As part of My Brother’s Keeper Wake County initiative to build a collaborative community of organizations united by the goal of impacting the lives of Black, Latinx, and Native American youth, a directory of partners was established on their website. The Philharmonic Association became one of the first partners to register our profile at mbkwakeco.org in hopes that we could become better known in this community.

Recently, partners were invited to record a video short that included basic information about the organization and their involvement with MBK-Wake.  These videos were premiered at their sold-out drive-in movie event at the State Fairgrounds on July 30 and archived on their website. Naturally for the PA, music has the ability to communicate more about our organization than words so it was decided that our United Strings of Color would be featured in the video.

image of United Strings of Color rehearsing in downtown RaleighThe ensemble, which consisted of Cameron Taylor, Lexi Etienne, Kenza Ngatchou, Sterling Elliott and Tristen Johnson, rehearsed once to perfect an arrangement of “Oh, Freedom!”, a song that was important in the civil rights movement of the 1960s. The musicians then came together at Moore Square in downtown Raleigh to perform. Despite the distractions of a dozen skateboarders, a strong breeze, and the discomfort of witnessing a white police officer’s detainment and search of a black bystander, the string quintet did their best to play the song from memory.

The event gave the ensemble an opportunity not only to reach a diverse audience with their music, but to say goodbye to Kenza whose family is moving back to Seattle. The PA is so grateful to MBK-Wake for this chance to extend the reach of our programming!

Learn more about our partnership with MBK-Wake by watching the video they created featuring our United Strings of Color: