Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, Music Hall chosen for free world premiere concert

The Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and Cincinnati Music Hall are set to co-star in a large-scale recording of composer Justin Morell’s jazz trumpet concerto “All Without Words.”

The Boundless Arts Foundation selected the CSO and its home venue to host the free concert – Wednesday, Sept. 20, at 7:30 p.m.

Morell – an associate professor of musical composition at Lebanon Valley College in Annville, Pa. – composed the work in 2021 as a tribute to his nonverbal autistic son, Loren Morell. The inspiration for the album came from Loren’s spontaneous vocalizations, Loren’s father said. Those sounds eventually evolved into a piece for a solo trumpet, orchestra, rhythm section and chorus.

An outstanding view of Music Hall in Cincinnati's Over-the-Rhine neighborhood. (Casey Weldon)
Music Hall

Justin Morell described the music as being born of intense emotion – sometimes painful and sometimes joyful – and of hope for a future where “all people are loved and respected for their humanity.”

“What began as a mission to celebrate neurodiversity became an opportunity for me to connect with my son and hear his voice in a way I had not before,” he said.

The CSO’s upcoming live presentation of “All Without Words” will also include artists who appear on the original album. They include Grammy Award-winning trumpeter John DaversaTal Cohen on piano, and David Chiverton on drums. Other performers include singers and instrumentalists from the University of Miami’s Frost School of Music in Coral Gables, Fla.

The concert at Music Hall will also serve as a world premiere of an expanded production of “All Without Words” that features more than just sound. There will also be elements of staging, light, color and multiple artistic disciplines, including dancing. Artists from the organization The Art of Autism have created work designed to represent the music. Those pieces will be on display at Music Hall.

The plan is to record the audience experience during the concert, including foyer activations and the musical performance inside Springer Auditorium. The project team will convert the footage into a feature-length video. 

Music Director Louis Langrée conducting the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra
Music Director Louis Langrée conducting the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra

Tickets to “All Without Words Live” show at Music Hall are free and available now. Seating is general admission and organizers encouraged advance registration., 513-381-3300, Music Hall box office

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