Appears on: Gospel Christmas
December 2019 will mark the 21st year of Gospel Christmas, a collaboration of the Northwest Community Gospel Chorus and the Oregon Symphony. The first concert was performed in 1999 to high acclaim, and it has evolved over the years as one of the most important holiday traditions in Portland, Oregon. The multi-cultural chorus consists of approximately 92 members from 33 houses of faith and organizations in the Portland area and beyond. There are approximately twenty singers who have been chorus members from the project’s inception.
The rhythm section is comprised of professional, highly talented, and committed musicians. The members of the trio have played for Gospel Christmas for most of the 21 years.
The chorus’ mission and commitment are to bring a message of faith, hope, love, and joy through the perpetuation of gospel music as an original American art form. It is a true blessing to have been able to share the Good News with our audiences for these many years and to have produced our first recording on our 20th anniversary in 2018.
The founding members of the choir are Charles Floyd, conductor and orchestrator; Dorothy Davis, a highly-respected leader in the Portland/Vancouver Gospel Music Workshop of America; Terry Davis, music minister at New Hope Missionary Baptist Church; and Susan Nielsen, former director of operations for the Oregon Symphony. Terry Davis relocated to Columbus, OH, following the first two years, and the choir was fortunate to have engaged Gary Hemenway to serve as music director, for which he has been dedicated and committed for 19 years.