BASKING RIDGE, NJ — Los Angeles’ Voices of Destiny church choir from Greater Zion Church Family in Compton, Calif., took home the grand prize at Verizon’s How Sweet the Sound™ grand finale – the title of “The Best Church Choir in America.” During the finale, held on Nov. 13 at the Verizon Center in Washington, D.C., Voices of Destiny walked away with not only the title, but a cash prize of $25,000 and the unique opportunity to perform at the Stellar Awards and the Super Bowl Gospel Celebration in 2011. The GFC Chorale of Greater First Church in East Chicago, Ind., was named runner-up and received a cash prize of $15,000.
The 2010 Verizon How Sweet The Sound finale brought together the best church choirs from 14 cities across the nation who all shared their testimony in front of a sold-out house of 10,773 people. In addition to the choirs, award-winning gospel artists and co-hosts CeCe Winans and Donald Lawrence along with judges Marvin Sapp, Fred Hammond and Karen Clark Sheard added performances to the night’s entertainment. The evening also featured a special performance by legendary artist Bebe Winans.
“During the past three years, Verizon’s How Sweet the Sound has brought families and communities together for an uplifting singing competition. We congratulate Voices of Destiny choir and recognize the amazing talent of all the choirs in the competition,” said Elva Lima, executive director of community relations and multicultural communications, Verizon Wireless. “Verizon’s How Sweet the Sound is an opportunity to celebrate the unique ways that music connects people, and we are proud to share it with customers and fans.”
Voices of Destiny church choir plans to put the prize money – totaling over $42,000 – towards building a youth center in 2011.
“Verizon’s How Sweet the Sound was an amazing experience for the entire choir, and we feel blessed to have been given a platform that allowed us to share our passion and hard work with other talented choirs and people from across the country,” said Reverend Michael J. Fisher. “We are honored to have been named Verizon’s ‘Best Church Choir in America,’ an opportunity that will allow us to continue to expand on our impact in the community.”
Greater Mount Calvary Men of Valor of Greater Mount Calvary Holy Church in Washington, D.C., won the V CAST People’s Choice Award and a $5,000 cash prize. During the grand finale, audience members were asked to text their votes for their favorite choir to help decide the Verizon Wireless V CAST People’s Choice Award.
Verizon Wireless customers can download and watch video clips from the grand finale performances in the Music category on their V CAST-capable phones. For more information about the competition, visit www.howsweetthesound.com.
(EDITOR’S NOTE: Broadcast-quality B-Roll featuring 2010 Verizon’s How Sweet the Sound coverage is available online. Log on to Verizon Wireless’ Multimedia Library at http://verizonwireless.mediaseed.tv/Story.aspx?story=37569 to preview and request video segments, which can be received in newsrooms digitally or by tape.)
About Verizon Wireless Verizon Wireless operates the nation’s most reliable and largest wireless voice and 3G data network, serving more than 93 million customers. Headquartered in Basking Ridge, N.J., with more than 79,000 employees nationwide, Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE, NASDAQ: VZ) and Vodafone (LSE, NASDAQ: VOD). For more information, visit www.verizonwireless.com. To preview and request broadcast-quality video footage and high-resolution stills of Verizon Wireless operations, log on to the Verizon Wireless Multimedia Library at www.verizonwireless.com/multimedia.