The concert title “Choose Love” was drawn from one of the songs being performed by the choir this season, “I Choose Love,” composed by Mark A. Miller with lyrics by Lindy Thompson. According to music publisher J.W. Pepper, “This soulful anthem, written in response to the tragic events that occurred at Emmanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina in 2015, is a testament to the power of forgiveness and peace.” The concerts will feature this piece and many other songs of peace, social justice, and environmental stewardship.
The theme “Choose Love” was inspired by a number of recent events, including the mass shootings in schools, our contentious political times, a multitude of natural disasters across the globe, wars and the growing fears about the degradation of environmental systems all over the planet. Throughout all this, some people consciously “choose love,” and to sing and seek music in times of joy and in times of pain. Songs help us cope, inspire us, and remind us that we are not alone. While we are constantly exposed to negative messages in mainstream and social media, some choose to join the growing movement to recognize our own humanity through all of our challenges. Music helps to define and invigorate our message of love and community, and, as many activists know, music can help change and expand our hearts.
“Music can reach under the radar directly to our hearts and souls in a much more meaningful way than speech or debate,” says RVPC Director Rob Griswell-Lowry. “Using music to deliver a message of hope, of love, of caring community – this is our best chance to help secure a better future for our children and for this beautiful blue-green planet we have the precious and precarious privilege to call ‘home’.”
The Rogue Valley Peace Choir’s 15th season culminates in the presentation of the Choose Love concert. The choir is a non-auditioned secular choir of nearly 100 voices and directed by Rob Griswell Lowry and accompanied by Mikiko Peturcelli. The choir is dedicated to building peace, equality, social justice and stewardship of our planet through song.