Where We Are and Are Going

Good afternoon friends of Illumination!

I am so very proud of everyone’s efforts with our latest show, “Salty, Sour, Sweet…C’est Tres Magnfique!” It was a fun night! As our cast and crew enter into the summer season, would you pray that they dedicate themselves to some rest and respite from weekly school and theater meetings/responsibilities, but that they will remain diligent in the development of their hearts and minds through other means?

Regarding where Illumination is and where it is going:

1) We will be holding AUDITIONS for the 2015/2016 season before summer’s end. The actual dates are still to be determined. We had many artists at our recent show express an interest in becoming a part of what Illumination is doing in the community through the performance arts. If you know of anyone that would be interested in joining in us, please have them to email me at illuminationchoir@gmail.com.
2) Our community partner from our recent show, CHRISTIAN FAMILY LIFE, was extremely pleased with the show. I spoke to their president this afternoon. All in attendance at the show from his organization LOVED the performances. He wants to talk to us about some “encore” performances selected from the show and performed at his donors appreciation event scheduled for this September in the facilities of JD Gibbs Racing.
3) Christian Drake, the CFO of SOUTHERN EVANGELICAL SEMINARY, was so pleased with “Salty, Sour, Sweet” that he has offered the use of Southern Evangelical facilities to Illumination anytime. He and his wife were impressed with the execution of our vision and with the professionalism of our crew. This is big news. Not solely for facility use…but because we were able to imprint and inspire the mind of a leader.
4) We may already have a VENUE FOR OUR CHRISTMAS SHOW. I heard back from a large church in the Lake Norman area and they have two calendar possibilities for us. Pray over this matter. It would be HUGE for us to start a season and a show with a secured venue and performance date.
5) I am currently in the throws of some serious soul searching regarding the future of Illumination. My spirit is heavy to see it move beyond where it is now in regard to exclusively producing and presenting musical variety shows. I’m leaning towards asking for all cast and crew to commit to a big step of faith in the direction towards a fully staged/produced musical. Doing this would more completely align with my passion, talents, skills, and calling.

That being said, Illumination has successfully produced four “variety shows” since our launch as an organization in 2013. I am very proud of each of them. Everyone involved accomplished and overcame much in order to see these shows matured and presented to the community. Before I launched Illumination with Davis and Rachael Carman, I was just days away from working towards the establishment of an organization I was going to call “Arts in Union”. I was still serving a church in Monroe and was feeling led to pursue the establishment of a theologically grounded performance arts organization within that community. Instead, God directed me towards a meeting with Davis and Rachael one afternoon in Monroe and, shortly after that, He led me back to Charlotte from Union County. Illumination was formed prior to, during, and after that transition.

I know that Illumination will still produce and present “variety shows” from time to time. They have their value and I enjoy the challenge of taking a variety of songs, ideas, and other creative elements and stringing them together into a common narrative. But I want to get back to my vision’s initial appetite and roots.
Earlier this year, I found a script that I really like and that resonates within my spirit. To produce it would require, as I mentioned, a large step of faith. But all of our shows to date have been shoed with faith.

We’ll need a larger cast, a larger crew, a larger venue, a larger budget, and a full year to prepare it.

Would you join me in pray about this? Also, feel free to let me know your thoughts on this or any of the above. The cast and crew exist to serve you, our local community. We love to hear back from you.

Pursuing measurable good while attempting to be salt and light,

It’s Nearly SHOWTIME!

Fondue & FrappéDear friends of Illumination, we are so happy to be able to report a final show date & location for our holiday event, Fondue & Frappé…a festive soirée. There has been MUCH change for Illumination this year. It has been a year of growth, development, & transition for the organization AND its leaders; including a change of rehearsal & performance venues. Thank you for your prayers, encouragement, & support. Prayers & efforts have been honored & we will be presenting “Fondue & Frappé…a festive soirée” at First Baptist Church Charlotte on Tuesday, December 9 from 7 – 8:30 PM. We are also thrilled to have been led to our newest community partner, “Option Adoption”. The cast of Illumination was introduced to this local work while receiving training from Cities4Life Charlotte. This local organization has a fantastic story & we have the great privilege of presenting their work & vision to you during the show. We look forward to seeing you very soon! Tickets can be purchased through this website or from a cast member. Remember that your ticket purchase supports the mission of Illumination & that of our community partner. No one with Illumination takes a salary. All teaching, training, & skills/talents of our cast, crew, & supporters are voluntarily invested. Your ticket is a donation to visionary people who are on the front lines working to make a difference in the lives of people in your community.

We’re Moving!!!

When a cast & crew as talented & capable as Illumination develops in under 12 months, you have to MOVE quickly.  And that’s just what we’re doing…we’re moving on UP.  We’re moving Uptown…right into the center of the city.

As Illumination closed out the 2013/2014 performance season, the Illumination leadership team targeted three primary goals.

They are:
1) Increase the size of the cast
2) Find a new weekly rehearsal space
3) Build a greater awareness of our efforts

In order for Illumination to achieve regional recognition for excellence in arts performance, leadership training, & community impact, we determined that we must move from our previous home in Matthews NC and into the center of the Queen City.  As artists and other organizations from around the Metropolitan area become aware of the opportunities presented by Illumination, we know that we must be geographically positioned to better respond to such interest and growth.

Why Uptown Charlotte?  The Queen City

Charlotte center city (also known as Uptown) is the central area of Charlotte, North Carolina. The headquarters for the Fortune 500 companies Bank of America and Duke Energy are located here, as well as the headquarters for East Coast operations for Wells Fargo.

Museums, sporting venues, shops, hotels, and restaurants are heavily concentrated in the city center.  New museums such as the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art and the Mint Museum of Modern Art opened in 2010. Charlotte’s center city employs more than 100,000 people and more than 25 million visitors come to Charlotte’s center city to visit a year.

That’s a lot of action and Illumination will be positioned within it so that we may accomplish our mission on a larger scale!  In order for our cast of artists to receive the best training, the best exposure, the best opportunity to accomplish the most measurable good, we must be in an environment that will foster, create, and sustain our initiatives.

Our new home will be on the beautiful campus of FBC-Charlotte at 301 S Davidson St, Charlotte, NC 28202First Baptist Charlotte.  Illumination is deeply thankful to the executive staff of First Baptist Charlotte for making this exciting move possible for us.

Onwards and upwards…we look forward to sharing more news with you as we complete this summer’s auditions and design a performance schedule that is sure to illuminate, inspire, and elevate.

Creativity with a Purpose,

A Strong Inaugural Year Comes to a Close

Illumination ChoirLast night’s presentation was a strong close to a strong inaugural year!

“Cupcakes and Carols by Candlelight” and “Trifles & Truffles…a dishy revue” were superlative presentations of our signature menu, music, and message approach.  The charismatic and playful cast of performers, ranging in age from 15 to 21 years old, skillfully presented an eclectic program of Disney, Broadway, & spiritual favorites while our guests enjoyed a variety of homemade truffles, trifles, cake pops, and other confectionery accoutrements.  The evening summarily celebrated the joys and memories of childhood while featuring the beautiful work of our community partner, On Eagles Wings.

Illumination seeks your prayers, input, and assistance as we work to position ourselves for an even more effective 2014-2015 season.  Here are our immediate goals for the summer as we move towards the new season:

1)  Build a cast of 15 members.  Preparations for auditions have already begun as we make our plans for our next experiential presentation, “Fondue & Frappé…a festive soirée”…scheduled December 2014.
2)  Find a new rehearsal and performance venue.  The gracious generosity of First Baptist Matthews throughout our opening year has been deeply appreciated.  For 10 months, they have been a home to Illumination rehearsals, shows, and meetings.  Due to our growth and our goals, we must seek venues that continue to align with our vision and our progress.  The need for a larger performance stage, larger seating capacity, better audio/video/lighting support, and a more centrally located base of operations will strengthen Illumination’s ability to train our artists, develop leaders, and more effectively accomplish measurable good for our community partners.
3)  Schedule small-scale performances and cast appearances around the community in order to increase awareness of Illumination and our work.

Your attendance last night and last November was overwhelmingly encouraging. We look forward to having you as our guests again as we plan, prepare, and present two brand new experiences in an effort to illuminate, inspire, and elevate.  It is our desire to accomplish measurable good, to fight the darkness, & to build better people.

Our deepest thanks to the “Father of lights”, our donors, our audiences, our business partners, the cast & families of Illumination, & to our present community partners, “Truth and Mercy” & “On Eagles Wings”!  We are grateful for the support of our cast & their mission.

Fondue & Frappé

December 2014

Be Our Guest!


“Trifles and Truffles…a dishy revue”
Tuesday, May 27 @ 7PM
185 S. Trade Street
Matthews, NC 28105

From the producers of “Cupcakes and Carols by Candlelight”, Illumination Choir presents a whole new experience featuring an array of rich truffles & fun trifles, enjoyed during a menagerie of entertaining, lighthearted, and inspirational scenes from popular musicals, chart toppers, classical standards, and more.
Your ticket purchase goes towards the financial support of On Eagles Wings Ministries.  

OEWM seeks to
prevent females from falling victim to sex trafficking,
offer assistance to those still trapped,
and restore those who have survived by offering
hope, empowerment, and a brighter future.

Purchase your tickets online or purchase them from a member of our cast.

Featuring performances from:

“Frozen”, “Wicked”, “Toy Story”, “Tangled”, “Sound of Music”…and more!

Concert Tickets!

Illumination presents... Your new holiday favorite.

Illumination presents…
Your new holiday favorite.

This is it!  The night of nights!  No more rehearsing or nursing a part, we know our songs by heart!
Join us for a lovely evening of sweet decadence, illuminating performances, and holiday cheer.
Our artists have been rehearsing for several weeks, learning lessons on leadership, and preparing to meet YOU!

You are cordially invited to join us for “Cupcakes and Carols by Candlelight” on Saturday, November 30 at 6:00 PM on the campus of First Baptist Church, Matthews NC.  Dress up, dress casual, come hungry, and come with expectant spirits.

We will perform favorites, new songs, and share stories of life, love, and celebration.

Tickets are $10 and include desserts, beverage, and a wonderful holiday concert.  You can purchase your tickets online by clicking the “Buy Now” below.  You do not have to have a PayPal account in order to purchase from this page.  If you do not have a PayPal account, look at the bottom of the PayPal screen once you click “Buy Now”, and click the appropriate link.  You may also purchase your tickets from one of our artists or over the phone.  Simply email us at illuminationchoir@gmail.com and someone will contact you promptly.

A portion of all ticket proceeds will go towards the pro-life efforts of Truth & Mercy Ministries.  The remainder will go cover the cost of the concert.  We are pleased to be able to say that all leaders, teachers, and performers within Illumination do not receive compensation for their involvement.

Thank you for your support of our artists and our community!

Merry Christmas!

Creativity with a purpose,

Cupcakes and Carols

Buy Now Button with Credit Cards