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We chose the name Harlem Renaissance Orchestra because it is the residence and birth place of several of our members. The word renaissance means rebirth or revival and our mission is to revive the music of the Big Band Era and to preserve this music in its living form by giving recognition to some of its leading figures: Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Pops Louie Armstrong, Benny Goodman, Lucky Millinder, Earl Fatha Hines, Billy Eckstine, Lionel Hampton and many others. The Orchestra's goal is to reestablish Harlem as the Big Band Mecca of the world.
Over the past two decades, HRO has performed in some of the most prestigious Concert Halls, Jazz Festivals and in many other events. Including Lincoln Center/Mid-Summer Night Swing,Town Hall, The Apollo Theater, Cape May Jazz Festival, JVC Jazz Festival, The Philadelphia Arts Center,The Westchester Jazz Festival, The infamous Copacabana, Great Jazz on the Great Hill presented by Jazz Mobile Inc.,Plaza Hotel and the Rainbow Room. We have also appeared in various films and videos including, an HBO Special on the life of Swing Dance innovator Frankie Manning. We did a music special on the Discovery Channel entitled,"Drop Me Off In Harlem," that was also shown on channel Thirteen PBS(WNET). One of our performances was video taped on WDR/ARD (Germany) Good Life T.V., and we were filmed by Fuji Television Network Inc. (Japan). HRO has been recogized and featured in a plethors of publications and media for our contributions to the arts. The following is a sample of various media who have commended the HRO: United Nations Jazz Society Publication, the Amsterdam News, New Beginnings Magazine, the NY Daily News, Swing Live Magazine, the NY Times, the New York Press and the Village Voice. HRO is dedicated to keeping the spirit of Big Band Swing Music alive and thriving. Whether in a live performance or educating the next generation of musicians, we will remain a guardian and proponent of a great musical tradition.