The Universal Gospel Choir kick starts an exciting 2013 season with new music director Lonnie Delisle, and assistant director and pianist Diane Lines. Lonnie and Diane team-up to lead this multi-faith powerhouse in music dangerously bound to move an audience to toe-tapping, tears, and dancing in the aisles.
Lonnie Delisle actively immersed himself in the California gospel scene, at age 17, and continued his career as music director uniting gospel with jazz, pop, rock, classical and world music. Lonnie’s music directing skills and Hammond B3 chops shone most recently with the Marcus Mosely Chorale. Lonnie brings a youthful, urban element to the spiritual music of the choir. He is excited to join the UGC’s deep-rooted community, forged over 28 years, because he “values musical authenticity, promoting what unites all faiths: love, joy, peace, and openness.”
Pianist Diane Lines is a veteran of the Vancouver music scene as a performer, bandleader and musical director. She began accompanying the UGC in 2000 under the direction of Brian Tate, and has contributed her talent, humour, and love of spirit to this choir community. She is excited to collaborate with Lonnie in creating a new season with the UGC that merges gospel, funk, classical, and world music genres.
Lonnie Delisle describes “singing as an act of empowerment—a freedom to be ourselves.“ We are a world in search of freedom and common ground, from civil rights in the United States, human rights in Russia and India, Arab Spring movements, to Aboriginal reconciliation here in Canada. In this year of the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr’s “I Have a Dream” speech, the Universal Gospel Choir honours humanity’s drive to find freedom for all people with music that moves our soul, reaching through our differences to touch our common human spirit.