The Historic New Orleans Collection will present the 14th annual Bill Russell Lecture Thursday, April 11, at the Williams Research Center, 410 Chartres St. OperaCréole, a local ensemble dedicated to preserving the influence of Creoles of color in opera, will perform scenes from Scott Joplin’s “Treemonisha.” Influenced by songs sung by African Americans on North Louisiana farms, Joplin sought to emulate classic European opera while introducing a uniquely American sound. Walter Harris Jr. will serve as narrator. Wilfred Delphin and Samuel Liégeon, the current young-artist-in-residence at St. Louis Cathedral, will serve as pianists.
Admission for this event is $10 and seating is limited. Reservations are encouraged and may be made by calling (504) 523-4662 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Reservations will be held 10 minutes prior to the start of the program. At that time, any unclaimed seats will be released to the public.
About the Bill Russell Lecture
The annual Bill Russell Lecture honors the noted jazz historian, born Russell William Wagner (1905–1992), and is dedicated to New Orleans jazz. Russell’s research focused on traditional New Orleans–style jazz and related musical forms such as brass band, ragtime and gospel music. He amassed an extensive collection of memorabilia, including musical instruments, records, piano rolls, sheet music, photographs, books and periodicals. These materials trace the development of jazz in New Orleans and follow the movement of musicians to New York, Chicago, California and beyond.
The William Russell Jazz Collection—permanently housed at the Williams Research Center—encompasses Russell’s research, audiotapes, programs, posters, correspondence, films, business cards, notes, clippings and scrapbooks. The Russell Collection is available to the public at the Williams Research Center, located at 410 Chartres St. and open Tuesday–Saturday, 9:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m.