Artist Statement

This portion of the Séance Series brings together the immortal Bessie Smith with the beloved Beethoven.  Blues singer, intrepid entertainer, wild-party-giver, powerful, original, and deeply moving performer; Bessie Smith still maintains a hold over our souls and psyches: through her voice and her lyrics, she still has the power to incite laughter and tears from listeners far removed from the post civil war, Jim Crow, blues world of the black performers of the 1920’s and 30’s. I wanted to pair her with the premier icon of classical music; the epitome of Euro-centric, high-brow, creative “genius:” Ludwig Van Beethoven.