Clinton to perform with Ark. symphony

March 14, 2003 at 3:32 PM
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LITTLE ROCK, Ark., March 14 (UPI) -- The fifth symphony by Beethoven it isn't.

But, former President Bill Clinton, in between apperances as a political commentator for the CBS News program 60 Minutes, is preparing to take the stage at the Robinson Center Music Hall in Little Rock in the role of quest narrator for an Arkansas Symphony Orchestra's concert later this month.

In his debut-performance, Clinton will read from the speeches of his predecessor Abraham Lincoln to the orchestra's rendition of Aaron Copland's Lincoln Portrait. The concert is scheduled on March 25 in Little Rock.

William Vickery, executive director of the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra, said Clinton will also read from the "I have a dream" speech from civil rights activist Martin Luther King during the orchestra's performance of Alexander Miller's Let Freedom Ring.

"He is a tremendous personality," Vickery told United Press International Friday. "I think its very courageous for the former president to stand in front of a expected sell-out and read these speeches.

"This is truely a collaborative effort. There are segments that regardless of who you are have to be read in a certain amount of time."

The one-time concert will raise money for the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra and the William J. Clinton Presidential Foundation. "This is all about downtown and the (Clinton) library, which hasn't been completed," Vickery told UPI. "It is going to be a wonderful addition to the city's cultural corridor."

The tickets sell for between $100 and $125. "It isn't sold out yet," he said, but we expect a sell out for the concert later this month at the music hall in downtown Little Rock.

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