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Music At First & Central

First & Central Presbyterian Church is pleased to present a rich and diverse music program under the direction of David Schelat, our Minister of Music. The church offers a variety of modes of musical expression and entertainment to its membership and the Wilmington public alike.

Festival Concerts, Thursday Noontime Concerts, the Chancel Choir, the Center City Chorale, and ensemble-in-residence, the Serafin String Quartet are well-known and ongoing musical opportunities at First & Central.

Experience the wealth of musical offerings at First & Central!


Thursday Noontime Concerts

The primary musical offering of First & Central to the downtown community is Thursday Noontime Concerts, which present weekly fall and spring concerts of free half hour programs at 12:30 p.m. These concerts are designed to present outstanding classical, jazz, folk, and multi-cultural music in a convenient location at a time that fits easily into the busy schedule of downtown workers and shoppers. The concerts are free, but a small donation of $2 per person is encouraged each week. This program is made possible, in part, by grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Delaware Division of the Arts (a state agency committed to promoting and supporting the arts in Delaware).

Festival Concerts

Festival Concerts at First & Central are the church's series of full-length concerts that take place primarily on the weekends. This season, the schedule includes programs by our ensemble-in-residence, the Serafin String Quartet, the Chancel Choir of First & Central, a presentation of "September Echoes" by Distant Voices Touring Theatre Company, as well as the popular annual Bach Marathon Concert.

Your generosity enables First & Central Church to continue its mission of presenting excellent concerts to the Wilmington public at very affordable admission prices.

The Chancel Choir

The Chancel Choir is a 24-voice ensemble of volunteer and professional musicians that sings during worship at First & Central, as well as at Festival Concerts and occasionally at other events each season. The choir has been praised for its outstanding ensemble singing, and is heard singing music ranging from vocal jazz and music of non-western cultures to cantatas of J. S. Bach and masses of Mozart. Guest musicians sometimes join the choir in worship and in concert. The Chancel Choir rehearses on Thursdays beginning September 8, 7-9 p.m. in the second floor choir room, and is always open to new singers by informal audition. For more information, contact Minister of Music David Schelat.

Center City Chorale

The Center City Chorale is a 45-voice mixed SATB choir designed for and primarily made up of those people who work in Downtown Wilmington. The Chorale rehearses each Tuesday, 12:05 - 12:55 pm, from September 6 through mid May at First & Central. It normally performs during Thursday Noontime Concerts at the church. Music sung by Center City Chorale ranges from sacred to secular, from Bach and Mozart to music from non-Western cultures, spirituals, and vocal jazz. No audition is necessary, but a commitment to attend rehearsal each week is essential. For more information and a schedule, contact Minister of Music David Schelat.

Children's Music

Each Sunday, the children of First & Central are offered an opportunity to experience and learn about music as part of church school for all ages. All children meet with music educator, Julie Swanson for a period of singing and music making utilizing the church's collection of Orff instruments. The children showcase what they have learned during all-church gatherings where songs are sung, and staged presentations, punctuated by music, are offered for all to enjoy. In addition, they sing and play during worship a few times each year.

Community Concerts and Events at First & Central

Groups from all over the greater Wilmington area find a welcome at First & Central for their musical events. Wilmington's First Night celebration has used the sanctuary as a venue since its inception, the Delaware Rainbow Chorale holds its winter and spring concerts at the church, the American Guild of Organists offers periodic educational and fellowship programs, and musicians from the community regularly hold recitals and small concerts. For guidelines as to building use, please use this link to our on-line information or contact our Building Superintendent, Gerard Coleman.