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Wednesday, January 23 , 2019, 8:38 pm | Fair 49º


Musical Celebration of Freedom Pays Tribute to Martin Luther King, Jr.

Congregation B’nai B’rith in Santa Barbara hosts free community event

Red Sea Rhythm Rockers, Unity Inspirational Ensemble, and Shir Chadash Choir to perform Jan. 18.
Red Sea Rhythm Rockers, Unity Inspirational Ensemble, and Shir Chadash Choir to perform Jan. 18. (Courtesy photo)

The public is invited to attend a Community-Wide Musical Celebration of Freedom event in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr., at an MLK shabbat service, 7:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 18, at Congregation B’nai B’rith, 1000 San Antonio Creek Road, Santa Barbara.

The free event will feature the sounds of the Red Sea Rhythm Rockers, the Unity Inspirational Ensemble, and the Shir Chadash Choir.

“It’s never a bad time to remind ourselves of all we have in common, and celebrate the spirit of freedom embodied by the work and legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr. But with all the craziness in the world these days, right now is an especially good time to come together and celebrate,” said Rob Raede, Red Sea Rhythm Rockers musical director, and co-creator of the MLK event.

A similar event was held five years ago to coincide with the 50th anniversary of MLK’s I Have A Dream speech. It was the largest event in CBB’s history at that time.

“It’s wonderful to have various religious groups join together in spirit and song to celebrate justice and freedom,” said co-creator Cantor Mark Childs, who will be playing guitar while leading his choir.

“I think the words of Martin Luther King, Jr. are as vital today as they were more than 50 years ago, as we face a rise in racism and anti-Semitism.” Childs said. “King spoke valiantly against injustice and inspired millions with his words and his deeds.”

The eclectic Red Sea Rhythm Rockers perform regularly at Congregation B’nai B’rith while the Unity Inspirational Ensemble will travel from Los Angeles and bring joyful gospel music to the Santa Barbara sanctuary. Rabbi Daniel Brenner of Congregation B’nai B’rith will deliver the sermon.

“This supportive, spiritual gathering of people of different religious traditions is exactly the type of celebration that Dr. King would have enjoyed,” Raede said. “We are carrying forth his dream to unite people of various backgrounds in a meaningful, spiritual and uplifting way.

“And I bet Dr. King would have loved the music.”

Doors open for the event at 7 p.m. For more information, visit www.cbbsb.org.

— Ann Pieramici for Congregation B’nai B’rith.


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