The Southwest Arkansas Arts Council partnered with Hempstead Hall this weekend to bring Los Angeles based acapella group M-Pact to the Hempstead Hall stage.
The six-man group, which steps outside traditional acapella styling, delighted the Hope crowd with their poppy jazz vocal stylings that go beyond harmonizing, mimicking instrumental accompaniment. The group did break out a bassoon and piano for “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas”, which was one of several Christmas songs the group performed. While most of their set were Christmas songs, the group also treated the audience to some of their other favorites including a Miles Davis number where they mimicked a trumpet solo and a medley of theme songs from the Jetsons, The Price is Right, Cheers and other popular shows from years past.
M-Pact has received high praise wherever they’ve performed, and Hempstead Hall was no different. Many had never heard the group before the live performance and were impressed with the show they put on. Hempstead Hall Director Amanda Lance said she was glad they were able to book M-Pact and was thrilled with the performance. She said that she did wish more people had the opportunity to see the group perform while they were in town.
Following the show, the group took time to meet with concertgoers following the show, posing for pictures and signing autographs before heading back to California for the Christmas holiday.
M-Pact is about to celebrate its 25th anniversary and the group said they plan a new album release to mark the milestone.
The group has grown to be bigger than the people who make it up. As of 2016 no original members remain in the line-up, but the current members see the tradition that has been passed on to them through the years and are carrying it on, with their own individual styles bringing it to new audiences.
The members of M-Pact don’t just focus on group projects. A big part of what they do is outreach and education. All the members teach at some level and are also studio session performers. Incorporating themselves into the community is something they say is very important to them. They said they enjoy going into smaller communities where students don’t have many opportunities to see live performances and resources are limited. The group said they played about 40 shows this year and they mainly tour in the Christmas season and summer when they have more free time.
If you are interested in learning more about M-Pact, you can visit their website at m-pact.com.