The History of Unity Performing Arts Foundation


July 9

The youth choral program was officially organized under Unity Performing Arts Foundation (UPAF) and the members who attended voted the named The Voices of Unity Youth Choir. This was the official beginning of phase one of UPAF.

2000 Heather Headley Concert



Plans begin for the first board meeting along with a Special VIP Presentation of UPAF and the Debut Performance

June 11

Mr. Ian Rolland endorsed the Special Presentation of UPAF and invitations were sent to various people from the community. This first board meeting and Special Presentation took place on at Neff Hall on the IPFW campus and it was a tremendous success.

June 11

Unity Performing Arts Foundation (UPAF) first board meeting took place

June 16 - 17

The Voices of Unity were presented in their first Debut Concert, Join The Caravan of Love, at Neff Hall on IPFW campus.

August 21

The Rolland Foundation approved UPAF for our first grant for $10,000 Mr. & Mrs. Ian Rolland were also the first family to make a personal donation to UPAF of $2000 to help us get started.

October 12 -14

The Voices of Unity Youth Choir First Fall Choir Camp
Camp Potawotami 47 students 13 adults

2001 Join the Caravan of Love Debut Concert


February 10

A Celebration of Unity Joint concert with Canterbury School Choir

March 17

UPAF first Rap with the Pros Program

December 1

English, Bonter, Mitchell Foundation, first grant of $25,000 for our Youth Choral Program, the Voices of Unity Youth Choir

2002 Power of the Dream Concert


January 18

The Voices of Unity Youth Choir join in their first-time performance with the The Fort Wayne Philharmonic in A Celebration of Unity

2003 Rhythm Nation Spring Concert


June 16

Unity Performing Arts Foundation (UPAF) first VIP Showcase Reception for the “The State of the World" Concert. Hosted by Russ and Stephanie McCormick at Southside High School.

2004 State of the World Spring Concert


November 26

The Voices of Unity invited to sing the National Anthem for the Indianapolis Colts and Philadelphia Eagles game.

November 30

Unity Performing Arts Foundation (UPAF) endorsed by GM & President Bill Polian of the Indianapolis Colts

2006 VOU sings at Colts Game


September 6

The Voices of Unity sings at the NFL 2007 Opening Kickoff Game, the Indianapolis Colts and New Orleans Saints. They perform the National Anthem with R & B Artist Keshia Cole.

November 23

The Voices of Unity performs the National Anthem at Fort Wayne Mad Ants Basketball Team Opening Celebration

2007 VOU sings at Alcoa Christmas party 


May 24

UPAF’s First Senior Day – 20 High School Graduates (our largest graduating class).

August 14

The Voices of Unity performs the National Anthem and America The Beautiful at the Opening Celebration of the Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, IN along with recording artists John Mellencamp and Stephen Stills

October 8

UPAF launches The Creative Writing Program (POP-The Power of Passion)

2008 Senior Day at Joseph Decuis


April 16

The Voices of Unity to sing the national anthem at the opening night at the new Fort Wayne minor league stadium, Parkview Field.

April 29

Recognition as a one of the 50 top arts-and humanities programs serving youth 2009 Coming Up Taller Semifinalist by the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities and its partner agencies, the Institute of Museum and Library Services, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the National Endowment for the Humanities.

June 27

Unity Performing Arts Foundation (UPAF) and The City of Fort Wayne collaborates and presents An Evening Of Hope event that was broadcast live on prime time on WANE TV 15.

December 21

Mr. White receives a phone call from Lori Lobsiger who extends an invitation to The Voices of Unity to participate in the 6th World Choir Games in Shaoxing, China and represent the USA. Plans begin Feb 1, 2010 to pursue the biggest opportunity in the history of Unity Performing Arts Foundation (UPAF) and the city of Fort Wayne.

2009 Tincaps Parkview Stadium Opening


July 19 - 28

The Voices of Unity Choir Olympic Team accomplishes their goal to go to China and comes back with two gold medals one in Popular Choral Music and one in the Gospel & Spiritual Category and the World Grand Champion title in the Gospel & Spiritual category. This is a big historical accomplishment in Fort Wayne’s history by any artistic group.

October 20

UPAF hires our first college Alumnus on staff. Jordan Applegate was hired to serve as the Program Supervisor of the Voices of Unity Youth Choir.

November 15

The Voices of Unity Youth Choir was honored by the US Senate and presented a Congressional Record for their accomplishment at the World Choir Games, a letter of recommendation was sent to the White House requesting a special visit with the President and the First Lady.

2010 Olympic Team Photoshoot 


January 6

The Indiana General Assembly recognized the first Indiana choir to win an International title at the 6th World Choir Games in Shaoxing, China. Our young champions were honored on the floor of the Senate and House during sessions prior to the Inaugural Ceremony.

May 23

Antonio Beasley, our first Alumnus to join the Unity Performing Arts Board of Directors

2011 State Inauguration


July 3

The Voices of Unity performs the WCG opening ceremony with Gospel Superstar, Kirk Franklin

July 15

The Voices of Unity defends their two Gold Medals won in China in 2010 in Popular Choral music and Gospel music at the 2012 World Choir Games, in Cincinnati, OH.

2012 Livington Taylor Concert


April 1

Unity Performing Arts Foundation (UPAF) receives our first $500,000 pledge from Chuck & Lisa Surack

April 10

Unity Performing Arts Foundation (UPAF) receives our first $1,000,000 pledge from Tim & Libby Ash

June 18 - 22

The Voices of Unity travels to New York City to perform at Carnegie Hall
The Voices of Unity Youth Choir was invited by Choirs of America.

July 13 - 22

The Voices of Unity travel to Riga, Latvia at the 8th World Choir Games. They won their fifth gold medal in the Gospel Category and their first silver medal in the Popular Choral Music category.

2014 World Choir Games


June 29 - July 13

The Voices of Unity had their first successful four country concert tour, the 2016 European Tour that included Italy, Vatican City, Austria, and Hungary

December 11

The Voices of Unity Youth Choir sings at the Bicentennial Celebration for Indiana’s 200th Birthday: Celebrate Indiana- Ignite the Future

2016 Bicentennial Celebration


February 25

UNITY Chattanooga, TN- First official UNITY of Chattanooga concert

2017 Chattanooga Concert


January 16

Ivy Tech Facility – First occupancy date (NC) Unity Performing Arts Foundation , Program & Training Center (MW)

May 25

First UNITY Valedictorian- Samia White - Cornerstone College Prep School - Future College: Xavier University of Louisiana (NC)

June 23

First guest professional band director, Myron McKinley, Music Director for Earth, Wind and Fire. Our first UNITY Professional Guest Series for the 2018 Tribute to Disney End of Season Concert.

June 23

Second guest professional band director, Chris Byrd, Music Director for Rance Allen. Our second UNITY Professional Guest Series for the 2019 Praise Celebration Concert.

2018 Tribute To Disney Concert


February 26

Dance Preparatory Program starts at the UNITY Program & Training Center (PTC)

February 27

Oratory Preparatory Program starts at the UNITY Program & Training Center (PTC)

March 12

James Foundation- Pledged $500,000

May 7

All of the UNITY organizational and Program logos that were filed in January of 2018 are now registered with the United States Patent and Trademark Office

June 22

UNITY’s first Artistic Program Showcase was held at the Rhinehart Recital Hall featuring student work from Expression Creative Writing, Dance, and Oratory.

December 21

VOU students to participate in video shoot for Wyn Starks (Wayne Starks) who is a Curb Recording Artist is releasing his first video with Curb Records entitled, “Dancing My Way”. VOU students are extras in this video.

2019 Praise Celebration 


March 13

UNITY discontinue weekly programming because of the world-wide Coronavirus Pandemic.

April 1

UNITY launches Virtual Learning Program

2019 Indiana Music Association Performance


June 17

UNITY’s launches Mini Maestro Instrumental Program

July 20

Mini Maestro Instrumental Program first recital

2021 Mini Maestro Recital

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