Branches is Fairmount's choir for 2 and 3 year-olds. The director is Carri Naumann-Monti. Practices are Sunday evenings from 6:00 - 7:00 from September through April. The choir sings at the beginning of various services throughout the season, and joins with Jacob's Ladder for a mini-musical in the Spring.
Singing has always been a love of Carri's, especially in worship. It is a privilege to worship with the children in Fairmount's youngest choir, Branches, along with faithful helpers, Jane & Jim Bland, Kim & Lindsay Hinson, and Marie Felts. Carri sings on Praise Team, for Special Music, has also sung in the Worship Choir and played Elsa Shraeder and a Postulant in Fairmount’s Production of The Sound of Music. Carri received her B.A in German from VCU, her M.A. in German/Teaching English as a Second Language from WVU, and her M.Ed. in Reading from University of Virginia. She has taught ESL, German, Italian, Linguistics, Resource, and was in school administration, before becoming an Educational and Dyslexia Therapist and homeschool mom. She and her husband Marco, have three children; Marcello, Olivia, and Sofia, who sing in the children’s choirs. Carri is passionately curious about cognition and neuroscience, which has turned her into a life-long student. She also enjoys traveling with family to her husband's beloved home country of Italy, as well as his "delizioso" Italian cooking, and sailing with her family.
Jacob's Ladder is Fairmount's choir for 4 and 5 year-olds. Practice is Sunday evenings from 6:00 - 7:00 from September through April. Jacob's Ladder joins with Branches to perform a mini-musical each Spring, and sings at the beginning of various services throughout the season. The director is Evelyn Cronin.
Evelyn Cronin grew up singing and dancing. At the age of twelve, she attended Oak Hill Camp's Music & Drama week for the first time and fell in love with performance. Throughout high school, she attended Music & Drama camp and played the lead role her final year. She also participated in Fairmount's teen choir, Blessed Assurance, while she was in high school. During her freshman year of college at Mid-Atlantic Christian University (then Roanoke Bible College), she founded a drama group called The King's Players. She also sang in the fall choir and auditioned and was selected for The Master's Twelve choir in the Spring of 1997.
After returning to Richmond, she became a Dean for Oak Hill's Music & Drama week where she continues in that role to this day. While the program has changed, her love of directing each year's musical has not. Evelyn also sang on the United Christian Church Praise Team for nine years.
When Evelyn came to Fairmount in January 2012 the last thing she saw herself doing was directing a choir of Pre-K and Kindergarten students. All her experience was with middle school and older! But, in August 2013 she took on directing Jacob's Ladder and hasn't looked back! Her favorite part of directing Jacob's Ladder is the relationship she builds with the kids that lasts into the halls as they give hugs and say hi. She's also enjoyed being able to spend quality time with her own kids (Ella, age 8, and Joe, age 4) during their time in Jacob's Ladder.
Evelyn looks forward to being back on the stage herself one day, but enjoys directing Jacob's Ladder and Music & Drama for now.
Evelyn is from Richmond, has been married to Jeff Cronin since May 2006, and has two children.
Rhonda Holley is the director of Fairmount's Joyful Sound choir for children in 1st-6th grades. Rhonda is a kindergarten teacher in a local elementary school, and a mother of two gifts from God. Together with her husband, Kenny, she directs Joyful Sound's annual musical. Rhonda participates in FCC's Praise Team and Worship Choir. Rhonda has performed in FCC's drama ministry most recently as Maria in The Sound of Music and Annelle in Steel Magnolias. Music is Rhonda's passion, and she is delighted to share her God-given talents with the children at Fairmount.
Joyful Sound rehearses on Sunday evenings from 6:00 to 7:00 in the Children’s Worship room (150) next to the Family Life Center. The main focus of Joyful Sound is to worship God in song, but the children learn so much more along the way. They create friendships, learn memory verses, highlight Bible lessons that go along with our lyrics, and even learn some music theory.
"Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth! Break forth unto joyous song and sing praises!" -Psalm 98:4
Rise Up! is Fairmount's program for interpretive dance for girls and boys from elementary ages through teens. Rise Up! practices Thursday evenings from 6:00 to 7:15 from September through May and performs at various worship services and other programs, such as the Virginia Preteen Convention. It is led by Kim Moncrief and Beena Shelton.
Kim Moncrief became a member of Fairmount Christian Church when she was 9 years old. She has a BFA in Dance and Choreography along with a BS in Psychology from Virginia Commonwealth University. She began her dance career at The Richmond Ballet when she was 8 years old where she received intensive training until graduating from High School. She has been formally trained by notable instructors & choreographers in a variety of dance styles including: Classical Ballet and Pointe, Jazz, Tap, Contemporary, Acrobatics, Theater, Cheerleading, AfricanCarribbean, Improvisation, and Yoga.
Kim has traveled the U.S. teaching and choreographing for dancers of all levels and abilities, primarily focused on the competitive circuit. Her strength for directing was apparent early in her career where she quickly received positions such as, Assistant Artistic Director and Ballet Director within the studios she was employed. Since then, Kim has gone on to become Founder, CEO & Artistic Director of Miracles in Motion, a dance troupe for people with special needs. Kim is also Artistic Director of "Joni Fusion dance company" at St. Catherine's School & she is a jazz instructor and free-lance choreographer at School of Dance Arts in Mechanicsville.
Kim's love of dance, inspired a vision for a performance group in Fairmount. In 2010, that vision became reality and with the help of the Fairmount Staff, Kim and Beena Shelton produced "Rise Up!".
Kim is married to her supportive husband, John Moncrief who is also an active member of Fairmount. They have 3 active children. Logan, Isabella & Gibson who have all grown up in Fairmount and aspire to one day be old enough to join "Rise Up!".
Kim always wanted to serve God in her own special way. Through performances with strong messages, "Rise Up!" is Kim's way of spreading the love she has for Christ to our youth, congregation and community.
Beena Shelton immigrated to the United States at the age of 5 with her parents and two other siblings. She became a United States citizen at the age of 9. Her parents instilled the Indian culture in their children. Watching Indian movies inspired Beena and her sister to recreate musicals. Beena and her sister began to choreograph and perform at small Indian events in the 1980’s in Chesterfield, VA. A group of young teenagers, interested in Indian dance, began to form. The group soon began to compete against other groups along the Eastern corridor. They won several trophies including the “Best of the Best” award in Greenville, SC.
In 1996, Beena married Julian and moved to Fredericksburg, VA. In 2000, their daughter, Shyli was born. In 2002, they moved to Midlothian, VA and soon after moved to her husband’s (Julian) hometown of Mechanicsville, VA. Soon after the birth of their son, Jace, in 2006 the entire family joined Fairmount Christian Church.
Beena and Julian volunteered for several years teaching toddlers through 4th grade in Sunday School classes. Beena enjoys working with children and leading them to Christ.
In 2012, Rose Williams (Former Children’s Ministry Director) approached Beena with an idea of offering a program for children to express their love for Christ and introduced her to Kim Moncrief, an established dance instructor. Beena felt that this partnership would allow Jesus to shine through her talents to the children and adults in the church, community and soon the WORLD!