After twenty years since the debut of his widely hailed studio album Illmatic, Nas has teamed up with the National Symphony Orchestra to glorify the historic hip-hop album in classical fashion.
Titled Great Performances — Nas Live From the Kennedy Center: Classical Hip-Hop, the concert film musters the energetic appeal of the profound collaboration and wistfulness of the audible hip-hop Queensbridge fable. The program will premiere on PBS nationwide on Feb. 2 at 9 p.m.
“It’s crazy, you know, I wrote this in the projects in New York City. Here we are in the capital of America, Washington, DC, and, you know, a bunch of white people with strings and all that, playing this album, and they feeling it,” says Nas.
The program will take the masses into an exclusive journey that captures the N.Y. State of Mind rapper’s inspiration behind the gem and scope into his life as a New York City youth with throwback candids from his childhood and classic 90s footage of the emcee during his prime time.
In the name of classical hip-hop, the showcased collaboration between Nas and the notable orchestra revolutionizes the resonance of Illmatic‘s most prized songs like “N.Y. State of Mind,” “The World Is Yours,” “Memory Lane (Sittin’ in Da Park)” and “It Ain’t Hard to Tell.”
“I hope that you can look through the dream with me and see the journey I took to be on the stage with an orchestra.”
The program will premiere on the PBS network nationwide on Friday, February 2 at 9 p.m. Check out the trailer of the harmonious performance curated by Nas revived Mass Appeal, below.