At Unity in Greensboro, we celebrate oneness, gratitude, and love of Spirit through the joyful creative expression that exists within us all. Each Sunday, our incredible music team helps us tap into our own “creative divinity” through heart-opening, life-enriching, and soul-stirring music.
Music is a vital part of our services. We do not follow a traditional model for “church music,” but believe that a variety of music helps us celebrate the many gifts of Spirit. Our music is dynamic. It is uplifting, joyful, thoughtful, soulful and meditative. It includes Unity songs, folk, rock, new age, jazz, pop, traditional hymns, blues, country, gospel, musical theater, and classical music. Frequently we feature original music written by our own Elaine Penn and Nancy Pitkin.
At Unity in Greensboro, music is about living in gratitude and love and experiencing a more joyful, peaceful and conscious life. We believe that music inspires us to see God in everyone and everything. It calls us to become aware of God within our own being and to love unconditionally.
Share Your Musical Gifts
There are many opportunities to get involved with the music at Unity in Greensboro. Talented members of the congregation are always welcome to audition for Sunday services and special events. Everyone is encouraged to find the courage to offer their gifts and talents as ministry to our congregation. Music Director Elaine Penn and Associate Director Nancy Pitkin are wonderful teachers and mentors for those who feel called to “step out”.
The Unity Singers
In addition to solo performers, we regularly feature the Unity Singers, a volunteer adult ensemble that includes both professional vocalists and inexperienced congregants who just plain love to sing! The Unity Singers are highlighted at numerous special services throughout the year.
Our Music Ministry presents bi-monthly Friday night coffee houses in the Community Life Center at Unity. These fabulous, fun events offer a loving, supportive venue for both emerging new talents and seasoned professionals. They provide wonderful fellowship where congregants and visitors can “kick back”, relax, get to know one another better and bask in great music.
Elaine is a nationally-recognized motivational speaker, trainer and performer who inspires people to reach their highest potential. Specializing in creative leadership, breakthrough performance, holistic wellness and diversity, Elaine works with universities, nonprofit agencies and businesses throughout the United States. She has been featured on 1,500 college campuses nationwide.
Elaine has been performing professionally for most of her life. She grew up in her family’s dance band and learned to sing jazz and big band music at an early age. While in her 20’s, she formed a Mo-Town and Top 40 band that traveled the East Coast. Elaine has performed in concert halls, nightclubs, jazz clubs, dance associations, musical theater productions, and for television and radio.
Elaine is a successful singer and songwriter who has written and performed theme songs for five public television documentaries. Her CD of original music, Same Sky, explores how to honor diversity through unity. Currently she is recording a new CD of original “New Thought/Inspirational” songs. She also finds time to sing with the Greensboro Big Band, the Mike Day Swing Machine and the Penn Family Music Band.
Prior to training and speaking, Elaine worked at the University of North Carolina Wilmington for 14 years in a variety of positions, including that of Director of Special Projects for the Chancellor, Chief Fundraiser and Executive Producer of educational documentary projects, Director of Campus Recreation and Assistant Volleyball Coach.
ASSOCIATE MUSIC DIRECTOR, CHOIR DIRECTOR
Nancy is music! In addition to her work at Unity in Greensboro, she teaches music at the American Hebrew Academy. Nancy sells her popular Old Time Favorites CD across the country, and has also recorded several albums of her own original, New Thought inspirational music.
Nancy grew up singing in church choirs and says much of her musical talent was inherited from her grandfather, who was a ragtime piano player and singer in a barbershop quartet. She studied piano under the late Leonard Seeber, and graduated from the University of Connecticut with a B.S. in music. She also studied two years at the Hartt College of Music.
Nancy’s music career began as an elementary school music teacher. Later she moved to Nashville to hone her skills as a singer, songwriter and recording artist. In Nashville, she worked as a staff writer for Southern Nights Music. She was also a working musician and performer in various clubs and resorts in and around Nashville. Besides performing with a variety of bands, Nancy has been a ballet accompanist, pianist for musical theater and a Kindermusik teacher. She has performed original songs for community events such as Hospice services, Kidspath and Relay for Life.
Along with Elaine, Nancy plays at nearly every Sunday service at Unity in Greensboro. She is a generous accompanist as well as a gifted soloist. Her soulful sounds touch everyone’s heart and raise consciousness to a higher level of spiritual awareness. The Unity Singers shine under Nancy’s encouraging direction.
In addition to her Unity responsibilities, Nancy enjoys singing and playing for senior and assisted-living communities.
John brings a lifetime of music experience to leading the Unity Singers. He is a highly accomplished and well-known jazz musician, playing keyboard or piano in the NC Big Band and the Likewise Jazz Quartet; serves as Unity’s church accompanist; and offers piano solo performances throughout North Carolina. He has been training and directing outstanding choral groups for over 30 years. John’s exuberant and contagious love of music and choral singing make every practice and every performance a joyous occasion.
AUDIO VISUAL COORDINATOR
Chris has more than 30 years experience recording everything from radio voiceovers, recitals, school choral performance, church choirs, solo artists and rock ‘n’ roll bands.
Chris received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Speech/Mass Communications from the University of West Georgia. Following an 18-year career in radio broadcasting, Chris embarked on his career in music and music production.
Currently, Chris is a recording engineer at the Music Academy of North Carolina. He also owns Spin It On Entertainment, a thriving Mobile DJ business.
Chris plays guitar and sings, and he is back on the radio after a 13-year “break”. He can be heard Thursday mornings from 6:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. on WQFS 90.9 FM* in Greensboro, NC.
THE UNITY BAND
Elaine Penn, Guitar and vocals
Nancy Pitkin, Piano and vocals
John Trotta, Piano
Jack King, Guitar and vocals
Bob Teesdale, Guitar and vocals
Angela Aldrich, Drums
REGULAR GUEST ARTISTS
Brenda Bey, Soloist
Angela Aldrich, Soloist
Nick Boulet, Songwriter, Guitar Player and Soloist
Annelise Delcambre, Soloist
Danielle Delcambre, Soloist
Jeanine Delcambre, Soloist
Karla Greene, Soloist
Chris Rachal, Solist
Anita Shaver, Soloist
Vic Tynes, Soloist
Nick Vogel, Drummer
Maria Wagner, Soloist