August 2018  
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The People

Adam Ivey

After ten years under the directorship of Patty Graham, Wings of Glory announces that Ms. Graham has retired and Mr. Adam Ivey has agreed to take over this community choir dedicated to performing Black Gospel music.

About Adam Ivey:

Adam brings a wealth of talent and an abundance of experience with him as Wings of Glory’s new director.  When you meet him you are instantly aware of his rich speaking voice, engaging smile and energy.  He was born deaf at Alta Bates hospital in Berkeley California; he received corrective surgery at a young age and has been able to hear music ever since.  His grandmother was an early influence, was very supportive of him, and bought a piano.  He was about nine when he prayed about being able to take lessons because his family couldn’t afford them.  His prayers were answered; soon he received the first of many scholarships which allowed him to study and continue his musical education.  His family continued to help make certain he was at his lessons, recitals and concerts, although he is really the only musician in his family.

At twelve years of age, Willa Thompson took an active interest in his progress and became his booking agent.  She arranged for his first recital and made it possible for him to perform at music conventions in Dallas and New Jersey.   Adam remembers being so excited to turn 13 so he could join the youth choir of the Church By The Side of the Road in Berkeley, then directed by Terrence Kelly who went on to direct the internationally known Oakland Interfaith Gospel Choir.

 While in High School, Adam studied piano with Louise Milota of the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto, Michael Orland of UC Berkeley, along with piano jazz studies with Bill Bell and Bennet Freidman, and composition with Dr. Steven Blumberg in The Young Musician’s Program  at UC. Berkeley from 1992 to 1998.  He also has received extensive training in choral directing with Dr. Johari Jabir, then at the Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, and opera training with the renown Bay Area opera singer David Tigner.

Adam has composed chamber music for the Healdsburg Jazz Festival, and a collection of gospel songs and arrangements.  Currently he arranges and writes songs for the Community Baptist Church in Santa Rosa where he is the Music Director.  Mr. Ivey lives in Santa Rosa with his lovely wife Jovan and his amazingly energetic daughter who is 2 years old. 

Adam has always felt at home with gospel music since it is a part of his life, in church and in his spirit.  He cherishes the 100 years of singing and music that lives in the rich history of this tradition.  He wants to continue that tradition in presenting performances that have great rhythm, precise harmony, and spiritually purposed singers.  He is working to expand his experiences of music, to record, and perform worldwide. 

As the new director of Wings of Glory, Adam appreciates that this local community group has an amazing and wonderful attitude along with energy and willingness to learn and use all their collective experience to make a moving gospel performance.  His goal for Wings is to share the gospel experience and perform to as wide an audience as possible, in as many venues as possible.  He is as committed to that goal as are all of the members of this enthusiastic gospel loving group.