UCR Orchestra (UCR/Delmy Castillo)
February 23, 2023

UCR Orchestra honors Black History Month with concerts this weekend 

Performances also include Pedro Rubio, a Spanish virtuoso clarinetist currently conducting research at UCR

Author: Sandra Baltazar Martínez
February 23, 2023

Over the weekend UC Riverside Orchestra will honor the life and history of Black Americans with a special performance of “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” the song also known as the Black National Anthem.

The concerts, taking place Feb. 25-26, feature “Of Our New Day Begun” by composer Omar Thomas, who writes for both jazz and classical ensembles. Also featured is special guest soloist Pedro Rubio, a Spanish virtuoso clarinetist visiting UCR for the year.

Concerts are at University Theatre and are open to the public. Tickets are $10. 

“Omar Thomas used ‘Lift Every Voice and Sing’ in tribute to the Charleston churchgoers who were massacred by a white supremacist in 2015,” said Ruth Charloff, UCR Orchestra conductor.  “Anchored by that song, his powerful piece expresses sorrow, determination, and uplift.”    

Rubio will perform the virtuosic Concerto No. 2 by Weber. He is internationally known as a clarinetist and bass clarinetist who teaches at the Turina Conservatory in Madrid as well as the Royal Conservatory of Madrid. He often performs in a duo with his wife, the well-known concert pianist Ana Benavides, who is also spending the year researching at UCR’s Center for Iberian and Latin American Music.

“Every year we offer these public concerts because we want our community to experience music across centuries, cultures, and languages,” Charloff said. “The public will get to hear not only Omar Thomas’s piece and our guest artist’s fabulous performance, but also a masterpiece by Brahms, Variations on a Theme by Haydn, and music by William Grant Still and Linda Robbins Coleman. We’re always excited to perform, and this program is particularly rich. We hope the Inland Empire and beyond joins us.”


Saturday, Feb. 25 at 8 p.m.

Sunday, Feb. 26 at 3 p.m.


$10 General

$8 Students/seniors

$6 Child

Additional tickets may be available at the door on night of performance. Phone orders and customer service (Monday-Friday, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.): (909) 227-4788 or email: isabele@ucr.edu 


FREE PARKING is available in nearby Lot 6. Reserve parking for this event through the ParkMobile website.

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Details: events.ucr.edu

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