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Jeff Redding uses music to create unity for community

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Jeff Redding is the choral director at West Orange High School for 11 years.

But Redding’s gift for creating harmony — musically and racially — has brought national respect for him and his choirs, as well as rare invitations to perform with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and at New York’s Carnegie Hall.  Redding teaches in an area of West Orange County that has a history of racial division.

“The first thing Mr. Redding did on my first day of chorus was to mix us up so we were sitting next to people of other races,” said West Orange graduate Kelsey Bergh, 20. “I would not have become close to half of my friends if I had not been in his choir.”

Redding has the ability to inspire more than just the kids.

But his reach is not restricted to the young. A veteran choir director recently confided to Eichenberger that the intensity and beauty of a performance by Redding’s choir sent him back to his own students with a “renewed purpose.”

“When a guy nearing retirement watches a kid like Jeffrey and feels inspired, it’s a powerful thing,” Eichenberger said.

Read more of this inspirational story at the Orlando Sentinel

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Written by Symphony

January 24, 2008 at 7:39 pm

3 Responses

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  1. Mr. Redding is an amazing choir director. He does not tolerate separation or oppression among all races. He touches and changes lives in all the meets and teaches. His standards are higher than others and he shows that a young black male coming from a single family home can make a difference in this world. I was proud to have him as my daughters teacher for two years. We miss him and the choir dearly but he will always hold a special place in our hearts. If you ever need an example of a great man, this is the one many should emulate. We love & miss you, Mr. Redding. Love the Miller Family

    Miller

    November 5, 2008 at 1:24 pm

  2. I had the pleasure of having Mr. Redding as my choir director for the WV All-State Choir in 2009. He is the most kindhearted man. He loves what he does and he does an amazing job at it. His ability to truly see into the hearts of the students is amazing. May God bless him and his family.

    Amber Spurlock

    March 16, 2009 at 11:07 am

  3. I just recently had the honor of having Mr. Redding as my choir director for the 2009 WV All-State Choir, also. He has to be one of the most amazing directors I’ve had the pleasure of working with. He puts his heart and soul into the music, and shows that he loves what he does through his teaching. God has truely blessed him with a gift, and he uses that gift to it’s full potential. I wish nothing more than Gods bessings for him and his family.

    Seth Elmore

    March 16, 2009 at 8:30 pm


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