Community Highlight: ARC Gospel Choir

Every Wednesday morning, Harlem Spirituals conducts a tour throughout historic Harlem, concluding at the Greater Central Baptist Church for “The Hour of Power” by the ARC Gospel Choir. Although it is very easy to tell that this is a powerful and moving a cappella choir, what you may not realize is the fact that each member has found faith through Gospel that turned their lives around; these members sing to stay sober. Read on to learn where the heart and soul of ARC comes from, and why the group is so special today.

ARC, standing for Addicts Rehabilitation Center, was founded in 1957 by Mr. James Allen, who was a former addict himself. This center is one of the oldest and largest rehabilitation services in New York, but this is not where ARC finds its fame. The center is most renown for its ARC Gospel Choir, a singing group open to any graduate of the ARC. Today, the group performs all over the world. From Europe, Africa and Japan, the group performs over 200 concerts a year. ARC currently has two released albums and is sampled in Kanye West’s “Jesus Walks.

(Photos by David Keith)

The ARC has grown immensely over the years. The group acts as an international icon to preserve the history and culture of the organization and its impact not only on the Harlem community, but all throughout New York City. ARC performs at schools, hospitals, churches, jails and civic and social affairs all around the globe, and will forever work to protect, guide, and assist with discovering identity.

The passion, faith, dedication and gratitude of the ARC Gospel Choir members shines in the nature of their performances. The genuine and soulful performance will leave you feeling empowered. See for yourself on our specialized Harlem Gospel Tour every Wednesday.


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