An ETSU alumni and faculty member, sang at the New York Stock Exchange annual tree lighting event this past week. 

Sally Berry

Sally Berry, a voice instructor at ETSU, sang the popular Christmas song “Mary, Did You Know?” written by Mark Lowry and Buddy Greene in 1991, at the event, which is one of the oldest tree lightings in New York City.

Berry was invited to perform at the NYSE Tree Lighting after a January 2018 performance at the official opening of the Grand Ole Opry City Stage in New York City’s Times Square with her mother, famous bluegrass legend Rhonda Vincent, and her mother’s band Rhonda Vincent and the Rage. 

“I’m excited to be able to perform this song and to be in New York City,” Berry said to ETSU University News. “It’s a really cool opportunity, and I think the way it came about just makes it more special.”

Berry’s musical roots began as a child when she traveled with a family band. According to the ETSU website, while growing up, she performed at many festivals, made appearances on the Grand Ole Opry, and recorded on the Grammy nominated album “Ragin’ Live.”

“My mother has been so amazing in the way that she has steered me and guided me in music,” she told University News. “She features everybody on stage, and she doesn’t have to. People come to see her and her alone, but it’s cool that she allows not only her band, but also me as her daughter, to be featured in a way that promotes us, as well. I never thought that this would be my career, my life. It’s not what I envisioned for my life, but I love it.”

 In 2009 she performed internationally with her sister in a band called Next Best Thing. Berry graduated from ETSU with a degree in sociology in 2011 and began teaching at the university in 2012. 

Her performance was live streamed on the NYSE website.