Barbara A. Lyons (pen name Antonia Harris), author of Out of the Depths: The Jonson Chronicles, Book One, will be speaking on Monday, Apr. 23, at 7 p.m., in Rodman Main Auditorium. Accomplished musician, vocalist, licensed Baptist minister, and Administrative Assistant, this is Lyons's first novel set in contemporary times?a gritty family saga that examines love in its many facets. It is a story about a soldier returning home from the war in Afghanistan after being tortured and the wife who must now deal with the side effects of her husband's PTSD. Out of the Depths is the beginning of an epic story of hope and forgiveness. It is timely, poignant, and thought provoking, filled with humor and spiritual truths that will make you laugh and cry out loud.
The pen name, Antonia Harris, was chosen to honor Lyons's mother and best friend. She uses it because she has some things to say, and the subject matters tackled are hard. Lyons says she feels much freer when allowed to use another voice. Antonia is snarky in the extreme. She's brash and bold, yet compassionate and sensitive. Antonia strives to tell the story truthfully, but she isn't shy about letting the chips fly where they may.
Lyons is a graduate from the University of California, San Diego, with a BA degree in music (vocal performance with departmental honors) and has earned a Master's Degree in Ethnomusicology from Bethel University, St. Paul, MN. She has worked in the clerical realm and in the capacity of Administrative Assistant for the past 30 years in the fields of higher education and the health industry. She has also worked in music ministry for equally as long as a musician, soloist, choir director, and as adjunct music faculty at Pomona College in Claremont, CA, and, most recently, at the University of Mount Union in Alliance, OH. Lyons has directed numerous inter-city gospel choirs and college gospel choirs, plus organized the first city-wide Gospel Music Workshop in Alliance. Recently, in collaboration with the University of Mount Union's Inspirational Voices of Praise, she presented a continuing education Gospel/Sacred Music Workshop geared toward church musicians who wished to broaden their repertoires. She is also a proud recipient of the University of Mount Union 2010 Martin Luther King, Jr. Leadership and Diversity Award. She resides in Alliance with her husband of thirty-two years.
This program is free and open to the public. No registration is needed. For more information, call the Main Library at 330-821-2665, ext. 107.