Urban Nation Hip Hop Choir

The Urban Nation H.I.P.-H.O.P. Choir of Washington, DC is the brainchild of Dr. Sheila Johnson Newman and renowned DC musician Dr. Rickey Payton, Sr., who is the choir’s president and chief executive officer.

Focusing on the acronym H.I.P. - H.O.P. (Hope, Integrity, Power - Helping Our People), the choir’s mission is to channel the creative and artistic energies of a targeted group of youth into a dynamic, structured group that will foster excellence in all facets of their lives.

Students who range in ages 13 to 18 participate in the Urban Nation H.I.P.-H.O.P. Choir. They gain a better understanding and awareness of their heritage by performing a variety of musical styles, particularly spirituals, gospel, jazz, contemporary, inspirational, folk, musical theater and classical music. In addition to performing, Urban Nation emphasizes education, academic excellence, community service, intercultural appreciation, discipline and HIV/AIDs awareness Each participant is required to maintain a minimum GPA of 2.5 and attend all educational and motivational workshops as well as seminars that will develop their talents, skills, self-esteem, confidence and personal character.

Some highlights of the Urban Nation H.I.P.-H.O.P. Choir include performances at the White House and Pageant for Peace (lighting of the National Christmas Tree). With rave reviews, the choir has also shared the stage with such celebrities as Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson, P. Diddy, Oprah Winfrey, Celine Dion, Wayne Newton, Shania Twain, Hilary Duff, Tatyana Ali, Jasmine Guy, Paul Simon, Raffi, Denyce Graves, Renee Fleming, Rosie O’Donnell, Maya Angelou, Yolanda Adams, Hezekiah Walker, John P. Kee, Vicki Winans, Karen Clark Sheard, and Bobby Jones. The choir has performed for John D. Podesta and the Center for American Progress, Christmas in Middleburg, The Center for Non-Violence and General Dynamics. The choir has also been featured in an array of media outlets including B.E.T., NBC TV, The Washington Post, The Washington Times and B.E.T. Weekend.

For more information, please visit our website: www.urbannation.org.


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