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Unorchestrated is a podcast of Conversation, Music, Musicians and the Communities they serve produced by the Akron Symphony Orchestra. The podcast is co-hosted by Music Director Christopher Wilkins and Director of Marketing Thomas Moore.

Jan 28, 2021

In Episode 11 of Unorchestrated, Christopher and Tom talk with poet Rita Dove about Billy Waters, a marginalized street musician of African descent who, despite all odds, rose to great prominence in 19th century London, with readings from her book, Sonata Mulattica.

This is the 11th episode in our 14-part series, Sonata Mulattica with Rita Dove.

The episode closes with an excerpt from Clint Needham's Sounds of Akron, which incorporates sounds sent in by scores of Akron residents, and a performance of Amazing Grace by Celeste Hicks, a member of the Gospel Meets Symphony Choir. The Akron Symphony’s Sounds of Akron concert took place on April 16, 2016.

Rita Dove is a Pulitzer Prize winner, former U.S. Poet Laureate, and the only poet honored with both the National Humanities Medal and the National Medal of Arts. An Akron native, she is currently Commonwealth Professor of English at the University of Virginia.

(Photo courtesy of W.W. Norton & Company)