Classical 101.1 WRR Focus on the Arts: How Black Violin is breaking barriers through beatboxing Bach

“When we perform for them, we see how lit up they get,” says Wil Baptiste (AKA Wil B.) who, together with bandmate Kev Marcus, founded the classical/hip hop crossover duo, Black Violin. “These kids go crazy when we come onstage and from that moment, they see this idea of this thing that has been seen as unreachable… and we took it and flipped it on its head. And from that moment, I believe they’re inspired to do the same thing in their lives.” For more than two decades, Black Violin’s mission hasn’t only been about performing music, but also paying it forward through educational outreach initiatives with youth symphonies and kids in low income, Title 1 schools. In this conversation with WRR’s Amy Bishop, hear more about the group’s beginnings, musical influences, community outreach, and breaking barriers.