BISHOPVILLE, SC (WIS) - Two groups who may have never crossed paths got together for a concert at Lee Correctional Institution.
College students and prisoners.
Talent is everywhere. Even behind bars.
USC Music Professor Danny Jenkins said, “I wanted my students to see incarcerated people are still people.”
Jenkins has taught music theory to prisoners at Lee Correctional since 2016. “It doesn’t matter if we’re inside or outside, we’re individuals making music together,” he said.
This fall semester, he decided he was going to have his students at USC work with inmates to create music.
The music is inspired by Leonard Bernstein’s Mass.
They discussed ideas over video conference calls for the past two months.
Today was the first time they ever met or played together.
“As soon as we sang the first notes today there was a different feeling in the room,” he said.
Jenkins said having his two worlds collide was special for him and everyone else around.
“You can feel it in your body. You were transformed by that musical experience. I think I was and I think many of them were too.”
The songs they played together were about mercy, redemption, and peace.
All of which can be found behind bars.