Dear Pastor Shirley Caesar & Team,
Greetings to you in the name of our LORD and Savior, Jesus Christ.
First of all I send my sincere condolences on the passing of your brother. My heart goes out to you and your family and I am praying God’s peace and comfort with you during this time of grief. God’s blessings be upon you.
I thought it prudent to contact you with regard to a recent and very bad experience I had with one Rosalind Wornum (Women on the Rise) and her behavior over the past several weeks of rehearsing in Boston in a choir under the tutelage of Dennis Montgomery III for your September 16, 2017 concert date.
Ms. Wornum has been very unprofessional and disrespectful, to the point that I and others decided it would be more beneficial to step out of the choir than to participate under her “rules.” To define unprofessional and disrespectful: before, during, or after the 8 plus rehearsal nights we had, she would show up late, she never greeted us, and when she addressed us she did so from the back of the church; she did not come to the front to look us in the face. She never gave us a genuine thanks for our sacrifice of time away from our families and only gave us an underlying pressure to buy tickets. She also lodged accusations at the choir in general, she said someone called the venue asking about accommodations for the choir. Ms. Wornum was very hard on the choir and said if we did not buy tickets we would have to come to the venue 3 hours early and after we sang we would have to leave right away. If her hands were tied on this (which I don’t believe they were) she should have conveyed the ticket issue in a more decent and respectful manner.
Ms. Wornum even stepped-to and blatantly disrespected a tenor telling him (in front of many others) that he probably could not afford the cheapest ticket, balcony tickets and laughed in his face (he did not participate tonight, but he bought three tickets for other choir members so they did not have to operate under the burden of Ms. Wornum’s rules). Although we understand Ms. Wornum was under pressure to sell tickets, she took her anger and frustration out on the choir. She acted as if she was doing us a favor by allowing us to sing behind Pastor Shirley Caesar. She should have been more appreciative; we did not receive pay to sing in the choir and that was fine but the lack of respect and decency on her part was too much and caused people to leave. This caused people to lose the benefit of singing for Pastor Shirley Caesar under the revulsion of Ms. Wornum’s behavior.
It was my hope to convey this because otherwise people might think that those that did not participate were flaky, but that is not the case. We all did the rehearsals to the very end, until we could not take her despicable behavior anymore and decided it would be gain to leave and a loss to stay.
R. Andre Chapman
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