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Eastern Territorial Songsters


The mission of the Eastern Territorial Songsters is to glorify God and share the gospel of Jesus Christ through song. Our goal is to lead people into the presence of God through singing and to encourage others to use their voices to sing praise to the Lord.

Upcoming Events

Rhode Island
March 3-5, 2017

For booking or membership information, please contact Robin Rice via email.




Gavin Whitehouse
Songster Leader


Emilee Bennett New Jersey
Deborah Bowin Massachusetts
Major Janet Clarke Eastern PA & Delware
Captain Rene Jarvis Southern New England
Jaye Jones Empire
Chelsea Rice Empire
Robin Rice (Secretary) Empire


Donna Burgmayer Eastern PA & Delaware
Captain Elizabeth Ferreira ARC Command
Lt. Colonel Rene Lance (Executive Officer) Territorial Headquarters
Christianne Livingston Greater New York
L. Christine Payton Empire
Major Joan Pierce ARC Command
Envoy Patricia Wood Southern New England
Major Carl Avery Eastern PA & Delaware
David Burgmayer Eastern PA & Delaware
Craig Evans Northern New England
Major Frederick Hagglund Eastern PA & Delaware
Robert Jeffery Greater New York
Captain Timothy Sheehan SW Ohio & NE Kentucky
Ian Anderson Northern New England
David Cornish (PR Secretary) Southern New England
Pablo Fernandez Greater New York
Erik Jones Empire
Captain Judson Laidlaw Eastern PA & Delaware
Major Dennis Muir Northeast Ohio
Ben Payton Empire

Richard D. Lopez Puerto Rico & Virgin Islands
Lt. Mark Ferreira ARC Command
Lesley Ann Finikin Greater New York
Warren Smith Jr.
(Property Secretary)
Territorial Headquarters


ETS Recordings



Gavin Whitehouse

Eastern Territorial Songster Leader


Songster Leader Gavin Whitehouse was born in Sydney, Australia.  The son of Salvation Army officers he grew up in various towns and rural cities in New South Wales, Australia.  After high school, he studied at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, gaining a Bachelor of Music Education degree.  While in Sydney, he attended the Blacktown Corps in Western Sydney, where he was commissioned as the Songster Leader in 1997.  In the same year he was appointed to the Sydney Staff Songsters.

After graduating, Gavin took up a music teaching position at Arndell Anglican College, teaching classroom music for 5 to 18 year olds, as well as directing the college's bands, choirs and musicals.  Gavin was appointed as the Deputy Songster Leader of the Sydney Staff Songsters in January 2005.

In July 2005, Gavin and his wife Jennifer moved to the US, where he took up a position in the Greater New York music department as Assistant Divisional Music Director with responsibility for all vocal and piano programs in the division.  In September 2005, he formed the Greater New York Youth Chorus, which he continues to direct. Gavin has been a member of the Eastern Territorial Songsters, serving for a brief time in the tenor section, but the majority of time has been spent as the group’s pianist.

S/L Whitehouse has had choral works published in International Salvation Army vocal journals and in the Eastern Territory's Psalms, Hymns and Spiritual Songs.

About the ETS

The Eastern Territorial Songsters (ETS) is a choir of pastors and members from The Salvation Army church community.  Members are drawn from choirs in Puerto Rico, Kentucky, Ohio and along the eastern seaboard from Delaware to Maine.  The choir is 30 men’s and women’s voices strong, with rhythm combo accompaniment, who sing in a variety of musical styles.  The singers are volunteer Salvation Soldiers with diverse vocal backgrounds, a conviction for teaching and leading church ensemble singing and a long-term commitment to ministering in The Salvation Army.

Appointed to service by Eastern Territory leader Commissioner Lawrence R. Moretz in 2005, the songsters have accompanied many well-known preachers as they traveled in the Army’s USA northeast region including The Salvation Army’s international leader General Linda Bond and past leader General Shaw Clifton.  The choir has shared programming with The Salvation Army’s International Staff Band, New York Staff Band and Canadian Staff Band, the Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir, trumpeter Chris Jaudes, Christian pop song-writer Ken Medema and many regionally known church artists.

The songsters have enjoyed instruction and retreat under the pastoring of S/L William Rollins (ETS director/conductor 2005-2012), Salvation Army International Staff Songster conductor Captain Len Ballantine,  Salvation Army International Staff Band and Staff Songster conductor Lieutenant-Colonel  Norman Bearcroft, worship leaders Colonels Robert and Gwenyth Redhead and Asbury College choral professor Dr. Beatrice Holz.  The songsters have presented a varied and diverse vocal repertory.  It is not unusual to find the choir sing hymn tune arrangements, gospel stylings, patriotic tunes or masterworks of the liturgical genre.  ETS released their first CD, “We Feel Like Praisin’ Him”, in the summer of 2007and their second “It Is Good” in the summer of 2010.

In its brief existence, ETS has spent time ministering with many diverse corps songster groups, divisional youth choirs and Eastern Territory vocal workshops.  The ETS has been able to demonstrate vocal repertory, workshop vocal technique, present and worship with choral music.  In every exposure with Salvation Army Corps songster brigades, ETS has witnessed vital and effective corps ministry regardless of the size and ability of those groups.  ETS has had wonderful personal fellowship with each choir member with which they have shared and witnessed a wonderful ownership and support by corps for their songster brigades.  ETS has witnessed effective God honoring worship led by even the smallest of Salvation Army choirs.


The Salvation Army Eastern Territory Music Department

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