NewsBlack History Month


Killeen ISD Celebrates Black Heritage through classical music

Posted: 9:53 AM, Feb 21, 2023
Updated: 2023-02-21 15:18:06-05

KILLEEN, Texas — The sound of music can take you back to a certain place in time and for the Fine Arts students at Killeen High school.

It's also an opportunity to learn about the Black musical legends that came before them.

"When you think of music from black geniuses, you think of the kind of towards of what people want to do now, you hear kids talk about I want to be a rapper. Nobody really gets into the musical aspect of it as far as composing or arranging," says student Amaeri Covington.

From Folk to the Blues, African Americans have created, inspired and fostered different genres of music for generations including classical and contemporary music.

Legendary musical geniuses have been undervalued and ignored throughout time.

Covington shares his gratitude for the chance to learn from musicians that look just like him.

"This is why this needs to be shown because in the past just because they were different nobody wanted to play their music or hear their music. It's wonderful we have an opportunity like this to show their music to the world so we can show hey they can make just as good as music to someone to your right," he adds.

An opportunity that does that happen often in classical music.

"Killeen is one of the most diverse districts in Texas and so I looked around the district and see how we can celebrate this and how can we honor this and I just thought it is really important they hear music from their heritage, to be represented and to be heard and to talk about that because music just transcends so many other things," says Assistant Director of Fine Arts, Garth Gundersen.

Covington hopes to one day become a Band Director and teach other students the music he loves.

But until then, as a first-chair trombone player, his goal is to continue to inspire others and showcase that they too have a future in classical music.

"I always feel comfortable with music, band has always been my home, my family, it has brought a lot of passion. I am honestly really enjoying it; it is an honor to do it," says student Janiely Brito.

For more information on the Killeen ISD Fine Arts department and its upcoming events. You can visit their website here.