A Musical World
Classic with Soul


From an early age, Marcus Bedinger enjoyed crafting worlds that were all his own. Before he started singing, those worlds spilled out onto paper as short stories, poems, and even recipes. It wasn’t until middle school that Marcus found music, and more importantly his own musical voice. After lifting his first church solo before the Lord at age 11, Marcus saw an entire new world open up, and this one included other people just like him. When he participated in gospel music workshops all around his hometown of Dayton, OH, there were people who spoke his new language. And when his high school choir director, Ms. Niesley, invited him to her office to tinker around with “Sous le dôme épais” from Delibes’ Lakmé, she instilled in him a passion for the classical music language that would lead him all the way to Harlem.

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           We, Too, Sing America: American Songs Brought Beyond the Veil is Marcus’ portrait of American songs from the perspective of what sociologist, author, and civil rights activist W.E.B. DuBois coined the “double consciousness” of Black Americans. The “veil” that creates this second sight has many iterations, but We, Too examines the veil within theater and concert music. Black musicians often sing classical songs or theater compositions composed by Black composers. Unfortunately they are seldom staged, celebrated, or preserved elsewhere. Juxtapose that sentiment with the reaction to genres like the blues and Negro spirituals- created by Black people, incredibly sorrowful, yet universally acclaimed and performed by singers of all stripes. The commercial success of black anguish is what has elevated Black performers Beyond the Veil for generations. However, when that warring spirit is overcome to create positive artistry and music making, We, Too, Sing America.

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