Arts and Entertainment

Gospel choir brings its sound to Wabash

Seattle Pacific University alumna Valerie McKay is hosting the Seattle Pacific University gospel choir at 5 p.m. March 8 at Wabash Presbyterian Church.

The 65-voice choir, under the direction of Stephen Michael Newby, will perform a rare “south end” concert for the public. This event is free, however donations will be accepted to help the concert raise money for a trip to perform in Boston in late March.

“It’s a wonderful concert with a big sound,” McKay said of the performing group which was started three to four years ago. “They have a Detroit-sounding gospel sound with lots of energy.”

Newby is a native of Detroit. He received his bachelor of arts in vocal music education and flute performance from Madonna College in Livonia, Mich. His master’s in music in jazz composition and arranging was earned from the University of Massachusetts. He completed his doctorate in composition at the University of Michigan, where he studied with William Albright, Michael Daugherty, George Wilson, Fred Lerdahl and Pulitzer Prize winners William Bolcom and Leslie Bassett.

“As an alumnus I represent the third generation of SPU graduates and am very excited to have this wonderful group coming to perform on the Plateau,” McKay said.

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