Westminster alumni perform at the White House

Trish Joyce ’85 conducted members of the New Jersey Youth Chorus' Coriste ensemble

Westminster alumna Trish Joyce ’85 conducted members of the New Jersey Youth Chorus' Coriste ensemble in a performance at the White House's annual Holiday Open House earlier this month. They were accompanied by alumnus Phillip Steffani ’00.

The two-hour set took place in the festively decorated East Room, with Coriste performing beneath the portrait of George Washington and surrounded by the twinkling lights of the East Room's Christmas trees. The ensemble was selected to perform at the 2019 Holiday Open House following a rigorous application process.

“Performing at the White House, the 'People's House,' was a tremendous honor, and a Christmas dream come true,” says Joyce. “To sing in the East Room, where so many major events have taken place, and in front of the full-length portrait of George Washington, was truly inspiring. The power of singing brings a message of hope and joy, and we were thrilled to share our artistry, integrity and passion for choral music with the White House visitors. As very proud and grateful Americans, I know this was an experience our choristers will treasure all of their lives."

Founded by Artistic Director Joyce in 1992, the New Jersey Youth Chorus is an auditioned choral program for children in grades four through 12. Its mission is to provide exceptional choral music education and performance experiences, fostering expression, artistry and growth. Rehearsals are held on Mondays at Chatham United Methodist Church, located at 460 Main St., Chatham N. J.  More information is at