Aaron Diehl and Joshua Banbury | The Phillips Collection
Aaron Diehl and Joshua Banbury
January 15, 2023, 4-5:30 PM
In-person and Livestream with Ticket Reservation
Rapidly becoming a Phillips-audience favorite for his abilities as an improviser and crafter of nuanced programs that explore the conversations between jazz and classical idioms, pianist Aaron Diehl returns to our stage in a new collaboration with the up-and-coming vocalist and librettist Joshua Banbury. Banbury’s operatic libretti have been presented by Washington National Opera, The American Lyric Theater, Fort Worth Opera, and The Coalition for African Americans in the Performing Arts.
In a program that honors ignored figures in the history of African American music of the twentieth century, Diehl and Banbury pair together the music of Billy Strayhorn and Julius Eastman. Strayhorn spent much of his career in the thrall of Duke Ellington as a composer and arranger, only later receiving due credit for writing hits like Take the A Train and Lush Life. Similarly invisible in his own lifetime, composer Julius Eastman’s music has only recently been revived thanks to the passionate advocacy of a number of contemporary musicians. An experimental innovator whose style blurred the lines of art, music, and theatre, the ongoing Eastman revival shows the powerful endurance of art and expression on the margins.
Aaron Diehl is the 2011 American Pianists Awards winner.