- Faith & Family
The Historic Hampton House Community Trust (HHHCT) is led by a petite dynamo known throughout South Florida named Dr. Enid C. Pinkney, who along with an able-bodied board of trustees and advisory council, has made it her mission to lead the way in the preservation of Black culture and heritage. Their latest program is a free community concert conducted by Dr. Nelson Hall that will feature steel pan drums, hip-hop arrangements of spirituals and Handel‚ Messiah performed by a full orchestra, mass choir and selected soloists.
“Blacks can do the classics as well as anyone else and thats part of what this concert is all about,” said Hall, 57, who is the minister of music at the Church of the Open Door and a professor at Florida Memorial University (FMU). “The Messiah is a traditional classic masterwork and we wanted to share it with the people of Liberty City ‚ performed by members of the community itself. Sports is great but music is another wonderful avenue for young minds as they are developing. Wynton Marsalis is just one example of someone who is classically trained but still maintained his roots and has made it his career.”
The all-Black group of soloists are youth representing their alma maters, FMU and Westminster Choir College (NJ). The choir is made up of voices from area churches, including a large contingency from Miami Temple Seventh Day Adventist, Church of the Open Door and The Church of the Incarnation. Incarnation (1835 NW 54th Street) is the site for the concert, Bridging Classics of the Past with Classics of the Future, on Sunday, Dec. 11 at 4 p.m. Internationally-acclaimed violinist Jeffrey Hughes, who combines classical violin with soul, funk, rock, jazz and hip-hop, will also perform. FMU, female steel pan wonder, Dr. Dawn Batson, will lend her musical talents to the orchestra along with other students from the University. Vocal soloists include: Stephanie St. Come, TraKiece Douglas, J. Allen Pealer, Jr., Rubin Aponte and Victor Clairmont.
“This is one way to share the arts with the people of Brownsville and Liberty City and it is for all ages and lovers of all kinds of musical genres,” said Charlayne W. Thompkins, who chairs the Miami Messiah committee. “What’s even more exciting is having both young and old work together while highlighting the amazing talent that exists right here in our community.”The program was made possible by a Miami-Dade County matching grant but HHHTC will accept financial contributions, no matter how big or small,‚Äù that will go towards the Trust‚ continued endeavors. For more information go to www.HistoricHamptonHouseMiami.com.
By D. Kevin McNeir