White also served as the organist and musical director of the Grant African Methodist Church, Los Angeles, for over 38 years. Under his leadership, the Grant A.M.E. adult choir achieved national recognition for their musical versatility. Under his leadership, the adult choir of Grant A.M.E. Church gained substantial recognition for their versatility in music and professional performances throughout the United States and has several recordings. White also served as director of music for the Southern California Conference Fifth Episcopal District of the African Methodist Church for 15 years and served eight years as associate director for the Connectional Music Department for the African Methodist Episcopal Church.
In 1988, White took a leave of absence from Grant A.M.E. and organized the D.L.W. Community Chorale, whose purpose is to perform the extended compositions of African American composers. White preferred anthems, cantatas, and opera, saying “The smooth performance of the classical sacred music is something the musicians of today should strive to keep alive and valued for future generations”. White was an active member in many music organizations, among them the National Association of Negro Musicians and the American Chorale Directors Association. In addition he was often requested to give lectures and workshops across the country.
In 2008, White was inducted as a "Living Legend" into the California State University Dominguez Hills Georgia and Nolan Payton Archive of African Diaspora Sacred Music and Musicians (ADSMM). He passed away on September 16, 2010. Explore the Don Lee White Collection.
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This page references:
- Exhibit 05- Don Lee White case
- Don Lee White and Albert McNeil at 2009 Living Legend Festival
- Don Lee White and the Grant AME Adult Choir
- "Blessed Are the Meek"
- Don Lee White, circa 1965.
- Don Lee White, celebration of 30 years at Grant AME
- dlw Community Chorale
- Don Lee White's AA diploma
- Don Lee White in 2010
- Don Lee White at a minister's workshop in Waco, TX mid-1960s
- Don Lee White, age 19
- Sallyanne Payton, Don Lee White, and Hansonia Caldwell
- Don Lee White at the piano, circa 1960