There’s a musical celebration going on this Sunday at the Long Bay Symphony’s third performance of the season.
“Music for the Soul: A Celebration of Spirituals, Gospel and the Orchestra” is the name of the concert and it promises to be one of the musical highlights of the Grand Strand performance season.
The program will feature compositions by African-American composers William Grant Still and Duke Ellington as well as spiritual-inspired orchestral works by Aaron Copland and George Gershwin.
Special performances will be given by New Arts Six, a classically trained group that is devoted to the preservation of African-American music, poetry and literature.
The Negro spiritual was born of the sorrow and longing for the homeland of the American slave as well as dreams of freedom, dignity and equality.
The program begins with Samuel Coleridge-Taylor’s “Danse Negre” from African Suite. Then the orchestra performs “Symphony No. 1, the “Afro-American” by William Grant Still.
Some of the selections include “Lord, How Come Me Here?,” “Keep Your Lamps Trimmed and Burning,” “Let’s Have a Union” and “Goin’ Home.”
If you go
- When | 4 p.m. Sunday, conversation with the conductor begins at 3:15 p.m.
- Where | Myrtle Beach High School Performing Arts Center, 1551 21st Ave. N.
- How Much | Tickets are $35-45
The Largo from the very well known and loved “New World” symphony by Antonin Dvorak will be followed by a Gershwin collection from Porgy and Bess, including “Summertime” and “O Lawd, I’m on My Way.”
After the intermission, the orchestra will perform the Andante con motto and Allegro maestoso from Mendelssohn’s “Symphony No. 5.” Then comes Aaron Copland’s “Variations on a Shaker Melody,” and Copland’s arrangements of the old American songs “At the River” and “Zion’s Walls.” Next is an arrangements of “Jacob’s Ladder” and “Ring dem Bells.”
Toward the close, the orchestra and performers will present Duke Ellington’s “Three Black Kings,” then “Praise Him” and “Total Praise.”
The concert promises to be one of the most unusual musical performances ever on the Grand Strand.
The members of New Arts Six include Glenda Cole Clay, who is noted for her recital and oratorio concerts. She is also a teacher in the Dallas-Fort Worth area of Texas.
Cynthia Dorn Navarrete is an actress who has had extensive experience as a performer in movies and on TV and who does extensive voice-over media commercials for major sponsors.
Dorothy Regina Powell is a mezzo-soprano who has competed in many national and international voice compositions and who has performed in many light-opera productions.
Gale Washington Tyler is a lyric soprano who has performed with orchestras and opera companies here and abroad and is an ordained minister.
Linda Hall Searight is a contralto who has been a public school teacher in Dallas for 35 years and has performed with many orchestras around the world.
She was also the founding artistic director of the Grammy award-winning recording choir, God’s Property.The pianist for the group is Monya Davis Longan, who is a music teacher in Dallas and has an extensive career accompanying many well known groups and individuals including Peabo Bryson and Melba Moore.
The concert will begin at 4 p.m. in the Music and Arts Center at Myrtle Beach High School and will be preceded by a pre-concert lecture by Long Bay Symphony director, Dr. Charles Jones Evans, who is marking his 15th year with the orchestra, which itself is in its 21st year on the Grand Strand.