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23nd Annual Southern Folk Advent
December 5, 2015 @ 4:00 pm - 8:00 pm EST
MERIDIAN HERALD PRESENTS
BROOKS HOLIFIELD, THE SONNY HOUSTON BLUEGRASS BAND,
AND THE MERIDIAN CHORALE
STEVEN DARSEY, MUSIC DIRECTOR
SOUTHERN FOLK ADVENT®, OLD CHURCH OXFORD, GEORGIA
December 5, 2015, 4:00 PM
The Sonny Houston Bluegrass Band will provide bluegrass-Gospel music and preacher-scholar Brooks Holifield will speak at Meridian Herald’s 23nd annual Southern Folk Advent® Service. The Meridian Chorale will sing and Steven Darsey will direct the music. The event will be held Saturday, December 5, 4:00 PM at Old Church on the Oxford College campus in Oxford, Georgia. Admission is free.
This year’s service features the majestic singing of Atlanta tenor, Timothy B. Miller, famed for his Atlanta Braves home game appearances. He sings the dramatic folk hymn “The Morning Trumpet” in Steven Darsey’s arrangement, backed by the Meridian Chorale.
E. Brooks Holifield is Charles Howard Candler Professor of American Church History Emeritus at Emory University. Described by his students as “brilliant” and “passionate,” Dr. Holifield is a renowned scholar, speaker, and author on American religious history. In 2011 he was named a fellow of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences.
Meridian Herald is a recipient of the 2014 Governor’s Award in the Arts and Humanities for bringing together “music, literary, and storytelling traditions from Georgia’s past to share them with contemporary audiences, thus strengthening public appreciation for the wisdom of previous eras.”
Since its inaugural service in 1993, Southern Folk Advent® has become an honored holiday tradition. A form of Lessons and Carols, this service is based on folk hymns from the historic Sacred Harp tunebook, compiled in Georgia in 1844. The tunes are presented in a variety of formats, with the Meridian Chorale singing some in original arrangements and the congregation singing others both a cappella and with folk instrumental accompaniment. These hymns arose from the life experience of poor folk struggling to survive in the early 19th century south. Their haunting music embodies the struggles and dreams of generations singing and praying for the coming of Christ. Noted composer and music director Steven Darsey will lead the music. His Georgia heritage and research on The Sacred Harp have engendered a deep love for this music and the people from whom it sprang.
Built in 1841, Old Church springs from the same era and region as The Sacred Harp itself. Old Church is near Oxford College of Emory University in Oxford, Georgia, at the corner of Fletcher and Wesley Streets. For more information and directions, see www.meridianherald.org
About Meridian Herald
Meridian Herald engages southern musical, literary and spiritual traditions to affirm shared humanity, advance enduring truth, enrich the present and transform the future for individuals and communities. Meridian Herald produces concerts, story-telling, worship services and educational programs honoring the heritage and enduring power of culture, history and music in the ethnically diverse American South. In these ways we facilitate new understandings and shared expressions of the human experience.
Our events include the Higher Ground Camp Meeting, the Southern Folk Advent and the Atlanta Music Festival Concert. The music, ranging from classical to folk, African American to Appalachian, sacred to secular, traditional to avant-garde, is performed by the Meridian Chorale and other groups and soloists.
Speakers include preachers, actors, poets, historians, novelists and playwrights.
Through these profound and moving experiences, Meridian Herald affirms shared humanity, facilitates new understanding, and serves the human longing for a sacred higher ground.
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For information about Meridian Herald, Dr. Darsey, and The Meridian Chorale, please visit www.meridianherald.org.
For information about Brooks Holifield, see Brooks Holifield
For information about the Sonny Houston Band, visit http://davidbelcher.net/bbb/sonny.php.