Excitement for jubilee builds

By RICHARD LUKEN
Register Reporter

With perhaps the area’s most highly anticipated local gospel music concert less than six weeks away, Dee Singer has fielded more than her share of long-distance phone calls.
“This is the first call I have had this morning that wasn’t to order concert tickets,” Singer told a Register reporter today. “We’re getting excited about it.”
Singer is secretary and treasurer for the Southeast Kansas Christian Artists Series, which is hosting a “Kansas Gospel Jubilee” Aug. 28 and 29 at the Bowlus Fine Arts Center.
The musical extravaganza is noteworthy because it will feature the combined efforts of three of the country’s top gospel groups — The Booth Brothers, Legacy 5 and Greater Vision — performing on stage for the first time as a single group.
The collaboration came about after members of the three groups began working together on a single CD. The original plan was for each of the groups to record songs separately, then work together for a few other songs.
“But they had so much fun doing it, that they re-recorded most of their other songs as one group,” Singer said.
The group’s three Bowlus shows will mark the premiere of that CD, appropriately titled “Jubilee.”
Each of the three groups has performed multiple times — a combined eight in all — in front of packed houses at the Bowlus.
Singer anticipates much the same for the upcoming shows.
Ticket sales were so strong, that the performers agreed to the third show, Singer said.
“We’ve been getting calls from all over,” Singer said. “We just received an order from our 17th state — Georgia.”
Singer has heard stories of one duo driving from California, solely for the jubilee. Another carload is headed in from Wyoming.
“I know the groups are getting excited, and we’re getting excited,” Singer said. “We hope Iolans are getting excited as well.”
Tickets for the 2 and 7 p.m. Aug. 29 shows are selling rapidly, Singer cautioned. “And we want local audiences to have an opportunity to buy tickets.”
More tickets are available for the Aug. 28 show, which was not announced until after SEKCAS printed up its season tickets, Singer noted.
Organizers are putting together a red carpet arrival for the Aug. 28 show, Singer said, and other activities will fill the weekend for concert-goers. The Iola Municipal Band and Iola Barber Shop Quartet will perform at the bandstand the morning of Aug. 29, while Molly Trolley tours of historic homes and churches will follow.
“We’ve talked to a lot of the downtown merchants to let them know that we have quite a few things going on for that weekend,” Singer said. “Some of them will have different sales or specials, too.”
The jubilee shows will be at 7 p.m. Aug. 28 and 2 and 7 p.m. on Aug. 29. Orchestra tickets will sell for $25, balcony for $15. Balcony tickets for students will sell for $8. For phone or credit card orders, call 365-7496. For more information, visit sekcas.org.