MIDDLETOWN — When Ryan Tremblay takes the stage this week in Panama City, Panama, during World Youth Day 2019, he will be performing before the largest crowd ever in his 10-year career as a Christian music recording artist.
The St. Lucy parishioner will perform at the Figali Convention Center before a crowd of 10,000 on a stage that has featured such superstar musicians as Jennifer Lopez, Katy Perry, Justin Bieber, Shakira, Miley Cyrus and the group Metallica.
He will join a number of other featured artists and speakers, including Los Angeles Auxiliary Bishop Robert Barron, in providing musical entertainment and inspiration to U.S. pilgrims during World Youth Day’s Fiat Festival.
“It’s going to be so special, to play in Panama in front of our United States brothers and sisters,” said Tremblay, who is traveling to Panama with a large group from the Diocese of Bridgeport, Connecticut.
“I’m grateful to Bishop Thomas J. Tobin and the Diocese of Providence for their support and look forward to representing Rhode Island and the United States proudly,” Tremblay said.
For Tremblay, 30, who grew up in Coventry, this event will be his second time on the world stage in support of his faith in the last three years.
In 2016, he performed for a crowd at World Youth Day in Poland.
This time around, Tremblay will be performing songs from his new album, entitled “Trust: An EP for Erica.” The album, a six-song collection, is dedicated to Tremblay’s sister, who died in 2015 from advanced Stage 4 inflammatory breast cancer.
Tremblay said his sister, Erica Shea, was 14 weeks pregnant when she was diagnosed with cancer. The doctors gave her a choice of keeping the baby or aborting in order to start her cancer treatments earlier.
“She courageously chose to keep her baby, even knowing that her chances of survival were lessened,” Tremblay said.
Shea died two months after giving birth to her daughter.
Tremblay said he feels tremendous gratitude at being able to perform at World Youth Day and bring his talents to the stage as part of the great work of evangelization.
“It’s a real honor and I’m happy to be invited back,” said Tremblay.
World Youth Day began on January 22 and ends on January 27.