Christopher Neely brings a diverse set of experiences to the role of Executive Director of the Oberlin Choristers, having been a professional opera singer, voice teacher, choral director, and higher education administrator. He has served in various roles at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, Indiana Wesleyan University, and at Cuyahoga Community College and has a well-developed passion for organizational leadership and excellence. Christopher received a Bachelor of Music degree in Vocal Performance from East Carolina University and a Master of Music degree from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music where he was a Dieterle Scholar. An advocate of studying abroad and of domestic service, Christopher trained for two summers in Italy and served a year as an AmeriCorps volunteer. Christopher is excited to be in his first year with Choristers and looks forward to supporting its continued artistic quality and vibrant presence in Northeast Ohio. When he is not in the office or singing, he enjoys serving as the Director of Music Ministries at Westlake United Methodist Church and making barbeque. Christopher and his wife currently reside in Parma with their Great Dane, Marley.
Emily Capece enjoys a varied career as a conductor, singer, and teacher. An Ohio native, she is returning home after 22 years. Emily spent the last 11 years as the Artistic Director of womanSong, in Charleston, WV, and served on the faculty of the West Virginia Governor’s School for the Arts teaching choral and vocal music at Marshall University.Formerly, Emily has taught music at all levels, including schools in Okinawa, Japan, Fairfax County, Virginia, New York City, and Charleston. She served as a conductor with the Appalachian Children’s Chorus, the Princeton Girl Choir, and has been a frequent guest conductor and clinician for all-county and all-state choral festivals. Choirs under Capece’s direction have been invited to perform at the Piccolo Spoleto Festival in Charleston, SC, and have toured to Italy, San Marino, and Croatia. A certified elementary Montessori teacher, Emily has taught upper elementary, music, and humanities at several Montessori schools in Charleston.
As a singer, Emily has performed in several professional choirs, the internationally noted Spoleto Festival USA, and many regional and community theater productions in principal roles. Most recently, Emily was seen in the Charleston Light Opera Guild’s 2019 production of Mamma Mia! as Donna Sheridan.
Ms. Capece completed her master’s degree in music education and choral conducting from Westminster Choir College in Princeton, NJ, and holds bachelor’s degrees in vocal performance and music education from Otterbein University. She is the recipient of the National Endowment for the Humanities Educator Grant to study Mozart Operas in Vienna, Austria.
Office and Communications Manager
Amanda Anderson studied Music Education at Lorain County Community College and Cleveland State University. Amanda has performed multiple times as a soprano with the Oberlin College Musical Union. Prior to joining the Oberlin Chorister staff in November 2013, Amanda worked as an Office Manager at a wealth management firm. Amanda and her family live in a century home in Kipton.
Social Media Coordinator
Lili joined the Choristers’ staff with an eclectic resumé encompassing geology, children’s literature, and girl empowerment. While none of these are fundamentally musical pursuits, much of her childhood was spent in theaters watching her parents direct, produce, and stage plays, musicals, operas, and ballets. She loves listening to her own children sing with Oberlin Choristers, and is thrilled to be promoting the arts in Oberlin and the surrounding area.
Student Office Assistant and Teaching Assistant, Arts Academy: Lorain
Dulcis Musica & Jubilate Musica Oberlin Conductor
Angela Bak led the Intermediate Choir from its founding in 1996 until 2002. She returned in 2008 and is enjoying directing both Dulcis Musica and Jubilate Musica. Angela is Director of Music at Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary Church in Lorain. She earned a Bachelor of Music in Music Education from Oberlin College in 1995 and completed a Master of Music Education with a Kodaly emphasis at Capital University in 2001. She and her husband reside in a circa 1892 farmhouse in Amherst, where she may be found playing with her daughters, experimenting in the kitchen, and working in the garden.
Cantate Musica Conductor
Marie Cronje-Cox was born in Cape Town, South Africa, a country famous for its extremely rich choral culture. Marie was fortunate to sing in multiple world renowned choral groups, competing on national and international stages. She has a BMusic Degree in Orchestral Studies (percussion and piano) and a MM Degree in Solo performance from the University of Stellenbosch, SA. Marie was Principal Percussionist/Associate Timpanist and alternate keyboardist of the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra. After moving to the US in Dec 1998 Marie served on the music faculty of the Beck Center for the Arts in Lakewood from 1999-2009 and during that time furthered her percussion studies at CSU with Tom Freer of the Cleveland Orchestra. In addition to the Cantate Musica Director, she serves as Music Director of Avon United Methodist Church (organist and choir director), Music and Choral Director of HEARTS for Jesus Christ, a large home school co-op on the Westside, and is also a licensed Kindermusik instructor. Marie, a Choristers and home school mom, lives in Avon with her trombonist husband, two children, six cats and a variety of amphibians.
Dulcis and Jubilate Oberlin Accompanist
Lynn has been a piano teacher and accompanist in her community for many years. She is the current accompanist to the Firelands High School choirs, First Baptist Church in Wakeman, and “The Generations” men’s gospel quartet. Lynn and her family have lived and farmed the same land in Camden Township for 7 generations and genuinely love it. She has 2 grown children who live and work locally and she loves spending time with her 2 amazing granddaughters.
Jubilate Musica North Ridgeville and Cantate Music
Leah Frank is a pianist, violinist, violist, organist, and graduate of the Baldwin Wallace Conservatory of Music (BWCM) with a BA in Music in both piano and violin. She has been the recipient of multiple scholarships and was inducted into the Baldwin Wallace Dayton C. Miller Honor Society. Ms. Frank served as pianist and principal violist in the Baldwin Wallace Symphony Orchestra (BWSO) and performed as soloist following the BWSO concerto competition. She has premiered multiple new works from local composers through the Cleveland Composers Guild and has participated in masterclasses given by the Emerson Quartet and members of the Cleveland Orchestra. Ms. Frank performs in local pit orchestras for theaters such as Near West Theatre. Other performance venues include, Cleveland State University, Cleveland Institute of Music, Carnegie Mellon University, Severance Hall, Playhouse Square, The Music Settlement, and 78th Street Studios, to name a few. Her contemporary group, Leah Frank & Company, opened for the Cleveland Pops Orchestra this past summer. She is the current music director at Heritage Congregational Church, on staff at BWCM, and maintains a few private students. Ms. Frank is a member of Mu Phi Epsilon and is a U.S. Army Veteran.
Dulcis Musica Conductor
Mrs. Orr is in her 25th year of teaching Music. She teaches General Music to grades K-4 at Avon Lake's Redwood and Westview Elementary Schools, and also conducts the Redwood 3rd and 4th Grade Choir. She received her Bachelor of Music Education degree from Capital University in 1992. While a student at Capital, she had the opportunity to study at the Kodály Institute in Kecskemet, Hungary. In 2001 Mrs. Orr received her Master of Music Education degree with a Kodály Emphasis from Capital University. She is a member of the Organization of American Kodály Educators and is a member of the American Choral Director's Association. She serves as Hospitality Chair for the ACDA Central Division Conference. (2016 and 2018). She and her husband, Craig, reside in Avon Lake with their children Caleb and Clara. Together she and her husband serve as Children’s Ministry Directors for Legacy Church in Westlake.
Canterra Musica Accompanist
Twenty-one-year-old Zachary Ricker began playing piano at the age of four and currently is a student at the Baldwin Wallace Conservatory of Music, where he studies classically with Dr Robert Mayerovitch. He has performed in master classes for pianists such as Spencer Myer, Julian Martin, and Fr Sean Duggan, and he is an active collaborative pianist, chamber musician, and musical theatre pianist. This is his first season with Canterra Musica and the Oberlin Choristers; he also collaborates with the Baldwin Wallace Women’s Chorus and has played in Fairview Park Stagecrafters’ spring high school musical the past two years. Add Description here
Jubilate Musica Conductor
Michelle Swislocki teaches vocal music to grades Kindergarten – 4 at Avon Lake’s Eastview and Erieview Elementary Schools. Mrs. Swislocki has taught at the Choristers’ World Music Festival since its inception, and is also a cantor at St Bernadette church in Westlake. She received her Bachelor of Music Education degree from Baldwin-Wallace College in 2000. Mrs. Swislocki earned a Master of Music Education degree with a Kodály emphasis from Capital University in 2002, and she completed her Level I Orff certification. She is a member of the American Choral Directors Association, the Organization of Kodály Educators, and is treasurer of N.O.C.K.A., the Cleveland area Kodály chapter. Mrs. Swislocki and her husband, Jim, live in Rocky River with their three children.
Canterra Musica Conductor
Lisa Van Scyoc is a graduate of The Cleveland Institute of Music with a Master of Music in Vocal Performance. She holds a Bachelor of Music in Music Education from Bowling Green State University. Lisa currently is an adjunct professor on the Music Education faculty at Oberlin Conservatory of Music. She recently retired from teaching music in the Lakewood City Schools and was the Director of Music at Christ United Methodist Church in Cleveland for 24 years. Lisa was the Touring Choir accompanist in 2008-2010 and directed Cantate Musica from 2010 through 2017. She will begin directing Canterra Musica in the Fall of 2017. Lisa taught Music for Elementary Education Majors at Baldwin Wallace College from 1996-2002 and also enjoyed singing professionally with the Robert Page/Cleveland Singers from 1990-2003. Lisa is a member of the American Choral Directors Association, Ohio Music Educators Association, and the Cleveland Kodaly and Orff Chapters. She lives in Avon Lake where she teaches private voice lessons and is also the vocal music director for the High School musicals.
una voce musica Accompanist
A mother of two Oberlin Choristers (plus one in training), Ms. Carey is thrilled to be the accompanist for una voce musica. Ms. Carey, who has a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from Northwestern University, teaches private voice lessons and piano lessons in her Lorain home. She performs with Opera Circle, the brand-new Cleveland Chamber Choir, and is very involved with the music program of First Lutheran Lorain, where her husband is Director of Music. Ms. Carey is a member of Music Teachers' National Association, National Association of Teachers of Singing, and Cleveland Piano Teachers' Organization.
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