ROCKY MOUNT - The Tuskegee University Concert Choir will appear in concert at Franklin Heights Baptist Church at 110 Hilltop Drive in Rocky Mount, Virginia on Monday March 13 at 7:00 p.m. The concert will be sponsored by Friends of Booker T. Washington National Monument, Franklin Heights Baptist Church and Booker T. Washington National Monument.
The Tuskegee Choir is an organization steeped in more than a century of pride and the richest of choral traditions. Since its inception, the Tuskegee Choir has served as an artistic model while carving its place in American history. The school choir was developed in 1886 because Dr. Washington had determined that the Institute was in need of a group of singers who could lead vesper services and sing for special campus occasions. Further, he stated, “If you go out to have schools of your own, have your pupils sing as you have sung here, and teach them to see the beauty which dwells in these songs”. Thus, the school developed and passed on a singing tradition.
A new era began for the Tuskegee Choir in 1930 under its most renowned director and educator William L. Dawson, the “Dean of African-American Choral Composers”. His tenure was marked by performances for the grand opening of Radio City Music hall, for United States presidents (Herbert Hoover and president-elect Franklin D. Roosevelt), at Constitution Hall in Washington, D.C., and for a host of television and radio programs.
The Tuskegee Choir has since appeared at Carnegie Hall, has been invited to the National Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony (1962) by President John F. Kennedy and the National Prayer Breakfast (1994) and the White House (1997) by President William J. Clinton. On January 18, 2015, in celebration of the release of the movie Selma, the choir was invited to sing the Grammy Award winning song “Glory” with John Legend and Common on the Edmund Pettus Bridge.
The Tuskegee University Golden Voices Concert Choir continues its mission of campus service and ambassadorship at weekly All-University Worship Services and appearances in the community and across the nation, under the leadership of Dr. Wayne Barr.
The concert is free to the public. However, love offerings will be accepted at the concert.
Join us as we welcome these Golden Voices once again to the birth place of their founder, Booker T Washington.
Please contact Lillie Head at 540-238-1030 or Franklin Heights Baptist Church, 540-483-9507 for more information.