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Paint Factory


Darin Atwater's Black Metropolis

with The Philadelphia Orchestra & Chill Moody
TD Pavilion
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Supported By:

The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage


All Ages


Darin Atwater, composer
Jonathan Taylor Rush, conductor
The Philadelphia Orchestra
Chill Moody, rapper
Soulful Symphony Choir
Soulful Symphony Rhythm Section
Wendel Patrick, DJ


Artists and repertoire are subject to change.

Add to calendar 2023-07-19 20:00:00 2023-07-19 20:00:00 Paint Factory The Mann Center the Mann. America/New_York public

In celebration of hip-hop’s 50th anniversary, The Philadelphia Orchestra and West Philadelphia rapper Chill Moody will perform Darin Atwater's Black Metropolis: Improvisations on Paint Factory. This one-of-a-kind composition explores the pillars of hip-hop and Black culture through an architecture of sound. In addition to the great Philadelphia Orchestra, this evening will also feature rappers, DJs, and choirs. Join us for this free concert debuting at the TD Pavilion at the Mann on July 19!


Black Metropolis looks at the way in which culture is constructed through music. It creates a musical language connected to the social movements and sonic atmosphere of our time. Interweaving a dramatic narrative - from scenes of modern urban culture to red-as-fire-no-nonsense sermonizing from a prophetic protagonist - the tragic and heroic testify in ecstatic celebration of Black Culture.


The original Paint Factory first premiered in 2007 with Atwater’s Soulful Symphony, a 75-member orchestra predominantly featuring people of color. While many of the themes will remain the same in this newly adapted iteration, Black Metropolis: Improvisations on Paint Factory is an entirely new work in partnership with the Mann’s Artist-in-Residence Chill Moody.


This project is supported by The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage.  

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Click here to register for free tickets. Registration is required for entry. Seating is general admission and is on a first-come, first-served basis. Please note: The Mann's Ticket Office closes at 4PM on Wednesday, July 19.


About the Artists


Darin Atwater is a critically acclaimed composer, conductor, pianist, producer, entrepreneur, educator, and arts advocate. Twenty years ago, he founded the Soulful Symphony, a Maryland-based symphony orchestra featuring predominantly African American and Latino members. Atwater has performed with the National Symphony Orchestra, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Dallas Symphony Orchestra, Columbus Symphony Orchestra, and more. In 2018, Atwater was commissioned by the Mann Center and The Philadelphia Orchestra to compose South Side, Symphonic Dances, an adaptation of West Side Story for the Leonard Bernstein Centennial.


Chill Moody is a hip-hop artist, entrepreneur, and activist based in Philadelphia. He was named 'Best Rapper' by Philadelphia Magazine and is the official Philadelphia Music Ambassador as named by City Council. Chill Moody is the Mann’s first-ever Community Artist-in-Residence. In this role, Moody serves as a guest and contributor to many of the organization’s education programs, sharing his style, creative spirit, and industry experiences directly with Philadelphia’s youth. You can see him throughout the Mann’s 2023 Season in productions such as Black Metropolis: Improvisations on Paint Factory and Downstage @ the Mann, a series also exploring the 50th anniversary of hip-hop. 


Bag Policy


Since this performance is a part of the Mann's Picnic Series, the bag policy does not apply. However, all blankets, chairs, bags, or other hand-carried items permitted into the venue are subject to search.


Digital Program


We're going paperless! For a copy of the season's touchless and environmentally-friendly program, text PROGRAM to (215) 544-2803. Instructions here.

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Picnics are permitted for this performance as a part of our Summer Picnic Series.

If you are 21 years of age or older and plan to consume alcohol at the concert, please be prepared to present proper I.D.


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Small blankets are permitted for all shows, but we do ask that you be mindful of your neighbors on the lawn. 

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No photography is permitted at this performance.