Annual gospel celebration underway

Chuck Reed, Staff Writer

The upcoming annual Gospel Celebration Concert May 5 marks the 24th anniversary of the event at Los Medanos College. Held only in the springtime, it welcomes students, family and friends to listen to the growing talents of the students in the choir and orchestra.

The program will include a variety of gospel songs meant to get the crowd emotionally involved, and features a plethora of titles, some slow moving pieces and others that may cause the audience to jump up and clap along with the music. A couple titles from the show that highlight the range are, “Don’t Cry” by Kirk Franklin, a slow emotional ballad, and “Hallelujah, You’re Worthy to be Praised” by Judith McAllister, a toe-tapping classic.

Teaching assistant Kadesta “Kay” Prothro-Harris said she likes “gospel taught in a formal way,” adding that gospel classes at LMC focus on the respect, quality and structure of what gospel music really is and that the upcoming concert is a celebration of that philosophy. She is so passionate about the genre that she hopes LMC will “start a gospel music degree program.”

If you would like to enjoy this annual celebration, tickets are $22 at the door, $20 in advance with children under 4 free. According to music professor Silvester Henderson, who directs the Gospel Choir, proceeds “go into a choir trust to raise funds to one day hire big name performers such as Stevie Wonder.”

The show will start at 7 p.m. in the LMC Rectal Hall. For tickets and information, call Henderson at 925-565-6107 or 925-473-7805, or email him at [email protected].

“This is a great festival to support education,” Henderson said.