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Paul Robeson Through His Words and Music

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 Briarcliff Congregational Church, 30 South State Road, Briarcliff, NY 10510  See map
Derrick McQueen, a gifted performer, singer and song writer, will narrate the story of Robeson, interspersed with two dozen songs that were sung by him.

Paul Robeson (1898 – 1976) was an African-American scholar, athlete, performer, and activist.  Robeson was both an actor and a singer, playing lead roles in plays by Eugene O’Neill and receiving rave reviews as Shakespeare’s Othello. He performed both classical music and spirituals, and may be best known today for his performance of “Old Man River” in Showboat.  Robeson’s commitment to civil rights and his left wing political views were not always well received and he was a highly controversial figure in this country.  In 1949, there were riots associated with his concert in Peekskill.

Derrick McQueen received a degree in Theater Arts from Drew University where he was a soloist for the Drew University Chorale. With a voice ranging almost three octaves, from baritone to tenor, he has performed a variety of music – hymns, musicals, and jazz.  Mr. McQueen is currently a Ph.D candidate at Union Theological Seminary and sings in their choir and several other choirs in New York City. 

Paul Robeson through His Words and Music is produced by the East Lynne Theater Company of West Cape May, New Jersey and was written by the company’s artistic director, Gayle Stahlhuth.

The concert will be held in the church building, located at 30 South State Road (corner of Elm Road) in Briarcliff Manor. Ample free parking is available, and there will be a reception following the program.  There is no charge for the concert but a free will collection will be taken to benefit the Kliptown Youth Program, an after school program which serves children living in one of the poorest areas of Soweto, a sprawling township outside Johannesburg, South Africa.

For further information, please contact the Church Office at 914-941-4368.


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