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Formed in 1993 to celebrate the tradition and inspirational root of gospel music on America’s main stages, Washington Performing Arts’ Children of the Gospel Choir showcases uniquely talented young voices in their own distinctive style of high energy performances featuring works by local and national composers. Under the artistic direction of Michele Fowlin, the choir works with some the area’s noted choral directors who enhance the choir’s training, performance quality and disciplinary skills and has shared the stage with an array of artists including Richard Smallwood, Dr. Bobby Jones, Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, Y’Anna Crawley, Kathleen Battle, Sweet Honey in the Rock, and others. Under the direction of artistic director, Stanley J. Thurston and music director, Michele Fowlin, Washington Performing Arts' Children of the Gospel choir has been featured at The White House, the Inaugural Prayer Services for President Barack Obama at the National Cathedral; the State Department; National Archives; National Cherry Blossom Parade; the Smithsonian Museums; the Harman Center for the Arts; Kennedy Center Millennium Stage; NBC's Today; and other special events. In addition, the Washington Performing Arts gospel program promotes an environment of self-confidence, teamwork, and respect; offers performance opportunities; and provides life learning tools to aid in personal and artistic growth through work with the performance choir and the annual two-week vocal music intensive workshop.