/Murrah Singers put passion on record with ‘Mighty & Joyful’ CD

Murrah Singers put passion on record with ‘Mighty & Joyful’ CD

It will now be sold to boost fundraising efforts for the award-winning, acclaimed choral program. The project was recorded last spring at St. Philip’s Episcopal Church, Jackson. It includes a father’s love, an instrumental leader’s last semester with the youths and a legendary label. There are also dozens of new voices that have been lifted in song. This collection features 18 selections from choirs such as Mendelssohn, Mozart, and Whitacre. Marc Leffler’s daughter Perry was in her senior year at Murrah, and third year in the choral program. This all began with a tugging on his ear and imagination. Leffler, creative director/writer at Maris West & Baker ad agency, says, “I fell in love with that chorus — just the power their music.” “The emotion and musicianship of that choir are just incredible to me. It’s one the greatest things that comes out the Jackson Public Schools.” Pierrdro Galllion, “Mr. Pierrdro Gallion, “Mr. Gallion says that recording was a great experience after many years of service. He also said it was a personal experience. The choir grew from a mere 15 to 20 students to an average of 70-80 kids each year. Gallion was responsible for overseeing its growth, which was “almost from ground zero with maybe 15 to 20 children, to the point where there was an average of 70-80, to 100 each year, and 100 in classes that fed into it — for 200 to 250 students on average.” It grew through the years based on our hard work, the people who saw us perform, and how serious we were about the arts. This recording is very precious to me. It seemed like a culmination of all that hardwork.” Leffler wanted the choir to be recorded while he had a connection to Malaco, so he burnt a CD with live performances and gave the demo to Tommy Couch Jr. who is Malaco’s company president. Gallion stated that Leffler put in the CD as a courtesy and was also blown away. “The recording was born after a meeting with Gallion.” The choir last recorded with Malaco back in the 1960s. Couch said, “They are just really talented and have been consistently talented for a very long time.” “You want to do your part to make the city a better place.” The session was recorded at St. Philip’s Episcopal Church because of its rich acoustics. It was a poignant experience for seniors and a source of pride for the children. It was a real dream come true. I also got to perform with some of my closest friends from high school. I even got the chance to sing with them,” Erika Crumwell, Murrah grad and now freshman at the University of Southern Mississippi. Perry Leffler, her father had been talking about possible recording for many months. “We got our best into the music.” But, when we discovered that we would be recording, we were all excited. . … We are an internationally and nationally acclaimed choir that people don’t realize. That recording was amazing! We’re doing stuff. “Look at Murrah!” Mikayla, a Murrah senior, was the artist behind the album cover. She is also the choir’s visual arts insider contact. She says, “It’s been a secret talent.” “Mr. “Mr. He said, “I wouldn’t like anyone else to do that.” She was inspired by a 1960s swirl, Murrah Mustangs school colors of blue, silver, and a sunrise as a symbol of the hopeful hope for a new day. The album layout was done by Parker Brewer, Maris West & Baker’s art director. Gallion is now the Holmes County School District’s arts coordinator and director for choral arts. Although it was difficult and bittersweet to leave Murrah, “I knew that I was going to a place where my talents were needed,” in order to create a core arts program. Gallion, a strong Christian, says that he felt God’s call to help. “These children should have the right to travel, be exposed to new locations, and to learn how to sing Mozart, just like the children in Jackson,” he says. He brings with him the same spirit that guided Murrah for a decade. Gallion states that his philosophy when it comes teaching arts, as both a teacher and a musician, is “You can’t do anything without passion.” “I discovered that the arts are our own billboard and our own advocate. “The reason that we were able travel across the country and even the ocean was because people saw the discipline, the musicality and the skill progressively growing each year. They also saw our dedication to excellence.” The Murrah Singers Booster Club president Teresa Williams calls the Murrah Singers CD “a blessing to them.” We’re pushing to get the children and program back on track and do what they do well.” The Booster Club is now taking pre-release orders for the album, at a special $10 price; email tlwilliams6@hotmail.com.