From April 16-30, 2021, Carnegie Hall presents Voices of Hope, an online festival that examines the resilience of artists, exploring works that they felt compelled to create despite—and often because of—appalling circumstances and human tragedy. Over the two weeks, Carnegie Hall’s first-ever digital festival explores this theme through more than 100 events including digital programming presented by Carnegie Hall and more than 40 leading cultural and academic institutions across New York City and beyond.
Anchoring Voices of Hope will be free streamed musical performances presented nightly by Carnegie Hall over the two weeks, ranging from orchestral and chamber works to folk and jazz. The festival line-up will include performances by Rhiannon Giddens and Francesco Turrisi, Magos Herrera and Brooklyn Rider, Jerusalem Quartet, Kinan Azmeh Cityband, Kronos Quartet, Ute Lemper, Jason Moran, Samora Pinderhughes, Jordi Savall, Somi, Third Coast Percussion / Movement Art Is, Davóne Tines and Jennifer Koh, as well as the Boston Symphony Orchestra, National Symphony Orchestra, and more.
These festival performances will feature music that inspires change and lifts the human spirit, highlighting how artists have used their creativity to connect with others, helping them to make sense of the world around them. Programs will show how artists have explored themes of war and conflict under oppressive regimes; the Holocaust; pressing social justice issues including systemic racism and police brutality; as well as the COVID-19 pandemic.
Complementing Carnegie Hall’s evening line-up of musical performances, each afternoon, the Hall will stream a curated selection of free documentaries and filmed performances (also available for on-demand viewing via carnegiehall.org/voicesofhope through May 31), further exploring how the arts have been used as a tool for activism, resistance, and solidarity.
In addition, through programs created by the Weill Music Institute—Carnegie Hall’s education and social impact arm—songwriters of all ages from across the US have been invited to explore the Voices of Hope theme, creating new music to empower themselves and their communities in response to the world around them. A selection of more than 20 of their songs will be featured during the festival in a special online presentation, In Response, streamed on Wednesday evening, April 28 as part of the Learn with Carnegie Hall series.
Online and in-person programming created by more than 40 prestigious partner organizations will further expand the scope of Voices of Hope over the two weeks with 60+ events ranging from exhibitions and dance/theater performances to talks and film screenings considering humankind’s capacity for optimism, courage, and strength in the face of the unimaginable.
“With our Voices of Hope festival, we have set out to create a special journey, inviting audiences to explore the inspiring role that artists have played in some of the darkest chapters of our shared history—capturing stories or a moment in time and expressing hope, courage, and resistance,” said Clive Gillinson, Carnegie Hall’s Executive and Artistic Director.
“The festival also reflects on the world today, and how, during the global pandemic, we continue to turn to the arts and artists to provide us with the inspiration and resilience we so desperately need.”
Originally scheduled to feature live, in-person performances from March through May 2021, Voices of Hope was re-envisioned as an online festival after Carnegie Hall was forced to close its doors for an extended period due to COVID-19. Since April 2020, the Hall has partnered with major musical artists to produce a range of new original streamed programming to stay connected with audiences as the Hall works toward welcoming audiences back for live music-making in fall 2021.
All Voices of Hope programming presented by Carnegie Hall along with most festival partner events will be offered for free. Carnegie Hall programming will stream on carnegiehall.org/voicesofhope as well as on the Hall’s Facebook and YouTube pages, and will be available for on-demand viewing through May 31, 2021.