Odean Pope / Immanuel Wilkins / Chad Taylor Trio: An Autumn Equinox Celebration | Ars Nova Workshop
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New Grass

Odean Pope / Immanuel Wilkins / Chad Taylor Trio

An autumn equinox celebration and opening night for the Second Annual John Coltrane Symposium

Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Please join Ars Nova Workshop and The Woodlands for a closing celebration of the New Grass program series featuring Karen Smith’s Spiritual Atmosferic Cleansing, a yoga and live harp session featuring the music of Alice Coltrane with Spirits Up!, and a very special performance by a generation-spanning trio of jazz luminaries featuring saxophonists Odean Pope and Immanuel Wilkins and drummer Chad Taylor.

The evening will also kickoff the Second Annual John Coltrane Symposium, a celebration of the life and music of John William Coltrane, curated by Anyabwile Love and co-presented by Ars Nova Workshop in collaboration with The John Coltrane Symposium.

Program Schedule


The Wake with Spirits Up! — with jean-jacques gabriel and Elizabeth Steiner

Karen Smith’s Spiritual Atmosferic Cleansing — featuring Weez the Peeples Collective, Philly Jawn Collective, Afro Blue, and special equinox moments with poetry, music, and song

Odean Pope / Immanuel Wilkins / Chad Taylor Trio

Pope / Wilkins / Taylor Trio

Bringing together three leading lights of modern jazz bridging a generational divide of nearly 60 years, this performance exemplifies the torch-passing reverence that continues to propel adventurous jazz forward while remaining rooted in its storied tradition. At 82 years of age, Philadelphian Odean Pope remains one of the most vigorous and inspired tenor saxophonists in jazz. He’ll be paired with Upper Darby native Immanuel Wilkins, a rising star who recently released his acclaimed debut album, Omega, via the iconic Blue Note Records. These two sax masters will be ably accompanied by the great drummer Chad Taylor, a longtime Chicagoan now based in Philadelphia.

As Nate Chinen once wrote in JazzTimes, “at home in Philadelphia, and among a circuit of aficionados stretching from Australia to Japan, [Odean Pope’s] name commands a reverence bordering on awe.” A friend of John Coltrane from the iconic saxophonist’s time in Philly, Odean Pope went on to work extensively with legendary drummer Max Roach. He later co-founded the pioneering fusion group Catalyst and his own monumental Odean Pope Saxophone Choir. His most recent release also happens to be his earliest recording; he can be heard on the landmark long-lost release Metaphysics by the elusive pianist Hasaan Ibn Ali.

Alto saxophonist and composer Immanuel Wilkins grew up in Upper Darby, Pennsylvania, just outside of Philadelphia, and moved to New York City in 2015 to attend The Juilliard School. In the city, he met trumpeter and composer Ambrose Akinmusire, who mentored Wilkins and helped him navigate the jazz scene. He also met a musician who would change his professional life: Jason Moran, the prominent pianist and composer who took the young saxophonist on tour. Wilkins has since worked with a diverse range of artists including Solange Knowles, Gretchen Parlato, Wynton Marsalis, Gerald Clayton, Aaron Parks, and Joel Ross, and was hailed by several publications as the Debut Recording of the Year for Omega.

A composer, scholar and educator as well as a capaciously inventive percussionist now living in Philadelphia, Chad Taylor is probably best known as co-founder of the Chicago Underground Duo with trumpeter Rob Mazurek (and the numerous Underground iterations that have spun off of that original partnership). A professional on the Chicago scene from the age of 16, he became a rhythmic muse for many of the most celebrated artists in improvised music, including Fred Anderson, Pharoah Sanders, Nicole Mitchell, Matana Roberts, Ken Vandermark, Darius Jones, James Brandon Lewis, Jaimie Branch, Derek Bailey, Marc Ribot, and Peter Brötzmann.

Cover: Immanuel Wilkins / Photo by Dana Scruggs
Wednesday, September 22, 2021


  • Festival
  • Mindfulness
  • Performance

Program Info

Free with RSVP
All Ages


Pope / Wilkins / Taylor Trio

  • Odean Pope – saxophone
  • Immanuel Wilkins – saxophone
  • Chad Taylor – drums

Spiritual Atmosferic Cleansing featuring Weez the Peeples Collective

  • Warren Cooper – keyboard
  • Cory Neale – bass
  • Michnari Robinson – trombone
  • Karen Smith – percussion
  • Donna “Noize” Dorman – additional percussion

Philly Jawn Collective

  • with Aziza Kebe, Sherry Wilson Butler, Lois Moses, Kia Keeyame, and Creator Debra Powell Wright

Afro Blue

  • with vocalist Geraldine Oliver

Equinox Moment with Poetry and Song

  • with Damien Cooper, Toni Love, V. Shayne Frederick, and Gretchen Elise

Special Musical Moment

  • with Patricia King Haddad and Orlando Haddad


The Woodlands
Philadelphia, PA

  • The Woodlands, Philadelphia

Presented by

The New Grass program series is presented by Ars Nova Workshop in collaboration with The Woodlands, Philadelphia.

Additional thanks to the Department of Music at the University of Pennsylvania.

summer 2021

New Grass

  • Series

New Grass

In collaboration with The Woodlands historic site in West Philadelphia, Ars Nova Workshop presents an exploration of fostering spaces where the creativity, thoughtfulness, and joy of everyday life in West Philadelphia can be shared.