Power Up Gospel Music Festival — "Your music friends are forever friends"

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“Thump thump. Thump thump,” Nicole Sinclair-Anderson says with a smile as the room fills with nervous laughter. She’s looking for a lead soloist in her “The Art of Vocal Style” workshop. Everyone’s eyes immediately go to the floor. Maura McGroarty, my high school music teacher who I haven’t seen in years, sticks her hand up and gets up to the front of the room. “How Great is Our God” comes through her deep mezzo and the room erupts with cheers and hollers as the nervousness melts away and transforms into something much more impactful. This is gospel music — people coming together through music to find joy...