Live Off Beale jazz concert featuring gospel and pop music to benefit Southwest music program

Southwest Tennessee Community College will debut Memphis’ newest choral ensemble, Memphis Community Voices, featuring Southwest students and local vocalists.

For more information, contact: Diana Fedinec, Director of Public Relations and Media (901) 333-4247

Southwest Tennessee Community College will debut Memphis’ new choral ensemble, Memphis Community Voices, at Live Off Beale, a musical benefit for Southwest music students, 7-8:30 p.m., Sept. 26, at Southwest’s Union Avenue Campus Theatre, 737 Union Ave., Memphis, Tennessee.
From gospel classics, “It Is Well,” to popular songs from the Bee Gees, the event features an eclectic night of song and music performed by Memphis artists and Southwest vocal and instrumental music students.

Memphis Community Voices, an ensemble composed of community singers and Southwest students, will perform spirituals and hymns arranged for them and directed by the group’s founder, Department of Communications, Graphics and Fine Arts Professor Charles Pender. Tenor Winston Merriweather, contralto Cristian Robinson and alto LaShay Brown will accompany the group with solo performances.

“Our choral group was formed in spring out of our collective passion to preserve the arts,” said Pender. “We plan to perform two or more concerts a year and will begin formal auditions next year.”

Pender said the event’s proceeds will go directly toward music scholarships for deserving Southwest music students who need supplemental financial aid to offset the cost of their education. “State grants may cover tuition, but not supplies like headphones, recorders, and flash drives – it’s a high tech world for our students and the cost to purchase equipment adds up quickly. We have a lot of talented students and want to keep them in school.”

The event also features Classical, Blues, Jazz and Gospel musical selections performed by Memphis musicians’ violinist Tammy Holt and trumpeter Johnny Yancey, joined by Southwest student musicians. Many of the selections feature a string quartet, horn section, and a full rhythm section.

Tickets are $10 in advance; $12 at the door.  Purchase tickets online at  Donations are welcome at the event.

Special thanks to event sponsors Circle Music, Lane Music, and the Memphis Jazz Workshop.