A community of voices.

Join us for a Bring the Sing tribute to Martin Luther King Jr. in Rochester on Jan. 20

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Bring the Sing: Martin Luther King Tribute MPR

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Bring the Sing
When: 1-4 p.m., Sunday, Jan. 20, 2019 (doors open at 12:15 p.m.)
Where: Lourdes High School Fine Arts Auditorium (2800 19th St. NW, Rochester, MN 55901)
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The hundreds of singers who converged in Rochester last year for Classical MPR's Bring the Sing weren't able to harmonize much after a small fire in the auditorium cut it short early on. Fortunately, no one was hurt, and new community ties were forged among the participants who convened outside until the all clear was given from firefighters.

When it became clear the day's event couldn't continue, Bring the Sing conductor Joe Osowski and Classical MPR staff vowed to bring the community choral event back to Rochester. On Sunday, Jan. 20 — the day before Martin Luther King, Jr. Day — Bring the Sing will again welcome Rochester community members to Lourdes to join in song, this time in honor of the late Dr. King.

The spirit behind Bring the Sing is to forge community and interpersonal ties through communal choral singing, connecting participants in ways not otherwise possible. Bring the Sing events have taken place across Minnesota and are open to everyone, regardless of musical abilities and backgrounds. The ability to read sheet music is not a requirement to participate in Bring the Sing.

The repertoire for Bring the Sing in Rochester will reflect the rich tradition of African-American choral music, including a gospel hymn that became an anthem for the Civil Rights Movement, "We Shall Overcome," sung most recently in November at Bring the Sing Northfield. Other works to be sung that day are arrangements of the spirituals "Set Down Servant" and "All My Trials," as well as the unofficial anthem for Bring the Sing, "Draw the Circle Wide." Each work will be rehearsed, then recorded for a feature on YourClassical's Choral Stream, as well as for consideration for broadcast on Classical MPR.

Readings from Dr. King's works from Rochester community leaders — including Don Barlow, pastor of the Rochester Community Baptist Church and recently elected Rochester School Board Chair — will reinforce the musical performances. Bass-baritone Matthew Tintes, who was to perform at last year's event before circumstances shortened it, will return as a soloist. Other special guests include the soaring vocalist Anthony J. Cook, a well-known favorite of audiences in Rochester and elsewhere. Osowski's award-winning 80-voice high school choir, the St. Michael's-Albertville Concert Choir, will serve as the core ensemble for the event, offering side-by-side support for participants who don't read music or could otherwise use some vocal encouragement.


Choral-singing and music-reading experience are not required. Voices of all abilities are welcome to this free community event, where conductor Joe Osowski and special guests will lead everyone in these songs:

"All My Trials"
"Set Down Servant"
"We Shall Overcome"
"Draw the Circle Wide"

Questions? E-mail

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Minnesota Legacy Amendment

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