Preparations for a Maltese choir that sings Gospel music are in their final stages before choir members leave Malta for another engagement abroad, this time in Ireland.
At the Santa Lucija Parish, in recent weeks the Joy Gospel Singers choir were meeting with another choir to practise for a gospel music concert which will take place at the end of this week in Ireland.
Music choir Director, Michelle Abela, said that the program in Ireland is packed with activities. “Friday will be the first time we meet. There will be 100 of us, divided into two groups of 50 people each. Then Saturday we have this concert in a prestigious place. Sunday there will be a Mass. ”
She explained that the aim of Gospel music was a way of giving joy and having fun while urging the the congregation to join in the choir. “We have a few negro spiritual songs like Swing Low, Sweet Chariot, Amazing Grace. But then we’ll switch to something more contemporary like Happy Days, I Will Follow Him and things that most people join in and clap to the music.”
Although the arguments during rehearsals do not abate, pianist Avertano Grech can’t imagine doing anything else. “We get on well with Michelle. Even though she says that we don’t get on but anyway. But maybe we can agree on music. We have a bit of arguments here and there. I play and everyone talking,” said the pianist Avertano Grech.
The oldest member of the choir is Victor Gatt who is 82 years old. “I lost my wife two years ago and God forbid I didn’t find this group because I would have finished up badly. They urged me to sing with them and we took it from there.”
Victor Gatt best describes the meaning of active aging. “I tell them that as much as possible they should meet people and continue doing out because if they stay indoors, their life is over.”
The Joy Gospel Singers have 49 choir singers and have been entertaining people with Gospel music since 2002.