By COREY HOWELL
Arts and Entertainment Editor
There were little introductions given during last night’s Spring Concert. But, as choir adviser Mrs. Robbi J. Barber said, the choir needs little introduction. Last night, April 15, the Joyful Noise choir let their voices speak for themselves.
Led by choir director and musician Landen A. Wilson, the Joyful Noise choir, a group of sixteen Georgetown College students (along with musical accompaniment by students Wes Smith and Flint McCallum), performed a plethora of different songs, ranging from gospel to opera. Apart from wonderful group performances of songs such as “Hallelujah to the Lamb” and “Chasing After You” (led by the extremely talented and soulful voices of brothers DaVon and Deandre Pitts, also the director of the show) in which the group’s voices blended brilliantly into one joyous whole, the night also featured many solo performances by a number of immensely talented student singers.
Soprano Dawn Dailey performed “We Need to Hear from You” with a beautiful accompaniment on piano by her mother Tanya Dailey. Dawn’s performance was light and lovely, with a softness that, when necessary, gave way to a voice emanating with powerful assurance.
Fellow sopranos Wes Moses, Nikita Taggart and Stella Hundley, also performed. Wes’s rendition of “I Surrender All” was a surprise to all who had not had the pleasure of hearing him perform before. Standing at well over 6 feet, Wes’s high pitched soprano, almost falsetto, resounded with power but remained tender, reflecting the song’s message. Hundley and Taggart both denoted a shift from gospel to opera. Performing “The Ballad of Baby Doe” and “Se tu m’ami, se sospiri” respectively, the two ladies displayed absolutely stunning classical voices, making the incredibly difficult songs seem effortless even when singing in a foreign language.
The student solos finished with a performance of “Ave Maria” by baritone Shakir Mackey. A definite contrast to the high sopranos of those that had preceded him, Mackey’s deep and booming voice displayed immense confidence and command while displaying a gentleness necessary for the prayer-like nature of the song.
After two more brilliant ensembles led by director Landen Wilson and Georgetown student Sam Gilbert Wilson introduced the final act of the evening—a return performance from renowned baritone, Keith Dean. The imposing Dean filled the room with his deep and booming voice, feeling the music and the words go through him. The singer’s undeniable charisma grabbed onto the room and held tight, the audience enraptured by his gorgeous serenade.
The power of the voices of the Joyful Noise choir and the words they sang were undeniable. Throughout the evening, men and women in the audience sang along, clapped, danced in and out of their seats, whooped and hollered and most of all praised Jesus. At the start of the evening, Georgetown Students Natalie Hymer and Mary Bishop read aloud from Psalm 34 and said that through prayer and through song, the group hoped they would be able to do at least a little something to aid those struggling in the world today. And if the joy the choir brought to the John L. Hill Chapel audience is any indication, they did just that.