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October 31, 2009

McNeil Jubilee Singers mark 40 years with reunion concert

The Tidings (CA):

Celebrating 40 years of performing African American spirituals all over the world, the Albert McNeil Jubilee Singers will gather many of the 170 singers who have performed with the ensemble for a reunion concert Nov. 1 at St. Bernadette Church in Los Angeles.

In addition to the rich repertoire of spirituals for which the Jubilee Singers are famous, the group will sing Gospel Mass composed in 1978 by Dr. Robert Ray, professor of music at the University of Missouri, St. Louis, and also perform a set of secular songs and choreographed Broadway selections. The concert is a fundraiser for St. Bernadette parish.

The Jubilee singers are named for founder Albert McNeil, a native of Los Angeles who as a child sang at St. Joseph Church downtown and is currently a parishioner of St. James in Redondo Beach. He earned Bachelor and Master degrees at UCLA, and did his doctoral studies at USC, the Westminster Choir College of Princeton, and the University of Lausanne, Switzerland. McNeil is a former teacher in the Los Angeles Unified School District, professor of Ethnomusicology at USC, and director of Choral Activities at the University of California at Davis where he also headed the Music Education Program.

The Jubilee Singers are an ensemble of 12 to 15 singers who perform most of their music a cappella. Under McNeil's direction they have performed in more than 70 countries.

In addition to their international fame, McNeil and the Jubilee Singers have the respect and recognition of national choral organizations and audiences. McNeil has been honored on four occasions with "Command Performances" before the prestigious American Choral Directors Association, most recently in 2000, during the ACDA Western Division Convention at Loyola Marymount University. Read more.

Posted by acapnews at October 31, 2009 12:00 AM


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