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October 06, 2023

Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra announces free Sphinx Series for 2023–24 season  

INDIANAPOLIS—The Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra (ISO) continues its partnership with the Sphinx Organization to present four free concerts during the 2023–24 season.

Working with the Detroit-based Sphinx Organization, a national nonprofit dedicated to developing young Black and Latinx classical musicians, the collaboration brings Sphinx artists and ISO musicians together for an annual series of chamber and orchestral music at locations throughout Indianapolis. The project is made possible through the generous support of title sponsor Eli Lilly and Company Foundation, along with premier sponsors Honda, Pacers Sports & Entertainment, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

The 2023–24 Sphinx Series presented by the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra includes the following performances: 

7:00 p.m., October 18, 2023 
Madam Walker Legacy Center, Indianapolis 

The first Sphinx Series concert of the season will be held at the Madam Walker Theater in Indianapolis. Registration is required for this free event. Walk-ups will be allowed pending capacity. 

Four talented Sphinx fellows join the strings and percussion of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, led by ISO Assistant Conductor Su-Han Yang, at the historic Madam Walker Theater.  The program features the Sphinx musicians as soloists in music from the Baroque to today. Join us to experience the masterful artistry of the Sphinx musicians along with your Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra. Musicians include Esme Arias-Kim, violin; Alexandra Switala, violin; Dillon Scott, viola; and Brandon Leonard, cello. 


Vitali: Ciaccona
Clarice Assad: Dreamscapes
Roberto Sierra: Viola Concerto, Movements 3 and 4
Bragato: Graciela Y Buenos Aires
Michael Abels: Delights and Dances 


7:00 p.m., January 17, 2024 
Arts for Lawrence’s Theater at the Fort, Lawrence 

The second Sphinx concert of the season will be held at Arts for Lawrence’s Theater at the Fort. Registration is required for this free event. The performance sees the return of Sphinx artists and fan favorites by Juan Pablo Jofre playing the bandoneón, Thomas Mesa performing on cello, and a violinist from the ISO.

Juan Pablo Jofre: Tangodromo 

JP Jofre: Como el Agua  

JP Jofre: Contrabando 

JP Jofre: Sweet Dreams  

JP Jofre: Transcendence 

JP Jofre: Before the Curtains  

JP Jofre: Metamorphosis 

Astor Piazzolla: Libertango 


6:00 p.m., February 27, 2024 
Central Library, Clowes Auditorium, Indianapolis 

Sphinx violinist Melissa White returns to Indianapolis following a series of stunning performances at Sphinx-ISO collaborations during the past two years. Join the ISO for this special concert at the Central Library in downtown Indianapolis, also featuring pianist Pallavi Mahidhara and two musicians from the ISO. Registration is required for this free event.


Samuel Coleridge Taylor: African Dances 
Samuel Coleridge Taylor: Piano Trio in E minor 10
Dvořák: Piano Quintet No. 2 in E-flat Major, Op. 87 34 

7:00 p.m., April 12, 2024 
Hilbert Circle Theatre, Indianapolis 

The 2023–24 Sphinx season culminates in this performance at Hilbert Circle Theatre with Sphinx conductor Anthony Parnther leading the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra for an unforgettable evening. Registration is required for this free event, which highlights Sphinx violinist Nijoma Grevious performing Dvořák’s Violin Concerto in A minor.

Samuel Coleridge Taylor: Ballade in A minor, Op. 33
Dvořák: Violin Concerto in A minor, Op. 53
William Grant Still: Symphony No. 1 (Afro-American) 


Through the ISO’s Unheard Voices initiative, the orchestra celebrates contemporary and historical composers whose works are often underrepresented in orchestras today. The Sphinx program, along with selected works throughout the 2023–24 IU Health Plans Classical Series, features composers who authentically represent their unique culture, exploring the human condition through the universal language of music.

About the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra  
The Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, at home and thriving in the heart of Indianapolis, offers an exceptional artistic and musical experience. The orchestra is open to all and dedicated to creating an inclusive and innovative experiential environment that is inspiring, educational, and welcoming. The ISO celebrates historically beloved performances while engaging audiences by introducing new voices through programming including the IU Health Plans Classical Series, the Printing Partners Pops Series, the holiday traditions of AES Indiana Yuletide Celebration and the popular Film Series presented by Bank of America. For more information, visit 

About the Sphinx Organization 
The Sphinx Organization is the social justice organization dedicated to transforming lives through the power of diversity in the arts. Sphinx’s four program areas – Education & Access, Artist Development, Performing Artists, and Arts Leadership – form a pipeline that develops and supports diversity and inclusion in classical music at every level: music education, artists performing on stage, the repertoire and programing being performed, the communities represented in audiences, and the artistic and administrative leadership within the field.  

Sphinx was founded in 1997 by Aaron P. Dworkin with the goal of addressing the underrepresentation of people of color in classical music. The name Sphinx, inspired by the mythical creature and legendary statue, reflects the power, wisdom and persistence that characterize Sphinx’s participants, as well as the enigmatic and interpretive nature of music and art.   

Now led by President and Artistic Director Afa S. Dworkin, Sphinx programs reach more than 100,000 as well as live and broadcast audiences of more than two million annually. Read more about Sphinx’s programs.