RPO premiering work by Douglas Lowry

07:01 AM, Feb 03, 2013

Pianist Terrence Wilson. Fadil Berisha/

Pianist Terrence Wilson will join the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra Thursday and Saturday to perform Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue.

Also on the RPO’s Black History Month program will be the world premiere of The Freedom Zephyr, an ode to the Underground Railroad composed by Doug Lowry, dean of Eastman School of Music.

The 14-minute piece uses excerpts from one of Frederick Douglass’ speeches, a poem by Walt Whitman, an essay by Ralph Waldo Emerson and Lowry’s words. It will be narrated by Paul Burgett, vice president and dean at the University of Rochester, as well an Eastman professor.

Conducting will be Ward Stare, a native of Pittsford.

The concert is at 7:30 p.m. Thursday and 8 p.m. Saturday at Eastman Theatre, 60 Gibbs St. Tickets are $15 to $82. Go to rpo.org.