The Bethune-Cookman College Inspirational Gospel Choir is an extracurricular activity consisting of dedicated
individuals who exemplify a deep appreciation for the music they sing. The choir renders a wide range of music to include
rock and jazzy gospel, contemporary and blues gospel, negro spirituals as well as acappella renditions.
however affords no academic credit or financial aid for the members, or financial restitution for the Coordinator; it being
a voluntary organization affording pleasure and satisfaction to those involved.
The Gospel Choir adds to the religious
atmosphere of the College and to its many collegiate activities. This organization orginally functioned for the sole purpose
of furnishing gospel music for Wednesday evening prayer meeting and was organized by the Pentecostal students. Since that
time, its purpose has broadened to include gospel music for recruiting campaigns in order to portray a religious image of
the college,as well as raise enthusiasm in prospective students for entering Bethune-Cookman College.
concerts are normally scheduled for weekends, while local community concerts are during the week. Such scheduling causes students
the least interruption of their academic endeavor. Many concerts are performed in Florida, however, the choir travels throughout
the United States.
During the Spring Vacation period, the choir schedules a ten day tour which include performances
in Texas, Louisiana, Georgia, North and South Carolinas, Tennessee, Illinois, Indiana, Virginia, Washington, D.C., Maryland,
New Jersey, Delaware, Pennsylvania, Kentucky, Ohio, and New York. Some of the Gospel Choir's crowning achievements were performing
for The American Dental Association in Orlando, FL in September 1996; Participating in the celebration of McDonalds Restaurant's
opening of their 25,000th store; Being invited to participate in a Black History Month celebration by the United States Navy
at Naval Air Station Miramar in San Diego, California; Performing for Walt Disney Corporation in Orlando, Florida on numerous
occasions and having the distinct honor of being invited by Mrs. Tipper Gore, wife of the Vice-President Al Gore to perform
at the Fifty-Second Inaugural Prayer Services in Washington, D.C. on January 20, 1993. Only three choirs in the United States
were invited to perform and the Inspirational Gospel Choir from Bethune-Cookman College was the only choir invited from Florida.
Performances and rehearsals are under the leadership of the Musical Director and Coordinator, even to include the
making of recordings. All previously made recordings have been sold, indicative of the popularity of the choir. Rehearsals
are normally conducted in Kottle 101. The Choir, in effect, competes strongly with other musical organizations on campus for
prestige and audiences attention. Rules are published for the edification of the choir members and vigorously enforced.
choir membership is composed entirely of students, which has been true from its origin. The directors, during the period of
the Choir's existence, has been students, however the need has mandated that a full time Musical Director be hired by the
Coordinator of the choir. The choir recently added a female chaperone to the staff to assist with student supervision.
was an article published recently in the Bethune-Cookman College campus newspaper, THE VOICE OF THE WILDCATS; the article,
written by a non-choir student,was entitled, "Gospel Choir: HEAVENLY MUSIC." The choir presently has a CD available entitled,"Songs
Of Inspiration." The members of the choir write some of their own music, permitting the pleasure of creativity while avoiding
the complications of copyright laws when the choir makes recordings.
For information regarding sponsorship,
please contact Mr. Ervin Ross at (386) 481-2560 or write to:
Mr. Ervin Ross, Jr., Coordinator
Inspirational Gospel Choir
640 Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune Blvd.
Beach, Florida 32115
Music Clips of the Choir Below:
CLICK HERE TO PLAY VIDEO
CLICK HERE FOR A VIDEO