Cyril has been involved with church and music since an infant. This lifelong involvement led him to attend Westminster Choir College in Princeton, NJ where he obtained a Bachelor of Music in Sacred Music Degree, followed by a Master of Music in Choral Conducting degree from the University of Arizona. During his tenure in higher education, he had the opportunity to perform with and learn from many of the worlds top orchestras, choirs, and conductors. He has also been part of recordings released by The Westminster Choir and the Anam Cara Choir. Growing up in the church, ministry was always in his head and God has led him to use music as a ministry to people near and far.
Fred Mason, Jr. has served as organist at Duke Memorial since 2005. He also serves the congregations of St. Joseph’s A.M.E. and Immanuel Temple Seventh-Day Adventist Church as organist. He is organist at Bennett College in Greensboro, NC and is recently retired from Durham School of the Arts. He maintains an active role in training future generations of pianists and organists, and often brings students to Duke Memorial to practice on the Holtkamp Organ.
Shelley Turkington was first introduced to Sacred Dance at Duke Memorial, and took over the dance ministry in 1998. “As someone who devoted much of my life to the study of dance, I was thrilled to find a way to use this art form to express my faith. One of my greatest rewards in leading the dance ministry has been in helping youth and children bridge their love of dance and their love of God. It is important for them to realize that they play an important role in enriching the worship experience for our congregation and that they can help express God’s message throughout our community. I am so grateful to the congregation for their strong, enduring support of this ministry throughout the years.”
Murray Simpson started playing handbells in middle school while attending First Baptist Church in Monroe, NC. After a hiatus of nearly two decades, he rekindled his interest in handbells by joining the Bethany Bells choir at Duke Memorial, assuming the position of choir director in 2009. Murray’s wife and sons play the bells as well, and he fully expects his daughter will carry on the family tradition once she is a little older. There is a place for you in Duke Memorial’s handbell ministry if you can (1) spell the word FACE, (2) learn what the acronym GBDFA represents, (3) count to four, and (4) pretend to drive a nail into a wall. If you can do each of these, you have what it takes to make a beautiful noise for the Lord!