Resonance: First Church Berkeley Performances

Resonance poster 2017-18Watch for news of the 2018-2019 season of Resonance @ First Church!

Join us for exciting concerts that highlight the diversity of musical excellence in the Bay Area and beyond.



Sylvestris Quartet: April 13, 2018 · 8:00 p.m.

"Quartet Metamorphosis: From Biber to Beethoven"

San Francisco’s gut-string era Sylvestris Quartet will perform a program that explores the cyclical transformation and development of the string quartet. The program centers around two boundary-pushing characters, separated by nearly 150 years: Heinrich Ignaz Franz Biber and Ludwig van Beethoven. You will enjoy hearing this unusual pairing as well as works by Scarlatti, Boccherini, Haydn, and Mozart—framed with lively insight!

MUSA: May 6, 2018 · 7:00 p.m.

"The Birth of the [String] Symphony"

Resonance favorite MUSA showcases the birth of the symphony with works for strings by C.P.E. Bach, Johann Stamitz and the young Felix Mendelssohn!

Mozart for Friends: September 15, 2017 · 8:00 p.m.

Delve into the sound world of 1780s Vienna with three masterful chamber works by Mozart, performed on instruments similar to ones he would have played himself. First Church Director of Music and fortepianist Derek Tam will be joined by violinist Laura Rubinstein-Salzedo, violist Natalie Carducci and cellist Gretchen Claassen.

Jason Chu: October 21, 2017 · 8:00 p.m.

Based in LA, Asian-American hip-hop artist/poet/activist jason chu is on a mission to speak hope, healing, and justice in a broken world. He tells stories about friends and families wrestling with fear and joy, greed and hope, hurt and healing. jason's work has been covered by The Huffington Post, The Los Angeles Times, and other outlets.

Mya Byrne: December 8, 2017 · 8:00 p.m. (Loper Chapel)

Recently relocated to San Francisco by way of NYC, Mya Byrne is a poet, award-winning folk-Americana performer, songwriter, and activist. Mya regularly plays at festival and club stages across the country, and her writing has been published in numerous outlets. She is a founding member of the Bay Area Trans Writers Workshop, and was most recently published in The James Franco Review.

Brahms Requiem: February 2, 2018 · 8:00 p.m.

For generations of music lovers, Johannes Brahms's "Ein Deutsches Requiem" (A German Requiem) has offered comfort and solace. Enjoy one of the great monuments of the choral literature as performed by the First Church Festival Chorus, accompanied by the First Church Festival Orchestra and conducted by Derek Tam.

Peter and the Wolf: Saturday, March 17, 2018 · Three performances in three different languages: 10:30 am (English; Rachel Bauman)/11:30 am (Chinese; Monica Xu)/12:30 pm (Spanish; Marci Valdivieso) (all tickets $15 for these performances)

Join the First Church Festival Orchestra for these special presentations of Sergei Prokofiev's "Peter and the Wolf". In one day, this “symphonic fairy tale for children,” will be performed three times with the narrator speaking in a different language each time—in English, Chinese and Spanish. An instrument “petting zoo” will also allow children and up-close look at different musical instruments!


First Church Berkeley, a premier venue for music performance in the East Bay, has created its own exciting series of chamber and orchestral music concerts featuring artists from the Bay Area and beyond.

Music has always been an important part of the life of First Church. It touches the soul and gives sound and voice to ineffable mystery. We sing together and share our musical gifts. We also delight in the special talents of artists from within our community and beyond.

Derek Tam, First Church's Director of Music, curates this exciting series.

First Church is on the south side of the UC Berkeley campus, just west of Telegraph Avenue. It is a few blocks from the Downtown Berkeley BART and is accessible by several bus lines. Some paid parking is available in the church parking lot. Directions to the church and public transportation information...

$25 for general seating
$20 for seniors (65 and over) 
$15 for students, children under 18 and First Church members

Tickets for individual events are available at the individual event pages below or by calling the church at (510) 848-3696. You may also purchase tickets at the door.