“A lesser-known part of Music Hall’s history will be celebrated Friday at the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra’s annual Classical Roots concert,” reads an unsigned Friday (4/20) article in the Cincinnati Enquirer (Ohio). The Music Hall concert “will pay tribute to legendary African-American musicians who graced the stages of Springer Auditorium and the famed Graystone Ballroom, which welcomed African-Americans during the period when the Music Hall Ballroom hosted segregated events…. Cincinnati Pops conductor John Morris Russell, who helped to found Classical Roots … leads this year’s program…. The Greystone operated between 1937 and 1956…. It hosted such legendary artists as Billie Holiday, Cab Calloway, Sarah Vaughan, Fats Domino and Duke Ellington…. On the nights the ballroom was open for white audiences, it was called the Topper Club. The soloists for Friday’s concert are soprano and Kentucky native Angelique Clay; Michael Preacely, who recently was on stage at Music Hall during the Cincinnati Pops’ Cirque de la Symphonie performances in March; and the multi-talented Tatiana ‘LadyMay’ Mayfield, who performed as part of the Pops’ celebrated ‘I’m Every Woman’ program in 2016.”

Posted April 24, 2018