The Mann & The Philadelphia Orchestra Present Free In-Person Concert for Essential Workers
Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin and The Philadelphia Orchestra will take the stage in the TD Pavilion at the Mann on Saturday, May 15, to perform for something that’s been missing for more than a year: a live audience. The Philadelphia Orchestra and the Mann Center for the Performing Arts have partnered to present a free thank-you concert, Hail to the Heroes: A Concert of Gratitude, for the frontline responders, healthcare professionals, and all manner of essential workers who have done so much to keep the region safe and productive throughout the pandemic. The concert marks the Orchestra’s first performance in front of a live audience since March 7, 2020.
The concert on May 15 will begin at 7:30 p.m. Free tickets are available, beginning today at Ticketmaster, to frontline and essential workers such as healthcare and hospital staff, emergency responders, teachers, grocery store workers, Postal Service employees, and more. The Mann will be able to seat approximately 1,200 patrons in the TD Pavilion, according to the city’s social distancing requirements; no lawn seating or picnics will be permitted for health and safety reasons; and masks will be required. The concert will air at a later date on 6abc/WPVI-TV.
Under the direction of Yannick Nézet-Séguin, The Philadelphia Orchestra, which will be socially distanced on the Mann’s main stage, will perform uplifting and powerful works, including the first performance for a live audience of Valerie Coleman’s Seven O’Clock Shout, commissioned by the Orchestra during the pandemic to honor frontline workers. The concert will also feature the Theme from Rocky, James Weldon Johnson’s anthem “Lift Every Voice and Sing” with vocalist Laurin Talese, Florence Price’s Piano Concerto in One Movement with Michelle Cann, and Vivian Fung’sPrayer, also composed during the pandemic.
“There is simply nothing like performing for a live audience,” said Philadelphia Orchestra Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin. “To do so for the first time in over a year with the frontline workers of Philadelphia, who have worked so tirelessly and so bravely throughout the pandemic, makes this reunion that much more special. It is with great anticipation and tremendous gratitude that we present this musical gift to the heroes of our beloved city.”
“What an extraordinary evening this will be. Not only will it mark the return performance of our resident ensemble, our Fabulous Philadelphians, to their Philadelphia summer home in front of a live audience, but also the members of that audience will consist of so many who have helped our city and region survive the unimaginable year that we’ve all experienced,” said Catherine M. Cahill, president and CEO of the Mann. “To all who have played a role in caring for, educating, and providing for others throughout the pandemic, this concert is for you. We will be thrilled to welcome you to the Mann!”
Hail to the Heroes: A Concert of Gratitude is sponsored by Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Thomas Jefferson University and Jefferson Health, Main Line Health, Penn Medicine, and Temple Health, with additional support from the Snider Foundation.