Philadelphia Artists Up for Classical, Jazz, and Musical Theater Grammy Awards!

Jan 26, 2018

Philadelphians have a lot of cheering to do these days, and not just about the Eagles—although we do love to do that! Nine artists from the area are nominated for 2018 Grammy Awards, or are named in connection with them. Here’s a rundown to get you ready for the ceremony.  Most of the awards will be given out during a live stream broadcast Sunday afternoon between 3 pm and 6 pm.  The rest are reserved for the CBS telecast at 7:30 pm.

CLASSICAL:

Instrumental
Two Philadelphia composers are competing for Best Contemporary Classical Composition. Jennifer Higdon’s Viola Concerto is nominated. The recording on which it appears, Higdon: All Things Majestic, Viola Concerto & Oboe Concert, is also up for Best Classical Compendium.  

The soloist in the viola concerto is another Philadelphian, Curtis Institute of Music President, Roberto Diaz. More on Higdon’s upbeat and celebratory viola concerto.

Curtis professor Richard Danielpour’s Songs of Solitude, is also nominated for Best Contemporary Classical Composition. The album on which it appears, Songs of Solitude & War Songs, is also up for Best Engineered Classical Album. 

Choral 
Conductor Donald Nally and his Philadelphia-based ensemble The Crossing are up for Best Choral Performance with Gavin Bryars:  The Fifth Century, a collaboration with the PRISM saxophone quartet. Listen to the trailer:

Concerts by the innovative chamber choir dedicated to new music are broadcast periodically on WRTI 90.1. Listen this Sunday at 5 pm to hear The Crossing’s concert,  “The National Anthems.”

And Other Connections
Other Philadelphia connections in the classical Grammy nominations include  artists produced by David Frost, who is up for Producer of the Year. His credits include Philadelphia Orchestra Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin’s DVD of Verdi: Otello with the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra & Chorus, and Curtis professor, pianist Jonathan Biss’s recording of Beethoven Piano Sonatas, Vol. 6.
 
JAZZ:

Philadelphia native Christian McBride and his Big Band’s album Bringing It is nominated for Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album. More on Christian McBride.

Joey DeFrancesco and The People’s album Project Freedom is up for Best Instrumental Album.
Watch behind the scenes!

MUSICAL THEATER:

Ardmore native Benj Pasek, a graduate of Friends Central School, and songwriting partner Justin Paul, are up for Best Musical Theater Album for Broadway hit Dear Evan Hanson. The pair has just been nominated for a 2018 Academy Award for the song, "This is Me" from The Greatest Showman. Meet Benj and Justin here.