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Concert to trace history of slavery in America

The GrPrairie Singers will perform March 9 concert 4 p.m. Faith United Protestant Church 10 Hemlock Road Park Forest. SouthlCollege

The Grand Prairie Singers will perform March 9 at a concert at 4 p.m. at Faith United Protestant Church, 10 Hemlock Road, Park Forest. Southland College Prep Charter High School's singers and band will be special guests. | Supplied photo

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Updated: April 10, 2014 6:13AM



About 100 singers and band members from Southland College Prep Charter High School in Richton Park will be special guests at the Grande Prairie Singers’ concert, “I Remember When the Stars Fell,” at 4 p.m. March 9 at Faith United Protestant Church, 10 Hemlock Road, Park Forest, according to a press release from the school.

The concert, a musical journey through the history of slavery in America, is open to the public. Advance tickets are $15 for adults; and $10 for students, and can be bought by calling (708) 481-8684. Tickets at the door are $20 for adults and $10 for students.

Southland College Prep Charter High School music director Stirling Culp will lead the school’s singers in a repertoire which he describes as “gorgeous and stirring songs and spirituals from Africa that trace the triumph over horrific injustice and are sure to move and uplift the spirit of our audience,” the release said.

The Grande Prairie Singers and Southland’s band and singers will perform music of famous arrangers and composers of the early black repertoire, such as Moses Hogan, H.T. Burleigh, William Grant Still, Evelyn LaRue Pittman and Andre Thomas, as well as contemporary selections, the release said.

Images and narration of the writings of escaped slaves, freed slaves, slave owners and abolitionists will weave together the stories and music of the historic times.

Among the songs to be performed will be “Amazing Grace,” “Precious Lord,” “Way Over in Beulah Land” and “In Bright Mansions,” Culp said in the release.

In addition to Culp, a tenor who will perform, other guest artists include sopranos Dorothy Canady and Kimberly Jones, and tenor Cornelius Johnson.

Joseph Lawrence will conduct Southland College Prep’s band.

The Grande Prairie Singers, under the direction of Jo Rodenburg, are recognized as one of the region’s premier arts organizations, according to the press release. The Singers are heralded for their passion for the vocal arts and for breathing life into classic and modern master works of choral literature, it said.

The group, which began in 1977 as the Park Forest Singers, draws voices from 28 suburbs and villages, the release said. Members’ ages range from 17 to 89, and they include doctors, students, engineers, teachers, accountants and grandparents, the release said.

Staff report



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