Don’t miss Gospel Mass by Robert Ray this coming Sunday, 10:00 AM, at GCC!
Chancel Choir rehearses this Saturday, May 16, from 9 – 11 AM in the sanctuary. If you would like to send your friends the graphic as an invitation, the file is here: Gospel Mass 2015 Flyer
A bit about the piece:
Robert Ray began writing Gospel Mass in 1979 on the heels of the Black Power Movement. It was the right time and place for this Northwestern University graduate, who went around the country with the Reverend Clarence Rivers advocating the use of jazz and African-American music in Catholic masses. Rivers was a musician and the first black Catholic priest in the archdiocese of Cincinnati. Ray was teaching at the University of Illinois – Urbana when he was asked to compose a Mass in the style of African-American music. It premiered in 1979 at University of Illinois – Urbana with one of Ray’s choruses. Said Ray, “God controls everything I do. It was written in about a two-week period. The hard part for me was not being a formally trained composer. The creativity was a result of divine inspiration. (God) was working with me.” Indeed, he composed the Hallelujah movement of the mass the night before the premiere. He taught it by rote to the chorus the night of the premiere performance. Robert Ray is Professor Emeritus at University of Missouri-St. Louis.