Freedom sings in April 26 concert

April 19, 2002

"Let Freedom Sing," a joint performance of the Maryville College Community Chorus (MCCC) and the Maryville College Concert Choir will take place April 26 in Wilson Chapel on the college campus. The concert, which is free and open to the public, will begin at 8 p.m.

The MCCC, a choral ensemble made up of Maryville College students, faculty and staff and community members, will perform Randall Thompson's "The Testament of Freedom" during the first half of the program. Written during the height of World War II and using Thomas Jefferson's own writings, "The Testament of Freedom" affirms the concepts of life and liberty.

"Choir members have been very moved [in rehearsing the piece]," said Stacey Wilner, who directs both the chorus and choir. "It's interesting how poignant the work is today. Here we are, almost 60 years after the work was first performed, with the some of the same issues."

For the second half of the program, the MC Concert Choir will perform patriotic pieces, reflecting the Monticello-Williamsburg, Va. route the Choir Tour made this past Spring Break.

Toward the end of the concert, both choir and chorus members - nearly 80 voices total - will perform Brock McElheran's "Funeral March on the Deaths of Heroes." There is no singing and no accompaniment in this piece. In march-like precision, singers speak the names of several servicemen and civilians who were killed in World Wars I and II and Korea. McElheran got the names from war memorials all over the world, but for this Blount County performance, singers will add many names of relatives or friends who were also killed.

Marie Kepley, a member of the MCCC, researched the names of firemen and policemen killed on Sept. 11. The choir will speak these names.

At the very end of the performance, audience members will be asked to join the choir and chorus in singing "The Star Spangled Banner."

For more information on "Let Freedom Sing," call 865/981-8150.

Maryville College is ideally situated in Maryville, Tenn., between the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and Knoxville, the state's third largest city. Founded in 1819, it is the 12th oldest institution of higher learning in the South and maintains an affiliation with the Presbyterian Church (USA). Known for offering its students a rigorous and highly personal experience that includes an undergraduate research requirement, Maryville College is a nationally ranked institution of higher learning that successfully joins the liberal arts and professional preparation. Total enrollment for the fall 2016 semester is 1,198.