Director of Music Announcement
I know that many of us miss being together in church this season, particularly as we approach these last Sundays of the program year. We have missed so many milestones together, especially musical milestones. Our Bach Cantata could not happen, and our opportunity to thank our choirs will have to be virtual - not to mention the milestone that is Steve Finch’s retirement after 33 years of devoted service to St. John’s. But that will all come. Plans to celebrate Steve’s ministry among us are postponed until the fall so that the whole parish can gather to thank God and Steve for his amazing tenure with us.
Today I am writing to share the wonderful news with the congregation that, even in this complicated time, the church has successfully completed its search for our next Director of Music. After an extensive nationwide search, we are pleased to announce the appointment of Jun Kim as the next Director of Music for St. John’s Church.
Jun is a wonderful and engaging musician with extensive experience in Episcopal Churches having served as a director of music at St. John’s in Oakland, California for 4 years, and previously at Christ Church in Tarrytown and Grace Church Whitestone. Prior to his appointments as a Director of Music, Jun served as a section leader and professional singer at St. Luke’s Church in Darien, Connecticut, and a piano instructor at St. Thomas Choir School in New York City.
Jun has a Master’s of Music in classical piano from SUNY College, Purchase and a Bachelors in classical piano performance from the Manhattan School of Music. He studies organ with Anthony Newman of St. Matthew's Bedford, and voice with Arthur Burrows, former voice instructor at Bard College. He credits Anthony Newman, Arthur Burrows, the late Charles Dodsley Walker, Daniel Beckwith, and Dr. Neal Campbell - all excellent musicians in Episcopal Churches - with shaping his career and life, and continuing to fuel his spiritual and musical growth.
Jun comes to us after a successful tenure leading St. John’s in Oakland through a transition following a long-term Minister of Music of over two decades. While at St. John’s he was able to build on the successful efforts of his predecessor, retain many veteran choir members, and build new choirs to reinvigorate the choral program there. His work there included the establishment of a youth choir which continues to grow and thrive in his absence as well as an organ scholar program, encouraging young musicians to study organ playing and Royal School of Church Music inter-generational choir program.
Throughout the process, Jun impressed the search committee with his wide-ranging experience, his warm and engaging manner, and his good humor. Jun, his wife Judy, and their 18-month-old daughter Jeannine are looking forward to joining the St. John’s Cold Spring Harbor Community this summer. Jun’s first day at St. John’s will be August 1 and can be reached at [email protected] after that date.
A special thanks is due to our Director of Music Search Committee who have risen to the challenge of the occasion with great flexibility. No one could have imagined that this process would unfold in the midst of our social distancing practice, but our committee embraced new technology and new habits with incredible joy. Congratulations and thank you for a job well done.
Please join us in welcoming Jun!