Witnesses to the American Spiritual Concert, performed November 18, 2018, recall the energy and charisma of Everett McCorvey, Guest Conductor.
American Spirituals Concert by Knoxville Handel Society exceeded expectations. It was a concert so highly anticipated that a matinee performance was added to the 7:00 PM original concert. Singers and audience became immersed in the sound and historical details of American Spirituals, engagingly portrayed and presented by Everett McCorvey.
Cathedral of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus rang with rhythm and moving music. Four soloists from the American Spiritual Ensemble enhanced the concert with solo renditions. Kevin Thompson, bass, rendered an unforgettable “Ol’ Man River”; John Wesley Wright, tenor, touched heartstrings with the poignant “Bring Him Home” from Les Miserables. Hope Koehler, soprano, was featured soloist in “I Wanna Be Ready”; Jeryl Cunningham-Fleming, soprano, took us to Christmas with “Behold the Star.”
Lift Every Voice! | A Joint Concert by Knoxville Handel Society & American Spiritual Ensemble | June 27th 2020 at 3:00PM and 7:00 PM | Central Baptist Bearden | 6300 Deane Hill Drive, Knoxville, TN 37919 | GET TICKETS *Tickets available on April 6th 2020
Lift Every Voice! is a vocal extravaganza, featuring Knoxville Handel Society jointly with the entire American Spiritual Ensemble, 21-professional voices strong. Knoxville is host to the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS). Everett McCorvey and the American Spiritual Ensemble are providing leadership in this 56th annual NATS conference, a prestigious vocal and choral conference. Opportunities to reconnect with world-class musicians are extraordinary. Lift Every Voice! holds a world of promise for audience, as well as performers. Make plans to attend one of the performances.
Tickets will be available April 6 from KnoxvilleTickets.com. KnoxvilleTickets.com is the sole ticket source for this event. All tickets will be electronically scanned for entry to concerts.
Knoxville Handel Society, a multi-generational community choir, will present The Magnificat by J. S. Bach and Messiah Part I by G. F. Handel. The Cathedral of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus provides the ideal sacred space for these premier choral masterpieces.
The Cathedral Concert Series supports the arts in its goal to provide opportunities for local, regional, national and international music ensembles to perform sacred and classical musical works for the community in the effort to foster an appreciation for sacred music in East Tennessee.
Magnificat & Messiah Part 1 |November 24th 2019 at 5:00 PM | Cathedral of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus | 711 South Northshore Drive, Knoxville TN 37919
Knoxville Handel Society led the way as the first arts organization to perform in the Cathedral Concert Series, as shown in the photo below. This program of Christmas favorites is Knoxville Handel Society’s third return to the Cathedral Arts Series. These profoundly beautiful masterpieces will lead the way to Advent.
The Creation was performed in April 2018 to a capacity audience. Musicians and audience appear to blend together as one, producing powerful energy and involvement. Sight and sound converged in an unforgettable concert.
We encourage purchase of tickets in advance due to the expectation of a large audience.
Tickets are available now through Knoxville Tickets at 865.656.4444 or online.
Purchase tickets here at knoxvilletickets.com.
Adults $20; groups of 4 or more $15; College students $10; K-12 Students no charge. NO CHARGE tickets for Students K -12 must be ordered in person at the Thompson-Boling Arena Box Office.
Our most recent concert at the beautiful First Baptist Church was, in many ways, the bittersweet realization of the vision of Knoxville Handel Society co-founders Don King and Wendell Boertje.
That vision has included the presentation of major choral works like Messiah (Parts II and III) with Guest Conductor Don Neuen; Haydn’s Creation, directed by Boertje; a program of spirituals with American Spiritual Ensemble soloists, directed by ASE director Everett McCorvey; great hymns and anthems from diverse traditions.
On April 28, 2019, Knoxville Handel Society members sang with full and heavy hearts as they, accompanied by organ, full orchestra, and bagpipes, presented How Great Thou Art: Glorious Hymns & Classical Anthems mere days after the passing of Don King, their beloved, energetic co-director who lovingly planned every detail of the concert.
From the opening procession of the piper, the wide-ranging musical selections, with audience participation in heritage hymns, the souls of all present were stirred in a beautiful tribute to the King of Kings and Lord of Lords!
Tears flowed in sadness and gratitude as we rested in the beauty of the evening.
(This description was written by a participating member of Knoxville Handel Society.)
How Great Thou Art | Glorious Hymns and Classical Anthems | April 28, 2019 at 6:00 PM
Venue: 510 W Main Street, Knoxville TN 37902.
Knoxville Handel Society anticipates the vocal command of the featured soloists: John Wesley Wright, tenor; Jeryl Cunningham-Fleming, soprano; Kevin Thompson, bass; and Hope Koehler, soprano. All four soloists perform with the American Spiritual Ensemble, and are featured in performances internationally.
John Wesley Wright, Tenor
John Wesley Wright, tenor
Tenor John Wesley Wright, D.M.A., is known for his soulful interpretations of music from baroque to Broadway. Holding degrees from Maryville College and the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, Dr. Wright is a native of Rome, Georgia and coordinates the voice and opera programs at Salisbury University in Maryland.
Hope Koehler, Soprano
Hope Koehler, soprano
Born in Chattanooga, Dr. Koehler has Tennessee connections. She received her B.A. degree from Lipscomb University in Nashville. Dr. Koehler received graduate degrees, Master of Music in Voice Performance from University of Alabama; and D.M.A. from University of Kentucky. Her voice has been described as having “the richness of Marilyn Horne at the bottom and the clarion clarity of Leontyne Price at the top.” Dr. Koehler is currently Associate Professor and Coordinator of Voice Studies at West Virginia University.
Kevin Thompson, bass
Kevin Thompson, bass
Singing throughout the world, Mr. Thompson is at home both on the opera and concert stage. “The excitement his performances generate has captured international attention: a voluminous bass with exquisite overtone-rich timbers and rafter-shaking sonority.” A native of Washington, D.C., Mr. Thompson is a graduate of The Juillard School. Knoxville Opera featured him as Ramfis in the May 2018 performance of Aida.
Jeryl Cunningham-Fleming, soprano
Ms. Cunningham-Fleming is a regular soloist and Assistant Director with the American Spiritual Ensemble. Her repertoire encompasses opera, oratorio, choral masterworks, jazz, and art song. Interpretation of the African American spiritual is a high point of her artistry. Ms. Cunningham-Fleming received her bachelor’s degree in vocal performance at Oakwood University. She obtained her master’s degree in vocal performance at Mannes College of Music; and has completed a doctoral degree at the University of Kentucky.