Legends Artistic Director Dennis Spears is cooking up a stirring tribute to gospel music: Sweeping Through the City, featuring Shirley Marie Graham and Sanford Moore with special guest Paris Bennett. The show debuts at 7 p.m. Saturday, February 11, followed by a second performance at 3 p.m. Sunday, February 12 at the Capri Theater, 2027 West Broadway.
Sweeping Through the City will focus on African American gospel music and artists of the ‘50s and ‘60s including the Barrett Sisters, Shirley Caesar and the Caravans, Mahalia Jackson and many more. “These are the songs that were heard in churches all across the country during the civil rights era,” said Spears. “The music will be spirited and joyful and it will bring a beautiful, bright light to North Minneapolis.”
The evening will be graced with the soaring vocals of Shirley Marie Graham and Paris Bennett. Graham is the current First Lady at Macedonia Baptist Church in Minneapolis. A longtime member of the Grammy Award-winning, Sounds of Blackness, she has traveled the world, sharing stages with Luther Vandross, Stevie Wonder, Johnny Mathis, Chaka Khan and many more. Bennett is perhaps best known for her debut as a contestant on the 5th season of American Idol. She has since released two albums, performed with her mother, Jamecia Bennett, in the Minneapolis production of Rent, and continues to perform in the Twin Cities area and across the country.
Renowned pianist, composer, arranger and producer Sanford Moore will join Graham and Bennett on stage to create a deeply moving musical experience in the true gospel tradition.
Tickets are $25, or $20 each for groups of 10 or more, and available at thecapritheater.org or Capri TicketWorks at 612-343-3390. Early ticket purchases are advised as this eagerly anticipated show is expected to sell out.
Spears programmed Sweeping Through the City for February to illuminate the rich history of gospel music and its impact around the globe. “This is our offering to our city – and the world – in honor of Black History Month,” he said.