Evelyn Chapel to Host Festival of Spirituals and Songs

January 18, 2007

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. - Illinois Wesleyan's University Chapel Hour and Special Events and Services will host the annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Festival of Spirituals and Songs on Wednesday, Jan. 31 at 11 a.m. in Evelyn Chapel (1301 Park St., Bloomington).

The event is free and open to the public.

Since 1998, the Festival of Spirituals and Songs has celebrated the life of King through music.  IWU students and faculty will perform traditional spirituals and contemporary songs, all which have significance in Black History, particularly the civil rights movement.

The program will feature musical numbers, like "Make Them Hear You" from Ragtime, "Can't Help Lovin' dat Man of Mine" from Showboat, and "There's a Boat dat's Leavin' Soon for New York" from Porgy and Bess by George Gershwin, and old favorites, such as "Amazing Grace," "Swing Low, Sweet Chariot" by Carl Diton, "Go Down Moses" by Burleigh, and "Go Tell it On the Mountain" by Mark Hayes.  The celebration will conclude with "Wade in the Water," arranged by IWU Associate Professor of Voice Carren Moham.

Moham, who has completed doctoral research in vocal pedagogy and black music studies, is the founder and coordinator of the Festival of Spirituals and Songs.  Before joining the IWU music faculty, she performed with both national and international opera companies and symphonies.  She has won awards at several prominent vocal competitions, including the Luciano Pavarotti International Voice Competition and the Metropolitan Opera Auditions.  In 2002, Moham released her debut CD, Sonnets of Love, Rosebuds, and Death: Songs by African-American Women.

For additional information, contact the Office of Multicultural Affairs at (309) 556-3412.

Contact: Teresa Sherman, (309) 556-3181