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Keyboarding Duo Slated for First Friday in the Chapel

June 29, 2017 | Supporting Our Community

One of Christina Bridges Surma’s claims to fame is that she appeared on the Johnny Carson show as the nation’s first professional female auctioneer.

But she tickles the ivory as swiftly as she calls for bids, and will prove so when she and her brother Daniel Surma perform, “The Pianists – A Family Affair,” at the July 7 First Friday in the Chapel. The program begins at Noon at the La Porte Hospital Family Chapel, 1007 Lincoln Way, La Porte. It is free and open to the public.

Christina was five and a half years old when she asked her mom, “Will you teach me how to play something?” The result was a life-long relationship with music focused mainly on keyboard, but she also has played tenor saxophone.

Before moving to Nashville in 1982, Christina played organ at Trinity Lutheran Church in La Porte, and participated in concert band, marching band and dance band.

She attended college at University of Colorado in Boulder, and graduated from the Reisch College of Auctioneering in Mason City, Iowa in 1972 – the only female student among 158 men.

She has played all over the world, and today, she conducts auctions for organizations like Hands On Nashville, and is requested by school systems as far away as Bocas Del Toro, Panama. She is also a professional church organist and a local rock pianist on the Nashville music scene.

Ever since he could reach the organ pedals, Daniel has been involved with church music. After graduating from La Porte High School in 1973, Daniel continued his education at the Moody Bible Institute, American Conservatory of Music and DePaul University. He later received his Masters of Music in performance, having studied with Virgil Smith, Mary Sauer and later Katherine Glaser.

A piano teacher at St. Xavier University, Daniel has also been a choral accompanist and keyboardist for several schools and orchestras in the Chicagoland area. He is the organist/choir director at St. Peter U.C.C. in Skokie, Illinois, and has taught piano at Moody Bible Institute.

“The Pianists – A Family Affair” with the Surma duo will feature original songs by Christina called Easter and Down Thru There, as well as various hits from the 1960s – including the famed Great Balls of Fire. Daniel will tap into some of his favorite piano solos including Etude Op. 25 #1 – “Aeolian Harp” F by Chopin and Concert Etude III – “Un Sospiro” by Liszt, among others.

First Friday in the Chapel is made possible by the Healthcare Foundation of La Porte (HFL), a not-for-profit foundation dedicated to empowering residents to live healthy and well in and around La Porte. HFL is proud to support health and wellness programs and services to achieve the vision of La Porte becoming one of Indiana’s top 10 healthiest communities by 2030.

For more information about First Friday in the Chapel performances, call 325-7633.