IRIS Orchestra MLK50 Program “It’s Up to Us”
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IRIS Orchestra MLK50 Program “It’s Up to Us”


Clayborn Temple map

Marcia Kaufmann

IRIS Artist Fellows will coordinate a program based on theme “It’s Up to Us,” from a speech by Dr. Martin Luther King on that topic. Focusing elements will include Dr. Harold Middlebrook’s relationship with Dr. King and Dr. King’s worldwide influence on civil liberties.  With a  by LarJuanette Williams, E.D., of Black Arts Alliance, the program will include commentary by Dr. Harold Middlebrook, spoken word and poetry by a young, local poet, a chorus, and string chamber ensembles including the IRIS Artist Fellows and additional local musicians.  The program is planned for the week of April 2nd (date TBD: a day other than April 4th) at a morning or early afternoon time to create a field trip opportunity for area students, with the potential for a second, later performance accessible to the working community.  Partners for this event with IRIS Orchestra will include Black Arts Alliance and Dr. Harold Middlebrook. Additional partners may include Le Moyne-Owen College (Dr. Middlebrook’s alma mater), visiting jazz musicians from Poland, student ambassadors from Poland, University of Memphis string students, and The Consortium MMT.  As an outreach and engagement event, this concert will be offered free to the public. The target audience includes underserved segments of the community, communities of color, youth and senior citizens.