History, with Videos

The Origins of Vocal Resistance

The first rehearsal of our community choir was February 2, 2017.

At that time, none of us had any idea how far this project would go, how many hearts it would touch. In the beginning, one thread tied us together: we were all moved by MILCK’s viral video of “I Can’t Keep Quiet” performed during the Women’s March on Washington.

Karen Buchanan posted the video on the Empower Ohio FB page. Several people commented on the post. Karen then started a Facebook page #icantkeepquiet – Central Ohio, which gave us a space to plan.

Here’s the original post, dated January 24, 2017:

The first FB post for VR

Marlene Hartzler is a choir director at North Unitarian Universalist Congregation and the church offered space for rehearsals. We created an event on the Facebook page. The first rehearsal was February 2, 2017, at 7 pm. More than 30 people showed up for the first rehearsal. Here is our first video:

At the second rehearsal, another 30+ people sang. Some were the same folks from the first rehearsal, but many new people also attended. We made two videos at the end of that practice. Anna Haught quickly emerged as a soloist with her incredible voice. Her mother, Mona, was our videographer.

February 8, 2017 (a cappella)

February 8, 2017 (with guitar and piano)

We continued to meet. Thursdays at 7 pm seemed to be a good day and time for most people. Rehearsal #3 on February 23 was larger still with almost 40 singers in attendance. We added “I’m Gonna Walk It With You” to our repertoire. Hannah Lilbit took pictures of the rehearsal. Many of these pictures are featured on the first page of our website.

February 23, 2017

Rehearsal #4 on March 2, 2017, was focused on preparing the group for its first performances: a flash mob, the “Memorial for the Portman Town Hall That Never Was,” and the International Women’s Day Rally. At this rehearsal, we added “America, the Beautiful” to our repertoire.

On March 2, the group decided on an official name. Henceforth, we would be known as VOCAL RESISTANCE. The group also worked on a mission statement, led by Stephanie Henderson and assisted by Anne Reilly, Anna Fillipi, and others.

And the rest, as they say, was history.


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