Tyrone Birkett is a musician, award-winning composer, and speaker partnering art and social action. As the musical director of the band Tyrone Birkett Emancipation, he has created Postmodern Spirituals. A re-imagining of the Negro Spiritual placed in a contemporary context, it is an artistic form purposed to bring the hope and resilience of the freedom song into the 21st century. This project has been presented around the country and has supported work by cultural leaders such as MacArthur Fellow, actress, playwright, and Professor Anna Deavere Smith, and author Nikki Giovanni. Performances of his work have been presented at the Apollo Theater, WNYC/Greene Space, Schomburg Center for Black Culture, and the Riverside Theater at Riverside Church. He is also the creator of “Rumination and Hope, In and Out Of Time,” a series of autobiographical accounts offering an unheard perspective of how a Black man of a certain age bridges the struggles between relevance and retirement, memory, and regret, promise, and revival. Using spoken narrative, video, saxophone, song, & dance. Tyrone has been granted an NYSCA Composer Commission (2021) and is a 3-time winner of the BRIO (Bronx Recognizes Its Own) Award from the Bronx Council on the Arts among other awards.
A pioneering advocate for cultural equity, the Bronx Council on the Arts nurtures the development of a diverse array of artists and arts organizations and builds strong cultural connections in and beyond The Bronx.