Heading to NYC

Members of the First United Methodist Church choir are, back row, from left, Rev. Frank Baik, Ken Goodner, Sherry Peirce, Jean B. Coe, David Murrah, and Chester Barre; middle row, from left, Paul Klemm, Robert Cline, Barbs Meador, Ann Murrah, Barbara Klemm, and Susan Jamison; and front row, from left, Kaitlyn Jameson, Barbara Serota, Taiko Zeidler, Myrtle Lee, Karen Lee Rystad, and Linda Hamilton.

Distinguished Concerts International New York City (DCINY) announced Wednesday, Dec. 11 that director Paul Klemm and the First United Methodist Church (FUMC) of Rockport Choir have been invited to participate in a performance of Pepper Choplin’s “Resurrected: From the Tomb to Pentecost” on the DCINY Concert Series in New York City (NYC).

This performance is planned to take place Monday, May 25, 2020 in David Geffen Hall at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts under the baton of Composer/Conductor Pepper Choplin.

These outstanding musicians will join with other choristers from around the country to form the Distinguished Concerts Singers International, a choir of distinction.

Maestro Choplin will lead the performance and will serve as the clinician for the residency.

“Pepper Choplin has long been one of our very favorite composers,” said Klemm. “The choir has performed quite a few of his works. It was from one of these performances that they were discovered by DCINY who then invited them to come to New York.

“This is an extraordinarily talented group of people and I could not be more proud of them.  This is an opportunity of a lifetime and something they will never forget.”

Klemm noted organizing a trip like this takes a lot of resources.  The choir will host a series of concerts beginning January 19, and will continue on the third Sunday of each month.

Artistic Director and Principal Conductor for DCINY said, “The FUMC Choir received this invitation because of the quality and high level of musicianship demonstrated by the singers, as well as the exceptional quality of their audition recording.

“It is quite an honor just to be invited to perform in New York. These wonderful musicians not only represent a high quality of music and education, but they also become ambassadors for the entire community.

“This is an event of extreme pride for everybody and deserving of the community’s recognition and support.”

The singers will spend five days and four nights in NYC in preparation for their concert.

“The singers will spend approximately 9 to 10 hours in rehearsals during the five-day residency,” said Griffith. “Not all of the time is spent in rehearsals, since there is so much history and culture to see in New York City. However, the performance is the primary purpose for their visit to the city.”

Members of the community are encouraged to give financial support to send these singers to NYC by contacting Klemm via email at music@fumcrockport.org, or by calling the church at (361) 729-1659.

“In addition, we will hold a silent auction to raise funds,” said Klemm.


For information about tickets, group sales or other special offers, call 212-707-8566 Ext. 307, or BoxOffice@DCINY.org.

About Composer/Conductor Pepper Choplin

Pepper Choplin is a full time composer, conductor and humorist. He has gained a reputation as one of the most creative writers in church music today. Beginning his music training at the age of four, he grew up singing and playing piano, trumpet, guitar, and banjo.

With a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, he went on to earn a Master of Music degree in composition from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.

With a diverse musical background, Choplin incorporates varied styles such as folk, Gospel, classical, and jazz.

His published work includes more than 250 anthems for church and school choir, 16 church cantatas and a book of piano arrangements.

More than 100 groups have commissioned him to write original works for them. An original hymn, “Come to the Water” appears in the recent hymnal, Celebrating Grace.

His anthems consistently appear in the top seller lists of publishers and distributors. Since 1991, his choral music has sold several million copies.

Each week, thousands of singers present his music in churches and schools in the United States and around the world.

In 2013, he made his Carnegie Hall debut in a joint concert with Joseph Martin. In 2015, Choplin traveled to Lincoln Center where he conducted his new cantata, “Our Father”, based on the Lord’s Prayer.

He also visits many churches and conferences to conduct and to entertain. Beyond his choral music, Choplin has produced two humorous CDs and an inspirational recording. In his solo concerts, he moves audiences with his powerful ballads and his humor.

About DCINY Productions

Founded by Iris Derke and Jonathan Griffith, DCINY is the leading producer of dynamically charged musical excellence. With its unforgettable concert experiences in renowned venues, empowering educational programs, and its global community of artists and audiences, DCINY changes lives through the power of performance.

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