The Festival of Praise comes to the Orleans Arena

The Festival of Praise comes to the Orleans Arena

September 02, 2016 10:03 AM


The Festival of Praise Tour will bring some of biggest names in gospel music to Orleans Arena on Wednesday, Oct. 5, with performances from Fred Hammond, Israel Houghton, Regina Belle, Karen Clark Sheard, Hezekiah Walker and Casey J. 

Detroit native Fred Hammond has been a staple in gospel music since 1985 as a member of the gospel group Commissioned. Three of his solo albums, “The Spirit of David,” “Purpose By Design” and “Somethin’ Bout Love” all went Gold and his 1998 work, “Pages of Life – Chapters I & II” went double-Platinum. Hammond has received numerous accolades throughout his career, including winning a Grammy Award in 2008 for Best Contemporary R&B Gospel Album.

Israel Houghton hit the gospel scene in 1997 with the release of his debut album “Whisper It Loud.” In 2004, Houghton released “Live From Another Level,” his first album to earn Gold recognition. His follow-up album “Alive in South Africa,” also went Gold. Houghton has won six Grammy Awards, including his most recent win for “Covered: Alive In Asia – Israel & New Breed” which won Best Gospel Album in 2015.

Versatile singer-songwriter Regina Belle rose to fame in the late 1980’s with R&B hits “Baby Come to Me” and “Make It Like It Was,” both of which topped the U.S. charts. In 1992, Belle won a Grammy Award with Peabo Bryson for their contribution to the Disney animated feature “Aladdin – the duet “A Whole New World.” Belle transitioned from the Adult Contemporary charts to the gospel scene with her first gospel album, “Love Shines Forever,” in 2008.

Karen Clark Sheard got her start in the 1980’s as a member of the legendary gospel group The Clark Sisters. Her 1997 debut solo album “Finally Karen” earned her a Soul Train Award for Best Gospel Album of the Year. Three of her next four albums went on to crack the Top 5 on the U.S. Billboard Gospel charts.

Known as the “Hip-Hop Pastor,” Hezekiah Walker has released 15 albums since his 1987 debut. The two-time Grammy Award winner released his most recent album, “Better: Azusa – The Next Generation 2” earlier this year.

Atlanta native Casey J. is a successful newcomer to the gospel music circuit. Her 2015 debut album “The Truth” produced two chart-topping singles, “Fill Me Up” and “I’m Yours.”

Doors open at 6 p.m. Tickets are available from $35 plus tax and fees, and can be purchased by visiting