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Laura Whidden / Press

“The Berrien Springs singer-songwriter speaks candidly to audiences about her battles with bipolar disorder and severe postpartum depression. Her long-anticipated third album, "You Are," released in 2012, delves deep into those subjects. So it should come as no surprise that her first music video for the track "Table For One," which premiere's Thursday at a special concert at Andrews University's Howard Performing Arts Center, explores the ideas of both losing and finding hope again. "When I wrote the song I was fascinated with this idea of hope growing thin," Whidden says. "What would that look like? How would I respond to that? I thought, well I'd need to find a way to feed that hope. That's when I realized that we all have the ability to step into the lives of people who are losing the ability to live and share the bread of hope."”

“Laura Whidden wants you to know she's OK. That's big news for the Berrien Springs singer who has struggled with bipolar disorder since she was diagnosed with the mental illness at age 19 and more recently severe postpartum depression following the birth of her now 6-year-old daughter, Loralai. "I have great meds and great counselors and my husband has been super supportive and I'm on the other side," Whidden says. "Right now for the first time in many years I feel more well than I've ever been." And she's out to prove it. After a 10-year hiatus in local music circles, Whidden has released her long-anticipated third album, "You Are," which will make up the bulk of Saturday's set list in her debut at the Box Factory for the Arts. Recorded at Kung Fu Bakery Recordings (The Shins, Everclear) in Portland, Ore., the album features 11 original tracks highlighted by the songs "(Avery's) Bucket List," "All I Want" and the title track, which Whidden wrote for her husband, Cory Wetterlin.”

“I love that electricity that comes from telling my story to an audience and feeling them relate and respond. I tend to be very vulnerable and painfully honest about my life in my songs, so afterwards people want to share their stories with me. This connection is nothing short of divine, like God is drawing me into the lives of the people who need me, and the people who I need to know. There is something about being able to connect with so many people all in one moment...it feels like some sort of sci-fi mind meld...only no fear, only wonder is evoked.”

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