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The successful seventh

The debate surrounding music department chairperson Ron Matthews’ real favorite  hymn was finally put to rest at the 7th Annual Music Gala on April 11.

“You told me that ‘How Great Thou Art’ was your favorite hymn,” music department co-chairperson David Bryant said.

“No… ‘Great is Thy Faithfulness’,” Matthews said.

The two proceeded to play a piano duel of epic proportions, each playing the song that they believed to be Matthews’ actual favorite. The duel ranged from the combative playing of both songs at the same time to the incorporation of banjo themes.

“We go out of our way to have fun,” Bryant said. “It’s just a great night.”

In addition to this memorable duet, the University Choir performed several pieces of its own, including “O Sifuni Mungu,” an African-themed song complete with accompanying percussion.

“The great thing about this show is just how well the University Choir performs,” Matthews said. “Seven years ago, we started this show and there were no music majors. It is great to see what God has done here.”

Furthering the broad spectrum of talent from the music department’s faculty, vocal professors Christine DeVault, Carole Latimer and Rebecca Whitlow performed songs ranging from opera to “This Little Light O’ Mine.”

The Eastern University Piano Quartet—made up of Matthews, Bryant, piano and harp professor Duncan Stearns and piano professor James Correnti—played several pieces.
“It’s so cool to see our professors performing with such passion,” first-year Emily Lynn said. “It’s why we look up to them. They’ve reached incredible goals, and it’s inspiring for us to see their work.”

The Caritas Piano Trio of Matthews, violin and viola professor Leah Kim and cello professor and EU Strings leader Ron Lipscomb, performed as well.

The show took on a more intimate feel as the selective Turning Point choir took the stage.
Unfortunately, David Kim, concertmaster of the Philadelphia Orchestra, was not able to attend as he is currently in China.

But Kim’s absence did not deter those in attendance from thoroughly enjoying themselves. One member of the audience said that they enjoy seeing the relationship that Eastern and Church of the Saviour have developed over the years.

“Of all the concerts that the music department puts on, this is the one I look forward to the most,” senior Jason Aduddell said. “I plan to continue coming to the gala even after I graduate.”

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