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Calvin Earl at Old Town Hall

HISTORY OF THE AFRICAN AMERICAN SPIRITUALS

  • Date: 02/06/2019 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM
  • Location: Old Town Hall
    3999 University Drive
    Fairfax, Virginia 22030
  • Introduction: This interactive storytelling & musical experience explores the stories that were embedded into music for safekeeping, the secret codes hidden in the songs and how the songs transformed into the freedom songs of the Civil Rights era.
As a storyteller, Calvin Earl tells the stories of our enslaved ancestors embedding their oral history into the spirituals for safekeeping. He sings their secret and sacred songs. He
sheds light on the secret coding hidden within the songs to help runaway slaves find safe routes on the UGRR. He demonstrates and explains the unique rhythmic cadence within the spirituals. Besides the spirituals rhythmic sound, similar to ancient mantras these songs were used as a path away from the pain and suffering you are experiencing on your human journey. With the enslaved family structure always in imminent peril of being torn apart with no warning, the spirituals provided a semblance of structure and a support
system no one could take from them. The spirituals gave them hope & courage to believe in the concept of freedom for all people. A spiritual is more than music it is a personal experience and journey for every person listening or singing it. Knowing the history of these songs is an essential part of understanding who we are evolving into as Americans. Calvin also talks and sings about how in our history these humble songs were transformed into freedom songs during the Civil Rights Movement in the 1950’s and 1960’s.
This interactive program also includes the opportunity for communal singing and making time for discussing any questions you might have.
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