Arts Center offering virtual holiday concert


ELKINS — On Wednesday at noon, The Arts Center will begin offering a virtual holiday concert featuring singer and pianist Raymond Godwin playing and singing many of your favorite Christmas songs. Recorded on Nov. 23, at The Arts Center, the concert will premiere today on The Arts Center’s YouTube channel and on its Facebook page.

The Arts Center’s Executive Director, Kurt Barkley, explained: “For the past eight months, we’ve all faced a lot of challenges, not the least of which is being isolated from others due to the pandemic situation. Here at the holidays, it’s especially difficult, so we decided to record Raymond’s show in its entirety, and offer it to our community as a way to say Thank you, and also provide some much-needed holiday cheer. We were especially interested in contacting all of the nursing homes, assisted-living facilities, and the ERCC so they could make their residents aware of the concert, and enjoy this show as much as we did in putting it together.”

With a running time of a little over an hour, the concert will be available on The Arts Center’s YouTube channel at https://youtu.be/qMHpAKHEWB4 and The Arts Center’s Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/TheArtsCenterElkinsWV until after the New Year. The concert will also begin airing on WETV Channel 3 next week.

“For the past several years, Raymond has been our go-to Brown Bag performer, and his talent and love of the holiday season makes this one of the best shows we stage all year,” said Barkley. “We’d also like to thank WETV Channel 3 for televising this special event. It will begin airing next week on WETV Channel 3.”

Musician and recording engineer Seth Maynard provided his technical expertise in recording and editing the concert. “We couldn’t have put this together without Seth, who also donated his time and skills,” said Barkley.

Godwin, a Randolph County native, is a 1974 graduate of Tygarts Valley High School and a 1978 graduate of Davis & Elkins College with Bachelor of Arts degree in history and political science.

In October 2004, he was ordained as a Roman Catholic permanent deacon. Godwin has worked at St. Brendan’s Catholic Church since early 2009 and worked at the Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston for more than four years before that. In addition, Godwin has been an aerobics teacher at the Elkins YMCA for more than 25 years and is a licensed Realtor with Re/Max Old Spruce at Snowshoe.

“I have been a musician for most of my life, primarily as a keyboardist,” Godwin said. “My mother, Frances Godwin, was a piano teacher for many years, and I took piano lessons with her for 10 years. My love of music comes directly from her. In addition to learning the classics as a child, I also found that I enjoyed playing the great standards of the 1930s and 1940s.

“Mom always had sheet music around, and I have continued to love those old songs,” he continued. “Over the years, I have had the pleasure of playing music for many weddings and other celebrations. Music is a gift that I have been given and treasure greatly. Music is an integral part of the person that I am, and has always been an important part of my life.”

For additional information contact the RCCAC, 304-637-2355, or visit our website: www.randolpharts.org.

The Randolph County Community Arts center is committed to the accommodation of all persons with disabilities. Specially-designated parking spaces are conveniently located behind the office, facing Elkins City Park. For more information or to inquire about accessibility options, please call 304-637-2355.


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