A Piano Concert by Jacqueline Schwab


June 15, 2023    
7:30pm - 8:30pm


First Church in Boston
66 Marlborough Street, Boston, MA, 02116

Event Type

Bring your friends and family to this rare event! 

“I Lift My Lamp—Illuminations from Immigrant America”

At a time when the United States has been engaging in difficult discussions about issues of immigration and cultural diversity, I Lift My Lamp celebrates vintage songs and dance tunes from American immigrants. Inspired by Jacqueline’s childhood years in vibrant, multicultural Pittsburgh and her work with documentary film maker Ken Burns, her June 15 program will focus on music from Western and Eastern Europe and the Caribbean and South America as well as African American spirituals, Tin Pan Alley tunes and ragtime. Jacqueline spins musical stories out of the myriad strands in the American quilt and with the spirit of community music making at their heart. Her signature playing features in over a dozen of Ken Burns’ documentaries, including his Grammy-winning Civil War, Baseball, Lewis and Clark, Mark Twain, The War and Benjamin Franklin, as well as The Irish in America—The Long Journey Home and other PBS documentaries.

She has performed at the White House for President Clinton, twice on national PBS with the American Pops Orchestra, on other public television and radio and in almost every state of the Union. She is well known to the traditional dance world for her groundbreaking playing with the Bare Necessities ensemble. She has just returned from performing entr’acte music for an evening of theatrical readings of plays about the war in Ukraine, sponsored by the Alliance for New Music—Theatre, in Washington, DC. Jacqueline graduated from New England Conservatory, majoring in piano improvisation.

Music from Western and Eastern Europe, the Caribbean and South America, plus African American spirituals and ragtime played by renowned pianist Jacqueline Schwab, the pianist for Ken Burn’s award-winning Civil War.

“Jacqueline Schwab brings more feeling and intensity to music than anyone I know. Her playing is insistent, physical, heartfelt and … unusually moving.” –– Ken Burns


Donations welcome ($20 suggested) to support First Church Boston

Image of a woman with a boat and other collage images
I Lift My Lamp by Jacqueline Schwab