The jubilate! (you-bee-lah-tey) Festival Singers began in the winter of 1994 when youth choirs from six churches met together in Clayton, Georgia for a weekend retreat in January. From the beginning, this was to be a different kind of gathering: the repertoire would reflect the very best of available sacred choral music, and it would represent a wide range of musical styles; the music ministers from the representative churches would share the teaching and conducting responsibilities; and the weekend would culminate in morning worship leadership at a local church.
Soon, a summer tour was added. Over the years, the choir has sung in churches, retirement homes, juvenile detention facilities, and drug rehabilitation centers across the southeastern United States. The singers have also performed on the program of three Cooperative Baptist Fellowship General Assemblies. This year’s tour will include concerts in Atlanta, GA, Macon, GA, Columbia, SC, and Greenville, SC.
Many young people’s lives have been changed as a result of their participation in the choir, and some of the students have even chosen music as a vocation. Just this past year, an alumnus began studies at Southern Methodist University, pursuing a master’s degree in sacred music, and an alumnae completed her first year (with full scholarship) at The Juilliard School, where she is pursuing an undergraduate degree in vocal performance.
The 2016 jubilate! Festival Singers represent Aiken’s First Baptist Church, Aiken, SC (James Bennett); Avondale Estates Baptist Church, Atlanta, GA (Mark Green); Broadway Baptist Church, Louisville, KY (Robert Gammon); First Baptist Church of Christ, Macon, GA (Stanley Roberts); and Highland Hills Baptist Church, Macon, GA (Cass DuCharme).