Choir members sought for upcoming Baptist State Convention

Published 12:33 am Monday, February 12, 2018

By Morgan Mizell

NATCHEZ — The Baptist State Convention is coming in March and one local organizer hopes to attract singers from area choirs for the event.

In advance of the convention, State Music Director Lannie Spann-McBride will lead a pre-workshop for area choirs and choir members at  7 p.m. Tuesday at Pilgrim Missionary Baptist Church.

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Spann-McBride is the founder and CEO of F & S Music KC Publishing LLC. She is also an adjunct faculty member at Jackson State University and she is most remembered for her work on the soundtrack of “Mississippi Burning.”

Minister of music for Pilgrim Missionary Baptists Church and Holy Family Catholic Church, Alvin Shelby, said he hopes to see a large turn-out for the Tuesday night workshop.

“I would love to see a 100 to 150 voices present on Tuesday,” Shelby said. “A strong Natchez showing would be great and I think it would make her feel good as well.”

Shelby said the pre-workshop is something he decided to do to create more interest for the March  session of the Baptist State Convention that will take place in Natchez.

“We have held this convention for several years,” Shelby said. “While we have hosted it here in Natchez, there has been fewer Natchezians than people from other places and we hope to change that this year.”

Shelby said Tuesday’s pre-workshop will include time for people to ask questions of Spann-McBride and a time to get a better idea of what the March convention will encompass.

“This is a free workshop and is open to the public,” Shelby said. “You do not have to be an active choir member to participate.”

Shelby said much of the night will focus on singing and singing technique.

“She will teach a couple of songs,” Shelby said. “Her goal is, and has always been, to make church music better and to take it to a higher level.”

Shelby said the main goal of the pre-workshop is to raise awareness to hopefully get more participation for the convention in March. While he said he will be in attendance for Tuesday night’s event, he will not be teaching, but offering support for the guests.