GOLDEN GATE XPRESS -- Works by prominent composers such as Harry Burleigh and William Dawson were featured during the show.
“They represent a lot; fight for justice, struggle against bondage, awareness of cultural history and they have those mini layers of what they acted as,” said director and School of Music Lecturer Nikolas Nackley. “They were a form of communication, were a form of protest songs they were rallying songs. They were songs of community.”
Chamber singer Robert Bradley explained how these spirituals kept the hopes of the many who were enslaved alive, as these songs served to ease their hardships and their pain.
“Spirituals in a lot of cases always spoke of the troubles and [going to see the Lord] and to be this bright happy place,” Bradley said. “There was always hope and light, and that’s really reflected in kind of the brightness of the music.”