The University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff Vesper Choir will be presented in concert at the Indiana Street Baptist Church on Sunday, January 22nd at 4:00 pm. The concert, sponsored by the Music Department of the church, will feature traditional choral compositions, spirituals and gospel selections. The free, public concert will take place at Indiana Street Baptist church, located at 1114 Indiana Street in Pine Bluff.
2017 is of special significance to the ensemble because it marks the 70th anniversary of the founding of the Vesper Choir. The choir was founded by Professor Ariel “Pops” Lovelace, who at the time served as Chairman of the Music Department. Upon his departure, the Vesper Choir was directed for nearly 50 years by Professor Shelton J. “Fessor” McGee. Both of these men were consummate musicians and were instrumental in developing and nurturing a tradition of musical excellence that is still a hallmark of the Choir. Now under the leadership of Dr. Michael J. Bates, the Vesper Choir continues the tradition of excellence established by Professors Lovelace and McGee. Dr. Bates has enhanced that tradition via performances throughout the mid-South and across the country; a 2006 performance tour to four cities in Italy; performances at prestigious venues such as The National Cathedral in Washington D.C., and the Cathedral of St. John the Divine New York City (the fourth largest Christian church in the world), mega-churches such as The Potter’s House in Dallas and Faithful Central Bible Church in Los Angeles; and recent performances with the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra. On March 20th, 49 members of the Choir along with staff, will be traveling to Spain for a performance and educational tour.
For more information about the concert, contact the Department of Music at (870) 575-7001.