Frances Chiasson, Founder and Artistic Director
Frances holds Bachelor of Music and Bachelor of Education degrees from the School of Music at the University of British Columbia (Vancouver, BC) where she studied piano with Dr. Terence Dawson and choral conducting with Prof. James Fankhauser. Frances has taught choral and instrumental music in primary and secondary schools and choral methods at the University of Calgary. She has conducted numerous choirs in school, community and church settings, including Lacuna Women’s Choir (UK), Amabile Girls’ Choir (UK), Donna Amabile Women’s Choir (UK), Queen Katherine School Chamber Choir (UK), Mount Royal Children’s Choir (Calgary), Scarboro United Church Children’s, Youth and Adult Choirs (Calgary), West Point Gray Academy Choirs (Vancouver), Forest Lawn School Choir (Calgary). She has worked as a choral clinician and adjudicator in local music festivals and as a piano accompanist for choirs, singers and instrumentalists.
From 2006 until 2014, Frances and her family lived in the UK where she worked as a choral conductor, a private voice and piano teacher and was a frequent leader of singing workshops in Lancashire schools. In 2014 she relocated back to Canada, living and working as a choral conductor in Kelowna, B.C., including working with with the Okanagan Children’s Choir, Musaic Vocal Ensemble (Summerland), Glenmore Elementary School Choirs, and as Minister of Music at First United Church. Frances is a member of the BC Choral Federation, Choral Canada, and Chorus America and is a certified teacher in the province of British Columbia. And she is Mom to Sophia and Noah.
Taylor Bone, Music Director of OCC Youth
Taylor Bone received her Bachelor of Music degree and teaching certificate from UVic in 2006, and her Masters of Music in Choral Conducting with Graeme Langager at UBC in 2017. Taylor worked for the past decade as a full time high school choir director at Point Grey Secondary in Vancouver, where she directed ensembles from grade 8 to 12 including concert choirs, chamber choirs, musical theatre, vocal jazz ensembles, women’s and men’s choirs. Taylor has been hired as a clinician both locally and internationally, having spent some time in Namibia learning from and working with local high school choirs alongside Kokopelli’s Scott Leithead. Taylor moved to Lake Country last year and is currently on maternity leave from teaching, looking after her two sons. She looks forward to returning to teaching in the Fall of 2019, and is happy to be back working with OCC Youth on Thursday evenings as of January 2019.
Esther Goertz, Pianist
Esther studied piano under her mother, Hildegarde Goertz in Surry, B.C. She competed in festivals and participated in concerts and began accompanying singers and choirs at a young age, and then began a career in teaching. She entered many students in music festivals and accompanied many musicians in local festivals and concerts in 100 Mile House and in provincial festivals. Esther continues in Kelowna as a church musician, teacher and accompanist.
Gloria Brooks, Musical Associate
Gloria began her singing career at age 5, singing on her older sister’s radio program in Vernon, BC. She grew up in Penticton, studying piano and voice throughout her school years, participating in the Okanagan Music Festivals, Royal Conservatory Exams, church and school choirs, musicals and local summer arts programs. Gloria went on to study voice at UBC in Vancouver, where she began her long association with beloved teacher, Madame Marie Schilder.
Gloria moved to 100 Mile House in 1974 and was very involved in the arts while there, as a singer and as part of the executive of the Concert Association, Arts Council and Festival of the Arts. She had a large private voice studio while in the Cariboo, working with many talented students both young and old, and conducted choirs – children’s, women’s and community.
Since Gloria moved with her husband Gary, to Kelowna ten years ago, she has been a member of both Chorealis Vocal Ensemble and Aura Chamber Choir. Retired now from teaching, she is currently singing with the Okanagan Festival Singers and happily assists Frances Chiasson with the Okanagan Children’s Choir. Gloria is also the BC Choral Federation Regional Director for the Central and South Okanagan.
Rhonda Draper, Musical Associate