In 2025, the Gospel Music Association will open the Dove Center and Gospel Music Museum in downtown Nashville.
The Dove Center and Gospel Music Museum will be located at 147 Fourth Ave. N., at the corner of Fourth Avenue and Commerce Street, one block from the historic Ryman Auditorium.
“Developed to preserve the legacy of our historic past, support the impact of today’s artists, and plant seeds for the future, we believe the Dove Center will be a beacon of light for the kingdom of God,” Gospel Music Association president/executive director Jackie Patillo said in a video revealing details about the timeline for the upcoming Dove Center. “It will also be a key part of the GMA’s mission to expose, promote, and celebrate the Gospel through music.”
The video also featured a rendering of the Dove Center, with plans including the Dove Awards Theater, a timeline of the history of the gospel music industry, exhibits highlighting artists’ stories, a Hall of Fame area spotlighting plaques for each member of the Gospel Music Hall of Fame’s approximately 200 members, and exhibits allowing visitors to create and mix their own song. The center will feature exhibit areas with titles including Lift Your Voice, Moving Up The Charts and Created to Worship.
The Gospel Music Association, which puts on the annual GMA Dove Awards, was founded in 1964. The Dove Awards were conceptualized by singer-songwriter Bill Gaither in 1968. The inaugural Dove Awards were held in 1969 in Memphis, Tennessee, before the awards moved to Nashville in 1971. The Awards were held in Atlanta in 2011 and 2012, before returning to Nashville in 2013.
The building that will house the Dove Center is also home to Lipscomb University’s Spark Center. Since 2013, the Gospel Music Association and Lipscomb University have had a partnership, where the annual GMA Dove Awards have been held at Lipscomb University’s Allen Arena, while the Gospel Music Association operates from its headquarters at 4012 Granny White Pike in Nashville, on Lipscomb University’s campus.
This 54th annual GMA Dove Awards winners this year included artist of the year winner Brandon Lake (who picked up four total awards during the evening), while Tasha Cobbs Leonard, Toby Mac, Blessing Offor and Jeff Pardo each won two awards.
The Dove Center will join several other music-focused museums in Music City, including the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, the Musicians Hall of Fame and Museum, the National Museum of African American Music, the Johnny Cash Museum, the Patsy Cline Museum, and the Willie Nelson and Friends museum.