The Gathering Awareness and Book Center presented The Boys’ Choir of Tallahassee (BCT) on Saturday June 6th at the Englewood Missionary Baptist Church and blessed those in attendance with prayerful pride and solemn tears. This all male choir of ages eight to 18 turned in a stupendous performance that brought a standing ovation from the audience as they sang, danced, and mime acted their way into the hearts of the young and not-so-young audience in the sanctuary.
Reggie Dogan, of the Studer Institute Publications served as the Master of Ceremonies, with the Prayer for the service brought by Rev. John Powell of Truth for Youth. Dr. Donna Curry, Principal of Dixon School of the Arts, provided the event’s Welcome address and presented an official program agenda item listed as Love Letter to our Children.
However, beyond the performance is a deeper and more important story of how the BCT works to help young men meet their developmental needs and realize their full potential by proactively reducing risky behavior, restoring self-esteem and promoting academic success. The BCT is a community outreach program for males’ ages 8 to 18 with strategies employed by Earle Lee, Jr. the Program Director of the very talented ensemble. This strategy includes adult and peer mentoring for both academic and social skills assisting its members to develop a sense of poise and self-confidence through education and performance in a safe and supportive afterschool setting.
The Choir strives to help members develop a sense of poise and self-confidence through education and performance. Members are challenged to sing well, stand tall, stay on schedule, take pride in their appearance, respect those in charge and tap into the best part of whom he is and what he can accomplish. The key to the success of the Choir is its emphasis on discipline, hard work, responsibility and respect for oneself and others. BCT reaches out to youth to give them a sense of purpose and accomplishment through music instruction and the encouragement of a positive adult role model.
Earle Lee announced the tragic death of one of their choir members just the night before. The emotion of the loss could be seen on the face of Lee and in the depth of the performances of the choir’s members.