First Christian Church
Concert Series Ministry
The purpose of the Concert Series Ministry is to create a spiritually enriching experience through the power of music in traditional and emerging forms. This ministry is part of our vision and mission statement: to “act out our gifts in joyful Christian service…radical in hospitality, outrageous in generosity and joyful in service to God and neighbor…"
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Upcoming Programs at First Christian Church
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Hot Summer Nights: Music on the Labyrinth
All programs at 6:30 p.m.
Outdoors on the south side of the church
(will move inside for inclement weather)
Bring a chair or blanket, or just sit on the wall around the labyrinth.
A free will offering will be taken.
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Singer and Acoustic Guitar
Ray Killian, singer and acoustic guitarist will sing songs reflecting his love of nature, his passion for social justice, and the joy of performing songs by Colorado’s own John Denver. Special guests will include Manitou High School’s Mustang Chorale. A free will offering for Interfaith Hospitality Network will be taken.
Ray Killian was educated at Westminster Choir College (BS MusEd) and the University of Illinois (MM and EdD-(ABD)). While at Westminster, he sang tenor in the Westminster Choir, which toured extensively and sang under Columbia Artists Management. He studied further at the Mozarteum in Salzburg, Austria, and the Classical Music Seminar, also in Austria. Ray taught in Washington DC for twelve years, and as a conductor, his groups were recognized with the DC Mayor Arts Award and the Smithsonian Folk Life Festival (chosen over 60 choral organizations in the metro DC area). After leaving Washington DC, Ray was Admissions Director for the School of Music and taught conducting at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. He then taught in Arizona for three years (Westside Teacher of the Year/AZ Teacher of the Year nominee) before moving to Colorado. His passion for teaching music and teacher training comes from his belief that music and the arts are necessary components of life, and that music education is essential for our children. Currently Ray is the choral director for the secondary schools and Director of the Fine Arts Institute @ Manitou (FAIM), D14's acclaimed comprehensive arts program.
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Velvet Hills Show Chorus
40-member small ensemble
The Velvet Hills Chorus has been a chapter of Sweet Adelines International for over 50 years! Their 110 members are united in their love of singing four-part unaccompanied barbershop harmony. Under the direction of the dynamic Kathy Carmody, they rehearse on Monday nights and have extra weekend coaching sessions several times a year. In addition to performing in the community on a regular basis, they participate in the annual Rocky Mountain Region 8 chorus competition. The organization is dedicated to enriching the lives of its members and the community through education, performance, and musical excellence.
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Swallowtail Celtic Trio -
Hammered dulcimer, Irish Flute and Guitar
Randy Zombola, Sandy Craddock and Dan Dameron
Swallowtail is a local trio that enjoys playing Celtic/World music. Sandy Craddock is a Juilliard trained musician who brings a unique and soulful style to the group. Dan Dameron is a talented guitarist/vocalist who, in addition to providing Swallowtail with a solid and energetic rhythm base, also performs extensively as a solo guitarist and vocalist around the Colorado Springs area. Randy Zombola has played the hammered dulcimer for over 30 years and has played in several Celtic groups during this time. He won the prestigious National Hammered Dulcimer Championship in Winfield Kansas in 1988. Swallowtail has played their eclectic and exciting brand of Celtic music for over 10 years.
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All Those Who Wander
Folk Alternative Group
Danielle Park, Nick Booker and Forrest Alvarez
All Those Who Wander is a three piece folk alternative group creating original and traditional music. The group creates an eclectic mix of American, Scottish, and Irish folk styles combined with recorded sounds. From mandolin and penny whistle to tight harmonies and ballads, All Those Who Wander is a dazzling Colorado folk group making its way into the world of folk legends. The group is composed of Colorado natives Nicholas Booker, Danielle Booker, and Forrest Alvarez. All three are versatile musicians who perform on guitar, piano, penny whistle, flute, bodhran, mandolin, bouzouki, trombone, and vocals. The group is diverse in their schooled and unschooled musical backgrounds as well as their bold stylistic choices, resulting in a unique sound.
Nicholas Booker performs in a myriad of styles, from folk to classical. He has studied flute since the age of nine, but the spark for his musical inspiration was lessons, jam sessions, and a church praise group on guitar in high school. He has always had a close relationship with folk music and has loved performing his music in settings from the Sydney Opera House to Scottish pubs. He has a strong classical background and a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Denver, but his folk style is defined by bluegrass, Appalachian folk music, Canadian folk music, and Scottish and Irish folk musics. In keeping with folk traditions, he explores many instruments including guitar, flute, voice, piano, and penny whistle.
Danielle Booker is a Colorado-based musician who has enjoyed learning a wide variety of instruments over the years. She started singing at an early age, and took up the piano soon after that. At age 11 she was introduced to the trombone, and played in several Colorado honor bands through high school. She attended the University of Denver, obtaining her Bachelor of the Arts in Music in June of 2015, and played in a variety of ensembles both at the university and around Denver on trombone, euphonium, voice, penny whistle, and bodhran. Danielle also loves world music, and jumps at any opportunity to learn about music in other cultures and to try their instruments. Through the world music class at DU, she had the opportunity to perform in an impromptu Ghanaian drumming ensemble and played in a Balinese Gamelan ensemble. Though Danielle loves learning about all cultures and their music, Scottish music has always held a special place in her heart, and is currently learning to play guitar and bagpipes and would one day like to learn how to fiddle.
Forrest Alvarez has had the good fortune of playing music, often because of Nick Booker. Forrest likes music because it's a bit funny and a bit unusual. His favorite artists are Bob Dylan and Touchstone.
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Joe Uveges and John Fischer
Singer, Acoustic Guitar and Piano
Joe Uveges has been performing and writing songs on Colorado's front range for more than 22 years now. He has eight studio albums under his belt, a movie credit, publishing credits (Goodnight Kiss Music), and 130 plus shows a year for the last 15 years. A consummate veteran of concerts of every type, Joe weaves a performer's magic in numerous settings with grace and humor. As a five-time Winner of the Reader's choice Gazette “Best Of” in Colorado Springs, his most recent awards include “Solo Musician of the Year” (2011, 2012) and “Best Video to Touch the Heart” (2014) with daughter Katie Uveges (produced by Steven Norris). Joe's most recent recording was a duo project with singer/songwriter Stephanie Pauline of “More than Music” ministries on a country disc entitled When the Smoke Clears. Joe also has performed in numerous churches in a wide variety of denominations. He is currently acting music minister at High Plains Church (UU) in Colorado Springs. He also leads worship at St. Mary's High School (Catholic) for school masses. Joe resides in Colorado Springs with his wife Kristen and his two children, Katie (22) and Andrew (14). They have two cats and 14 rabbits!
John Fischer lives in Colorado Springs with his beautiful bride and his strapping young newborn son, himself a budding musician on the foot piano. By day he is an educator in Harrison School District 2, and by night he indulges in his lifelong love of music. Dabbling in Jazz, Classical music, and everything in between, his eclectic tastes keep life interesting. Other hobbies include smoking meat, making mint tea from his garden, and riding his road bike through beautiful Colorado and beyond.
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Championship Guitar Picker and Vocals
Dean Phelps, folk guitarist and singer, combines award-winning Travis-style guitar with a soulful vocal style and a wide repertoire. The result is heart-friendly songs played to a toe-tapping beat. In 2012 he won the National Thumbpick Guitar Contest in Mountain View, Arkansas, and was the thumbpick guitar champion in the Indiana State Picking and Fiddling Championships. His music is regularly featured in worship services of DisciplesNet Church, an online congregation of the Christian Church, Disciples of Christ. He is currently the interim regional minister for the Central Rocky Mountain Region of the Christian Church, Disciples of Christ, in Denver. Samples of Dean's music, as well as a list of his albums, can be found at www.deanphelpsmusic.com.