Soloists & Guests:
Ian Sadler : Organ
Ian Sadler was a boy chorister at St. Paul’s Cathedral, London, UK. He then attended The King’s School Canterbury, from which he won the Organ Scholarship at Bristol University. Following an honours degree in Physics and Musicology, he returned to St. Paul’s Cathedral as Organ Scholar. Ian holds further degrees in Education, and a Fellowship from Trinity College of Music, London. His final engagement in the UK was to play the organ in the movie, Chariots of Fire.
In 1980 Ian was appointed Director of Music at Grace Church on-the-Hill and Choral Director at Upper Canada College, Toronto. In 1986, he won 1st prize at the Syracuse International Organ Competition (USA). In 1999, Ian was the first Canadian juror at the International Liszt Organ Competition at the Liszt Academy, Hungary. In 2005, Ian had the honour of being elected to membership in the world’s oldest music society, The Royal Society Of Musicians, founded by Henry Purcell in the 17th century. Recital tours have taken Ian to Denmark, Sweden, Austria, Continental USA and Hawaii, Australia and back to the UK, where he recently performed his third organ recital at King’s College Chapel, Cambridge.
Ian has made 8 organ CD recordings and in 1999 won a Juno award for a choral CD. His Cathedral Singers of Ontario has recently returned from London, UK, where they sang at St. Paul’s Cathedral. In July this choir has been invited to sing for a week of services at Worcester Cathedral. This 40 voice choir is drawn from a pool of over 400 singers from SW Ontario.
Last season Ian celebrated his 25th Anniversary as Artistic Director of The Stratford Concert Choir.
For his dedication to promoting the organ and Canadian music, The Royal Canadian College of Organists awarded Ian with ‘Fellowship of The Royal Canadian College of Organists’ (2007).
Sheila Dietrich : Soprano
Described as “sparkling, secure, and ethereal” (KW Record), Canadian soprano Sheila Dietrich is a versatile and in-demand young performer whose style and vocal technique shine in both concert and operatic roles.
Ms. Dietrich has appeared as a concert soloist with ensembles across Canada including The Toronto Mendelssohn Choir under Noel Edison, The Guelph Chamber Choir under Gerald Neufeld, and The Bach Elgar Choir under Howard Dyck. Operatic roles include Pitti-Sing (The Mikado | Sullivan), Belinda (Dido & Aeneas | Purcell), and Helena (A Midsummer Night’s Dream | Britten).
A Kitchener-Waterloo native, Ms. Dietrich received her Bachelor of Music Performance and Opera Diploma from Wilfrid Laurier University where she studied with Victor Martens. Ms. Dietrich continues to study with Laura Pudwell. This season, Ms. Dietrich made her Carnegie Hall debut as a featured soloist in an evening devoted to the music of Purcell under the direction of Richard Egarr. She was also a finalist in the 2015 New York Oratorio Society Solo Competition and was awarded the Johannes Somary Prize.
Erin Lawson: Mezzo
Praised for her beautiful lyric mezzo-soprano voice (Opera Canada), and coloratura to die for (Hamilton Spectator) Erin Lawson has been attracting attention on opera and concert stages across Canada. A past member of both Calgary Opera’s Emerging Artist Program and Pacific Opera Victoria’s Resident Artist Program, her engaging stage presence has captivated audiences in repertoire ranging from Handel and Rossini, to newly created works.
Recent operatic highlights include Marcellina in La Nozze di Figaro with Pacific Opera Victoria, as well as Emilia in Otello and the title role in Handel’s Ariodante, both with Calgary Opera. Erin has appeared with opera companies across Canada, including touring the east coast of Canada with the Jeunesse Musicales, as Rosina in Il Barbiere di Siviglia and then the west coast with Vancovuer Opera in Schools, singing the title role in La Cenerentola.
With a voice that shows an exceptionally strong core, Ms. Lawson is equally at home on oratorio and concert stages, with repertoire including Beethoven’s 9th Symphony, Durafle’s Requiem, Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Handel’s Messiah, Vivaldi’s Gloria, Rossini’s Petite Messe Solennelle, and Pergolesi’s Stabat Mater.
Christopher Mayell : Tenor
From his acclaimed presentation of Britten’s ALBERT HERRING in St. John’s, Newfoundland, to his interpretation of Handel’s SOLOMON in Victoria, British Columbia, Christopher maintains a hearty schedule of engagements across the country.
Recent appearances include a debut performance of Bach’s renowned Cantata No. 55 ‘ICH ARMER MENSCH’ with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, Bach’s CHRISTMAS ORATORIO with the Kingston Symphony, Mozart’s GREAT MASS IN C MINOR and Orff’s CARMINA BURANA with the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir, Mozart’s REQUIEM with the Grammy-nominated Elora Festival Singers. He has also joined the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra as well as Orchestra London for performances of Handel’s glorious MESSIAH.
Christopher is enjoying a growing international presence, including a portrayal of the title role in a world-class production of ALBERT HERRING at the Aldeburgh Festival in England (alongside soprano Felicity Lott), as well as a nationwide tour of China.
Christopher is also a champion of new Canadian works, including Opera NUOVA’s commissioned opera for younger audiences, THE LIVES OF LESSER THINGS, which toured extensively in Alberta. He also continues to work closely with Toronto’s Tapestry New Opera Works in their development of new works, including Richard Payne’s GET STUFFED!, and Aaron Gervais’ OKSANA G. This season, he gave a debut performance with Toronto’s Continuum New Music, performing a world-premier performance of ‘FREDERICK’S DOCTOR’, a narrative for tenor and instrumental ensemble.
Christopher is a proud alumnus of the Calgary Opera Emerging Artist Ensemble program, through which he performed roles in Verdi’s RIGOLETTO, Moore’s THE BALLAD OF BABY DOE (Canadian premier), and Richard Strauss’ ARIADNE AUF NAXOS (featured on CBC Radio’s Saturday Afternoon at the Opera). While in Calgary, he was also featured by the Spiritus Chamber Choir in a national CBC Radio broadcast performance of Respighi’s LAUDATE PER LA NATIVITA DEL SIGNORE.
Christopher’s endeavours are made possible by support from the Ontario Arts Council’s Chalmers Professional Development Grant program, as well as through a generous grant from the Canadian Aldeburgh Foundation.
Greg Crisp : Bass
Greg is thrilled to be performing tonight with his friends in the Georgian Bay Concert Choir.
He moved to Owen Sound last winter from Toronto where he formerly sang with the Canadian Men’s Chorus and the Metropolitan Community Church. His quartet “The A-Men” has performed and recorded at the Glenn Gould Studio and the Jazz Bistro in Toronto.
Music is a joyous gift we give each other, and Greg wishes everyone very Happy Holidays filled with light, laughter, and song.
Music Director : Dan Lenz
Dan received his vocal and choral training at Wilfrid Laurier University (WLU), where he earned his Honours Bachelor of Music in vocal performance and a post-graduate diploma in opera studies. While at WLU he studied voice with Daniel Falk, choral studies with Victor Martens, and choral conducting with Howard Dyck. After obtaining his Bachelor of Education from University of Western Ontario, Dan spent 27 years teaching music in schools in Waterloo Region and York Region. During those years he kept busy with choirs at the Elora Festival, K-W Philharmonic Choir, and St. James Anglican Church in Sutton. Dan is currently the conductor of the York Regional Police Male Chorus and the Upper Canada Chordsmen Chorus, and is very pleased to be working with Georgian Bay Concert Choir this season.
Choir Accompanist : Barbara Dyck
Barbara Dyck enjoys connecting people to the arts in her rural Ontario setting. She teaches group and private piano lessons from her studio and performance space at The Colour Jar in Durham, a family-run business of art supplies, art classes, framing and bookbinding. Barb studied piano and harpsichord at Goshen College, Indiana. To further pursue the inspiration of piano pedagogy and performance, Barb received a master’s degree from The New School for Music Study through Westminster Choir College in Princeton, NJ. Besides keeping her fingers busy at the piano, Barb knits and spends time each summer picking vegetables as part of a working share at the Saugeen River CSA. Barb and her husband Tim homeschool their daughters Annika and Lydia.