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Jones High School celebrates 50 Years of Handel's Messiah

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Jones High School
Jones High School Concert Choir performs Handel's Messiah.

The Jones High School Concert Choir is celebrating 50 years of performing Handel’s Messiah on Thursday.

The performance will be a collaboration between the Jones High School Concert Choir and the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra.

The tradition dates back to 1971, when the high school presented Handel’s masterpiece at the first ever Walt Disney World Christmas Candlelight Service.

Jones High School’s Dr. Carl MaultsBy says he hopes concertgoers can take away a message of unity from the event.

“Here we are, still a principally African American school and choir uniting with a principally white American orchestra, singing a work by a European from the 18th century. So there's some things that are transcending time, person and place.”

He says the concert has a special mission this year.

“This performance is also a fundraiser for the Jones High School Foundation, because we are trying to send the Jones High School Concert Choir to Nashville to sing at the National Museum of African American Music as well as tour the historical black universities in the Nashville area.”

The performance will begin at 7 p.m. Thursday at the Jones High School James W. “Chief” Wilson Auditorium.

Danielle Prieur is a general assignment reporter at WMFE. You can hear her reporting on a daily basis on the station. She also fills-in as a host during the morning and afternoon drive times. Her reporting has been featured on NPR, Marketplace, Here & Now, and Vox. Danielle is originally from Rochester Hills, Michigan and is a graduate of both the University of Michigan and Northwestern University. In her free time, she enjoys playing her guitar, writing fiction, and cooking.
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