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Explore interviews with local artists, ensembles, and organizations - in a bite-sized format.

Black voices are brought to the forefront in a Kansas City choir

Robert McNichols Jr.
P. Hurley Studios
Robert McNichols Jr.

Robert McNichols Jr. of the Black Musical Arts Community Choir shares how the ensemble is redefining what Black "classical" music can sound like and how representation matters.

The Black Musical Arts Community Choir is a music organization committed to showcasing professional African-American musical artists including vocalists, instrumentalists, and composers. Founded in 2013 by Robert McNichols, Jr., BMA artists specialize in a wide range of musical genres including Concert Spirituals, Black Opera, Musical Theater, and Gospel.

Classical KC's Brooke Knoll sat down with musical director and conductor Dr. Robert McNichols Jr. to talk about the group before their April 9 performance.

Music used in this story

The Ragtime Symphonic Suite
by Stephen Flaherty

Ezekiel Saw de Wheel
Trad. arr. by William Dawson

He Never Failed Me Yet
by Robert Ray

Listen to the Lambs
Trad. arr by R. Nathaniel Dett

Free at Last from Big River
by Roger Miller

Event Details

The Black Musical Arts Community Choir performs at the Warwick Theater on Saturday, April 9th at 7:30pm. You can learn more about the group on Facebook and event details can be found at

Brooke Knoll is the digital audience specialist and afternoon host for Classical KC. You can reach her at
Sam Wisman is a Senior Producer for 91.9 Classical KC and a backup announcer for KCUR 89.3. Email him at
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