PASTOR CYNTHIA E. ROBINSON
Cynthia Robinson graduated magna cum laude with a degree in psychology from Westfield State College in Massachusetts in 1987. Her Masters in Divinity degree was conferred in 1991 by Andover Newton Theological School. Prior to coming to the New Ark United Church of Christ, Rev. Robinson served as both an Associate Pastor and an Interim Pastor as well as being an active congregant and supply preacher during the years she devoted to raising her two daughters. Cynthia's interests include theology, spirituality, women's issues, peace and justice, retreats and mission trips.
Jane Dilley is among the founding members of the New Ark and from the earliest days took on the role of music director. As there was no library of choir music, choir selections for special music were the unfamiliar and somewhat more difficult hymns found in the hymnbook. In its evolution the choir first sang without formal direction. Once it began singing standard choir anthems Jane too evolved to become the choir conductor.
She began her music training in grade school on violin, later on piano with frequent accompanying assignments. In high school she played for services in her small rural church and directed its choir. She minored in music at Ohio University with some vocal training and directed the chorus of the music honorary. During college she sang in the local Presbyterian choir directed by a music faculty member and played viola in the University orchestra.
Jane's training in choral conducting has come from having sung under a number of professional directors: 20 years or so with the University of Delaware-Community chorus (Choral Union, now called Schola Cantorum) with directors from the music school; three summer sessions with the Berkshire Choral Festival; locally, two sessions with Coro Allegro and Friends directed by Jack Burnam and annual performances of the Newark Symphony Chorus directed by church choir directors, Betsy Kent and Nicole Aldrich; a one-week course on vocal production for choral singers in a Peabody Conservatory Elderhostel. She continues as volunteer music director for the New Ark and happily turns over conducting the choir to University conducting students who occasionally request some real-world experience to go with their course work. >>EMAIL JANE<<