GMA Dove Awards Celebrated at Atlanta's Fox Theatre

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GMA Dove Awards Celebrated at Atlanta's Fox Theatre

The 42nd Annual GMA Dove Awards were handed out tonight at the Fabulous Fox Theatre in Atlanta, Georgia celebrating Gospel and Christian music's biggest event. The 42nd Annual GMA Dove Awards hosted by TV host and comedienne Sherri Shepherd will be televised on GMC, America's favorite network for uplifting entertainment (www.watchgmctv.com), on Sunday, April 24 at 7 p.m. PT. Click here for a complete list of winners. This is the first year that GMC presented their UPLIFT SOMEONE award, which recognizes individuals who better the world and inspire others to do the same.

The Dove Awards in the overall categories went to:
Artist of the Year:
Francesca Battistelli
Female Vocalist of the Year:
Francesca Battistelli
Male Vocalist of the Year:
Chris August
Group of the Year:
NEEDTOBREATHE
New Artist of the Year:
Chris August
Song of the Year:
"Sometimes I Cry"; Jason Crabb (artist), Gerald Crabb, Christian Taylor Music (BMI)
Songwriter of the Year:
Gerald Crabb
Producer of the Year:
Ian Eskelin

Incoming GMA Chairman of the Board Mitchell Solerek said, "What an amazing night of music and honor. Tonight's performances were all a testament to why we are all here. On behalf of membership of the GMA, we are proud to present this year's Dove winners and congratulate each of them and the nominees on their achievements. We would also like to thank the city of Atlanta and the ACVB for all their efforts in making this year's Dove Awards an unprecedented success."

"GMA Dove Awards represent Gospel and Christian music's biggest night of the year and tonight's performances were extraordinary," said Charley Humbard, President, GMC. "Honoring some of the industry's most celebrated names in our home town of Atlanta and broadcasting this inspiring event to a nationwide audience reinforces GMC's commitment to bringing the best in uplifting music and entertainment to our viewers," he continued.

Multi-award winners tonight are Chris August, Francesca Battistelli, Jason Crabb and Point of Grace pulling down 3 Doves a piece; making them the top award winners for the evening.

This is the second year in a row for Francesca Battistelli to take home Female Vocalist of the Year honors and the first year to be crowned Artist of the Year. She also won Pop/Contemporary Recorded Song of the Year.

First-time nominee and multi-award winner for Male, New Artist and Pop/Contemporary Album of the Year Chris August had quite a night.

The night was full of special collaborations. Chris Tomlin and the Passion Artists ignited the evening with a Praise and Worship sing-a-long of "Our God", Third Day's single "Children of God," represented hope as Third Day was joined by Mark Hall of Casting Crowns and Steven Curtis Chapman to honor Chapman and his wife Mary Beth's ministry, SHOW HOPE with the GMC UPLIFT SOMEONE award. Kenny Rogers and Point of Grace finished with a standing ovation. Other show highlights included all of the Female Vocalist of the Year nominees performing a tribute to the legendary Sandi Patty, the Dove Award's most honored female singer to date.

Kirk Franklin raised the roof in his inimitable way his high energy closing that rounded out an evening of performances that ranged from country to hip-hop to contemporary gospel, rock and pop all representing the uplifting message of Gospel and Christian music. All-in-all, the evening played host to many outstanding performances by Jason Crabb and MIKESCHAIR, Natalie Grant and LeCrae, Committed and Ernie Haase & Signature Sound, Mary Mary, Kenny Rogers with Point of Grace and many more.
The Dove Awards represent a wide-array of musical styles ranging from Adult Contemporary, Bluegrass, Country, Gospel, Inspirational, Pop, Rap/Hip-Hop, Rock, Spanish Language, Urban and Worship categories.

First time host Sherri Shepherd was a standout having the audience in the palm of her hand and clearly enjoyed the musical performances. This is the first time a non-musical act has hosted the awards show.

Pre-show Highlights: Rock Recorded Song of the Year was awarded to the rock band RED who was not able to attend this year's show, but accepted via cell phone. Backstage generated a lot of excitement mixing Tim Tebow with Greg Jennings and Ruben Studdard with Michelle Williams. Sandi Patty, who was honored in a tribute with all of the nominees for Female Vocalist of the Year, lit up the room with Natalie Grant and Mary Mary.

Follow us on TWITTER @gmctv #doveawards and Facebook.com/gmctv

About GMA:
Founded in 1964, the Gospel Music Association serves as the face and voice for the Gospel/Christian music community and is dedicated to exposing, promoting and celebrating the Gospel through music of all styles including Pop, Rock, Praise & Worship, Urban Gospel, R&B, Hip Hop, Southern Gospel, Bluegrass, Country and more. The GMA community consists of members including agents, artists, church leaders, managers, promoters, radio personnel, record company executives, retailers, songwriters and other industry visionaries. The GMA produces the GMA Dove Awards, GMA Dove Week and IMMERSE. For more on supporting the GMA or becoming a member, please visit www.gospelmusic.org or contact the GMA directly at 615.277.1376.

About GMC:
GMC (www.watchgmctv.com) is America's favorite channel for uplifting music and family entertainment. In 2010, The Parents Television CouncilTM awarded its Entertainment Seal of ApprovalTM to GMC for being "an authentic family-friendly cable network." GMC was the only television network to receive the highly coveted honor last year.
GMC can be seen in nearly 48 million homes on various cable systems around the country, on DIRECTV on channel 338 and on Verizon FiOS on channel 224.

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