ILION -- Local singers, and musicians, are gearing up for a benefit concert to help less-fortunate students at Mohawk Valley Community College.
The concert is raising money for the school's College Community Connection (C-3) program, which helps students through its various services. Some of those services include food assistance, housing assistance, and employment assistance.
“I know how hard it is to be able to pay for college, being a parent of three college students, and anything that I can do to help them, especially doing something that I love, it’s just a plus,” said singer Tracy Bowens.
The singers say the benefit concert will be a night of soul and will pay tribute to Aretha Franklin. For singer Astena Smith, this is a full circle moment. Smith says she remembers meeting the late singer as a child.
"Singing with her at the piano, I will never forget it,” Smith said. “Singing ‘Amazing Grace’ was just absolutely awesome, and from that time on I just knew singing would be part of my life.”
The show takes place on Nov. 5th at MVCC's Schafer Theatre at 7 p.m. With two weeks until showtime, the singers say they are readier than ever to sing their hearts out for a special cause.
“Any show that is put on for something else other than ourselves is huge,” singer Zainep Abdelaal said. “We all get to experience each other and watch each other work so hard. I can’t wait for everybody to see what the hard work is going to pay off doing.”
One-hundred percent of proceeds will be donated to MVCC's C-3 program. If you want to purchase tickets for the benefit concert click here.