CLEVELAND — Before this year’s NFL draft picks hit the main stage, the spotlight will be on Cleveland’s All City School Choir as they help kick off the event with a special vocal performance, which will mark their first live gig since the pandemic set in.
The group of high school juniors says this experience is an opportunity of a lifetime.
It’s a pretty big deal,” said one choir member.
“It’s an amazing experience to have like colored kids from Cleveland doing this performance and actually putting Cleveland on the map. I think that’s amazing to show the talent that’s here,” another choir member added.
Their choir and musical director, Dr. David M. Taylor, says the NFL draft opportunity may be one of the best highlights of their lives and possibly the most important performance they’ll ever do. His team is ditching the nation’s anthem to fulfill the NFL’s request instead by honoring black and brown people here in Cleveland and across the country.
“We normally sing the Star-Spangled Banner,” Dr. Thomas said. This year is the first year we are doing the lift every voice and sing, the black National anthem.”
Dr. Thomas went on to say, "But for this reason and based on the social unjust things going on around the country and the world, it's really nice the NFL has zeroed in on taking the time to honor African Americans and honored the culture, the music.”
The Cleveland City All School choir will perform Thursday, April 29 at 7:30.