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Selma High schedules choral performance

Selma High senior and choir president Aubrey Perkins watched and listened carefully as his classmates emphasized notes in “Precious Lord” after school Thursday.

He chimed in with his singing voice and then with words of praise or admonishment whenever necessary.

As host of the Choral Music Festival, the choir is advocating harmony in more ways than one.

The choir will hold the second in a series of performances at 5 p.m. Sunday at the School of Discovery’s J.A. Pickard Auditorium.

The festival is not a competition, said senior Perkins. Rather, it is a chance for students from each school to fellowship with each other and use their talents to praise the Almighty.

“This has been a tradition for years and years now,” Perkins said. “It’s a good time to meet new people.”

The festival brings schools from all over the state together three times during the school year. The first performance was held in Birmingham in the fall, and the final performance is scheduled in Montgomery this spring.

Selma High’s choir will also use the occasion to honor black composers and musicians — as well as other black people of historical significance.

“This is like our big event,” noted choir director Latresha Woods, who said the festival has gone on for more than 10 years. “We honor those who paved the way in the struggle for things like Barack Obama being our president. This is the home of the Civil Rights Movement, and when we do this concert we do it in honor of those people who are living and lost their lives to help pave the way for the students to do what they’re doing. They unify in music, race, creed, color.”

Selma’s program will include one spiritual piece, one classical piece and one gospel piece.

Other local choirs performing are from Southside High and Wallace Community College.

“It’s like a family event because if you’ve been in choir before, then you’ve been around people in other choirs,” said senior Ebony Reed. “It’s a gathering of people who love to sing and praise the Lord.”