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Sat, Jun 24


Villa Rica

RSJ Full Band Public Performance - Thomas A. Dorsey Festival - Villa Rica

Featured Artist: Thomas A. Dorsey Birthplace Choir, Dr. Eddie Robinson, Earnest Pugh, Saxophonist Richard Shaw Jr. & Creation Band, Cocomotion, Kasper & The 911 Band!

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RSJ Full Band Public Performance - Thomas A. Dorsey Festival - Villa Rica
RSJ Full Band Public Performance - Thomas A. Dorsey Festival - Villa Rica

Time & Location

Jun 24, 2023, 3:00 PM – 11:50 PM

Villa Rica, 106 Temple St, Villa Rica, GA 30180, USA


About the event

The Thomas A. Dorsey Birthplace and Gospel Heritage Festival, Inc., was established in Villa Rica, Georgia, by Mr. Evan Wilson, soon after Dr. Dorsey’s death in January 1993 to recognize his birth in that town in July 1899, and to foster and encourage the study and perpetuation of African-American “anointed” gospel music of the kind Dorsey is often credited with creating in and near the setting where the young Dorsey was first nurtured in African-American field hollers, shape note worship and the “moaning” chants of the rural slave church.

The organization was incorporated in Georgia, seated a community-centered Board of Directors that includes national arts figures, was given a office in the Villa Rica City Hall, received 501(c)(3) tax-exempt recognition from the Internal Revenue Service, and identified the location of Dorsey’s boyhood home, all in 1993.  Its highly-acclaimed Thomas Dorsey Birthplace Choir, composed of 40 voices from a number of area African-American church choirs was organized in May 1994 by Shirley Marchman and the late Rev. Verlyn Styles, and sang publicly for the first time at the dedication of a Georgia Historic Marker honoring Dorsey’s life and music in July 1994.  The marker is Villa Rica’s first and only the eighth in Carroll County. During 1994, the Thomas Dorsey Birthplace Choir also was inducted into the National Convention of Gospel Choirs and Choruses, founded by Dr. Dorsey in 1932 to market his “new type” music, and in which our choir therefore enjoys a special status.

In July 1995, the organization presented the First Annual Thomas Dorsey Gospel Festival.  Now in 2021, the organization celebrates its 27th Annual Thomas Dorsey Festival. The festival is now a 2 or 3-day event, which brings to the City of Villa Rica the top Gospel, Jazz and Blues artist in the US.

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