The Freeland Community Choir was formed in the fall of 2008 after the former Freeland Interfaith Choir was dissolved earlier that same year. Starting with a core group of dedicated singers, a new accompanist (the talented Janet Hartman on piano and keyboard) and the dynamic and charismatic Jacque Wetzel as director, the choir burst onto the Hazleton-Area music scene. The Choir is now comprised of over 60 members from communities all over the Freeland Area. The Choir performs annual Cantatas at Christmas and at Easter.
The choir has performed at various community and church events in Freeland, Hazleton, Conyngham and Eckley Miner's Village, including a Patriotic July 4th Concert in 2009 at the Conyngham United Methodist Church in. The choir is honored to have performed at the St. David's Day Service for the Welsh Congregational Church in Hazleton and has done so in 2011 thru 2015.
The Freeland Choir has also appeared on the annual Christmas Eve, WNEP TV program "Christmas All Night" in 2008 and 2009, as well as a special Christmas feature for Hazleton SSPTV TV in 2010.The choir was honored to perform at the Hazleton Cancer Society Relay for Life, Luminaria Services in 2010 and 2011. In the Spring of 2011, the choir collaborated with the Hazleton Philharmonic Orchestra to produce and perform “Music and Glory: Celebrating the Easter Season”. This presentation was held at the Christ Lutheran Church in Hazleton.
During the 2011 Thru the 2014 Christmas Seasons, the Choir again performed with the Hazleton Philharmonic in the annual “Sounds of the Season” Christmas Concert held at the Alice C. Wiltsie Performing Arts Center at the Historic Castle in Hazleton.These concerts were broadcast on Hazleton TV Channel WYLN and were picked up by the Pennsylvania Cable Network (PCN) for multiple statewide broadcasts during the holiday seasons. The Choir was honored to perform for the Hazleton Area Cancer Telethon in Feb. 2012. The Choir concluded its Spring Schedule with three performances of the Easter Musical "Never Thirst Again". The choir performed at St. Luke's Church in Freeland and at the Conyngham United Methodist Church on April 1st, then presented an encore performance at the Faith United Church of Christ in Hazleton on 22 April. In July, the choir held its first annual "Picnic in the Park". The picnic was a great time and included catered food, pot-luck sides and deserts, AND entertainment by the Freeland St. Ann's Brass and the Tunebandits.
The choir began rehearsals for its 2012 Chirstmas Cantata performances in Sept. and performed the brand new Pepper Choplin Cantata Heaven's Child at the Saint John's Reformed United Church of Christ in Freeland, the Conyngham United Methodist Church in Conyngham, and the Faith Unithed Church of Christ in Hazleton. For the 2013 Easter Cantata, the choir was pleased to perform another new work by Pepper Choplin, Upon This Rock.
In August, the choir held its second annual "Picnic in the Park" at the historic Freeland Public Park Pavilion. The picnic featured a pig roast that was enjoyed by all. Entertainment was provided by Carol and Bill Drumheller.
For Christmas, 2013, the choir presented a brand new Pepper Choplin cantata: The Heart of Christmas. The choir again joined forces with the Hazleton Philharmonic Orchestra for the 10th annual Sounds of the Season Concert.
For Easter, 2014, the choir performed the Camp Kirkland cantata: Like a Lamb. This cantata has a wonderful, Gospel flavor and powerful message.
In July of 2014, the Choir was proud to participate in the dedication of the Purple Heart Memorial in Freeland with the Freeland VFW Post 5010 and the Freeland American Legion Post 473. For Christmas 2014, The Choir is performing the Tom Fettke and Thomas Grassi: The Christmas Story. The Choir is also proud to present the Sounds of the Season Concert with the Hazleton Philharmonic Orchestra.
For Easter 2015, the Choir Performed the Cantata "Come Walk With Me."
For Christmas 2015, the Choir is performing the Pepper Choplin Cantata "Night of the Father's Love".
For Easter 2016, the Choir performed the Pepper Choplin Cantata "We Were There".
On June 6, 2016 the Choir performed the National Anthem at the Scranton-Wilkes Barre Railriders Baseball game at PNC Field in Moosic Pa. The Railriders are the New York Yankee's AAA affiliate.
In August, the Choir performed for the 1940's Weekend at Eckley Miner's Village.
For Christmas 2016, we will be presenting "Invitation to a Miracle" by Joseph Martin. The choir will also sing for the residents of Heritage Hill in Weatherly, Pa.