Winter 2018

The Chorus is very excited about this year's program, Music by the Fireside, once again lovingly put together by our director, Marie Harrington and accompanist Bob Legacy. 

This year's concert is on December 8 at 7.30pm and selections include "Do You Hear What I Hear," "Cantate Domino," "Light a Candle," "Sing We Now of Christmas" and "Grown-Up Christmas List."

Enjoy performances from our guest artists from the Metropolitan Opera, Sara Petrocelli and Chad Armostrong.

Sara Louise Petrocelli (Armstrong) is a mezzo soprano currently on the roster of the Metropolitan Opera Chorus. She received a Master's Degree in Voice from Carnegie Mellon University and has since completed residencies with Sarasota Opera, Tulsa Opera, and the Caramoor Festival, and has performed leading and supporting roles with regional companies throughout the U.S.  Singing has brought Sara all around the globe, and she is now very grateful to be playing the role of wife and mother right here in Hillsdale, NJ. Sara and her husband, baritone Chad Armstrong, founded Palisades Vocal Studio, offering private lessons and workshops, and she has served as cantor in the Catholic Church for over 20 years.,

Chad Armstrong has already had an extensive performing career in major operatic roles throughout the United States and Europe. His powerful baritone voice is well matched with his acting skills. Originally from Canada, Chad has maintained a busy schedule here in the U.S. as a soloist, teacher and member of the chorus for the Metropolitan Opera in NYC.


As has become tradition at our winter concerts, we are pleased welcome our scholarship winners to come back and perform with us. This year we are excited to have three talented performers return, Mark Serkin, Kimberly Best and Rebekah Braun-McGovern. 

Mark Edward Serkin, American cellist is a Master of Music candidate and President’s  scholarship recipient at Mannes School of Music in New York City where he studies with the internationally renowned cellist Jeffrey Zeigler.  Mark is principal cellist of the Mannes Orchestra and has performed at Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, and various other venues.  He received his bachelor’s degree with honors in cello performance at Mannes School of Music, The New School of Music, class of Barbara Stein Mallow.    
Mark has performed in solo and chamber master classes for artists such as Sharon Robinson, Timothy Eddy, Robert DeMaine, Jonathan Spitz, Peter Stumpf, Julia Lichten, Gloria dePasquale, Stefan Milenkovich, Kronos Quartet, Horszowski Trio, and the Miró Quartet.  His main mentors include Hans Jørgen Jensen and Vladimir Panteleyev (cello performance), Todd Phillips (chamber), Nancy Wilson (baroque chamber).

Kim Best is a board-certified music therapist working with older adults living with dementia and those on hospice care. She was a recipient of the North Jersey Chorus Samuel T. Hutcheson Music Scholarship in 2008 and went on to graduate from Nazareth College of Rochester, NY with a Bachelor of Music in Music Therapy, minor in Psychology, and classical training in flute performance. Kim fulfilled an internship in New York City with a hospice company and later started a music therapy program at a hospice company in Minnesota. She is currently working with a local hospital to pilot a music therapy program and expanding her private practice. She writes about music therapy and end of life care at and creates custom calligraphy gifts and decor at Kim and her husband, a music producer and recording artist, live in Rochester, NY and enjoy making music together, spending time in nature, and eating Mediterranean food. 

Rebekah Braun-McGovern (2016) has a diverse musical background, performing with the choir and band in school musicals for 6 years. A member of the madrigal choir for 4 years, she was selected to the Bergen County Chorus for all 6 years of her eligibility. Rebekah has served as Cantor and soloist for Our Lady of Good Counsel Church in Washington Township. Described as a “very generous volunteer” she has worked on service projects with her church youth group, serving as a classroom aide preparing children for First Communion. Rebekah plans to continue her studies in music education.

For Mark, Rebekah and Kimberly's full bios, please click here: Samuel T. Hutcheson Memorial Scholarship Winners.


So mark your calendars and join us on December 8 at 7.30pm and who knows, maybe we'll get a visit from Jolly St. Nick himself!

Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for children under 12 and can be purchased from a Chorus Member or at the door the night of the performance.

The concert will be held at the Van Riper Ellis Broadway Baptist Church located at 7-01 River Road, Fair Lawn, NJ.


Interested in joining the Chorus?  New members are always welcome!  Rehearsals for the 2019 spring concert will began after the new year. Check back for the official start date or ask a chorus member.

The North Jersey Chorus rehearses on Wednesday evenings starting at 7:30pm at the Van Riper Ellis Broadway Baptist Church located at 7-01 River Road, Fair Lawn, NJ. 

We welcome all voice parts (soprano, alto, tenor and bass). Anyone interested in joining the North Jersey Chorus should e-mail us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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