01/17/07 — Saints Alive will feature local church musicians

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Saints Alive will feature local church musicians

By Winkie Lee
Published in News on January 17, 2007 1:46 PM

Four years ago, people filled the sanctuary at First Presbyterian Church to hear a concert by some of Wayne County's church musicians.

The Arts Council of Wayne County is hoping history will repeat itself Jan. 26 when it brings back Saints Alive.

The concert will begin at 7:30 p.m. and be followed by a champagne and dessert reception at the Arts Council, 2406 E. Ash St. Tickets, which cost $30 each, can be purchased at the Arts Council.

This year's performers come from across the county, and not all of them are adults. Madeline Edwards, who has earned a position in the CBS Early Show's "Living Room ... Live!" talent contest, will sing. Brother and sister Andrew and Katie Harper will also perform. All are members of St. Mary Catholic Church.

"Just as the arts tries to appeal to a broad spectrum, we wanted to do that," said Liz Meador.

Ms. Meador and Harriet Pegram are serving as the program's co-chairwomen.

They recruited Mark Gourley, minister of music at St. Paul United Methodist Church, to help them select this year's performers. A couple of the musicians -- Mike Nault of Good Shepherd Lutheran and Paige Vickory Barwick of First United Methodist in Mount Olive -- are returning. The others are new to the Saints Alive program.

The purpose of this event is to serve as a showcase for local church musicians. In 2003, when the first one was held, event chairwoman Margaret Baddour said the performers were just a few of the many talented musicians local churches have, Ms. Meador said.

The other purpose is to raise money for the Arts Council.

"We're hoping to raise $10,000 for the Arts Council building," Ms. Meador said. "The windows are in terrible shape" and there are other needs.

"If we want that building to be a lecture and performance area, we need adjustments made with the screens and baffles," she says. "We want to help the Arts Council continue its mission and improve that building so it's more versatile ..."

The performers scheduled to participate in Saints Alive and the selections they will perform are:

*The BSA Gospel Singers of Greenleaf Christian Church, The Lord's Table and Saint Mark DOC Church, "Oh Happy Day" and "What if God is Unhappy With Our Praise." Members are Frank Jones, Elaine Alexander, Tiffany Alexander, Gary Barnes Sr., Gary Barnes Jr. and Renee Smith.

*Paige Vickory Barwick, "Romance No. 2" by Ludwig van Beethoven.

*Dr. Brian Watson of First Presbyterian of Mount Olive, "Silent Noon" and "The Call" by Ralph Vaughan Williams.

*Dr. Sherri-Marcia Damon of First Assembly of God, "Down From His Glory" by William E. Booth-Clibborn.

*Dr. Jeremy Thompson of First Presbyterian, "'Waltz' from Gounod's 'Faust'" by Franz Liszt and "Toccata" by Theodore Dubois.

*Mike Nault, "Prelude in C# minor" by Sergei Rachmaninoff.

*Madeline Edwards, "La Pastorella Delle Alpi" by Gioacchino Rossini and "Pie Jesu" by Andrew Lloyd Webber.

*Andrew and Katie Harper, "Serenade" by Georges Hue and "Meditation on Bach's First Prelude" by Charles Gounod.

*Querida Thompson of First Presbyterian, "Grand Duo Concertante" by Carl Maria von Weber.

The program will end with all of the artists performing "Amazing Grace."