HORSHAM -- Hatboro-Horsham High School Choirs held their first Black History Month concert to celebrate American choral composers of color. The virtual event premiered live on March 12, at 7 p.m., and is available to watch on YouTube.

“We are excited to share all that we’ve learned in preparation for this event. This was a void we saw in the choral program at the high school and we’re excited and grateful to fill it with song through this concert,” said Director of Choral Activities Alison Lagan. “I hope this will become an annual event that blossoms and expands to include more students from the middle school and elementary schools throughout the district.”

The concert featured Concert Choir, Madrigals and Women’s Chamber, encompassing all grade levels at the high school, plus KV Singers from Keith Valley Middle School. Each choir performed two selections: one traditional spiritual or gospel piece and one non-idiomatic work, meaning that it is not tied to a specific cultural genre. “We wanted to honor the traditions of gospel and spiritual works but also highlight music of other genres by African American composers,” said Lagan.

The choirs performed two songs all together that were iconic to the civil rights movement. “Lift Every Voice and Sing” was the concert’s opening performance and is also known as the “African American National Anthem.” The concert closed with “We Shall Overcome,” the anthem of the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s, featuring over 100 singers from the middle school and high school.

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