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Gospel Explosion will bring Area Choirs to A-State for Black History Month Celebration


JONESBORO – Area gospel choirs and other groups will come together for the second annual Gospel Explosion as part of the continuing observance of Black History Month at Arkansas State University.

The campus Black History Month celebration will conclude with the annual Gospel Explosion on Tuesday, Feb. 26, at 7 p.m. in Centennial Hall of the Carl R. Reng Student Union, sponsored by the Multicultural Center at Arkansas State.  Admission is free and everyone is welcome.

The event pays homage to gospel music and the significance it played in the history of the African American community dating back to the years following the Civil War, according to Candence Williams, program coordinator.

Participating in the program are the New Mt. Zion Baptist Church, St. Paul Missionary Baptist Church, United Voices Gospel Choir, Baptist Collegiate Ministry, and the Praise Dancers, a group of ASU students.

“Gospel music is a major influence in nearly all genres of modern popular music, from rhythm and blues to jazz, from soul to rock and roll,” Williams commented. Once defined only as religious music, gospel has gone that measure to become a major influence in American music and popular culture.

The university has been celebrating Black History Month with a series of events and programs. Other upcoming events on the schedule include:

  • The Black Student Association is hosting its annual BSA Week. Events include Black History Jeopardy in the Student Union Multicultural Center on Thursday, Feb. 21, at 5 p.m. Also, BSA’s All Black Affair will be held Friday, Feb. 22, at 7 p.m. in Centennial Hall. This is a semi-formal gala where students, faculty, and the community enjoy an evening of fine dining and music dressed in all black attire. For more information about BSA Week contact LaTasha Moore at Latasha.moore@smail.astate.edu.

  • Monday, Feb. 25, at 6 p.m. is the National Pan-Hellenic Council’s Best Steppers. This is a step show where members of historically black Greek-letter organizations perform routines of step and dance for the title of “Best Steppers” on campus. The event will be held at the Nettleton Performing Arts Center. The cost is $5 with a canned good or $7 without. For details, more information please contact Alexis Hurdle at (870) 972-2055.

For a complete list of events during Black History Month, individuals may visit the Multicultural Center‘s website, http://www.astate.edu/a/leadership-center/multicultural-center/ or call 870-680-4052.

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