People are in pain. From Partygate to Buffalo to long Covid; their pain is screaming from the headlines, stoked in the raucous debate on radio, or going viral on social. Since its birth, gospel music has roused, consoled, and re-energised people to move in the spirit to overcome individual and systemic challenges. The pandemic has triggered a sharp and searching spiritual reawakening as people reflect on how to turn their pain into purpose.
Lift Every Voice draws upon choral music beautifully infused with the operatic tones of American soprano singer NaGuanda Nobles. Featuring the London Symphony Orchestra (LSO), the concert was a delightful journey of emotions as conductor André J Thomas provided insight into the history behind the songs. Signs of the Judgement arr. Mark Butler was a sobering chanting reminder that earthly actions have reactions in the spiritual realm. Hallowed Be Thy Name was an enchantment prayer of praise and reverence. With the London Community Gospel Choir delivering a soulful sound that prompted the audience to bob their heads and clap in unison, this was definitely one of the memorable moments of the evening.
In a period where everyone is asking what it means to fulfil their purpose, this concert was an injection of life and energy
Performing alongside the LSO and the London Gospel Choir, the youngsters in the LSO Discovery Choir were delightful to watch in bright red t-shirts that signalled vibrancy and life. They belted out Shine the Light, an uplifting and foot-thumping number that gives the get-up-and-go vibe.
Uniting the voices of gospel and community choirs, Lift Every Voice speaks to themes of collaboration and discovery that are the currency of a post-pandemic world. In a period where everyone is asking what it means to fulfil their purpose, this concert was an injection of life and energy to urgently bring the answer upfront. Hold still, the Spirit is moving.