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Popular Christian music acts to perform at Magic Springs

By Linda Haymes

This article was published July 10, 2014 at 1:56 a.m.

Steven Curtis Chapman

Celebrate the Word concert weekend

8 p.m. Friday, Matthew West with opening act the Rhett Walker Band at 7; 8 p.m. Saturday, Steven Curtis Chapman with opening act Tim Timmons at 7 p.m., Magic Springs Water and Theme Park, 1701 E. Grand Ave. (U.S. 70 East), Hot Springs

Admission (includes lawn seating): $54.99 the day of concert ($49.99 online); $33.99 senior citizens and children shorter than 48 inches; free for children 3 and younger. Limited reserved seating, $5 or $10 additional. Season passes: $74.99.

(501) 624-0100

Four Christian music acts will help Magic Springs "Celebrate the Word" this weekend.

For the second such weekend of the current season in the water and theme park's Timberwood Amphitheater, Matthew West headlines Friday night, followed by Steven Curtis Chapman on Saturday.

"I love performing in Arkansas," Chapman says. "Great, great folks there, including one of my favorite people, Dan Fife [of Conway, who works in communications and marketing]. Dan's a great man from that area who's been key to our ministry in recent years and helps us put on quite a few concerts each year. It's always great to hug his neck."

Chapman visited the state twice last fall, performing before packed houses in Bentonville and Little Rock on a tour promoting his latest album, The Glorious Unfolding. The coast-to-coast tour began in May with a Canadian run, with sporadic dates this summer. By the fall, he says, he and his band will have played 90 dates. "We've just completed The Glorious Unfolding music video," most of it filmed in Europe, he says.

"We do plan to do a 'JOY' Christmas tour this December," Chapman says. "My good buddy Brandon Heath [a contemporary Christian musician from Nashville] will join me and I'm hoping we can get your way for that. And we just announced I'll be playing with my band and a full symphony as well as a 250-plus-voice choir at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., in June [2015]."

Chapman began his career in the late 1980s as a contemporary Christian singer-songwriter. Since then, he has released more than 20 albums, eight of them certified as gold or platinum. He has been recognized with five Grammy Awards and 58 Gospel Music Association Dove Awards, seven of the latter for "Artist of the Year."

Of his songs, 44 have become No. 1 radio hits, and he has sold more than 10 million albums.

West is based in Nashville, where he works as a contemporary Christian musician and actor. He headlines Friday night's show with the Rhett Walker Band, a Southern Christian rock band also from Nashville, as the opening act.

Having released five studio albums to date, West is best known for his songs "More," "You Are Everything" and "The Motions." He won the 2013 American Music Award for Best Contemporary Inspirational Artist and was nominated for five Dove Awards in 2005.

West's second single, "Hello, My Name Is," from his album Into the Light, held the No. 1 position on the Billboard Christian Songs chart for 17 consecutive weeks.

Weekend on 07/10/2014

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