1780 – The Official Blog of Transylvania University

1780 | The Official Blog of Transylvania University

Artists’ discussion wraps up Transylvania’s 2021 Smith Concert virtual performance

Screen shot of Smith Concert Artists' discussion

The artists behind “The Power of Spirituals,” a virtual performance by the American Spiritual Ensemble, joined the Transylvania community for a discussion Sunday afternoon. Hosted by the university’s Office of Diversity and Inclusion, the talk focused on how the performance was inspired and created.

Filmed in part at Transylvania’s Haggin Auditorium in December 2020, the video performance combines vocals with commentary and first-person narratives selected by author Eileen Guenther from her recently published book, “In Their Own Words: Slave Life and the Power of Spirituals.” The American Spiritual Ensemble last performed on campus in 2013.

Transylvania choral director Regan MacNay led the discussion with ASE founder Everett McCorvey and author Eileen Guenther on the performance and the history and context of spirituals. 

Watch the full discussion below.