Winnsboro Music Club presents centennial concert

Club members Kerry Matthews and Laurens Livings | Barbara Ball

WINNSBORO – “In the spring of 1921 Mrs. Robert Y. (Kate Doty) Turner gathered several of the musicians and music loving women in Winnsboro and organized the Winnsboro Music Study Club.  This year is the club’s 100th  anniversary.

To celebrate that milestone, the club members will host a concert on Sunday, Oct. 3, at 4 p.m., at Bethel A.R.P. Church in Winnsboro.

The concert will include performances by past recipients of the music club’s scholarships:  Alan Reed, Barbara Saunders Taylor, Campbell Johnson, and Tyler Lewis. In addition, young people and club members will perform compositions by Nelle McMaster Sprott, who was the daughter of a founding member and a valuable asset to the club for many years

Article two of the Constitution states that the chief function of the club is ‘for the study of music in all forms.’ 

The History of the Winnsboro Music Study Club by Maree O. Arnette states that “the club has never wavered from this purpose.  In addition to enriching the lives of its members, the Music Club has also served Winnsboro over the years.  Quietly and persistently, members have tried to make Winnsboro music-minded.  It has been a very real part of the cultural life of the town.”

Throughout the years, members of the club have sung in church choirs and joined with others in local choral groups.  In addition, they encouraged local leaders to include music in all local schools and often invited guests to perform in open meetings for the community. 

In the spring of 1956, the members decided to award a scholarship to a local student majoring in music in college.  Although the monetary amount was small, the award encouraged those who received this gift. The first of these students was Laurens McMaster Livings, who was a student at Coker College and went on to become an opera singer. Today, she teaches piano lessons and frequently performs for social gatherings and receptions.

The Oct. 3 concert will be held in the sanctuary at Bethel A.R.P. Church and will be followed by a reception to meet with the performers.  The community is invited to the centennial concert.

The church is located at 101 N Zion St, Winnsboro.

Cambpell Johnson, right, was a recipient of one of the club’s music scholarships. She performs here with siblings Evan, left, and Mary Clare.

Contact us: (803) 767-5711 | P.O. Box 675, Blythewood, SC 29016 | [email protected]