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KNOXVILLE — The Love United Gospel Choir has been serving the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, campus and community by ministering through song for the past 30 years.

The choir is celebrating its 30th anniversary during UT’s Homecoming, Nov. 2-4. The theme is “Celebrating the Legacy and Continuing the Vision,” and there are several events for alumni. A reunion concert featuring former members is free and open to the public.

“When you consider that over the years student organizations have come and gone, celebrating 30 years of service is a milestone in and of itself. Love United Gospel Choir continues to touch many lives through community service and tours throughout the United States,” said the choir’s adviser Jocelyn Milton.

Love United Gospel Choir helps keep alive gospel music in the African-American tradition while being a proponent of the university’s Ready for the World initiative, which emphasizes intercultural and international opportunities for students.

“LUGC embraces and epitomizes one way in which this can be accomplished. The diversity of audiences at concerts and various events continues to be a testimony of the choir’s ability to cross cultures and garner an appreciation for gospel music,” said Milton, who also is associate director of the Black Cultural Center.

Love United Gospel Choir started in 1977 as the John 23rd Singers, and they were based at St. John Baptist Church in Alcoa. The choir changed its name to reflect the love and admiration early members had for each other.

The choir is a charter member of the National Association of Collegiate Gospel Choirs for the United States and Canada and was recognized at the association’s Emerging Leaders Summit in Huntsville, Ala., last April. For spring break last year, the choir toured Mississippi, Alabama and Tennessee, performing concerts and community service to aid Hurricane Katrina relief efforts.

This year’s choir has about 80 members, and the reunion is expected to draw about 100 alumni.

Here is the anniversary schedule of events:

• Hospitality and registration, 5 p.m., Friday, Nov. 2, at the Black Cultural Center.
• Breakfast, 9 a.m., Saturday, Nov. 3, at the Black Cultural Center, $10 a person.
• Brunch, 1 p.m., Sunday, Nov. 4, University Center Ballroom, $15 a person or $25 a couple.
• Reunion Concert, 3 p.m., Sunday, Nov. 4, University Center Auditorium. Free and open to the public.

For more information about Love United Gospel Choir, go to


Elizabeth Davis, UT media relations, (865) 974-5179,

Jocelyn Milton, (865) 974-4738,