Former Governor Deval Patrick will join the Wellesley Symphony Orchestra (WSO) on Sunday, February 11, for an all-American program celebrating President’s Day and Black History Month. He will narrate Aaron Copland’s stirring "Lincoln Portrait," commissioned by Andre Kastelanetz during the difficult early days of Wold War II. Also on the program are Gershwin’s "An American in Paris," Bernstein’s "Candide" overture, and "Punto" and "Mejorana y Socavon" from "Danzas de Panama" by the African American composer William Grant Still. Maestro Max Hobart conducts, and board president Leslie Holmes will give a pre-concert talk at 2:15.
Originally from the South Side of Chicago, Deval Patrick came to Massachusetts at 14, when he was awarded a scholarship to Milton Academy through the Boston-based organization A Better Chance. After Harvard College and Harvard Law School, he clerked for a federal appellate judge and then launched a career as an attorney and business executive, becoming partner at two Boston law firms and a senior executive at Texaco and Coca-Cola. In 1994, President Clinton appointed Patrick to the nation’s top civil rights post, Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights. In 2006, in his first bid for public office, he became the state’s first African-American governor. In his two terms as Governor, Patrick oversaw the expansion of affordable health care to more than 98 percent of state residents, launched initiatives stimulating clean energy and biotechnology, won a national Race to the Top grant, and steered the state out of recession to a 25-year high in employment. Patrick currently serves as a Managing Director of Bain Capital Double Impact, where he focuses on investments that deliver both a competitive financial return and significant positive social impact. He is a Rockefeller Fellow, a Crown Fellow of the Aspen Institute, and the author of two books, "A Reason to Believe: Lessons from an Improbable Life" and "Faith in the Dream: A Call to the Nation to Reclaim American Values."
The concert is at MassBay Community College, 50 Oakland Street, at 3 p.m. Tickets for the concert are $25 for adults, $20 for seniors and students, and free for children 12 and under, and may be purchased at Wellesley Books on 82 Central Street, Walgreens on 266 Washington Street, Andrews Pharmacy on 324 Weston Road, online, and at the door. There is plenty of free parking at the college. Call (781-235-0515) or visit www.wellesleysymphony.org for further information.