Utah woman has no regrets quitting Mormon Tabernacle Choir over Trump inauguration performance

Mormon Tabernacle Choir sings out Saturday morning for the opening session of LDS Confernce. Hartmann/photo 9/30/06

A singer says she regrets "not one bit" her decision to quit the Mormon Tabernacle Choir over its upcoming performance at the inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump.

"I totally understand the position of the church and the choir: They are goodwill ambassadors to send hope and love and support to others regardless of political party, and I understand that," Jan Chamberlin told CNN in an interview posted online Monday.

Chamberlin resigned from the choir after it announced Dec. 22 that it would sing at the Jan. 20 inauguration of Trump and Vice President-elect Mike Pence. She posted on Facebook a message about her resignation, saying she "could never 'throw roses to Hitler.' And I certainly could never sing for him."

"What I'm seeing is that this goes far beyond any past inaugural situation. I am seeing very similar parallels of fascism," Chamberlin told CNN. "... You have someone that finds a cause that gains people's trust and sympathy. And then ... they find a target to attack and use propaganda to make that look legitimate. They find their military and their financial support and then they're off and going."

As of Monday, nearly 34,000 people had signed a petition at Change.org asking the choir to cancel its performance.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which sponsors the choir, has pointed to nonpartisan, democratic principles as reasons for accepting the inaugural invitation.

FILE - In this Oct. 1, 2016, file photo, the Mormon Tabernacle Choir of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, sings in the Conference Center at the morning session of the two-day Mormon church conference in Salt Lake City. Choir member Jan Chamberlin posted a resignation letter that she says she sent to choir leaders on her Facebook page Thursdaym Dec. 29, 2016. In it, she writes that by performing at the inaugural, the 360-member Choir will appear to be “endorsing tyranny and facism” and says she feels “betrayed” by the choir’s decision to take part. (AP Photo/George Frey, File)

Return to Story