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Choir brings gospel to Pageant of Peace, ‘The Ed Brown Show’

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Published on: Wednesday, March 13, 2013

By Alexis A. Goring

New Vision St. Margaret’s Gospel Choir wowed the crowd during their novel performance for 2012 Pageant of Peace and later appeared as first-time guests on “The Ed Brown Show,” all within a span of four days in late December.

“Ed Brown is a huge asset to the community,” said Rich Landon, president of Landon Sports and Entertainment Management, who helped to book the choir on the show. “He brings on so many talented people and groups on his show and showcases them — some get 15 minutes, some a half hour. Ed Brown is dedicated to helping everyone promote their talents, their work, their event, through his show and his staff.”

Linda White, member of New Vision St. Margaret’s Gospel Choir, worked as the liaison for the choir, along with Landon. White described the opportunity to perform on the show Dec. 26 as “exciting.” The episode aired Jan. 3.

“We were very excited,” White said. “The room could only hold six of us, so it was just a small group that went right after Christmas. … We were welcomed with open arms and we really enjoyed ourselves. Ed Brown is a very pleasant person.”

The choir is directed by Joe Joy, a life-long member of St. Margaret’s of Scotland Catholic Church, who says the majority of his childhood memories revolve around St. Margaret’s Parish. He shared that his choir’s performance on “The Ed Brown Show” and at the Pageant of Peace are a “dream come true” for the choir — and for him.

“I especially loved the gospel choir,” said Joy in reflection of his childhood memories at the parish. “So much so, that I taught myself to play the piano from their inspiration.”

Joy went on to study Theology and music at the University of Notre Dame. He returned to the Washington, D.C., area in January 2003 for a job opportunity.

“And as fate would have it, the very month that I moved back to D.C., the choir director position became available,” Joy said. “It was a dream come true. … The very singers that inspired me to become a musician were now my choir family.”

Joy’s only concern in preparing New Vision, which has been signing together for more than 30 years, for the performance on Pageant of Peace — which took place outdoors the evening of Dec. 22 on the grounds of President’s Park — was the weather.

“Musically, I believe the choir is superb,” Joy said. “I was not concerned in the least about how well we would sing. … The idea of singing outdoors in late December at 8 p.m. was quite nerve-racking. I think nearly half of our rehearsals were dedicated to planning proper attire and preparing ourselves mentally for the prospect of long-time exposure to cold temperatures.

“And, I am very glad we did prepare properly as ‘Old Man Winter’ gave us his best that evening. Temperatures were very cold, and we were exposed to all the winter elements on the elevated platform. Despite any discomfort, New Vision performed beyond my expectations.”

The choir recently performed March 8 and March 9 for the Lenten Revival at St. Margaret’s of Scotland Catholic Church.

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