Galesburg Community Chorus Presents American Voices Concert

Staff Writer
Aledo Times Record

The Galesburg Community Chorus will present its spring concert, entitled American Voices, on Saturday, April 12 at 7:30 p.m., at First Christian Church, on the corner of North and Broad Streets in Galesburg. Tickets are $12 for adults, $10 for seniors, and are free for all students. They may be purchased at the door or in advance at Costa Catholic Academy, Burgland Drug, and Brighter Life Book Shoppe.

The concert will feature folk songs, folk hymns, and spirituals that are part of our American culture and heritage. The Chorus will perform songs that are old favorites, presented in new arrangements, as well as some early American pieces that are largely unknown to modern audiences. Some musical highlights include 18th-century songs by William Billings, stirring and powerful folk hymns from the shape-note tradition like “Hark, I Hear the Harps Eternal,” African-American spirituals from the 19th century such as “There is a Balm in Gilead” and “Ain-a That Good News,” Stephen Foster tunes like “Gentle Annie” and “Oh Susanna,” and some traditional folk songs like “Cindy,” in a rhythmic and virtuosic arrangement by Carol Barnett. The program will also feature readings that explore the origin and cultural background of the music.

The Galesburg Community Chorus, directed by Tim Pahel, is the oldest community music organization in the Galesburg area. It was founded in 1945 at Knox College and the chorus retains its affiliation with the college, which provides rehearsal facilities.

The concert is sponsored by the City of Galesburg, Galesburg Cottage Hospital, the Galesburg Community Foundation, OSF St. Mary Medical, and the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency. Free student admission is sponsred by the Register-Mail.