Tiffany Harvey and Alexis Atherley
As the Delaware State University homecoming week comes to an end, the Dover community and DSU students came together in worship during the Sunday Gospel Concert.
The concert was held in the Education and Humanities Theater on October 28, 2018, at 7pm. The Delaware State University Gospel choir opened up the concert with multiple gospel songs as it anointed the audience with their angelic voices.
Within the audience, there were individuals both young and old, all hoping to get a taste of the spirituality the Delaware State University choir (and others) had to offer. “I know y’all came here for a concert, but y’all also came here to praise the lord,” were the words of one Antoine Jackson, the host/announcer for the night.
What Was In Store
Following DSU’s own choir, many other gospel ensembles came to the EH stage and sang multiple classic gospel songs that everyone sang along to. Kenderlyn Turner, a gospel singer, performed a cover version of the song “When The Saints Go To Worship” by Donald Lawrence. Justin Powell and Adoration, a new gospel group, also performed a song called, “Receive the Strength of God”.
Edward “Busta” Fields opened up the concert with his choir and preaching God’s word before the two special ensemble groups came to perform. The two groups included Chico Robinson and God’s Chosen, and Charles Butler and Trinity.
Charles Butler Jr., is a music teacher, director, vocalist and started the gospel group, Charles Butler and Trinity. A Washington D.C. native, he and his group were given a spot on Jawn Murray Presents Untapped, a compilation of up-and-coming gospel artists in 2011.
Two years later, Butler released his first album “Better.” In 2015, Butler was selected to lead the multi-denominational choir of 100 voices during the Million Man March 20th anniversary. In 2016, “Make It” became Butler and Trinity second album, in which it hit #2 on the Billboard’s Gospel albums chart. Butler and Trinity gospel group were influenced and inspired by gospel artists such as Shirley Caesar, Hezekiah Walker, and Kirk Franklin.
While every performance had its own version of praise to offer, what the performances had in common were the reactions they were able to get from the audience. All throughout the night, attendees were just unable to contain their excitement and enthusiasm as singalongs were prompted, and praise dancing broke out throughout the isles.
The gospel concert was made to be more than just that. Though no full sermons were given, the audience was still prompted to at times “turn to your neighbor,” as they do in church, and bestow not only words of wisdom, but also words of support. No act came to its end without the deliverance of a message or words of encouragement.
Overall, the experience that Delaware State University’s homecoming gospel concert gave was that of a church away from home.