The Bridgeport Boys Choir, Inc. was developed as an outlet for young men to express themselves creatively and positively.
The mission of The Bridgeport Boys Choir is:
To provide an opportunity for minority and young men at risk to enhance character development through the positive social and cultural experiences made available through music
To generate pride, self-esteem and a feeling of worth among the young men as a result of their accomplishments
To promote good habits of discipline, punctuality, regular attendance, the ability to follow directions, good deportment and listening skills
To instill a spirit of cooperation and working together as a team to attain desired goals
To provide an opportunity for young men to develop musical talent
To inculcate valuable learning skills that can be transferred from music to other disciplines
The Bridgeport Boys Choir
The concept of a boys' choir was created by Bridgeport educators and residents, the late James and Gwendolyn Johnson in the early 1980s while witnessing the effects Bridgeport's changing landscape had on the city's youth. Although Bridgeport was situated in Fairfield County, one of the nation's most affluent counties, the city experienced a significant decline in its once vibrant economy. The loss of its manufacturing businesses and jobs, scarce employment opportunities and the loss of households coupled with high taxes plagued the city. As in other urban areas, the effects were manifested in lower household incomes, lower home values, lower educational attainment, and higher poverty levels than compared to the national average.
In 1985, the Johnson's concept came to fruition and The Bridgeport Boys Choir was formed. The choir was created to help soften the negative effects of inner city living among the young men of color and offer positive alternatives for them. With their vision affirmed by others in the community, the organization gained an initial backing from the Afro-American Educators Association, Inc. in 1988 and a board of directors was established.
The legacy of that Board and the Johnson's vision continues today. The Bridgeport Boys Choir continues to grow and offer new and exciting opportunities that enhance the choir's existing program for its current and future members.