Atlanta Music Festival
In 1910, members of First Congregational Church were denied admittance to Metropolitan Opera performances in Atlanta. Their response was the creation of the “Atlanta Colored Music Festival,” which featured the most prominent African American concert artists of the day. Organizers intentionally invited the white community, who came in strong numbers. (For more on this history, see History.)
This year, First Congregational Church, Meridian Herald, and Emory University present the 2011 Atlanta Music Festival: Songs of Aspiration, Hope, and Progress, September 21-24, 2011.
This significant collaboration will involve the Atlanta community through dialogue, master classes for young musicians, a dramatic re-creation of the inaugural performance of James Weldon Johnson's “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” and a climactic concert featuring opera star and Atlanta native Indra Thomas, the Honorable Andrew Young as narrator, the Chancel Choir of First Congregational Church, the Morehouse College Glee Club, and the Meridian Chorale.