DSO releases “Spirit of Detroit,” a collaborative video performance featuring orchestra musicians and participants from around the world

-Project is made possible by support from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

Detroit, (August 26, 2020) – In June, the Detroit Symphony Orchestra (DSO) welcomed musicians throughout Detroit and around the world to join Spirit of Detroit: A Symphony of the People, a virtual ensemble comprising individual parts recorded separately and combined into a whole. Today, the DSO published the complete performance online.

More than 193 musicians– including string, woodwind, brass, and percussion players, as well as choral musicians – sent in videos to create the complete ensemble. 56 DSO musicians also participated, as did incoming DSO Music Director Jader Bignamini, who conducted the virtual performance from his home in Italy. Chorus member Isabella Vesprini is featured opening and closing the piece. Vesprini has been playing with the DSO’s Civic Youth Ensembles since 2015.

Spirit of Detroit features a new adaptation of the central theme of Gustav Holst’s “Jupiter” from The Planets. This popular passage has served as the basis for several hymns and songs of unity, and now it has been arranged for orchestra and mixed choir with new lyrics by Meaghan Heinrich.

Spirit of Detroit is made possible by support from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.

About the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

Knight Foundation is a national foundation with strong local roots. We invest in journalism, in the arts, and in the success of cities where brothers John S. and James L. Knight once published newspapers. Our goal is to foster informed and engaged communities, which we believe are essential for a healthy democracy. For more, visit https://knightfoundation.org.

About the DSO

The most accessible orchestra on the planet, the acclaimed Detroit Symphony Orchestra is known for trailblazing performances, collaborations with the world’s foremost musical artists, and a deep connection to its city. As a community-supported orchestra, generous giving by individuals and institutions at all levels drives the continued success and growth of the organization. In January 2020, Italian conductor Jader Bignamini was named the DSO’s next music director to commence with the 2020-2021 season. Conductor Leonard Slatkin, who concluded a decade-long tenure at the helm in 2018, now serves as the DSO’s Music Director Laureate, endowed by the Kresge Foundation. Celebrated conductor, arranger, and trumpeter Jeff Tyzik is the orchestra’s Principal Pops Conductor, while the outstanding trumpeter and composer Terence Blanchard holds the Fred A. and Barbara M. Erb Jazz Creative Director Chair. Making its home at historic Orchestra Hall within the Max M. and Marjorie S. Fisher Music Center, the DSO offers a performance schedule that features Classical, PNC Pops, Paradise Jazz, and Young People’s Family Concert series. One of the world’s most acoustically perfect concert halls, Orchestra Hall celebrates its centennial in 2019-2020. In addition, the DSO presents the William Davidson Neighborhood Concert Series in eight metro area venues, as well as a robust schedule of eclectic multi-genre performances in its mid-size venue The Cube, constructed and curated with support from Peter D. & Julie F. Cummings. A dedication to broadcast innovation began in 1922, when the DSO became the first orchestra in the world to present a radio broadcast and continues today with the free Live from Orchestra Hall webcast series, which also reaches tens of thousands of children with the Classroom Edition expansion. With growing attendance and unwavering philanthropic support from the people of Detroit, the DSO actively pursues a mission to embrace and inspire individuals, families, and communities through unsurpassed musical experiences.