Friday, July 29, 2011
How many black conductors at the BBC Proms?
The separate paths of BBC Proms and black conductors have been the hot topics here recently. Now they converge in this question - how many black conductors have appeared at the BBC Proms and Henry Wood Promenade Concerts during their 117 year history? It is not a rhetorical question as I do not have a definitive answer and therefore would welcome collaborative input from readers. One definitely has, Wayne Marshall conducted Porgy and Bess in the 1998 season. But have any other black conductors appeared at the Proms? Rudolph Dunbar, Dean Dixon, Everett Lee and James Frazier did not, while James DePriest, Paul Freeman, Isaiah Jackson, Kwamé Ryan, John McLaughlin Williams, Tania León and others to date have not; but I may have missed someone. Just as a benchmark, Charles Hazlewood has so far conducted two evening BBC Proms and four daytime concerts. My header photo shows Kwamé Ryan and you can read more about him here.
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