This August, Dessa will return for another collaboration with the Minnesota Orchestra under the baton of Sarah Hicks, principal conductor of Live at Orchestra Hall.
The native Minnesotan singer, rapper and writer will perform three concerts of her original music arranged for orchestra by Grammy-nominated composer and arranger Andy Thompson. In these concerts, Dessa—who has earned a national reputation for crafting ambitious, multi-disciplinary live shows that move, entertain and surprise her audiences—will premiere new arrangements and a new monologue, and will be accompanied by six vocalists, a bass player and a percussionist, along with the full Orchestra.
The program will be performed at Orchestra Hall in downtown Minneapolis on Thursday, August 3, at 8 p.m., Friday, August 4, at 8 p.m., and Saturday, August 5, at 8 p.m., with ticket prices ranging from $35 to $89. The performance on August 4 will be broadcast live on Twin Cities PBS (TPT-2), and streamed live for free through the Orchestra’s website and social media channels. The broadcast will subsequently be released for on-demand viewing with a digital subscription to the Orchestra’s Digital Concert Hall.
Dessa has previously been featured in multiple sold-out performances with the Minnesota Orchestra in 2017, 2018 and 2019, all under the direction of conductor Sarah Hicks, and traveled with the Orchestra on its 2018 tour to South Africa as a correspondent for Classical Minnesota Public Radio. The 2019 concerts were recorded and released as a full-length, 17-track live-in-concert album—titled Sound the Bells—released on Doomtree Records. “It shouldn’t be surprising that a multidisciplinary talent like Dessa would conceive of such an ambitious, large-scale collaboration,” wrote Andrea Swensson of The Current upon the album’s release. “But listening to Sound the Bells, recorded live at Orchestra Hall earlier this year, it’s clear that by taking on challenges like this one, she’s pushed her artistry to new heights.”
These concerts will conclude Summer at Orchestra Hall, the Minnesota Orchestra’s annual summer festival. As part of the Orchestra’s summer programming, audiences are invited to come early to enjoy Sounds + Bites on Peavey Plaza, which includes a variety of dining options and free outdoor entertainment by local performers. Vocalist and performance artist Lady Midnight will play a 20-minute set alongside DJ Cassieopia and Lazerbeak in the Target Atrium at Orchestra Hall during intermission on Thursday, August 3, and as part of the live broadcast on Friday, August 4. Accompanied by a full band, Lady Midnight will perform live on Peavey Plaza prior to the concert on Saturday, August 5.