Music & Fine Arts

A versatile program of arts in worship that seeks to uplift, inspire, challenge and comfort.


Our vision for the Music and Fine Arts programs at FAPC extends well into the realm of transformative ministry. We strive to offer a rich, relevant program that engages the congregation in worship and creates opportunities to share the wealth of artistic talents in our community.

Music is at the heart of a worship experience that, together with the Word, provides a genuine opportunity to encounter the holy. Our repertoire features the finest sacred organ, choral, vocal and instrumental art music from many periods and Christian traditions, including contemporary music from around the world.

Our choices are diverse and broad, reflecting our eclectic community even as they honor the rich traditions and heritage of this historic church.

Beyond worship, Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church offers a year-round program of sacred music concerts, exhibitions of painting and photography, and literary events that challenge us to consider questions of faith and explore new dimensions of spirituality through artistic expression.

The FAPC Choir is the heart of the church’s music program. From September through June, the choir (combining both professional and volunteer singers) leads the congregation in worship on Sunday mornings at the 11 am service and at special seasonal services. Under the leadership of Dr. Ryan Jackson, rehearsals are friendly, educational and encouraging. Most weeks we rehearse on Wednesdays from 6:30 to 8:30 pm. We warm up on Sunday mornings beginning at 9:45 am in preparation for the service. Although singing well together is hard work, we also like to have a good time—we gather several times a year outside rehearsal for socializing and fun.

The Chamber Choir is a subsection of the FAPC Choir. Its members include our professional choristers plus several volunteers with extensive choral experience and outstanding musicianship skills. Depending on the repertoire, the size of the choir varies from 18 to 24 voices. The goal of this professional-level ensemble is to achieve the highest standard of choral singing in a wide range of repertoire, with particular focus on music of the 20th and 21st centuries, as well as the Renaissance and Baroque. The Chamber Choir presents two or three concerts each season as the centerpiece of FAPC's concert series, Music@Fifth and 55th.

The Joyful Noise Choir is an entry-level ensemble for thos who would like to learn more about singing and music in general, and have a good time with like-minded people in the process. There is no audition to join this group—the only requirements are a love of music and a desire to learn. We meet on Thursdays from 5:45 until 7 pm, and spend our time learning about our voices and improving our varied abilities to read musical notation. Beginning in January 2014, members of the Joyful Noise Choir will be invited to sit in the loft with the FAPC Choir on Sunday mornings to join in leading the congregation in worship.

The Children's Choir and Youth Music provide opportunities for young people to express their love of God through songs. Choristers learn to read music, develop good singing habits and appreciate the many styles of great sacred repertoire. Our children and youth are featured frequently in Sunday worship, but our biggest performances of the year are the Christmas Pageant, the Family Ministries Christmas Eve service and our Spring Concert. We welcome all children and youth to celebrate God’s gift of music every Sunday at 10:15 am (right after Sunday School), with regular rehearsals from September through May.

Becoming a Volunteer Member of the Choir

We ask for volunteers to perform a simple audition—a hymn of your choice, both the melody line and your harmony part (alto, tenor, bass, or a descant line if you are a soprano). Because our choir rapidly covers a broad repertoire during the season, we ask that all choir members, whether professional or volunteer, be able to read music. You may be asked to sing a simple melody at sight (with some assistance from the piano, if necessary).

Becoming a Professional Member of the Choir

Our professional singers bring a wealth of training and experience to their work, lending musical and vocal leadership to the ensemble. Our professional choristers are versatile musicians: they are experienced choral singers, excellent sight readers, have superb pitch, and demonstrate the flexibility to perform in a variety of styles, both within the ensemble and as soloists. We ask you to audition first as a professional substitute, with the possibility of being considered for a permanent position later.

If you are interested in auditioning for the FAPC Choir, contact Ryan Jackson (rjackson@fapc.org).