Juneteenth: Celebration of Freedom
Sat Jun 24, 2023
The Minnesota Orchestra presents a program in honor of Juneteenth, the holiday commemorating the emancipation of the last African Americans still enslaved in Texas. With conductor André Raphel at the podium, the concert includes Adolphus Hailstork’s jubilant Three Spirituals and William Grant Still's Afro-American Symphony, one of the most celebrated American symphonies ever written. Justice Alan C. Page will perform the narrator role in Aaron Copland's Lincoln Portrait.
Our Relaxed Family Concerts are designed for audiences of all ages, including individuals with autism or sensory sensitivities. Each concert takes place in an inclusive environment where audience members are welcome to be who they are and enjoy music together with family and friends.
A Few Things to Know
- Juneteenth: Celebration of Freedom will feature a variety of music—some soft and some loud—because we know that different audience members like different levels of sound. Review our tip sheet (coming soon) to read about quiet spaces, noise-canceling headphones and other options which are available for tailoring the concert experience to fit your family’s preferences.
- Come early to participate in lobby activities, including opportunities to try instruments, engage in creative movement, make art, learn more about the program and meet Minnesota Orchestra musicians.
- Prepare for the concert experience with our playlist, lobby map, pre-visit story and other materials available approximately 2 to 4 weeks before the concert.
- Juneteenth commemorates when enslaved African Americans in Galveston, Texas, were the last to be freed in the former Confederacy on June 19, 1865, two and a half years after the Emancipation Proclamation was signed by Abraham Lincoln. Though it’s often referred to as “America’s Second Independence Day,” Juneteenth wasn’t recognized as a federal holiday until June 2021. It became an official state holiday in Minnesota in February 2023.
Date & Time
Symphony No. 1, Afro-American
Justice Alan C. Page
The Grammy Award-winning Minnesota Orchestra, led by Danish conductor Thomas Søndergård—who is serving as music director designate during the 2022-23 season—is recognized for distinguished performances around the world, award-winning recordings and broadcasts, educational engagement programs, and commitment to building the orchestral repertoire of the future. Founded in 1903, the Orchestra has an extensive history of touring throughout Minnesota, nationally and abroad, including high-profile visits in recent years to Cuba, Europe and South Africa. Recording projects undertaken in the past two decades include complete cycles of symphonies by Beethoven, Sibelius and Mahler, all recorded under Osmo Vänskä, who is now the Orchestra’s conductor laureate.
Acclaimed for his creative programing and versatility, conductor André Raphel is renowned for his compelling musical performances. A dynamic podium presence, he has also developed a reputation as a skilled communicator. Raphel has led critically acclaimed festivals, world premieres and commissioned works by Richard Danielpour, Jennifer Higdon, Kenneth Fuchs, Ellen Taaffe Zwilich, Uri Caine and Hannibal Lokumbe.
- ASL Interpretation
- Assistive Listening Devices
- Braille & Large Print Programs
- Open Captioning
- Service Animals
- Wheelchair & Accessible Seating
Additional services are available upon request.