‘I was just singing ‘O Lord my God, when I in awesome wonder consider all the works your hands have made’. And it occurred to me that 14 years ago God said to me, set your band and staff aside to praise and worship me in your African way that Easter. That was the birth of African Easter cantata at Manolia hall of the Lagos City mall.
According to Ekpenyong Bassey the visioner of the concert during exclusive chat, He has been so ever faithful to sustain the vision till date.
What is Easter Cantata?
It is a Creative Fusion of Nigerian Rich Cultural Heritage with Classical and Contemporary Gospel Music and Art Form.
It is a unique musical presentation to commemorate the life of Christ featuring His Suffering, Death and Victorious Resurrection; through artistic display, musical concert and variety of art forms. This is the fourteenth edition.
Take us through your journey in the Music Industry?
KARIS Band was formally birthed in October 1986 to Evangelize through music and to set a quality/acceptable standard of worship in the Church. Over the years, we’ve traveled far and ministered in Minna, Jos, Zaria, Ilorin, Abeokuta, Ibadan, Benin City, Sabongida Ora, Asaba, Ijebu Ode, Owo, Akure, Ado Ekiti, Ile Ife, Ilesha, Enugu, Onitsha, Nnewi, Calabar, Uyo, Oron, Eket, Onna, Ikot Ekpene, Ikot Nseyen, Port Harcourt, Oweri and many more towns and villages in Nigeria and we’ve also traveled out of the country to Cities like Lome, Accra, London. We have served from the Office of the Presidency to Churches and to the streets with the message of Grace.
What are your expectations from the public for this year cantata?
Like every honest and dedicated worker, we appreciate warm reception with joy. Good attendance and the manifestation of the power of God to save, heal and deliver.
What are the challenges?
In organizing a concert of this magnitude and Gospel music generally
The challenges are enormous. Gospel Music generally requires huge financial commitment. In acquiring of the sound system and management; Maintaining and training Mass Choir, Training, Rehearsals etc. In our kind of Ministry as a Band it entails a huge outlay of funds as all members of the band must live a good life. Some of them are Family men and women. Others may be as youths that need to raised to a functional adulthood. The Ministry has to support their education and other needs. All these translate to “MONEY”
What is your philosophy of music?
Music is a medium of communication to all men and is very crucial to our very existence. Therefore – Every music worker must be musically literate.
Give an insight into African Easter Cantata 2020?
Features Classical music with a difference/ Presentation of the Handel Messiah, Soul touching Gospel music, Drama, poetry, etc.
Give list of guest artistes?
The Lineup of Ministers includes:
· All Saints (AHQ) Choir,
· The NA DCS (P) HQ Mass Choir,
· Sammie Okposo,
· CHORD 5 with Moyin Nwevo,
· FRESH OLIVE with Lizzy Ola,
· TORA with Clem Ibekwe, · KARIS BAND and family, among others