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Night of Joy Stars Win Big at Dove Awards

We shared earlier about the lineup that will be performing at Night of Joy 2011. The “Headliners” at the official website are certainly worthy of the honor – newsboys, Jeremy Camp and Skillet on Sept. 9, 2011, and MercyMe, TobyMac and Jars of Clay on Sept. 10, 2011. But the headlines today belong to artists among the other 10 Night of Joy acts – particularly Francesca Battistelli and Chris August.

Night of Joy Stars Win Big at Dove Awards

Between them, Francesca and Chris have piled up six Gospel Music Association Dove Awards, including some of the biggest: Francesca was tabbed Artist of the Year and Female Vocalist of the Year; Chris was honored with New Artist of the Year and Male Vocalist of the Year.

In all, Night of Joy 2011 artists were awarded 11 Doves. The musical diversity of Night of Joy – and the superb caliber of the lineup – was underscored by the fact that artists were presented “recorded song of the year” in three categories and “album of the year” in four categories. The honored categories: Contemporary Gospel, Rap/Hip Hop, Pop/Contemporary, Rock, and Rock/Contemporary.

Somewhere up there, Sonny Anderson, our long-ago talent booking guru who helped launch Night of Joy in 1983 with an eye on pleasing the ears of people with lots of different music tastes, has to be smiling. His little Christian music party is still filling Magic Kingdom Park nights with a lot of amazing sounds.

You can learn more about this year’s event at Tickets go on sale May 1.


  • Dave! Thanks so much for the reply. I’m so glad to hear that Night of Joy seems to just simply be getting better and better — but what I meant by “join the fate of Grad Nite” was in reference to how the company recently announced that Grad Nite would be no longer after the 2011 event. Are there any plans “under the hood” to trim another item like Night of Joy off the list of special events?

  • You need to hold this event at the Disneyland Resort in So. Calif. That would be so awesome!

    • Cassie, you’ve arrived a generation or two late! The inspiration for our Night of Joy at Disney World was an event that took place at Disneyland circa 1970s!

  • Very cool! I went to Night of Joy a couple years ago and loved it, and I think it’s so cool that Disney puts on this kind of event. But I heard that Night of Joy might have the same fate as Grad Nite in not too much time…. is this true? =/

    • Tom, thank you for your support of Night of Joy. We created the event because we believed there would be an audience for the “good vibes” of the music. Now, as we prepare for our 29th year, we are excited that our “modern-day Sonny Anderson” — Brad Ross — and our special events team have put together such an excellent lineup for people like yourself who enjoy contemporary Christian music.

      Having been associated with Night of Joy since the inaugural event, I’m always comparing one year’s lineup with another, trying to decide if it’s maybe the best ever. Of course, that’s all a matter of opinion and quite impossible to determine.

      What is notable about this lineup is how broadly the accolades have been spread: 14 of the 16 artists have won Doves. And the two that haven’t were finalists this year. There is a collection of compilation albums that carry a title befitting this lineup: WOW!

  • So thankful Disney does this!

  • Congrats to all of the Dove Award winners!

    Will there be a pin for this year’s Night of Joy? I really missed not having one last year.


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