A legacy remembered: local MLK concert set for Jan. 19

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Austin-East Performing Arts and Sciences Magnet High School musicians and dancers, a choir of local churches’ members and the Knoxville Symphony Chamber Orchestra will present a free concert 6 p.m. Monday, Jan. 19, to remember Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and to honor his legacy.

The annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration Concert is at the Knoxville Civic Auditorium, 500 Howard Baker Jr. Ave. With the theme “The Beloved Community: We Cannot Walk Alone,” the concert is the culmination of a week of events hosted by the MLK Commemoration Commission of Greater Knoxville.

The concert itself is a collaboration. Knoxville Symphony Orchestra Music Director Lucas Richman will direct the symphony’s chamber orchestra. The Holiday Celebration Choir is made up of Knoxville College students and members of choirs from Tabernacle Baptist Church and other local black churches. Aaron Staple, music director at Tabernacle Baptist, will lead the celebration choir.

Young people who are part of the Austin-East Chamber Ensemble and the school’s West African Dance Ensemble also will perform during the concert. The school’s chamber ensemble will perform both alone and with the KSO musicians. The dancers will present a solo performance and then will perform with the orchestra and celebration choir.

Music arranged for the concert includes gospel songs, spirituals and traditional symphonic works. Songs that will be performed include “God Has Smiled On Me,” “I Have A Testimony,” “This is the Way We Sing Praises,” and “One Touch of the Master’s Hand.”

The concert also includes Felix Mendelssohn’s “Five Movement: Allegro vivace” from the musician’s Symphony No. 4 as well as the songs “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” “Walk Around Heaven All Day” and Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II’s “You’ll Never Walk Alone.”

The concert will end with “We Shall Overcome,” the simple yet powerful song that became an unofficial but key anthem of the 20th-century civil-rights movement.

The concert is partially paid for by Arts Builds Communities, a program funded by the Tennessee General Assembly and administered in cooperation with the Arts & Culture Alliance of Greater Knoxville. It is sponsored by South Central Radio Group and Tennessee Valley Authority.

Amy McRary may be reached at 865-342-6437.

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Comments » 1

earlofsandwich writes:

Looks like a good lineup and thanks for posting about it. BTW, how appropriate for our local celebration to include "We Shall Overcome" since it was co-written by east Tennessean Guy Carawan.

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