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Transformed - The Musical at California University of PennsylvaniaTransformed - The Musical at California University of Pennsylvania


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Posted on October 30, 2013

Cal U students sing in the gospel choir. Transformed—The Musical: The Story of African American Gospel Music
8 p.m. Nov. 23 and 24
Blaney Theatre, inside Steele Hall
Tickets are $3.50 if purchased in advance, or $5.50 at the door
Box office: 724-938-5943

Singers from the Young and Gifted Gospel Choir will lend their voices to Transformed—The Musical:  The Story of African American Gospel Music, at 8 p.m. Nov. 23 and 24 in the Gerald and Carolyn Blaney Theatre in Steele Hall. 

The musical will be directed by Dr. Randy Tillmutt, assistant professor of music and a Frederick Douglass Institute Scholar at Cal U. It will depict the chronology and development of African-American gospel music from the 18th through the 20th centuries. 

In addition to gospel music sung by enslaved people in the American South, the production will highlight the Quartet Era, with songs popularized by the Golden Gate Quartet in the 1930s and ’40s; the music of Thomas Dorsey, known as the “father of African-American gospel music” in the 1950s and ’60s; and the gospel sounds of James Cleveland, whose musical influence stretched from the 1950s to the ’80s. 

“All these time periods represent the different styles and phases in gospel music,” Tillmutt said. “The musical will include some songs that were pivotal in the development of this music genre.” 

Soloists who auditioned earlier this semester will perform with the Young and Gifted Gospel Choir, and students from the Department of Theatre and Dance will provide production assistance.

Stage director is senior Christina King, who has dual majors in theatre and public relations, with a minor in music.

“Not only has this show lifted my spirits, but it has also been a learning process,” she said. “Gospel is a different style, so this is new, exciting and challenging for me.  … This is a wonderful senior year memory and a phenomenal experience for my future in the arts. I cannot wait for show time!” 

Ticket prices are $3.50 if purchased in advance, or $5.50 at the door. For advance tickets, call the Steele Box Office at 724-938-5943.