About Us.jpg

About Us

Community Concerts at Epworth is a neighborhood concert series whose mission is to bring high quality concerts of diverse styles and genres to the North Berkeley area in an accessible format for all. The concerts are free of charge so that all can have access to great music. We accept donations at the performances which will be used to bring our musicians to the larger community  where music is hard to come by, such as homeless shelters, prisons and inner city schools. The concerts are about one hour in length and accessible for all ages. 


Community Concerts is a service of Epworth United Methodist Church to the wider community.


Message from Caroline Lee,
artistic director of Community Concerts at Epworth


Dear friends,


There is no way of getting around the fact that 2020 brought unspeakable challenges and trials, and none of us know exactly when we will be able to  breathe a sigh of relief.  I’ve been musing about how we can offer music that speaks to times such as these. In the works of the great masters of the past we find beauty and transcendence that help us rise above times of great tumult and uncertainty. Aren’t we all hungry for those moments of beauty, transcendence, connection, and healing? Yet we also find ourselves looking at our current condition, wondering what the future will bring, and longing to find meaning behind these times. 


This year marks the celebration of Beethoven’s 250th birth year. All over the world concert halls large and small were planning to celebrate one of the most recognized and celebrated composers of all times until the coronavirus shut them down. I can’t think of another composer whose music and life speak so deeply and eloquently to the human condition in all its forms and speak to the times such as the present. This fall we will celebrate Beethoven’s amazing achievement  with three of his monumental and beloved chamber works- Judas Maccabaus variations for cello and piano, the “Kreutzer” violin sonata, and the great opus 127 string quartet from his late period. 


This season we also look to the present and the future. CCE has commissioned two critically acclaimed composers,  Daniel Bernard Roumain and Kay Kyurim Rhee, to produce new works to be premiered on our stage this fall. We asked them to write works that speak to the time we are living in, and bring their own perspectives as composers of color.  I can’t wait to share these works that look deeply at our world and help us find connection and meaning. 


Our concerts are always free to the public, and we are committed to supporting our wider community with donations. We ask you to join us for our special digital fundraiser concert on 10/25. All of our musicians’ lives have been deeply affected by the coronavirus pandemic as all live performances have been cancelled since March, and we want to continue to support our world class artists. Any amount of donation will be welcome! All concerts in our fall season will be live stream events and can be viewed via our facebook page or our website. 


Please keep checking back as we will post updates and details about our performers and the program. We hope to see you on October 25th!