North Central College - Naperville, IL

Popular Christian band MercyMe performs Oct. 9

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Contact: Nancy Dunker, associate director of public relations, 630-637-5306

Aug. 10, 2010--Contemporary Christian band MercyMe celebrates the 10-year anniversary of its breakthrough hit, "I Can Only Imagine," with a concert Oct. 9 at North Central College.

Ten years ago, MercyMe front man Bart Millard penned the song, a touchingly personal story about his father's early death that catapulted the group to nothing short of superstardom. The band's breakthrough sensation sold nearly 3 million units and aced up the charts on Top 40, adult contemporary, Christian and country charts.

The concert will begin at 8 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 9, in North Central's Pfeiffer Hall, 310 E. Benton Ave., Naperville. Tickets are $65, $55 and $40; call the North Central College Box Office at 630-637-SHOW (7469) or visit  

The down-to-earth Texas-based MercyMe was formed in the early '90s when Millard and keyboard player Jim Bryson realized music was meant to be their full-time career. Though the six-member band released six albums independently prior to getting signed, the release of their first studio album, "Almost There," instantly became a success. With the help of "I Can Only Imagine," the album became certified double platinum and reached No. 1 on the U.S. Christian chart.

Since then, MercyMe has enjoyed ongoing success with an American Music Award, two Grammy nominations, 19 No. 1 singles and five more albums-three of which have been certified gold. The group's most recent release, "The Generous Mr. Lovewell," revolves around kindness, seeing the good in others and, fittingly, loving them well.

To mark the anniversary of "I Can Only Imagine" and to celebrate one of the most powerful songs and popular groups in Christian music, MercyMe released "10," a CD/DVD set that showcases 11 No. 1 singles and videos that span the band members' careers.

This performance is one of many ongoing programs at North Central College to enrich and broaden the cultural and academic outlook for the College and community. Tickets for the 2010-2011 fine and performing arts season are on sale now for individual shows, season and series subscribers; call the box office at 630-637-SHOW (7469). For a comprehensive schedule of musical performances, theatrical and dance productions, art exhibits and lectures, visit or call 630-637-7469.