
Darryl Taylor, tenor; Maria Corley, piano.

Minstrel Man
Paul Robeson reads the poem by Langston Hughes.

Minstrel Man from Three Dream Portraits
Margaret Bonds / Langston Hughes
Kevin Maynor, bass; Eric Olsen, piano.

Lonely People from Four Songs
Jean Berger / Langston Hughes
Thomas Hampson, baritone; Malcolm Martineau, piano.

A Black Pierrot from Songs of Separation
William Grant Still / Langston Hughes
Darryl Taylor, tenor; Maria Corley, piano.

Joy
Howard Swanson / Langston Hughes
Darryl Taylor, tenor; Maria Corley, piano.

Lovely Dark and Lonely One
Henry T. Burleigh / Langston Hughes
Regina McConnell, soprano; Michael Cordovana, piano.

Daybreak in Alabama from Daybreak in Alabama: A Langston Hughes Song Cycle
John Stone / Langston Hughes
Amy Bartram, soprano; John Stone, piano.

Litany from Shadow of the Blues
John Musto / Langston Hughes
Paul Sperry, tenor; Irma Vallecillo, piano.

Drum from My Dark Hands
Hermann Reutter / Langston Hughes
Thomas Hampson, baritone; Malcolm Martineau, piano.

Peace from The Face of War
Elie Siegmeister / Langston Hughes
Esther Hinds, soprano; Alan Mandel, piano.

Dream Variations
Ricky Ian Gordon / Langston Hughes
Audra McDonald, soprano; ensemble conducted by Eric Stern.

 

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