In the fall of 2008 KSS recorded Road to Freedom, which features readings by Bryan and Shannon Prince of first-hand accounts they have collected of enslaved people who found freedom in Canada via the Underground Railroad.
The CD was produced by renowned producer and recording arts educator Kevin Doyle at Fanshawe College in London, Ontario, and a small team of students from Fanshawe also documented the recording process on video. Above is the result.
If you enjoy the music featured in the video, you can purchase it here.
Our latest CD, Road to Freedom, released February 2009, is a tribute to those who never lost hope, and those who helped to keep that hope alive. In this recording, Karen Schuessler, the Karen Schuessler Singers and a group of friends have come together to pay tribute to those who lived through this terrible episode of North American history, those who triumphed, and those who helped. Narrations are delivered by historians Bryan and Shannon Prince. Many are actual words of men and women who were once enslaved, but found the strength and courage to seek freedom – ultimately in Canada – via the elaborate organization of ‘conductors’ and safe houses that came to be known as the Underground Railroad.
Hear the choir’s magnificent interpretations of Deep River, Amazing Grace, We Will Find a Way, Let Me Fly, Lift Ev’ry Voice and Sing, Bridge Over Troubled Water, Battle of Jericho and Freedom Trilogy. Denise Pelley is our special guest soloist, who as well as being featured in some of the choral pieces, sings Wade in the Water, Songbird, and I Know Where I’ve Been. Our first CD, Missa Gaia/Earth Mass, is an unusual work created by Paul Winter for the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, New York City, and dedicated to St. Francis. Essentially a suite with sections by various composers, it is both ecumenical and ecological. The Alaskan tundra wolf supplies the theme for the Kyrie, the humpback whale for the Sanctus, the sound of the harp seal can be heard in the Agnes Dei. Some sections are informed by Gregorian chant, others by gospel or jazz, and still others by music from Africa or Brazil. The work is eclectic, but with a common vision; The Earth is a sacred space – not unlike a cathedral. The Earth is also a miracle of grace – a gift undeserved.
Visit this space often for a wealth of background information, research and interviews about our upcoming concerts, as well as cool stuff that we've found on the Internet related to music and choral singing.
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