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Aug. 26, 2004

LEWISBURG, Pa. — The New Century Singers will perform Saturday, Sept. 11, at 8 p.m. in Rooke Chapel at Bucknell University.

The concert, which is free to the public, is sponsored by the Rooke Chapel Congregation, Office of the President, Association for the Arts, Office of LGBT Awareness, Deans of Students Office, and FLAG&BT.

The New Century Singers is dedicated to singing a wide variety of Christian sacred music — from Beethoven to Bernstein, Gounod to "Godspell," early American music, spirituals and contemporary music, which includes compositions by its conductor and artistic director, The Rev. Elaine Kirkland.

Founded in 1995, the group is a voluntary, not-for-profit, non-denominational, community-based chorus from Long Island, N.Y., comprising 36 members and friends of the gay and lesbian community on Long Island,

The group's primary focus is to provide musical excellence in performance. Educationally, they present to the general public opportunities that project a positive image of the gay and lesbian community with the goal of building bridges of understanding and acceptance to the larger community.

The universal themes of healing and empowering individuals and communities are central to their work. By using the medium of choral music, they encourage understanding, respect and peaceful co-existence in the larger community and among their own singers.

In its 10-year existence, the group has performed in many places — houses of worship, schools and meeting rooms — and have participated in anti-bias rallies, anti-violence worship services, a memorial services, ordination services and many community-related fund raisers.

The chorus' most significant achievement to date was performing "Born to Manifest the Glory," a commissioned work composed and arranged by Rev. Kirkland. The work received its premiere in a public concert in June 2000.

The singers also will participate in a Taize service , led by the Rev. Elaine Kirkland, at Bucknell Friday, Sept. 10, at 7:30 p.m. in Rooke Chapel.


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