African American Spirituals arose from the African slaves in the United States during the 17th to 19th centuries. Although rooted in Christian songs and the hardships of slavery, the genre also includes secular songs related to work, protest, and the underground railway. Often, the seemingly Christian messages were actually coded directions for escape. This choir will learn about the vocal style of this genre with a focus on understanding and authenticity.
Open to novice and higher levels of singing ability. Selections can be learned by ear, but sight-reading ability and choral experience would certainly be helpful. Listening skills and singing in tune are required. This ensemble will perform at the end of the week.
Reference links to African America Spirituals: Maryland and the Underground Railway Library of Congress Negro Spirituals
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