UC Davis Celebrates 100th Birthday of Music Professor Emeritus Albert McNeil
College of Letters & Science
Professor Emeritus Albert J. McNeil was a transformative force in the music department during his 21 years as a faculty member (1969–90). UC Davis is celebrating McNeil’s 100th birthday.
At UC Davis, McNeil greatly increased participation in the University Chorus from an occasional course to a full public performance group, and created the University Chamber Singers. He founded a music education program and was an original faculty member of the African American and African studies program. As founder and longtime director of the Albert McNeil Jubilee Singers in Los Angeles, he had a profound effect on the performance, preservation and presentation of African American spirituals.
To celebrate the milestone, Jeffrey Day, content strategist in the College of Letters and Science created a tribute, “UC Davis Celebrates 100th Birthday of Music Professor Emeritus Albert McNeil,” which honors his illustrious career both on and off campus.
McNeil’s papers and archives are in the Gerth Archives and Special Collections at CSU Dominguez Hills. An ongoing exhibit at CSU Dominguez Hills Library prominently features McNeil and the McNeil Jubilee Singers. The exhibit, “Will the Circle Be Unbroken: The Sacred Music of the African American Diaspora,” curated by Beth McDonald, explores African American sacred music and musicians from the Los Angeles area and their impact on both sacred and secular culture. Included are photographs, posters, programs, documents, and music from the Georgia and Nolan Payton Archive of Sacred Music and the African Diaspora Sacred Music and Musicians Archive.