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THE STORY
OF
THE BEL CANTO CHORUS

The Bel Canto Chorus has roots that go back over forty years to the Sudbury Philharmonic Society. In the mid 1970s, this group split into the Sudbury Symphony Orchestra and The Bel Canto Chorus.

 

Ours is a non-profit organization which provides a welcoming venue for people who love to sing together. Our membership varies from 55 to 75 in number, consists of people from all walks of life, students to retirees, and from all over Greater Sudbury, including Whitefish, Capreol, Dowling, Onaping, Skead, Copper Cliff, Hanmer.

We offer four public performances annually (two in December and two in May); we perform a wide variety of musical styles, including sacred, classical, modern, folk and broadway, in order to appeal to a cross-section of the community. At our concerts, we often feature guests artists, and we have been able to provide opportunities for talented local voice students to be spotlighted. Each year we fund an award for vocal performance at the Sudbury Music Festival. 

OUR LEADERS

DR. CHARLENE BIGGS

Collaborative Pianist

Charlene Biggs holds a Doctorate in Piano Performance from The Eastman School of Music, and a Masters in Piano Performance from Goldsmiths College, University of London, England. She has performed extensively in Great Britain as a soloist and collaborative artist, appearing at such prestigious venues as The Royal Festival Hall, The Purcell Room, Greenwich Festival, Glasgow University, The National Theatre and The Barbican Arts Centre. 

 

She has been guest artist with several orchestras including the Toronto Symphony, Colchester Symphony, The Morley Orchestra and the North Bay Symphony, and has performed in France, The Netherlands, Austria, and the USA. Dr. Biggs was Assistant Chair of Piano in the Eastman School of Music Community Division, and held faculty positions in the Professional and Community Schools of the Royal Conservatory of Music, Toronto, where she was also the National Academic Advisor. 

 

She was Coordinator of the Music Performance Program at Cambrian College and is the Artistic Director of the City of Lakes Music Society and a Board member of the Sudbury Music Festival.

 

Dr. Biggs has written nationally published articles on pedagogy, and continues a hectic schedule as a festival adjudicator, and solo/collaborative artist. 

SUSAN URQUHART

Music Director

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Susan holds a Bachelor of Music in Performance and a Licentiate of Music with a specialty in Performance, both from Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario. 

 

Susan has performed with opera companies, choirs and orchestras

throughout Ontario. During her studies at Queen’s University, Susan

performed extensively in Eastern Ontario as both a violinist (Kingston Symphony, Mississauga Youth Orchestra, Sudbury Symphony Orchestra) and vocal soloist (Queen's University, Melos Choir). Susan has worked under the baton of Sir Andrew Savid, David Zafner, Brian Jackson and Gordon Craig.

 

She currently teaches voice and violin privately being a certified RCM instructor and Suzuki certified.

VICTORIA DOMINICO

President The Bel Canto Chorus

Victoria, or "Tory" as we know her, is our newly-elected President. She succeeds Jill Bennett, who served faithfully in this role for many years.

 

Tory is not new to the Executive Board; she has served as Secretary for 13 years, almost as long as she's been a member of The Bel Canto Chorus! In this year of transition to a new Music Director and Collaborative Pianist, Tory has provided a guiding hand in steering The Bel Canto Chorus through this new era of change.  

The Bel Canto Chorus Executive Board

  • Tory Dominico, President

  • Jill Bennett, Past-President

  • Shelbey Krahn, Secretary

  • Christine Kraus, Treasurer

  • Carol Sandberg-Prechotko, Business Manager

  • Averil Smith, Membership Coordinator

  • Rosalind Thomson, Librarian

  • Al Favretto, Public Relations Manager

  • Marc Noiseux, Web Manager

  • Johanna Schultze, Soprano Section Leader

  • Perry Ashawasegai, Alto Section Leader

  • Dan Thomson, Bass Section Leader

  • Dave Sykes, Tenor Section Leader

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