Dr. James Lee III is a composer with a strong connection to Baltimore. He is a Professor of Music at Morgan State University, and the Baltimore Symphony has played and commissioned a number of his works, including Chuphshah! Harriet’s Drive to Canaan, Fantasy on the Star-Spangled Banner, and Thurgood’s Rhapsody. His work has also been performed by the Baltimore Choral Arts Society, the Hopkins Symphony, and the Baltimore-based Monument Piano Trio.

Wordsmith—the moniker for Anthony Parker—also makes his home in Baltimore. Hip-hop is his main genre but uses different genres in his musical compositions, including Classical. Currently, he serves as an Artistic Partner with the BSO and has performed his reworking of Carnival of the Animals by Saint-Saëns and a remix of Beethoven’s Ode to Joy with the orchestra.

Wordsmith (top) and James Lee III (right)

In commemoration of Juneteenth, The BSO will present the world premiere of Destined Words by James Lee III as part of their Gala Celebration on June 19th. This will be in partnership with spoken-word artist Wordsmith.

On Tuesday, June 15th, I’ll be in conversation (virtually) with James and Wordsmith about this event as part of the Enoch Pratt Free Library Writers LIVE! series from 7-8pm. Please click here for more information, and to register for this online event.

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