The world is mourning the loss of the “Queen of Soul.”
Aretha Franklin is dead at age 76 after battling pancreatic cancer.
Music Director Thomas Wilkins with the Omaha Symphony an had the honor of working with Franklin prior to his arrival in the metro. He has very fond memories of that experience.
Wilkins says, “The minute she walked onto the stage, everything in her DNA as an artist and a performer came out and she had the crowd in the palm of her hand within seconds. She gave 110%, and that really is not cliché. She was just everything while on stage and it was all about the music and all about giving that music to the audience. So, as an artist for me, that was a great source of inspiration.”
Wilkins says after working together, Aretha would still call and leave him voice mails to let him know she was thinking of him. That shows what a warm spirit she had.
Years ago, Franklin was scheduled to sing with the Omaha Symphony but that performance had to be canceled and unfortunately never rescheduled.