CD Spotlight: Bach to Black, Vol. 2 by Rochelle Sennet
In 2021, Rochelle Sennet released Bach to Black, interweaving piano works of Johann Sebastian Bach and Black composers. At the time, Dr. Sennet said, "Bach to Black represents my strong interest in performing repertoire by Black composers in combination with works of J.S. Bach. The suites included on this recording represent beauty, excellence, contrast, celebration of dance style, and dialogue.”
Two years down the line the dance and dialogue are extended, as she revisits the idea, giving us Bach to Black, Vol. 2. This time around, she has added Black women to the mix: Florence Price, Montague Ring, and Joyce Solomon Moorman, along with Ulysses Kay, Harry Burleigh, and Rochester’s George Walker, are all blended with Bach’s Partitas. The result is a satisfying combination of the old and the new, which seamlessly flows together with the beauty of Dr. Sennet’s playing.
Dr. Sennet is the inaugural Associate Dean for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion for the College of Fine and Applied Arts at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where she also serves as Associate Professor of Piano in the School of Music. Bach to Black, Vol. 2 is a perfect extension of her life’s work, and a worthy successor to her first CD.