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Viewpoint Commemorates and Celebrates Black History Month and Brings the Transformative Power of Music to Our Community Once Again
Viewpoint Commemorates and Celebrates Black History Month and Brings the Transformative Power of Music to Our Community Once Again

The theme of Black History Month 2024, “African Americans and the Arts,” has been honored throughout our school for the past few weeks, starting with Healing through Music and culminating with a special guest performance by the KJLH Radio Free Voices Choir. This community gospel choir, named Stevie Wonder’s Choir, was founded in 2012 and has been the opening act for Stevie's House Full of Toys Benefit Concert over the past six years. The choir has also performed for Justin Bieber, Zendaya, Childish Gambino, and many others.

Following a rousing presentation for Viewpoint Middle School, Tyanta Snow, Choir Director of KJLH Radio Free Voices, expressed deep gratitude for the opportunity to share important stories and music with the School. "We're primarily a 90s gospel choir, but nevertheless, we remain rooted in our origins. Gospel music encompasses elements of spirituals, jazz, blues, rap, country, R&B, pop and more. In our songs, we incorporate all these influences to ensure that there's something for everyone."

"At the heart of our diversity and inclusion work live these truths: each person matters, each person should thrive in a sense of belonging, each person has opportunities to be seen and heard,” added Patricia Jackson, Director of Diversity, Inclusion, and Community Life. “Just as the choir incorporates different musical influences into their performances, we must teach, learn, and value Black History and the beautiful differences that make Our Viewpoint so special.”

During February '23 and '24, PPDI’s FAAV honored a tradition from the Black church that has been passed down through generations - after-church fellowship. During the Great Migration, this time together also became Homecoming - when Black folks who left the South would return to visit and connect with family. Folks would prepare huge, delicious traditional soul food dishes, then set the dishes out onto long tables covered with white tablecloths for all to enjoy. Women are usually dressed in white for these occasions. So, FAAV moms replicated this tradition by wearing white while serving a Homecoming type after-church fellowship meal for the BSU.

There were numerous additional opportunities for grades TK-12 to learn about Black history including a visit by Africa in America’s Kara Mack and Dante’ Fyall, who taught lessons about traditional African dances and rhythms while offering interactive performances - this, while everyone enjoyed Southern Girl Desserts. Viewpoint Upper School’s BSU hosted a celebration that showcased a performance by Viewpoint’s Step Dance Team, breakout sessions with games that tested knowledge about Black History, double dutch competitions, and more.

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