An ensemble of about 30 violinists, violists, cellists, and double bassists gathered Wednesday night in Malcolm X Park in West Philadelphia for a candlelight vigil in memory of Elijah McClain. The musical demonstration in the park at 51st and Pine Streets drew about a hundred listeners, some of whom brought instruments of their own to join the ensemble in several works after an opening performance of George Walker’s “Lyric for Strings.”

Cellist Aijee Evans plays during a candlelight vigil and short concert in memory of Elijah McClain in Malcolm X Park Wednesday night. McClain, a 23-year-old massage therapist and violinist, died while being detained by police in Colorado last summer.
TOM GRALISH / Staff Photographer
Cellist Aijee Evans plays during a candlelight vigil and short concert in memory of Elijah McClain in Malcolm X Park Wednesday night. McClain, a 23-year-old massage therapist and violinist, died while being detained by police in Colorado last summer.

He died several days later. An initial investigation ended with no charges filed in his death. After public pressure, a new investigation was ordered.

Wednesday’s vigil also honored the memory of Mouhamed Cisse, a cellist shot to death June 1 in West Philadelphia by an unknown assailant. The vigil will be repeated Sunday at 8 p.m. on the east steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art.