About our Minister of Music
Brother David Griffiths, a uniquely and exceptionally gifted baritone singer, composer, pianist, vocal coach and arranger, joined the Nineteenth Street Baptist Church as the Minister of Music in June 2009. Brother Griffiths is a devoted family man, whose wife Sister Monique sings and directs, and their young son David is an exceptional drummer.
Brother Griffiths earned a BA in Music and BA in Theology from Columbia Union College. He also completed a Masters of Music in Vocal Performance from the Peabody Conservatory of Johns Hopkins University. Privately, he studied conducting with Paul Hill and voice with Ruth Drucker, Wayne Conner, Gordon Hawkins, Liz Daniels, Jon Gilbertson, Ginger Beasley and Charlotte Holloman. In addition, he studied piano with Charles Covington, Neil Tilkins, Ron Warren and Dan Lau.
Griffiths has performed at the Kennedy Center and Capitol Hill and has performed in countries such as France, Korea, Japan, Jamaica, Canada, Antigua, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and Honduras. As a composer, he has completed more than 300 compositions. He has performed on numerous television shows and has produced his own music video, Let Your Heart Be Broken. He recently finished working with a Rwandan singer on a Gospel CD, which blends the rhythms and melodies of Africa with the sounds of Gospel music.
The Nineteenth Street Baptist Church family considers it a true blessing to have such a wonderful, multi-talented and inspired music minister.
For additional information, check out Brother Griffiths’ website.
About our Choirs
Directed by Brother David Griffiths, Minister of Music
The church at large and the African American tradition in particular have a very rich history of Anthems, Hymns, Cantatas, Oratorios, and Spirituals. The Senior Choir focuses on preserving this beautiful music for generations to come. For years, the Nineteenth Street Baptist Church Senior Choir has been recognized as one of the outstanding church choirs in the Washington Metropolitan area. The choir has performed throughout the surrounding area and in other cities outside the Metropolitan area. It is a choir of volunteer church members from varied backgrounds, who serve with earnest effort and sincere devotion to render the highest form of church music in praise to almighty God. The choir currently ministers on 2nd Sundays, September through July.
Directed by Sister Rhonda Glaude
The Gospel Choir presents songs of praise from different times in Christian music marked by strong rhythms and elaborated refrains incorporating elements of hymns, spirituals, and praise songs. Come and join in singing a joyful noise unto the Lord. The Choir ministers on 4th Sundays.
Directed by Brother Leonard Higgs
The Men’s Choir currently sings under the direction of Brother Leonard Higgs, ably assisted by Sister Tami Hayes, keyboard (Piano) and Sister Margaret Dorsey-Jones, Organ. The group is composed of men of all ages from high school to our most seasoned church family members.
The Men’s Chorus ministers a variety of music to include anthems, spirituals, gospels, and hymns, on 5th Sundays during the year. They also sing for the Men’s Day service and on other special occasions. In addition to coming together to raise their voices in praise to the Lord, the Chorus enjoys the fellowship of Christian men. Membership is welcomed.
Directed by Sister Shirley France
The Kandlelite Choir, the children’s choir, made its debut in worship service on Children’s Day, June 14, 1987 under the co-direction of organizers Sisters Phillis Cooke and Shirley France and Sister Rhonda Glaude as pianist. The Choir was formally accepted as one of the church choirs in February 1988.
The choir provides an active role in church service for children ages 2-12 years. Their involvement in the choir also serves to enhance their spiritual growth and development. The Kandlelites are featured on third Sundays, October – May and 2nd Sunday in June, Children’s Day. The choir continues today under the direction of Sister Shirley France.
Instruments of Praise
Directed by Sister Monique Griffiths
In 1999, under the direction of Sister Felecia Stovall, a small group of individuals known as the Praise Team ministered in song to the congregation. From its very beginning, the goal of the Praise Team was to uplift the name of Jesus in song and praise. Rehearsals were not just a time for learning the music, but were for prayer, Bible study, and praise. This choir provides soul stirring and spirit lifting music for praising and worshiping God, and ministering to God’s people. In 2001, the Praise Team became known as the Instruments of Praise (lOP). The Choir minister on 3rd Sundays.
Voices In Praise (Youth Choir)
Directed by Sister Lorelle Dance
The mission of the Voices in Praise is to encourage our youth’s participation to “Make a joyful noise unto the LORD .. “ Psalm 100:1. Music has a soothing, compelling outlet for everyone. For our youth, it provides a vehicle to express their love of Christ and their commitment to praising His name in song.
Women’s Day Choir
The Women’s Day Choir is the combined voices of women singers in the church. They prepare the music for service for women’s day under the direction of a special guest director.
The Comfort Choir sings for funerals at the church under the direction of Eleanor Winston. It consists of those available during the daytime to minister for memorial services and funerals. The repertoire of the comfort choir is mostly hymns.
Mass Choir (Combined Choir)
Directed by Brother David Griffiths, Minister of Music
The Mass Choir combines all adult choirs. Individuals not belonging to any particular choir are welcomed to participate in the Mass Choir. The choir ministers a variety of styles on 1st Sundays. The Mass Choir invites you to come celebrate Christ with them!