When Shirley Anderson heard the group Re-Creation perform during a visit with family in Pennsylvania, she just knew the group would be a good fit for her church in Gastonia.
So Anderson went to bat to get the band booked at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church. It took some persuading, but she got it done.
Last year's concert here met with such a good response that Re-Creation is back again this year. The group will perform at 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 18, at the church, 805 S. York St.
Re-Creation represents Re-Creation USA, a group that performs at Veterans Affairs Medical Centers. The group also performs at churches, fairs, banquets and more, singing and dancing in a Broadway-style. It adapts its repertoire to each environment. They perform secular, Broadway, and patriotic tunes.
“It’s a very energized concert,” said Anna McMahan Houser, head of the Congregational Life committee at Holy Trinity Lutheran.
The process to bring the group to the church started two years ago with Anderson, a member of the committee. She first heard Re-Creation four years ago in her home state of Pennsylvania, where she visited every summer to care for her mother. During that trip, she heard Re-Creation was coming to the the church they attended together.
“So I went to church that morning and they sang and it just so inspired me and (was) so uplifting that they can give the gospel through song. I just thought, ‘I have got to get them to Holy Trinity,’” said Anderson.
She came back and spoke to the pastor at Trinity. Nothing happened.
The next summer, Anderson returned to Pennsylvania as usual and heard Re-Creation perform again.
“I made up my mind I was really going to plug them. We have got to bring them here,” said Anderson.
Anderson then brought up the idea of the concert to McMahan Houser. It would be another year before the church was successful in bringing Re-Creation to Gastonia.
“I bent her ear to no end,” said Anderson, said of McMahan Houser.
Re-Creation performed at Holy Trinity Lutheran last year. Ther response?
“Everyone seemed to love it. We had a lot of favorable responses. People definitely asked us to have them back,” said McMahan Houser.
Each year, Re-Creation chooses a different theme. This year’s performances will be themed “Believe.”
Admission to all Re-Creation concerts are free, though freewill offerings are taken. The group relies on donations to perform.
McMahan Houser has sent out personal invitations with posters to 15 local congregations and fellow Lutheran congregations Holy Trinity has partnered with. They’ve also reached out to the Gaston County school choral programs so choral students can get a taste of real-world performances. The rest of the community is invited, too.
“If you want to hear good gospel music, these are the people you want to listen to,” said Anderson.
For more information, call Holy Trinity Lutheran Church at 704-864-0378.
Reach reporter Brandy Beard at 704-869-1840 or firstname.lastname@example.org.