In 2014, Nas performed his classic 1994 debut album Illmatic in its entirety with the National Symphony Orchestra at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. It was a memorable performance that only a few hundred people were able to see. But Nas fans will be now able to watch it on television.
PBS and Mass Appeal have teamed Up to present the concert film, Great Performances – Nas Live From the Kennedy Center: Classical Hip-Hop. The project will feature behind-the-scenes footage the Queens legend preparing for his classical performance with the NSO. Nas also fers his thoughts on the making the album and how it is still revered 20 years later after its release.
“It’s crazy, you know, I wrote this in the projects in New York City," said Nas about the album. "Here we are in the capital America, Washington, DC, and, you know, a bunch white people with strings and all that, playing this album, and they feeling it."
For Steven Reineke, the National Symphony Orchestra Principal Pops Conductor, it's a new musical experience to orchestrate with his musicians. “This was the first time me, as a classical orchestra conductor, was going to branch out into the realm doing hip-hop music and rap music,” he said. “And the idea finally tackling this genre was something I was really looking forward to do.”
PBS will air Great Performances — Nas Live From the Kennedy Center: Classical Hip-Hop on Feb. 2 at 9PM ET.
It's ain't hard to tell…this is going to be a dope film. Don't miss it.