An Evening of Spirituals

An Evening of Spirituals
Monday, January 15, 2024
7:00 PM

In recognition of Martin Luther King Day, Carl Clendenning is returning to perform an evening of spirituals.  Carl performed for us last MLK Day as part of Madelyn Porter’s performance celebrating the literary works of African Americans, and we were taken by Carl’s rich bass voice and expert keyboard skills.

This performance will celebrate the significance of spirituals in Black culture and Black music today.  Spirituals were a way for slaves to communicate with each other without their owners being aware of the messages.  These spirituals would celebrate the slaves’ successes, pass on information about a plan to escape, talk about their beatings, or to support each other.  Many slave masters wouldn’t allow the slaves to talk while working, but they allowed singing, as singing helped the slaves work faster.

Carl has performed on numerous occasions as a soloist with numerous musical organizations in performances of Messiah, Mozart Requiem, Verdi Requiem, and Bach’s Magnificat.  He has also sung with the former Michigan Opera Theater (now Detroit Opera Theater) Chorus in performances of Aida and Porgy and Bess.

Currently, he is a member of the famed Brazeal Dennard Chorale, The Community Chorus of Detroit, and the William Sean Harrison Chorale and Rooted.  In addition, he recently retired as Director of Music at Gesu Church (Detroit) after a long and successful ministry of more than 37 years.


Jan 15 2024


7:00 pm - 8:30 pm