Voices of Mobile and the University Singers perform an original arrangement by Greg Wiggins, instructor of music, of “Go Tell it on the Mountain/O Happy Day” during UM’s Christmas Spectacular Nov. 18–21.
Photo by Christian Hilley/University of Mobile

University of Mobile helps kick off the season with annual ‘Spec’

The University of Mobile hosted its 19th Christmas Spectacular Nov. 18–21.

Listed as one of the top 25 best Christmas events in Mobile, the event featured nearly 300 people serving as vocalists, musicians, actors and tech crew members.

The vocalists and musicians performed in 20 ensembles and a 50-piece orchestra of combined students and professional mentors. They did five shows over the course of the four days.

Coordinated by UM’s Alabama School of the Arts, “Spec” — as the faithful call it — was founded by Roger Breland, an early leader in contemporary Christian music and part of the UM community since 2002.

The goal, organizers say, is to present an inspiring musical extravaganza that stirs hearts and gets everyone, from members of the audience to members of the cast, ready to experience the joy of Christmas.

Growing audience

Along with the more than 8,000 who attend in person each year, the show is now broadcast internationally.

Held at Cottage Hill Baptist Church in Mobile, the production this year included musical selections from classic carols and hymns like “Come Thou Long Expected Jesus,” “O Holy Night” and “Adeste Fideles” (“O Come All ye Faithful”) to modern favorites including “Jesus, What a Wonderful Child,” “Charlie Brown Christmas Medley” and “I Believe.”

Ticket sales help cover the cost of the production.

To order a DVD, go to universityofmobilestore.com.

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