“I am very happy for the founding of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s African American Network. I look forward to its ongoing development and to seeing its members often at CSO concerts at Symphony Center. I highly welcome you, and you have my very best wishes and support.”— Riccardo Muti, Zell Music Director

The mission of the CSOA’s African American Network is to engage Chicago’s culturally rich African American community through the sharing and exchanging of unforgettable musical experiences while building relationships for generations to come.

The AAN seeks to serve and encourage individuals and families; educators and students; musicians and composers; and churches and businesses to discover and experience the timeless beauty of music.

To learn more how you can be involved, contact Sheila Jones, Director Community Stewardship, African American Network or call 312-294-3045.

Click here for free 2018/19 season concerts, including the upcoming All-Access Chamber Music series concert on October 16!

 


JUST ADDED: Celebrate the SCP Jazz series' 25th anniversary season opener on October 12 featuring pianist Ahmad Jamal! Click here to purchase and use promo code RSVP for $45 tickets.  

   

FEATURED EVENTS

Thursday, October 18, 5-6 p.m., Symphony Center 6th Floor Rotunda

FREE Educational Seminar: Columbia College Chicago Scholar Stan West Celebrates African American War Veterans

Tickets are required. Click here to reserve.

SPECIAL AAN TICKET OFFERS

$35 tickets are available for each of the concerts listed below unless otherwise noted. Use promotion code RSVP or call 312-294-3000.

2018/19 Special Ticket Offer Dates:

Chicago Symphony Orchestra concerts:
Saturday, October 6, 2018, 7:00 p.m.: $45 — Symphony Ball featuring Muti, David Fray and Austro-German and Italian music
Thursday, October 11, 2018, 8:00 p.m.: Mahler Symphony No. 3 
Thursday, October 18, 2018, 8:00 p.m.: Marin Alsop conducts a concert commemorating the 100th anniversary of the end of
World War I

Thursday, October 25, 2018, 8:00 p.m.: Haitink Conducts Bruckner Symphony No. 6 and Beethoven Piano Concerto No. 2 performed by Paul Lewis
Thursday, March 14, 2018, 8:00 p.m.: Muti Conducts Beethoven and Wagner
Thursday, April 11, 2019, 8:00 p.m.: Chopin and Zemlinsky The Mermaid
Thursday, May 23, 2019, 8:00 p.m.: Rodrigo Concierto de Aranjuez

Symphony Center Presents Jazz concerts:
Friday, October 12, 8:00 p.m.: $45 — Ahmad Jamal
Friday, November 2, 2018, 8:00 p.m.: $45 — Branford Marsalis Quartet with special guest Roy Hargrove | opening set by Reginald R. Robinson: Celebrating the Great James Reese Europe
Friday, February 22, 8:00 p.m.: Jazz in the Key of Ellison featuring Will Downing, Nona Hendryx, Quiana Lynell, Nicholas Payton and the Andy Farber Orchestra
Friday, May 24, 2019, 8:00 p.m.: TWO WINGS

Special Concerts:
Sunday December 16, 2018, 4:30 p.m.: The Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s Merry, Merry Chicago! holiday spectacular
Friday, April 19, 2019, 8:00 p.m.: Zakir Hussain and the Masters of Percussion

 

   

Tickets just $35 with promotion code RSVP. Call 312-294-3000 or visit cso.org.

How to book your tickets on cso.org:
1. Click BUY TICKETS button.
2. Click “Select Your Own Seats” button
3. User the interactive map to select your seating section on the Main floor or Lower balcony.
4. After you select your seats, click “Finalize Seat and Add to Cart”
5. Click “Checkout” in the pop-up window
6. You can also checkout by clicking “My Cart” and “Checkout”
7. Login or Register to Continue
8. Enter RSVP in the box that says “Enter Promo Code”
9. Click “Apply” and enter your billing information to complete the purchase. The ticket price will change for the tickets selected as long as you have Main Floor or Lower Balcony seats in your cart.

Fees: Additional fee of $6 per ticket apply.

2017/18 AAN EVENTS (WITH PHOTOS)

HAITIAN PIANO TREASURES RECITAL
May 3, 2018

AAN Event Photo

Pianist Marianne Parker performs never-before-heard Haitian piano gems.

 

AAN Event Photo

 

 

CHICAGO SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA OPEN REHEARSAL
May 2018

AAN Event Photo

Zell Music Director Riccardo Muti welcomes AAN members backstage following an open rehearsal with the CSO.

 

COMPOSING THE BLACK CHICAGO RENAISSANCE: PIANO RECITAL
April 12, 2018

AAN Event Photo

Pianist Samantha Ege performs works by African American female composers.

 

BLACK HISTORY MONTH CELEBRATION: FILM SCREENING OF THE SCAR OF SHAME
February 25, 2018

AAN Event Photo

Conductor and composer Renée Baker speaks about the silent film The Scar of Shame and her world premiere score.

 

AAN Event Photo

 

CELEBRATION OF MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. AND PAUL ROBESON: LECTURE
January 20, 2018

AAN Event Photo

Melanie Zeck from Columbia College Chicago’s Center for Black Music Research gives a lecture on the lives of Paul Robeson and Martin Luther King, Jr.

 

AAN Event Photo

Lecture attendees work on a written exercise about Paul Robeson.

 

AAN HOLIDAY PARTY
December 14, 2018

AAN Event Photo

Party attendees enjoy special holiday performances.

 

AAN Event Photo

AAN member Barbara Wright-Pryor, CSOA President Jeff Alexander, AAN Coordinator Sheila Jones, Center for Black Music Research lecturer Melanie Zeck, and AAN member George Cooper.

 

AAN Event Photo

Violinist Rachel Barton Pine performs for holiday party guests.

 

PIZZA PARTY & POSTCONCERT Q&A WITH CONDUCTOR THOMAS WILKINS
In partnership with the CSO’s Negaunee Institute
December 2, 2017

AAN Event Photo

Conductor Thomas Wilkins and Dana Navarro, CSO Communications & PR Manager and Q&A moderator, answer pizza party attendees’ questions after the Family Matinee concert.

 

CSO ALL-ACCESS CHAMBER MUSIC CONCERT
November 29, 2017

 AAN Event Photo 

AAN members pose for a photo following a free CSO chamber music series concert at Symphony Center.

 

 

THE TRANSORMATION OF BLACK MUSIC BOOK DISCUSSION & LECTURE
October 21, 2017

AAN Event Photo

Melanie Zeck from Columbia College Chicago’s Center for Black Music Research gives a lecture on The Transformation of Black Music, a book she co-authored with musicologist Samuel A. Floyd, Jr.

 

AAN Seminar at Benedictine University
September 15, 2017

 AAN Event Photo

The AAN was proud to give a seminar at Benedictine University entitled “Classical Composers of African Descent through the Ages.” Special thanks to Dr. Elizabeth Boone, AAN Organizing Committee member and Development Director of Benedictine University’s CLL program.

2016/17 AAN EVENTS (WITH PHOTOS)

POSTCONCERT Q&A WITH BRANFORD MARSALIS
June 16, 2017

AAN Event Photo

Pictured left to right: Branford Marsalis; Randy Elliot, CSO Director of Artistic Administration

 

AAN Event Photo

Pictured left to right: AAN Coordinator Sheila Jones; Branford Marsalis; Jeff Alexander, CSOA President

 

BODY AND SOUL FILM SCREENING
February 25, 2017

Body and Soul

The African American Network held its first film screening: Micheaux’s Body and Soul, with a new score by conductor and composer Renée Baker! Pictured left to right: Renée Baker speaks about the film and her new score alongside African American Network Coordinator Sheila Jones and Max Raimi, CSO violist.

AAN COMMITTEE & PARTNERS

ADVISORY COMMITTEE
Renee C. Baker, Artistic Consultant, Chicago Modern Orchestra Project
Ben Handy, Web Associate
Tony Land, Office of Illinois Comptroller Susana A. Mendoza
Eric Owens, Lyric Opera Bass-Baritone
Rachel Barton Pine, Classical Violinist, RBP Foundation
Barbara Wright-Pryor, Archivist/Historian
Darlene and Howard Sandifer, Educational Engagement
Javante Smith, Multilingual Interpreter
Melanie Zeck, Musicologist, Center for Black Music Research

ENDORSERS/SUPPORTERS
Alfreda Burke
Joyce A. Carter
Cynthia Clarey
George Cooper
Doris Davenport
Mimi Duginger
Thelma Fitzgerald
Jennifer M. Gunn
Keith Hampton
Cornelius V. Johnson
Ernest Paul Jones
Katinka Kleijn
Rev. Herbert Lassiter
Brad Opland
Eric Owens
Max Raimi
Godwin Sadoh
Florence Schwartz
Adam Vida

ORGANIZING COMMITTEE
Elizabeth Boone
Phyllis Calderone
Kyle J. Dickson
Susan Carlotta Ellis
Larry Flennoy
Patrice Fumbanks
Neomia Harris
Adrienne Harrison
Katherine E. Hicks
Casandra Holiday
Susan Johnson
Mary Lynn Kelly
Leah McGregory
Rosemarie Rogers
Bryant Young

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