Irene Messoloras, Guest Conductor
Dedicated to inspiring musicians and audiences through a determined passion for musical excellence, Dr. Irene Messoloras is excited to be appointed as the new Artistic Director starting this fall for the Mountainside Master Chorale. A native of New York, Dr. Messoloras maintains an active career as a highly sought music educator, conductor, clinician and adjudicator. Her ensembles have delivered meaningful and inspirational performances across the United States and on the international stage in both Europe and in Asia, appearing in multiple festivals and competitions and receiving superior ratings and awards.
As a member of the University of La Verne Music faculty, Dr. Messoloras is the Director of Choral Activities and Vocal Studies. She conducts the University Chamber Singers, University
Chorale and teaches courses in conducting. Before coming to ULV, Dr. Messoloras served as Director of Choirs and Chair of the Fine Arts Department at Northwestern Oklahoma State
University. She has also previously served on the music faculty at Gonzaga University in Spokane, WA.
Most recently, ensembles under Messoloras have performed for the National Association of Music Educators national conference as well as the Oklahoma State Music Educators conference (2014). Additionally, her collegiate ensembles debuted at Carnegie Hall (2015) and have toured extensively throughout Shanghai/ Beijing (2013).
Dr. Messoloras received her doctor of musical arts degree in choral conducting from the UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music. She currently also serves as the Director of Music Ministry at the
First United Methodist Church of Covina and is an active member with the American Choral Directors Association.
Jennifer Miller, Soprano Staff Singer
Virginia Beach, Virginia, native Jennifer Miller is an active choral singer, having performed as soprano section leader and soloist with The Verdi Chorus (Mimi, La bohème; Second Flower Maiden, Parsifal; Pousette,Manon), Los Angeles Choral Artists, Westminster Singers, Virginia Symphony Chorus, and the Virginia Beach-based women’s ensemble, Bellissima. Ms. Miller has performed as the soprano soloist in Poulenc's Gloria, Handel's Messiah, Vivaldi's Gloria, and Stravinsky'sMass. She was also the featured vocalist and pianist with the St. Mary's College of Maryland Jazz Ensemble, where she earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in music. Ms. Miller completed her master of music degree in voice performance and pedagogy at Westminster Choir College in Princeton, New Jersey, where she studied with soprano Margaret Cusack.
Debbie Dey, Alto Staff Singer
Debbie started her career as an Apprentice Artist with Opera Pacific in Orange County where she sang the role of the Valkyrie Grimgerde in Wagner‘s Die Walkure. She also sang Grimgerde at the Hollywood Bowl with John Mauceri directing the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra.
With Mountainside Master Chorale, she sang "Pie Jesu" in the Duruflé Requiem. Debbie is a soloist at Pilgrim Congregational Church and has sung solos from many major works including Rutter’s Feel the Spirit and the Seven Last Words of Christ by Dubois.
Debbie is currently a Resident Artist with Repertory Opera Company in Pomona where she has appeared as Third Lady in Magic Flute, Annina in La Traviata, Mercedes in Carmen, Gertrude in Roméo et Juliette, Forence in Albert Herring and also sang the role of Azucena in Verdi’s Il Trovatore for Repertory Opera Company where her performance was reviewed as “commanding” and her final duet “at once beautiful and heart wrenching.”
She has performed with Opera Pasadena, Riverside Lyric Opera, and Celestial Opera, where she sang the roles of the exuberant Hansel , La Principessa in Suor Angelica, Madame Larina in Eugene, Orfeo in Gluck’s Orfeo and with Beyond the Stage Opera Company she sang the title role of Bizet's Carmen.
Susan Winckler, Assistant Conductor
Susan Winckler, Assistant Director for the Chorale, is a charter member of the Mountainside Master Chorale. Throughout the years, Ms. Winckler has been very active in the Chorale serving as President, Tour Coordinator and Wardrobe Manager among many other duties.
Ms. Winckler attained her B.A. in Music from Dominican University in San Rafael, California, and her M.A. in Music Theory and Composition from the University of Hawaii. She is presently Music Director for Pilgrim Congregational Church in Pomona and also served as soprano soloist there from 1981-1988 soloing in such works as the Brahms and Verdi Requiems.
Ms. Winckler has been organist and/or Choir Director for various local churches including La Verne Church of the Brethren; Grace Lutheran, Glendora; Cucamonga United Methodist, Rancho Cucamonga; and St. Madeleine's, Pomona. Ms. Winckler has conducted numerous major choral works with full orchestra including the Verdi Requiem, Mozart's Coronation Mass, Puccini's Messa di Gloria and Requiem by Andrew Lloyd Webber. She was a long-time member of and Assistant Director for the Louis Rondfeldt Chorale and also directed the Claremont Chorale from 1978 to 1981.
Ms. Winckler, presently retired from teaching in public schools for 33 years, was choral director for Rancho Cucamonga, Chaffey, and Ganesha high schools. She has also taught Latin, mathematics, and art. Lately, in addition to music, she has been expressing her creative skills through ceramics and jewelry making.
Robin Billings-Reyes, Section Leader
Robin Billings-Reyes holds B.A. and M.A. degrees in Music from the University of California, Riverside. She is currently Director of Music for the United Methodist Church of Cucamonga, where she has worked for over 40 years as organist, choir director, and music director. Robin enjoys all aspects of choral music, has sung for the opening ceremonies of the 1984 Olympic Games in LA, was part of the pre-Olympic cultural Olympiad in Greece (2004), and has performed in Carnegie Hall (2005), and the Sydney Opera House (2006). Robin came to MMC in 2008 as alto section leader, and is excited to be working with the soprano section this season. In addition, Robin works at Wayne Ruble Middle School in Fontana as a sixth grade teacher, and sings with the chamber group Choralescence.
Steven O'Donnell, Tenor Staff Singer
Steven has sung choral music with numerous ensembles in both California and Germany and has collaborated in concerts, opera, musical theater and recordings with leading international conductors such as Lawrence Foster, John Mauceri, Helmuth Rilling and Mario Venzago. He was an inaugural ensemble member of Orange County’s Opera Pacific. O’Donnell is a resident member of the Los Angeles based Gilbert and Sullivan repertory company Opera a la Carte where he has sung the role of Box in Cox and Box, and The Defendant in Trail by Jury, and is a Choral Scholar at First United Methodist Church of Pasadena. A California native, Steven attained a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music at California State University at Fullerton.
Scott Ziemann, Bass Staff Singer
A Northern California native, Baritone Scott Ziemann is emerging as a noted artist in the Southern California vocal community having been called “a vocal talent worth catching…a brilliant tone, secure and resonant.” Scott has performed around the nation touring with Pacific Chorale under the direction of John Alexander. He also performs regularly in opera and musical theater. This year alone Scott has sung various roles in productions of The Rake's Progress, Abduction from the Seraglio, The Merry Widow, and Susannah with Pacific Opera Project and Pasadena Opera. Scott is a lover of choral music as well, having been a staff singer with Pacific Chorale for 10 years. He has been able to sing some of the most incredible repertoire at the highest musical level. As a concert soloist Scott has sung the Baritone solo in Orff's Carmina Burana and Faure's Requiem. Scott is excited and grateful to be a part of the Mountainside Master Chorale and is looking forward to the upcoming season.