BUCKHANNON – A Charleston-based performance group will be making its third appearance in Buckhannon this weekend.
Consisting of roughly 44 men, Martin Luther King Jr. Male Chorus, of Charleston, West Virginia, will be offering a free concert at 5 p.m. this Sunday at the First United Methodist Church.
According to the group’s Facebook page, the male chorus is formed of both clergy and lay leaders from 26 denominationally diverse congregations from Hurricane to Oak Hill, West Virginia.
With sounds of contemporary and traditional African-American gospel music, the group has traveled all over the state and even throughout the mid-Atlantic region, stopping at big-time cities, such as St. Louis, Missouri; Columbus, Ohio; and Washington, D.C.
Throughout its years of existence, the group has performed at prisons, schools, senior centers, churches, hospitals, reunions and other engagements.
The singing group has also participated in several events and festivals throughout the state, including Multi-Fest of West Virginia, the Appalachian Children’s Chorus Holiday Concert, the Third District Annual Conference of AME churches, the U.S. Postal Service’s ceremony honoring of Randy Moss and the Black Heritage Festival in Clarksburg.
The group has been showcased at the Mountain State Forest Festival in Elkins and The Governor and First Lady’s (West Virginia) “Joyful Night” celebration, according to the chorus’ website.
So, with all that information, why not enjoy the smooth sounds of the MLK Jr. Male Chorus?
To Kristi Wilkerson, director of Christian education and programming at First UMC, folks will not be disappointed with the concert.
“The chorus has a beautiful sound. They really are wonderful musicians,” she said. “This concert offers a genre of music that is a bit different from what you might typically hear at First UMC.”
Wilkerson went on to say from her first meeting with them, the chorus members immediately became good friends.
“They offer such warmth, friendliness and hospitality. You can tell that they have a sincere interest in spreading their message — in honoring the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr. and in praising God,” she said.
And with this being the third time in the B-U community for the chorus, their performance at the church has become a tradition.
Wilkerson said the concert lasts just over an hour, with choir members enjoys engaging with the audience members before and after the program.
“They also invite some folks who they know in Buckhannon to join them in singing a couple of songs,” she added.
With temperatures expected to be in the lower 30s this Sunday, there’s no better way to warm up than listening to tunes about love and harmony in a safe space.
“We never want cost to stand in the way of someone in the community attending a program or event at First UMC,” Wilkerson said. “We want the community to know that we welcome all, and we look forward to seeing them on Sunday, January 27 at 5 p.m.”