Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration Focuses on Reconciliation as ‘Expressed in Music,’ Thursday, Feb. 8

RI Philharmonic Orchestra & Music School Executive Director to speak

During an event that explores expressions of reconciliation through music, David Beauchesne, Executive Director of the RI Philharmonic & Music School, will be the main speaker. The event is on Feb. 8 (Thursday) at 7pm at the newly re-opened Cathedral of St. John, 271 North Main Street, Providence.

Hosted by the Center for Reconciliation (CFR), the program includes performances by students from the RI Philharmonic Music School, the Ruach Singers and the Providence Gay Men’s Chorus.

“Across many human conflicts and struggles for civil rights, music has served to signal protest, preserve dignity and promote reconciliation and unity. In our own lives, most of us can think of a moment where music helped reconcile us to our deepest emotions, our sense of self, our own cultural heritage. We can also likely think of times where it connected us with the emotions, experiences and culture of someone else. I am honored, along with students from the RI Philharmonic Music School, to be a part of this series on the practice of reconciliation, and to share in the re-opening of Cathedral of St. John as the headquarters of the CFR.”

David Beauchesne, Executive Director, RI Philharmonic Orchestra & Music School

This will mark the second of three events based on the teachings of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and the second public event at the Cathedral since its closure in 2012. The third event in this series explores Reconciliation as Expressed in the Arts. It will be March 8 (Thursday) at 7:00pm.

The Center for Reconciliation (CFR) is a nonprofit organization that fosters interracial reconciliation through a wide range of events and programs designed to connect us to our past so we can together build a more just and equitable future. The goal of each event or program is to engender dialogue. The programs and events are designed to inform and inspire participants to become ambassadors of reconciliation. Based in the Cathedral of St. John in Providence, the work of the CFR grows out of the commitment of the Episcopal Church to address its role in slavery and the slave trade and the ways the Church both participated in and benefited from slavery. It is essential that we acknowledge this history and understand its impact in the ongoing process of reconciliation. And, given the pivotal role that Rhode Island played in the slave trade, ours is a unique opportunity to provide leadership in this process – not to dwell on the past but to build on our history as a pathway to the future.

For more information about the Center for Reconciliation visit, email, or call 401-274-4500 x231.

The Rhode Island Philharmonic Orchestra & Music School is the largest fully integrated orchestra and music school in the United States. Its mission is to enrich and transform Rhode Island and Southern New England through great music performance and education. The Rhode Island Philharmonic Orchestra & Music School strives to be the national model for the 21st-century symphony orchestra, providing performances and education programs that are of exceptional quality, and are relevant and accessible. The Philharmonic’s 73rd season offers eight TACO Classical concerts and four Amica Rush Hour concerts. A search is in progress for the Philharmonic’s new music director, following Larry Rachleff’s retirement in 2017.

During the past four seasons, audiences for the Orchestra’s TACO Classical concerts and Amica Rush Hour series have increased by 42 percent. Throughout the same period, the Philharmonic Music School, which encourages lifelong engagement with music through comprehensive music education and community partnership programs taught by Orchestra members and other faculty, has seen its enrollment grow by 39 percent, and the Music School’s education and engagement programs have doubled, serving more than 20,000 children annually. In addition, the Orchestra and Music School’s combined community impact has grown exponentially, and it has become the largest symphony orchestra in the nation to devote more than 50 percent of its programmatic budget to music education and engagement.

Music School alumni include principal players in the nation’s finest orchestras, skilled music educators, esteemed composers and conductors, CEOs, doctors, lawyers, mathematicians, academicians and a former Miss Universe. As one of the largest community music schools in the nation, it has one of finest music education facilities in the Northeast–the Carter Center for Music Education and Performance in East Providence–in addition to branches in East Greenwich and Westerly.

For more information visit, and for tickets,, or 401-248-7000.