GatherNYC Introduces Mindful Minutes Series With Pianist Lara Downes

Classic Arts News   GatherNYC Introduces Mindful Minutes Series With Pianist Lara Downes
 
Downes will perform works by Black composers as the SubCulture program goes digital.
Lara Downes
Lara Downes Max Barrett

Though GatherNYC has had to put its regular programming at SubCulture on pause, the concert series is ready to keep the music playing online. The Mindful Minutes series launched June 9 and will continue several times a week at 11 AM ET via Facebook.

To kick things off, pianist Lara Downes will perform work composed by Black artists, beginning with Samuel Coleridge Taylor’s “Deep River.” Viewers are encouraged to donate; 10 percent of the proceeds will go to the NAACP, with the remainder to the artists.

“’Deep River’ is a song about the crossing over of rivers both physical and metaphorical—the river between this life into the next, the river between slavery and freedom,” says Downes. “At this moment in our American lives, we have the opportunity to cross over the ancient river of racism and violence, and finally find justice and peace on the side of our future. But this is such a deep and wide river, overflowing with injustice and muddied by ignorance. It won't be easy to get across. We'll need to link arms and hold each other up to fight our way through powerful currents, and it will be exhausting.”

GatherNYC was founded in 2018 by husband-and-wife musicians Laura Metcalf and Rupert Boyd. Previous guests have included Dover Quartet, Anthony McGill, Rachel Barton Pine, Imani Winds, Lara St. John, and the Attacca Quartet.

Watch Downes’ performance below.

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