Chicago Gospel Music Festival Preview “New Artist Showcases” will Spotlight Up-and-Coming Chicago Talent

February 4, 2015

Showcase events in Bronzeville on February 21 and on the West Side on March 14 will be held in conjunction with the 30th Chicago Gospel Music Festival, May 29-31 in Millennium Park

Mary May, 312.744.0576

Christine Carrino, 312.744.0573

In advance of the 30th Chicago Gospel Music Festival presented by the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE) this May 29-31 in Millennium Park, two New Artist Showcases will preview the festival and highlight the vibrant local gospel music community.

The FREE showcases will be held in the historic Bronzeville neighborhood on Saturday, February 21, at West Point Missionary Baptist Church (3566 S. Cottage Grove Ave.) from 6 to 9pm and on the West Side on Saturday, March 14, at the Greater Holy Temple Church of God in Christ (246 N. California) from 6 to 9pm. Each event will feature special performances by artists who will be performing at this year’s Gospel Music Festival and 12 emerging, up-and-coming musicians.

The first showcase will feature special performances by Chicago gospel artists Todd Dulaney and ONE 4 CHRIST on February 21 at West Point Missionary Baptist Church in Bronzeville, where Albertina Walker began her career. The evening will be hosted by Sonya Blakey of Inspiration 1390AM and Stellar Award-winning artist Mark Hubbard.

Todd Dulaney began his career playing baseball, including five years of pro-ball for the New York Mets. While refining his athletic skills, he accepted an invitation to travel and perform background vocals for gospel artist and Grammy® winner Smokie Norful. He has worked and shared the stage with many award-winning artists including Vanessa Bell Armstrong, Donnie McClurkin, Fred Hammond, Tye Tribett and others. Also performing that evening will be Chicago gospel choir ONE 4 CHRIST, who since 2004 has been a sought after group, inspiring audiences at every performance.

The March 14 showcase at Greater Holy Temple on the West Side will feature special performances by The Brown Sisters and Chicago artist Ryan Booker in addition to a fantastic lineup of new artists.

The Brown Sisters have performed together for many years, throughout the Midwest and at numerous Chicago Gospel Music Festivals. During their career they have performed with artists such as Aretha Franklin, Vickie Winans, The Clark Sisters, Albertina Walker, Darryl Coley, Pop & Mavis Staples, Donald Lawrence, among others.

A graduate of Columbia College Chicago, Ryan Booker interned with Grammy®-winning gospel artist Donald Lawrence. Booker’s songwriting and producing is inspired by and infused with the musical styles he heard while attending an international band camp in Germany. His debut album, We the People, was released in July 2014 and is a blend of genres including contemporary Christian and pop.

A complete lineup for each showcase can be found at

The 30th Chicago Gospel Music Festival will be held in Millennium Park this May 29-31. The free admission festival will feature local and national artists celebrating the genre’s foundational roots in Chicago. Complete details, including the full line-up, will be announced this spring.

The Chicago Gospel Music Festival is presented by the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events and is sponsored in part by Aquafina, Chicago Transit Authority, Communications Direct, Inspiration 1390 AM, LaGrou Distribution and Pepsi.

For the latest information on the Chicago Gospel Music Festival including artist information, visit, like us on Facebook at Chicago Gospel Music Festival or follow us on Twitter @ChicagoDCASE (#ChiGospelMusic).


Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events

The Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE) is dedicated to enriching Chicago’s artistic vitality and cultural vibrancy. This includes fostering the development of Chicago’s non-profit arts sector, independent working artists and for-profit arts businesses; providing a framework to guide the City’s future cultural and economic growth, via the 2012 Chicago Cultural Plan; marketing the City’s cultural assets to a worldwide audience; and presenting high-quality, free and affordable cultural programs for residents and visitors.


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