Apr 21, 2023
83: An Erasure of Black Excellence
The biographical film, Chevalier, is based on the life of Joseph Bologne, Chevalier de Saint-Georges – a Black, French composer and violinist of the 1700s. As the movie unfolds, there’s an intriguing line spoken by Chevalier, in which the lead character, played by actor Kelvin Harrison Jr., states, “I realized… the more I excelled, the less I was alone.” With those resounding words, combined with a riveting film score, an interesting takeaway begins to emerge: Excellence is the best deterrent to racism. Join us as host Eddie Robinson chats unguarded with the film’s composer, Kris Bowers. The Emmy Award-winning musician – whose work includes the score to the Oscar-winning film, Green Book; the biographical sports movie, King Richard; and Netflix hit dramas, When They See Us, and Bridgerton – offers up a candid conversation centered around the reasons why Chevalier and the lives of so many other persons of color, along with their contributions to art and culture, are left out of the larger historical narrative. Bowers also reveals to I SEE U how he felt his career was being ‘categorized’ and limited by the kinds of projects presented to him. An accomplished photographer and filmmaker himself, he also shares deep introspection surrounding his Oscar-nominated short film, A Concerto Is a Conversation, which received critical acclaim for its portrayal of race in America, as the story of the relationship with his grandfather is pieced together through music.