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This is the third in the 2023 series of videos recognizing key African American figures in the Episcopal Church and beyond.

Henry Thacker (Harry) Burleigh (December 2, 1866 – September 12, 1949) is a renowned American composer, baritone singer and was a life-long Episcopalian. He is known for his arrangements of the spirituals of enslaved African Americans, which he collected and transcribed during his travels throughout the South. He also composed many musical works, including art songs, operas and cantatas. His compositions were said to preserve the spirit of the spirituals while maintaining the integrity of classical music. He was an influential figure in the Harlem Renaissance, and his music has had a lasting impact on African American music.

The Rev. Chas Marks serves The Diocese of West Missouri as Transitions Missioner and St. Augustine’s Episcopal Church, Kansas City is its rector.

Archive Photographs:

  • Images: Public Domain / Fair Use.
  • Book Cover: From the Spiritual to the Harlem Renaissance. Amazon
  • Closing image: Harry T. Burleigh by Laura Wheeler Waring. Smithsonian.

Music: Abobe Stock

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