Many of the tens of thousands of people who visit Indianapolis for Classic weekend also look forward to what has become a popular staple: The Circle City Classic Gospel Explosion.
For the past 16 years the annual Gospel Explosion has treated guests to some of the most celebrated national and local artists in gospel music.
The headliner for this year’s event is Kurt Carr & The Kurt Carr Singers.
As an added convenience to gospel fans, the Gospel Explosion will take place on Sunday, Oct. 4. Previously, the event was held on the Friday before the Classic game, which forced it to compete with other Classic activities. Now fans can go to the concert on Sunday after church services.
Marc Williams, chief marketing officer and executive director of Circle City Classic, said the organization is proud of the Gospel Music Explosion because it has featured some of the greatest performers in the gospel music genre.
“Faith and the people of the faith community have always been a very important part of the success of Circle City Classic,” said Marc Williams. “With the Prayer and Praise Service at the beginning of Classic and the Gospel Explosion at the end, we go full circle.”
Since its first run in 1993, the Gospel Music Explosion has been successfully presented as a partnership between Circle City Classic and Joyful Sounds Productions (JSP), a ministry operated by Revs. Reginald and Beverly Barney.
“The Barneys are good people who are committed to quality, and we look forward to working with them again,” Williams said.
The Barneys, who are also co-pastors of a growing church called It Is Well Ministries, established JSP as a non-profit organization to assist the hungry and homeless, care for children in need, and donate to scholarship funds operated by IBE.
In addition to promoting local artists, JSP has been dedicated to presenting excellence programs featuring high profile names such as Yolanda Adams, Deitrick Haddon, Shirley Caesar, Darryl Coley, Helen Baylor, Rodnie Bryant, LaShun Pace, Rizen, and Vickie Winans, as well as gospel comedians Jonathan Slocumb and Ron Baker Jr.
“We’re dedicated to delivering an afternoon of excellent and uplifting music from some of the best praise artists in the country,” said Barney. “During these tough times, we want people who come out to leave with the hope and security that can only come from knowing that God is in complete control of our circumstances, and all we have to do is love, praise, and trust him.”
What: Circle City Classic Gospel Explosion
When: Sunday, Oct. 4 4 p.m.
Where: Madame C.J. Walker Theatre, 617 Indiana Ave.
Admission: $13 in advance; $15 at the door
Performers: Kurt Carr & The Kurt Carr Singers
Kenny Lewis and One Voice
Tyscott saxophonist, Harold Rayford
The Turning Point Family Choir
Indie-Mom of Comedy, Meshelle