LSM Newswire

Thursday, January 8, 2009

The Nathaniel Dett Chorale to Perform in Washington at events hosted in celebration of the Presidential Inauguration

The Nathaniel Dett Chorale

to Perform in Washington at events hosted

in celebration of the Presidential Inauguration

Founder, Artistic Director Brainerd Blyden-Taylor

Canada’s acclaimed The Nathaniel Dett Chorale will be part of one of the most significant events in United States history. The Chorale, Canada’s first professional choir dedicated to performing Afrocentric music of all genres, has been invited by the Embassy of Canada to perform at their Pennsylvania Avenue headquarters on January 20, 2009, as part of an Inauguration Day event hosted by the Canadian Tourism Commission.

While in Washington, The Nathaniel Dett Chorale is also being honoured with an opportunity to sing at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian on Martin Luther King Day, Monday, January 19, 2009. This 40-minute free concert is part of a three-day festival entitled “Out of Many,” a theme derived from Barack Obama’s election night speech in which he followed “out of many” with “we are one,” signifying the overwhelming feeling of unity, celebration, sense of hope and belief in the future that Obama has inspired in the American public and the world at large. This sentiment is in keeping with the theme the inauguration has adopted, “A new birth of freedom,” taken from Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address.

“We are profoundly honoured by these invitations,” says The Nathaniel Dett Chorale’s Founder and Artistic Director, Brainerd Blyden-Taylor. “The Nathaniel Dett Chorale has always sought to dissolve barriers of stereotype, to empower and inspire through the unity of music and celebration. We are touched that our performances in Washington are considered to be a tribute from Canada to the American people at this remarkable time in their history.”

The Washington performances are a continuation of The Nathaniel Dett Chorale’s 10th anniversary season, which began with a tour to the southern United States last fall and a two sold-out Indigo Christmas concerts in December, and will include an upcoming Western Canadian tour taking place during Black History Month. The February concert dates include stops in Alberta, British Columbia and the Yukon, and will conclude in Toronto with two performances in its subscription series at the Glenn Gould Studio in the Canadian Broadcasting Centre.

The Nathaniel Dett Chorale is supported in part by TD Canada Trust Music, who also provided 11th hour funding for the Chorale’s Washington journey. Additional support for this tour was provided by the Canada Council for the Arts.

“We were thrilled to be able to help make this journey to Washington possible for The Nathaniel Dett Chorale,” said Frank McKenna, Deputy Chair, TD Bank Financial Group. “TD is a strong supporter of the music scene, from jazz festivals to youth orchestras to outdoor rock concerts, and we’re proud to help groups like The Chorale achieve their goals. This is an exceptional choir and what a fantastic opportunity for them to showcase their talent on one of the most important dates in history.”

The Nathaniel Dett Chorale is Canada's first professional choral group dedicated to Afrocentric music of all styles, including classical, spiritual, gospel, jazz, folk and blues. These 21 classically trained, outstanding vocalists have shared the stage with internationally recognized artists such as Juno Award-winning jazz pianist Joe Sealy, opera star Kathleen Battle, and the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. The Nathaniel Dett Chorale's mission is to build bridges of understanding, appreciation and acceptance between communities of people, both Afrocentric and other, through the medium of music. They seek to dissolve the barriers of stereotype, to empower humans in general, and those of African descent in particular.

Tickets for the Glenn Gould Studio series available in person at the Roy Thomson Hall box office, 60 Simcoe St., by calling 416.872.4255 or online at

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