University of Alabama at Birmingham Gospel Choir will perform with singer Alicia Olatuja, praised by The New York Times as “a singer with a strong and luscious tone and an amiably regal presence on stage.”The
The concert is set for 7 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 4, and is presented by UAB’s Alys Stephens Performing Arts Center in its Jemison Concert Hall. Tickets are $18. UAB students, employees, faculty and alumni may purchase $10 tickets; use the code "uabfamily." For tickets, call the Alys Stephens Center box office at 205-975-2787 or visit www.AlysStephens.org.
The UAB Gospel Choir is a cherished ensemble in the UAB College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Music, under the direction of founder Kevin P. Turner. The choir performs traditional and contemporary American gospel music tours throughout the United States and abroad.
Olatuja and her band will open the concert for a half-hour performance, then the UAB Gospel Choir will take the stage with Olatuja performing holiday-inspired songs with the choir. Olatuja also will conduct a private vocal master class with the voice students in the choir.
Olatuja first came into the spotlight in 2013 while performing as the featured soloist with the Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir at President Barack Obama’s second inauguration. She continues to astound audiences with her exquisite vocals, artistic versatility and captivating demeanor. She assembled her own jazz-based ensemble and recorded her first solo album, “Timeless,” in 2014.
Originally from St. Louis, Missouri, Olatuja grew up immersed in a wide range of musical styles, including gospel, soul, jazz and classical. These influences informed her artistic journey, and she graduated with a master’s degree in classical voice/opera from the Manhattan School of Music. After appearing in many operatic and musical theater productions, she now also performs in gospel and jazz concerts and has worked with esteemed artists including Chaka Khan, BeBe Winans and Christian McBride.
Since its inception in 1995, the UAB Gospel Choir has brought American gospel music from the choir stand to the classroom at UAB, and has developed a powerhouse strategy of turning out talent and presenting sold-out concerts. This highly decorated and award-winning ensemble has over the years succeeded with nationally distributed CD recordings and a performance to 5 million viewers on NBC’s “Today” show; has charted No. 1 songs on amazon.com and XM Satellite radio; and has proudly waved the UAB flag for 20 years locally, nationally and with self-funded international tours. The UAB Gospel Choir is open to all students regardless of their major. One credit hour is earned for participating. Registration is required to participate.