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Gospel choirs come together in the Union to sing for a common cause

Students who love music with a purpose will have something different to do this weekend.

The Bowling Green Gospel Choir is holding its 4th Annual Gospel Fest today at 7 p.m. and Saturday at 6 p.m. in the Union Ballroom.

The show will include choirs from many different colleges, including Ohio State University, University of Akron, University of Michigan, University of Toledo, and Wright State University.

Gospel recording artists Jonathan Dunn and Karen Clark Sheard also will be performing at the show.

Eugene Partridge, president of the choir, is expecting between 700 and 1,000 people to attend the show each night.

“The attendance in the past has been around 600 to 700 people each night, but advertising has been great this year, so we’re expecting people from all over to come,” Partridge said.

Shanese Wilson, coordinator and secretary of the gospel choir, asked Partridge if he needed extra help with the choir. Partridge suggested she take over because he wanted others to know what it was like to be in charge since he will be graduating in May.

Since Wilson took over, the choir has dedicated many hours to practicing Donald Lawrence’s “When The Saints Go To Worship” and L. Spencer Smith’s “Under My Feet” to sing at the show this weekend.

But Wilson said the performance isn’t just about showcasing new music.

“This event is all for God,” she said. “If you love music and you are all about church, then you should support the gospel choir.”

Joining the choir gives life-long music lovers the chance to share their talents with the University community.

Jessica Brooks, the choir’s director, has a long history of singing.

“I have been singing since I was five,” she said. “My dad is a pastor and a producer for gospel artists, and my family also sings in our church choir, so it runs in the family.”

The show will last four hours each night, and today, the BG choir will be the first choir to perform, singing for a total of 20 minutes. Saturday’s performance will be a combination of all of the choirs singing together.

“It’s a wonderful thing when you get a whole bunch of different colleges together and are able see the spirit of worship that will be there,” Partridge said. “It’s going to be a great fellowship event.”

For BGSU students, tickets are $7 on Friday, $10 on Saturday and $15 for both nights. For others, tickets are $10 on Friday, $20 on Saturday and $25 for both nights.

All of the proceeds go to funding the gospel choir’s multi-city tour, which will take place during spring break. The choir will be touring major cities such as Indianapolis, Chicago, Orlando and Atlanta.

They will be performing in high schools, colleges and churches, and may perform alongside other choirs in each city.

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