Even though I sing in CBU’s Male Chorale, I don’t usually have the opportunity to hear other choir groups perform. Strange as it sounds, there is a good reason for this: all choir rehearsals are held at the same time on Tuesday and Thursday from 2– 4:30 p.m., which means I can’t listen in on the other groups during the week. Even our Sunday night concerts end up on the same days. If not, then they are usually in a city too far away for me to ride my bike. I mean, one of the main reasons I auditioned for Male Chorale in the first place was after I listened to the University Choir and Orchestra (UCO) in concert.
With that in mind, it’s no wonder I jumped at the idea of attending a nearby small group concert last Sunday. Rebecca Orr, a friend who I actually sang with in high school show choir, invited me and some friends to come to see her group at La Sierra Baptist church. The group is called Light and consists of seven singers (three men, four women) and a pianist. Small groups perform about as often as the actual choirs, but since they are much smaller, they can sing at smaller local churches. I actually wanted to try out for a small group this year, but the day of the audition was the day after a 12-hour Male Chorale rehearsal. My raspy, tired voice was not ready for a serious audition. At this point I still hadn’t even listened to a small group concert yet, so I was curious to see if I was missing out.
No doubt I was. With only seven singers, you can hear each individual voice and harmony so clearly, much different than the main choir groups. That sense of closeness to the performer is lost in a large room of 100 voices. Not only could we hear their voices, but they also sounded amazing. Each one of them could have easily performed solo without the group and still deliver a solid performance. With all of them singing together, I was simply left speechless. Not to give special attention to any one of them, but Desmond Clark has to have one of the widest vocal ranges I’ve ever heard. He sang all of the bass parts and then jumped up past the tenors on a couple of songs and still sounded incredible! As a fellow bass singer, I am honored to at least go to the same university as him.
Although I might be Light’s biggest fan right now, I want to emphasize how great it is that CBU sends groups like these to bless churches with worship. These students could easily use their voices to sing elsewhere, but they choose to glorify God on Sunday mornings with unfamiliar congregations. Just from the faces in the crowd at La Sierra Baptist church, I could tell that Light delivered the gospel in the best way they know how: worshipful song.