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Symphony Travels to Shawnee for Conductor’s Last Concert

February 1, 2002

Sponsored by area churches, the 6 p.m. concert in Potter Auditorium will feature varied musical selections by the 80-member ensemble.

Jon Duncan, worship and music ministries specialist at the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma, is the founding conductor of the group. The concert at OBU will mark the last event for Duncan with the BGCO.

Duncan will start as the director of worship and church music ministries at the Georgia Baptist Convention in mid-February.

Established in 1993, the orchestra is the only one of its kind in the Southern Baptist Convention. The group is made up of volunteers from different professions: computer analysts, builders, nurses, college students, band directors, housewives, pastors, and ministers of music. The instrumentalists hail from Ardmore, Tahlequah, Lawton, Miami, Grove, Ada, Guymon, Washington, Ponca City, Tulsa, and the OKC metro area.

The symphony incorporates video and slide presentations into their concerts in an effort to fulfill their mission statement. The group aims to provide a spiritual focus with their music which will emphasize the beauty of God's creation, point people to Christ and lead people to worship.

They also try to promote interest in instrumental ministry throughout the state and the nation.

Duncan has been significant in carrying out this mission in the Shawnee area, said J.C. Farrand, minister of music at First Baptist Church in Shawnee.

"He has had a tremendous impact on people in this area," said Farrand. "As the coordinator for the Oklahoma Baptist Youth All-State Choir and founding conductor of the symphony, he has influenced many Oklahoma Baptists, particularly in the Pott-Lincoln area."

The concert is free and open to the public.