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  • African American Choral Ensemble

African American Choral Ensemble


Inspirational, spiritually uplifting - the critically acclaimed African American Choral Ensemble preserves the legacy of African American choral music through transformative interpretations of this unique American art form. The Choral Ensemble features a broad repertoire including spirituals, folk forms, traditional and contemporary gospel music, and formally composed works by African American composers.

"My work as an AI with the African American Choral Ensemble under the leadership of [former ACE director] Dr. James Mumford was inspirational and instrumental in preparing me for my entire performance and teaching career - first as an international opera singer and now as a professor of voice."
~ Janet Williams, Soprano, Author, Professor of Voice and Herman C. Hudson Alumni Award recipient

The Choral Ensemble is available for public concerts, church services, conventions, school and college programs, lecture-demonstrations, and other types of engagements.

The Choral Ensemble has a long and rich legacy built by our former directors, Michael V. W. Gordon, Mellonee Burnim, John Williams, James E. Mumford, and Keith McCutchen. Meet our Former Directors.

Dr. Raymond Wise, Director

As a singer, pianist, composer, director, conductor, lecturer, and teacher, Dr. Wise regularly serves for orchestras, opera companies, and choral festivals throughout the nation and abroad. He went on to Denison University (Granville, Ohio) where he earned a B.F.A. in Music. He did additional studies in Opera, Art, and German at the Institute for European Studies in Vienna, Austria, and in African-American History, Music, and Dance at San Francisco State University in San Francisco, California. He completed an apprenticeship in the business and recording of Gospel Music with the Walter Hawkins Corporation in Oakland, California. Dr. Wise earned a Masters in Music Education, Ohio Teacher's Certification and Doctorate in Music Education from The Ohio State University.

Rev. Wise has served as a church musician for more than 30 years and has appeared on radio and television, recorded 22 albums, performed with opera singers, orchestras, dance companies, professional recording groups, and has toured extensively throughout the United States, Canada, Europe, and Asia, as a singer, dancer, pianist, composer, choral director, lecturer, and teacher. Dr. Wise has penned more than 600 compositions many of which are available through the Raymond Wise Gospel and Choral sheet music series. His Anthology of 21 Spirituals for the 21st Century has received national and international acclaim.

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Performance Resume

Conferences and Festivals

  • Annual Meeting of the Society from Ethnomusicology Bloomington, Indiana
  • Association for Black Culture Centers Conference - Bloomington, Indiana
  • Lotus Music Festival Bloomington, Indiana
  • Indiana Governor's Conference on Fatherhood Indianapolis, Indiana

Guest Performances with Orchestras

  • Northwest Indiana Symphony Orchestra Merrillville, Indiana, Gospel Mass by Robert Ray
  • Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra Indianapolis, Indiana
    • William Grant Still - Three Rhythmic Spirituals
    • Undine Smith Moore - "Striving After Good"
    • Kirk Franklin - "Joy"
    • James E. Mumford - "Let My People Go"
    • Traditional/Rider - "Great Day"

Special Service and Outreach

  • World AIDS Day Unity Breakfast - Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Martin Luther King Celebration at the Indiana State House Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Indiana State Legislature Banquet Bloomington, Indiana
  • Meadowood Retirement Community Bloomington, Indiana
  • Indiana Women's Prison - Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Wabash Correctional Facility - Carlisle, Indiana

TV and Movies

  • Best of the Best III
  • Hoosier Holidays, produced by Channel 6, Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Indiana University Basketball Halftime, ESPN
  • Concerts aired on CATS TV Bloomington, Indiana

Operas and Musicals

  • Porgy and Bess, Indiana University Opera Theater
  • The Gospel at Colonus, Buskirk-Chumley Theater, Bloomington, Indiana
  • Prelude to Swing Plus 50, Indiana University Auditorium

Opening Act Appearances

  • Five Blind Boys of Alabama
  • The Ray Charles Show

Guest Artists

  • Dr. Leonard Scott, Tyscot Records
  • Patricia Lacy Aiken, Sounds of Blackness
  • Reyna Carguill, soprano

Selected Tour Cities

  • Detroit, Michigan
  • St. Louis, Missouri
  • Cleveland, Ohio
  • Erie, Pennsylvania
  • Windsor, Ontario
  • Danbury, Connecticut
  • New York, New York
  • Washington, D.C.

Booking Information >>

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