Sara Hofer – Staff Writer
This last August, Dordt University worship arts alumna Kira Waite released her first album. As a part of her senior worship arts and theological studies project this last spring, she began working on the album in March 2022 out of a culmination of her work the last few years.
Waite grew up playing the piano from a young age. That personal experience helped grow her desire and love to continue developing a strong foundation for both creative songwriting and worship ministry as she got older.
“I always knew that I wanted to be in some sort of ministry ever since I was in high school,” Waite said. “It’s where I feel the most alive, so I knew I wanted to align my workplace with my passion.”
The album contains soundtracks written and developed by Waite when she was at Dordt with the help of some friends and musicians who were also a part of the project. Other contributors to the album are Jacob Brown and Damon Groen as vocalists, Josh Gross with electric guitar, Annabelle Hosmer with cello, Joe Kamstra with bass, James Kamstra with drums, Nicholas Schnell with design, and Alex Priore as one of the producers.
A third producer along with Waite and Priore was Jeremy Perigo, Director of Campus Ministries and Worship Arts at Dordt. As one of the producers, Perigo allocated resources and created a space where Waite and the other musicians could share their talents and God- given gifts.
Throughout Waite’s four years at Dordt, Perigo watched her grow both musically and spiritually as she worked through the project, all while pursuing her worship arts degree.
“These songs are amazing examples of Kira’s creativity and musical awareness,” Perigo said. “I was able to see her pull together many aspects of her Worship Arts degree including biblical studies, theological reflection, songwriting, arranging, and production.”
Alongside Waite, Nicole Mahoney, a current sophomore worship arts major, helped with vocals and co-wrote a song in Waite’s album project. At the time, senior Waite quickly became a mentor to freshman Mahoney in developing leadership skills and furthering her faith.
“[Waite] desires to see people come into a deeper understanding of His love,” Mahoney said. “She loves the Lord deeply, and that love is evident in how she leads worship and lives every aspect of her life.”
Waite hopes people who tune in to listen will experience and understand the unique purpose each of the songs serve as the album walks through life. Each song is meant to have a meaningful purpose to meet and relate to people on where they are at on their personal journey.
“These songs have always been anthems of authentic beauty,” Waite said. “I want my listeners to know how loved they are by their Heavenly Father as they encounter my music.”