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Oratorio: I Will Tell You the Truth About This, I Will Tell You All About It


United States Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith presents a ten-poem sequence capturing the lives and stories of African American soldiers and their families during the Civil War. Derived entirely from historical record, the sequence includes the voices of a mother pleading with President Lincoln to release her son from the army, a soldier sending love his children back home, and deposition statements given by African American veterans, their widows, and descendants hoping to receive their rightful pensions. Set for choir, soprano, and baritone soloists by composer Aaron Siegel, the oratorio is a gripping tribute to these overlooked lives and stories at a pivotal time in American history. The oratorio is performed by Harlem-based choir Songs of Solomon, under the direction of Bishop Chantel Wright with soprano soloist Michele Kennedy and baritone soloist Eric McKeever.