This year, performers for the Black Nativity will mark almost two decades of bringing the Christmas Gospel spirit to Seattle.
For its 15th year, kicking off this weekend and running through Dec. 23 at the Moore Theatre, the production will feature the traditional Christmas Nativity story, with live music and singing performed by the Total Experience Gospel Choir led by Pastor Patrinell Wright and the Black Nativity choir. On Dec. 21-13, Grammy award-winning Gospel and R&B singer BeBe Winans will bring his talents to the stage.
"It's really become a regular tradition in Seattle," Wright said. This year, the production is expecting international visitors from Japan, London and Korea, she added.
To kick off the show's triumphant anniversary, Jamel Gaines lent a hand as the show's new choreographer. As founder of Creative Outlet Dance Theatre of Brooklyn, Gaines got his feet wet in several community and professional productions in locally and across the county. Although Gaines is the newest addition to the production, he said the chemistry with fellow directors has been strong.
"We're really in sync with each other," he said.
For the production, Gaines focused on creating movement that highlights the Christmas spirit and Gospel soul. These elements have contributed to the production's success for the last 15 years.
"It's an American story," Gaines said. "This show brings a joy and spiritual aspect that leaves people walking away full. It's cleansing for the whole soul."