The history of America is indelibly linked to the movement of people. Some were brought here not of their own free will, and their perseverance and resilience transformed the nation. Others came here—or moved within the borders of this country—because they sought a new life, free from poverty, discrimination, and persecution. The many contributions—cultural, social, and political—of these migrations, and the people who helped to build this country and what it means to be American, are honored in Carnegie Hall’s festival Migrations: The Making of America.

In this festival, Carnegie Hall examines the musical legacies of three migrations: the crossings from Scotland and Ireland during the 18th and 19th centuries, the immigration of Jews from Russia and Eastern Europe between 1881 and the National Origins Act of 1924, and the Great Migration—the exodus of African Americans from the South to the industrialized cities of the Northeast, Midwest, and West from 1917 into the 1970s. The festival will include performances of bluegrass, old-time, klezmer, Yiddish musical theater, blues, jazz, and more.

Beyond Carnegie Hall, public programming, performances, exhibitions, and events at more than 75 festival partner organizations will highlight other aspects of these and the many other migrations, including those from Italy, Latin America, the Caribbean, and Asia, as well as the internal migration of Native Americans, that have contributed to American culture today. Our music—and our history—is enriched by the diversity of cultures, traditions, and people of this nation.

Explore Migrations: The Making of America

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