UPIKE Chamber Singers Perform In New York City

The University of Pikeville’s (UPIKE) Chamber Singers recently returned from a trip to New York City in May. Under the direction of Eric Rutherford, D.M.A., associate professor and director of choral and vocal studies, and accompanied on piano by Michelle Rutherford, associate professor of music, the 20-member choir performed at Rutgers Presbyterian Church and in the Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine. Performing in the Big Apple allowed the choir to present their talents to a diverse and influential audience, which included potential donors and collaborators.

New York City, renowned for its artistic diversity, offered the choir members a chance to broaden their cultural horizons. Through opportunities to witness world-class performances by others, the trip presented numerous networking opportunities enabling choir members to connect with music industry professionals and fellow artists. 

“Teaching collegiate students to express themselves through music has been the highlight of my career, but nothing quite compares to the joy, awe, and amazement in the eyes of a student when exposed to world-class music, whether operatic, musical, symphonic, or choral,” said Eric. “You can literally see the doors opening and the possibilities expanding in their minds. The opportunity to lead these students through their own performances in New York creates an experience that will stay with them throughout their lives.”

The trip was made possible through the generous support of First Presbyterian Church in Pikeville, Kentucky. The Chamber Singers performed there during a Sunday service on April 28th, which resulted in a donation of approximately $9,000 from the church and its congregation.

This extraordinary opportunity provided the ensemble with invaluable exposure, cultural enrichment and educational growth. This journey marks the third year of the UPIKE Chamber Singers’ touring tradition, having previously visited Columbus, Ohio, and Chicago.

Visit upike.edu to learn more.