Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration Concert

Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration Concert


(audience applauds) – It is great to see
everyone here this evening. Good evening. – [Audience] Good evening. – I’m Richard Smucker, Chairman
of the Board of Trustees of the Cleveland Orchestra. And on behalf of the
orchestra’s musicians, its president and CEO, Andre Gremillet, and the staff and trustees,
I am honored to welcome you to here to beautiful Severance Hall. I also extend warm greetings
to our radio listeners on WCLV and WCPN and to those who are turning into livestream of this
concert at ideastream.org. The first Martin Luther King, Jr. concert was presented by the Cleveland Orchestra and the City of Cleveland in 1980 at the Cory United Methodist Church. 40 years later, we continue to celebrate the life and legacy of
Dr. Martin Luther King with the goal of using music
to unite our community, to keep Dr. King’s dream alive, to honor the many Clevelanders who worked alongside of Dr. King and those who continue
to work tirelessly today for racial equality and social justice. To begin this evening,
please help me welcome our good friend Reverend E. T. Caviness of the Greater Abyssinian Baptist Church, who will deliver the invocation. Following the invocation, Karen White, senior vice president
of community relations and corporate initiatives of
KeyBank, will provide remarks from our generous
concert sponsor, KeyBank. Dr. Caviness? (audience applauds) – Shall we pray? Eternal almighty and everlasting
God, our heavenly Father, thou in whom we live and
move and have our being, thou God who loveth us with
an undying and unending love, thou who art there for us in our moments of immediate, critical, and urgent need, look down upon us in this
evening hour of honor, praise, and gratitude for a
distinguished, illustrious, and altruistic prophet in the person of the Reverend Dr.
Martin Luther King, Jr. This esteemed man, who
took a fatal bullet, that justice, love, and
righteousness would reign down upon each and every one
of your precious children, for this world-renowned, celebrated, and esteemed Cleveland Orchestra, in gratitude and adoration
for its gracious generosity in gifting us a mercurial perfect talent and artistically transcendence
for such a worthy and noble and noteworthy cause, for this great community choir and its voluntary
individual participation, we pause to give thee bountiful things. May this moment, for all of us and all of our gathering here, have deep and profound meaning, have providential and eternal purpose. Grant us renewed
determination to do all we can to create a world where
all of God’s children may live together as brothers and sisters, understanding that the alternative is that we perish as fools. May this entire world be
a better and more safe and secure world because
each of us had lived in it. May each and every last one of us devote and dedicate
ourselves to the love of God, the love of country, our relatives, our friends, and the love for one another. May the peace of God that
surpasses all human understanding be ours this night, tomorrow, and forever. We pray this prayer in the
name of Him who blessed us all. This is our common prayer,
and all the people said. – [All] Amen. (audience applauds) – Thank you, Richard, and
thank you, Reverend Caviness. Good evening. – [Audience] Good evening. – On behalf of my colleagues at KeyBank, it’s my privilege to welcome
you to the 40th annual Dr. Martin Luther King,
Jr. Celebration Concert. KeyBank is proud to partner
with the Cleveland Orchestra to celebrate and remember
the significant works and sacrifices of Dr. King. Our purpose at Key is to
help our communities thrive, and there are few better
examples of a thriving community than the one we see here tonight, a diverse community that has come together in celebration of a common good. And in the spirit of
celebrating a common good, I’d like to give special
recognition to the remarkable works of our Community Service Award recipients who are doing work in Cleveland, in communities throughout Northeast Ohio, and indeed across the nation. In addition to a celebration,
tonight is also an opportunity to come together to reflect
and to remind ourselves of our responsibility
that we have to continue Dr. King’s work now and into the future. There is still so much work to
be done to achieve his dream. Dr. King set forth the path. Now is the time for each of us to give renewed energy to this journey. In Dr. King’s words,
“The time is always right “to do what is right.” – [Woman] Amen. – Please enjoy tonight’s concert, and thank you for joining
KeyBank, the Cleveland Orchestra, the MLK Celebration Chorus in honoring the life and legacy of
Martin Luther King, Jr. (audience applauds) – Thank you, Reverend Caviness and Karen, for your heartfelt thoughts. I would like to also acknowledge the many distinguished
city, county, state, and federal elected officials
in our audience tonight. Thank you so much for
joining us this evening. Now please help me welcome to the stage Mr. Jeffery Weaver, the Chairman of the Cleveland Orchestra’s
Community Engagement Committee, who will present this year’s Martin Luther King, Jr.
Community Service Awards. Thank you. (audience applauds) – Good evening. – [Audience] Good evening. – One of the highlights of my service on the board of trustees
is my annual presentation of the Martin Luther King
Jr. Community Service Award. For 17 years, the Cleveland Orchestra, in collaboration with
the City of Cleveland, has presented these awards to
individuals and organizations who have significantly impacted Cleveland in the spirit of Dr.
King’s teachings and ideas. My remarks tonight will be brief
because for the first time, we have captured our awardees on video. What you will see during the concert, each speaks passionately
in their own words about how Dr. King influenced
their life and works. Please join me now in welcoming to Severance Hall Mayor Frank G. Jackson, City Councilman Kevin Conwell, Cuyahoga County
Councilwoman Yvonne Conwell to help us honor our award winners. (audience applauds) Tonight, we are proud to recognize
four extraordinary women. First, we introduce two pioneers. Betty Pinkney, a retired
educator in the Cleveland schools and constant promoter of
civil rights in our city, is best known for her tireless
work alongside her husband, the late Arnold Pinkney,
civil rights activist, political strategist,
campaign manager, and more. Together, they knew how to mobilize and get Cleveland voters to the polls. Their massive grassroots voter effort contributed significantly to Carl Stokes becoming the first African-American
mayor of a major city and to Louis Stokes becoming
the first African-American from the State of Ohio to be elected to the United States Congress. These were two history-making firsts for Cleveland and for the nation. Our second awardee, Reverend
Joan Brown Campbell, took action when there
was strong opposition to Martin Luther King, Jr. Speaking inside her nearly all-white
Shaker Heights church in the mid-1960s. She boldly arranged for Dr. King to speak on the steps outside the church, and more than 3,000 people of color and faith gathered that day to hear the inspirational civil rights leader. This was an important
moment for Cleveland. White and black leaders
and citizens came together, not the norm of this time, to address issues of racial inequality,
social injustice, building important relationships and coalitions that endure to this day. The work of these two women,
along with many others, was pivotal in Cleveland’s
early civil rights efforts. Now, please help me welcome Betty Pinkney and Reverend Joan Brown
Campbell to the stage to receive their Martin Luther King,
Jr. Community Service Awards. (audience applauds) (audience cheers) Next, we have two practitioners
of the current day. Margaret Mitchell is president and CEO of YWCA Greater Cleveland. Under her leadership, this 150 year-old social
justice organization has been transformed, its
financial health restored, its staff and budget doubled,
its strategic focus sharpened, its relevance elevated. Margaret Mitchell is a change agent. As a result of her efforts, the YWCA is transforming Cleveland
through direct service advocacy and collaborative work in the
community focused on racism, strategic empowerment, and homelessness. Next, we also have
Congressman Marcia Fudge. – [Yvonne] Congresswoman. – Congresswoman Marcia Fudge.
(audience laughs) (audience applauds) (person whoops) For over a decade, Marcia Fudge has served the people of Ohio as a member of the United States
House of Representatives, representing the 11th
Congressional District. She serves on a long list
of critical House committees and subcommittees and is past chair of the prestigious
Congressional Black Caucus. But it was congressman Lou Stokes, her mentor and good
friend, who counseled her to focus not on positions or titles or on who you know but
on the people you serve. In creating jobs, protecting
safety-net programs, improving access to education,
healthcare, and more, Congresswoman Fudge is all about doing the right thing for work of the people. Please help me welcome to the stage Margaret Mitchell, Congresswoman
Marcia Fudge to receive their Martin Luther King,
Jr. Community Service Awards. (audience applauds) (audience cheers) (audience applauds) Miss Pinkney, Reverend Campbell, Miss Mitchell, Congresswoman Fudge, you’re not standing where
you’re supposed to be standing. (all laughing) – We’re just trying to confuse you. – (laughs) We are deeply honored with your presence here tonight and profoundly grateful
for all you’ve done for us, continuing to do so for our
community and for our lives. Congratulations, and
now the concert begins. Enjoy, everyone. (audience applauds) (lively orchestral music) (audience applauds)
(audience cheers) (projector whirs) (projector clacks) – We have some great struggles
ahead, all over the nation and right here in Cleveland,
but as we struggle, let us have the courage to be nonviolent. You see, it doesn’t take
much courage to be violent. It is ultimately the courageous
man who can be nonviolent. (audience cheers)
(audience applauds) I’m more convinced than ever before that nonviolence is the
way, that violence creates many more social problems than it solves. I believe that unarmed
truth and unconditional love will have the final word in reality. This is why right temporarily defeated is stronger than evil triumphant. I believe that even amid
today’s mortar bursts and whining bullets, there is still hope for
a brighter tomorrow. If we are going to move
on in the days ahead, we’ve gotta recognize that the destinies of the white man and the black man in this interrelated
country are tied together. Our food, our music, our language, our cultural
patterns, our material prosperity are an amalgam of black and white. We are caught in an inescapable
network of mutuality. I believe we can emerge from the bleak and desolate midnight of
man’s inhumanity to man into the bright and
glittering daybreak of freedom and justice, and I haven’t
lost faith in the future. I still feel that we can develop a kind of coalition of conscience
and, with this coalition, move on into a brighter tomorrow. And with this faith, we
will be able to transform the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. (reflective orchestral music) ♪ We shall overcome ♪ ♪ We shall overcome ♪ ♪ We shall overcome ♪ ♪ Some day ♪ ♪ Oh, deep in my heart ♪ ♪ I do believe ♪ ♪ We shall overcome ♪ ♪ Some day ♪ ♪ We’ll walk hand in hand ♪ ♪ We’ll walk hand in hand ♪ ♪ We’ll walk hand in hand ♪ ♪ Some day ♪ ♪ Oh, deep in my heart ♪ ♪ I do believe ♪ ♪ We’ll walk hand in hand ♪ ♪ Some day ♪ ♪ We shall live in peace ♪ ♪ We shall live in peace ♪ ♪ We shall live in peace ♪ ♪ Some day ♪ ♪ Deep in my heart ♪ ♪ I do believe ♪ ♪ We shall live in peace ♪ ♪ Some day ♪ ♪ We shall overcome ♪ ♪ We shall overcome ♪ ♪ We shall overcome ♪ ♪ We shall overcome ♪ ♪ We shall overcome ♪ ♪ Some day ♪ ♪ Deep in my heart ♪ ♪ I do believe ♪ ♪ We shall overcome ♪ ♪ Some day ♪ ♪ We shall overcome ♪ ♪ Some ♪ ♪ Day ♪ (audience applauds)
(audience cheers) (contemplative orchestral music) (person whoops) (lively orchestral music) (audience applauds)
(audience whoops) (lively orchestral music) ♪ Let all the world in every corner sing ♪ ♪ Let all the world in every corner sing ♪ ♪ My God and King ♪ ♪ The heavens are not too high ♪ ♪ His praise may thither fly ♪ ♪ The earth is not too low ♪ ♪ His praises there may grow ♪ ♪ Let all the world ♪ ♪ Let all the world ♪ ♪ Let all the world in every corner ♪ ♪ Sing ♪ ♪ Let all the world in every corner sing ♪ ♪ My God and King ♪ ♪ The church with psalms must shout ♪ ♪ The church with psalms must shout ♪ ♪ No door can keep them out ♪ ♪ But above all, the heart must bear ♪ ♪ The longest part ♪ ♪ Let all the world in every ♪ ♪ Let all the world ♪ ♪ Let all the world ♪ ♪ Let all the world in every corner sing ♪ ♪ In every corner sing ♪ ♪ My God and King ♪ ♪ My God and King ♪ ♪ Let all the world in every corner sing ♪ ♪ My God and King ♪ (audience applauds)
(audience cheers) (mellow orchestral music) ♪ Deep ♪ ♪ River ♪ ♪ My home is ♪ ♪ Over Jordan ♪ ♪ Oh, deep ♪ ♪ River, Lord ♪ ♪ I want to cross over ♪ ♪ Into campground ♪ ♪ Deep ♪
♪ Oh ♪ ♪ River ♪ ♪ My home is ♪ ♪ Over Jordan ♪ ♪ Oh, deep ♪ ♪ River, Lord ♪ ♪ I want to cross over ♪ ♪ Into campground ♪ ♪ Oh, don’t you want to go ♪ ♪ To that Gospel feast ♪ ♪ That promised ♪ ♪ Land ♪ ♪ Where all ♪ ♪ Is peace ♪ ♪ Oh, deep ♪ ♪ River, Lord ♪ ♪ I want to cross over ♪ ♪ Into campground ♪
♪ I want to cross over ♪ ♪ Into campground ♪ ♪ I want to cross over ♪ ♪ Into campground ♪ ♪ Oh, don’t you want to go ♪ ♪ To that Gospel feast ♪ ♪ That promised ♪ ♪ Land ♪ ♪ Where all ♪ ♪ Is peace ♪ ♪ Oh, deep ♪ ♪ River, Lord ♪ ♪ I want to cross over ♪ ♪ Into campground ♪
♪ I want to cross over ♪ ♪ Into campground ♪
♪ I want to cross over ♪ ♪ Into campground ♪ (audience applauds) (projector clacks) (projector whirs) (projector clacks) (projector clacks) (people chattering) – This is a time of change
and a time of sorrow. I have saved this one opportunity
to speak briefly to you about the mindless menace
of violence in America which again stains our land
and every one of our lives. The victims of the violence
are black and white, rich and poor, young and
old, famous and unknown. They are, most important of all, human beings whom other human
beings loved and needed. Why? What has violence ever accomplished? What has it ever created? No martyr’s cause has ever been stilled by an assassin’s bullet. Some look for scapegoats,
others look for conspiracies, but this much is clear. Violence breeds violence,
repression breeds retaliation, and only a cleansing of our whole society can remove this sickness from our souls. For there is another kind of violence, slower but just as deadly, destructive as the shot or the bomb in the night. This is the violence of institutions, indifference, inaction, and decay. This is the violence
that afflicts the poor, that poisons relations between men because their skin has different colors. This is a slow destruction of a child by hunger and schools without books and homes without heat in the winter. We must admit to ourselves
that our children’s future cannot be built on the
misfortune of another’s, but we can perhaps remember,
if only for a time, that those who live with
us are our brothers, that they share with us the
same short moment of life, that they seek, as do we,
nothing but the chance to live out their lives in
purpose and in happiness, winning what satisfaction and
fulfillment that they can. And surely we can begin
to work a little harder to bind up the wounds among
us and to become in our hearts brothers and countrymen once again. (audience applauds) (somber orchestral music) (audience applauds) (lively orchestral music) (audience applauds)
(audience cheers) (projector clacks) (projector whirs) (projector clacks) – Dr. King believed in hope. Hope is bigger than optimism. Hope is trust and faith,
and so if you have hope, you have a belief that you can be better and that you can have a better life and you can make the lives
of people around you better. – He gives you a reason
for being, and there are so many reasons why people are needed, and he makes you feel like it’s important that you’re one of ’em. – He left an incredible
roadmap for us, the depth, the strategies, the clarity
around what needed to happen. – He realized you cannot
make change from the outside. You have to make change from the inside, and that is why he
believed in nonviolence. So he knew that every
generation would have its issues in its times, and he wanted to be sure that we understood the urgency of now. He looked at the difference
he could make that day and do the best he could at that time. – He said that it’s not
the words of my enemies but the silence of my friends. We’ve got to be bolder and more courageous about practicing anti-racism
in everything that we do. – He helped to say, however
much danger might be possible, far greater than the fear of
danger was the possibility that a word could be
spoken that might save the lives of people unknown to us. (audience cheers)
(audience applauds) – His message of peace and civility, that’s good everywhere,
not just in our country. It’s good globally. – [Margaret] I believe that Dr. King did have a prophetic knowledge that his words were going to be global, and he knew that every person is valued in the human race. – [Marcia] Even in the midst of his fight, he believed in bringing everybody along, no matter where they came from, no matter their station in life. He believed that all people have value. – If you want to help
to make a bigger world, a better world, there’s
no better story to read than Dr. King’s story. The risk that he was willing to take didn’t only belong to him,
and he never acted that way. He would say, “Come on, join!” Only together are we gonna be able to make this change that we want. – I just really do hope
that people will see, as he would describe it,
his breadth and his depth, that they would understand
what he sacrificed his life for and that it was worth it. (projector clacks) (audience applauds) (inspirational orchestral music) (audience applauds) (audience cheers) (triumphant orchestral music) ♪ Lift every voice and sing ♪ ♪ ‘Til earth and heaven ring ♪ ♪ Ring with the harmonies ♪ ♪ Of liberty ♪ ♪ Let our rejoicing rise ♪ ♪ High as the listening skies ♪ ♪ Let it resound loud as the rolling ♪ ♪ Sea ♪ ♪ Sing a song full of the faith ♪ ♪ That the dark past has taught us ♪ ♪ Sing a song full of the hope ♪ ♪ That the present has brought us ♪ ♪ Facing the rising sun ♪ ♪ Of our new day begun ♪ ♪ Let us march on ’til victory ♪ ♪ Is won ♪ ♪ Stony the road we trod ♪ ♪ Bitter the chastening rod ♪ ♪ Felt in the days when hope ♪ ♪ Unborn had died ♪ ♪ Yet with a steady beat ♪ ♪ Have not our weary feet ♪ ♪ Come to the place on which our fathers ♪ ♪ Sighed ♪ ♪ We have come over a way ♪ ♪ That with tears has been watered ♪ ♪ We have come, treading our path ♪ ♪ Through the blood of the slaughtered ♪ ♪ Out from the gloomy past ♪ ♪ ‘Til now we stand at last ♪ ♪ Where the white gleam of our star ♪ ♪ Is cast ♪ ♪ God of our weary years ♪ ♪ God of our silent tears ♪ ♪ Thou who has brought us thus ♪ ♪ Far on the way ♪ ♪ Thou who has by thy might ♪ ♪ Led us into the light ♪ ♪ Keep us forever in the path ♪ ♪ We pray ♪ ♪ Lest our feet stray from the places ♪ ♪ Our God, where we met thee ♪ ♪ Lest our hearts, drunk with the wine ♪ ♪ Of the world, we forget thee ♪ ♪ Shadowed beneath the hand ♪ ♪ May we forever stand ♪ ♪ True to our God, true to our native ♪ ♪ Land ♪ (audience applauds)
(audience cheers) (audience cheers) – [Man] Nicely done. (audience whoops) (person whoops) (people chattering)

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