Chapman Excited About Saturday Show with Orchestra
By West Kentucky Star Staff
PADUCAH - Steven Curtis Chapman will be back home on Saturday, performing at the Carson Center with the Paducah Symphony Orchestra.

Chapman told West Kentucky Star the best thing about the hometown show is that attendees are twice as likely to appreciate him, since they know him or are related to him, but he's a bit nervous, too.

Chapman said, "I am such a fan of symphony music, of getting to sing and play with the symphony, but I'm always a little intimidated by it because these are like, real musicians, you know, and I'm....I play guitar and write songs, but these are real musicians that I'm getting ready to be on stage with! It's exciting for me and the butterflies are a good thing, it's part of the excitement, and the thrill of getting to stand on stage with a full live symphony is one of my favorite things to get to do, but I'm always a little bit nervous."

The Paducah native has had a celebrated career in Christian music and has won more Dove Awards from the Gospel Music Association than anyone. So, how does he stay grounded? Chapman credits God for placing people in his life who don't get carried away by performances or accolades - especially his wife.

Chapman said, "I can come home from playing at Carnegie Hall or wherever it might be, and she's been wonderful over the years to say, 'I know they loved you in New York last night and that's awesome. I'm proud of you, way to go, but I really just need you to wash dishes and take out the trash right now.'"

Chapman says as someone who can easily get isolated because of what he does in the public eye, he values those people who have stayed close to him and aren't easily impressed. In fact he's got some friends who don't even care about music very much. 

He said, "I give the credit and the glory to God for keeping those people in my life all these years who just help keep it real."

Chapman is a 1981 Heath High School graduate, and still has family here. When he does visit, he has a few, "must see," locations.

"We always try to make our stop at Starnes' Barbecue of course, because there's only one place to get that barbecue," Chapman said. "I always love to go into Pizza Inn because that's where many Friday nights were spent after football games. It's where I lost my senior class ring. I'd just gotten it and went to the bathroom and didn't want to get soap in it. I took it off, laid it on the sink, washed my hands, walked out. Then I thought, 'oh no, I left my class ring!' - I wasn't used to having it - and went in and it was gone! I wore it for all of about two hours."

Noble Park also holds lots of memories, but one in particular.

Chapman said, "That was not only the place that I grew up every summer going and hanging out back when we had the old Funland and the train and the rides. But that was also the place where I took my girlfriend about 35 years ago and went to a little gazebo and I asked her to marry me. So that's a special place to go back to and take our kids and say, 'this is where I asked your mom to marry me,' all those years ago."

When asked about specific songs he'll play, Chapman said there are two songs that he suspects he'll have to do in every concert for the rest of his career - "Cinderella," written about living in the moment with his daughters, and "I Will Be Here," which he wrote to his wife, Mary Beth early in his career. Both songs deal with relationships and commitment to the ones we love in a fast-paced world, and the meaning of, "Cinderella," became more profound about 18 months later when one of his daughters, Maria, was tragically killed when she was struck by a vehicle in the family's driveway. 

"It not only reminds me of how short and fragile this life is and how important it is to savor those moments, but for me, with much of my music written from my faith as well, it's a song that helps me remember that I will see my daughter again and I will get to dance with her again, so that song has become exponentially more important for me and more significant for me," Chapman explained.

As of Wednesday night, the Paducah Symphony Orchestra website showed over 100 seats were still available. Click the link below to see more information or buy tickets.

On the Net:

Paducah Symphony Orchestra Website's Ticket page

Published 07:20 PM, Wednesday Feb. 13, 2019
Updated 07:20 PM, Thursday Feb. 14, 2019

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