Born and raised in Vancouver BC, Nick is delighted to be returning to Laudate Singers for his fourth season after a brief hiatus. He has been singing and performing music since elementary school. During his undergraduate studies at McGill University, he sang with the a capella ensemble New Earth Voices and with the light opera company McGill Savoy Society. He trained for several years under Matthew Chittick (M.Mus; Calgary Opera) as a classical baritone.
Nick returned to Vancouver in 2011 to study medicine at the University of British Columbia, during which he served for three years as Artistic Director of the UBC Medicine Choir and sang for three seasons with the Vancouver Peace Choir. Personal favourite repertoire since joining Laudate has included Charpentier’s Te Deum, Vivaldi’s Magnificat, and the Romancero Gitano suite by Carlos Castelnuovo-Tedesco.
When not singing, Nick works as a geriatric psychiatrist and researcher based in Vancouver and at the University of British Columbia.
Thanks in part to some negative experiences in high school orchestra, I ended up pursuing a career in science—a lucky break, because this gave me the opportunity to do music for pleasure. I’ve had a longstanding interest in “early” (Renaissance, Baroque) vocal music: past vocal highlights include advanced workshops over the years (with Paul Elliott, Nancy Argenta, Daniel Taylor, Ben Butterfield and others) along with concert performances and CBC broadcast; a sabbatical stint with David Fallis and the Opera Atelier chorus; and appearances as a soloist in concert (Bach cantatas, passions, Handel Oratorios, song recital). I’ve also been fortunate to sing with a number of fine choirs, including 20+ years with Chor Leoni and Christ Church Cathedral. More recently, I’ve enjoyed trying to expand my vocal repertoire to include more opera and other classical works, as well as jazz and other contemporary music.
Originally from Marseille, France, Lou received a Master’s degree in Music Therapy from Paris-Descartes University. She also holds a Master’s degree in Teaching and Education from ESPE Paris. Following an opportunity to move to Canada, she obtained her MT-BC and MTA status, her Teaching Certificate and joined ET Music Therapy as well as VSO School of Music as Music Therapist and Faculty member. Trained percussionist, pianist and singer in the Music Conservatory of Marseille, she has been a member of various orchestras, bands and choirs in Paris, France and Calgary, Canada. Singing being essential in her life, she is thrilled to join Laudate Singers this year to pursue her passion. When not practicing music, Lou is enjoying her new life in Vancouver, hiking, climbing, swimming, exploring as much as she can.
Maureen is very pleased to return to Laudate Singers after nearly 10 years off pursuing other adventures. A North Vancouver native, she’s been singing in choirs since early childhood. Life-changing experiences with BCMEA Honour Choirs and post-secondary ensembles such as the University of Victoria Chamber Singers and UBC’s University Singers cemented choral music as being central to her life and identity. More recently, Maureen has had the pleasure of experimenting further with vocal jazz, another genre close to her heart, and exploring a wide variety of musical styles with the former vocal ensemble Sound Eclectic. A lover of nature, she spends a good deal of time hiking, running, gardening, paddleboarding, and doing yoga in this beautiful corner of the world. In addition, Maureen is a Secondary Teacher of English and Social Studies and the mother of two high-energy boys.
Mark De Silva
Mark started singing in choirs and playing the violin in orchestras and chamber ensembles at school in England, and continued studies in the USA. He was a member of choral ensembles in the UK, the USA, and Canada, performing in concerts, tours, recordings and radio broadcasts. His voice teachers and mentors in Canada were George Roberts, Bruce Pullan and Peter Butterfield. An alumnus of Laudate Singers, the Vancouver Cantata Singers, and the Vancouver Chamber Choir, he has sung at Festival Vancouver, Early Music Vancouver Bach Festival, and on tours in North America, Europe and Asia. Mark has appeared as a guest soloist with ensembles throughout BC, performing works including Monteverdi’s 1610 Vespers, Bach’s Christmas Oratorio, St. Matthew Passion, St. John Passion, Mass in B minor, Magnificat, Handel’s Messiah, Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass and Mozart’s Requiem, and Ariel Ramirez’s Misa Criolla. His solo work includes performances with Handel Society of Music, Postmodern Camerata, Vancouver Voices, Turning Point Ensemble, Borealis String Quartet, Victoria Philharmonic Choir and Okanagan Festival Singers, and Capilano University Choirs. His recitals include Lieder, Art songs and song cycles by Benjamin Britten.
Originally from Calgary, Caroline has been singing since childhood, along with studying piano and, briefly, flute. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Mathematics and Physics at the University of British Columbia, and her PhD from the University of Waterloo. She balances her love of choral singing with her career as an infectious disease researcher. She has sung with the Vancouver Bach Choir, the Grand Philharmonic Choir in Kitchener with Howard Dyck, Montreal’s Orpheus Singers and the Collegium Musicum of London Chamber Choir. She is excited to have joined Laudate Singers, and particularly enjoys Laudate’s diversity of repertoire.
Laura Kaario is delighted to be singing such a diverse variety of fantastic music with the wonderful group of people in Laudate. Having grown up surrounded by choral music, she feels it is a highly spiritual and truly human experience to be singing and sharing with others. Laura holds a Bachelors of Music in Music Education (2018) from University of Victoria, and a Conducting Certificate (2015) and Music Diploma (2015) from Capilano University. She is a soprano and pianist, and has taught piano, voice, and preschool music classes.
When not making music, Laura is very often making food. Gardening, fermenting, cooking, baking, and preserving – not to mention eating – are some of her favourite hobbies. She is currently taking time to explore matters related to sustainable farming practices, self-sufficiency, as well as her place and purpose here on earth. A perfect day in the life of Laura starts with a book and a cup of coffee, includes a hike in the beautiful North Shore mountains or a swim in the ocean, and ends with dinner with friends and family.
Having graduated from Capilano University with a Classical Music Diploma in trumpet, piano and voice, Preston currently studies at the University of British Columbia and is actively working towards finishing his Bachelor of Education in Music; sharing his enthusiasm for music with other unanimous individuals.
Passionately ambitious and driven about anything he does, Preston first started his musical training on piano at around age 5, setting off his continued involvement in the music community at a very young age. Throughout his high school years, he attended the Sarah McLachlan School of Music; while there, he took part in the choirs, studied piano, music theory and began taking voice lessons. Upon graduating high school Preston began his studies at Capilano University, deciding to further expand his musical knowledge and pursue trumpet as his main instrument, which he began learning at age 8. While continuing his education with the trumpet, piano, and singing, he loves being active in the music community, taking part in various groups, churches, and semi-pro choirs.
Eager to have joined Laudate near the end of the 2015/16 season, he looks forward to singing with other like-minded musicians under the direction of Lars Kaario once again.
This is Amy’s first year with the Laudate Singers and she is looking forward to singing with Lars and the wonderful singers in the choir.
Choral music is an important part of Amy’s life. Amy has sung in many choirs, including the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir, the Mendelssohn Singers, the Vancouver Bach Choir, Pandora’s Vox and Espiritu. Amy is also a church musician and has been choir director, cantor, organist at various Catholic parishes. She was a Board member at Choral Canada and is currently a Board member of the BC Choral Federation.
Amy is an actuary by profession and is a pension consultant who works with organizations to help them manage their pension arrangements for employees.
A native of San Francisco, California, Linda Webster expressed musical talent at a very young age, starting with piano lessons at age 5. She trained at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, where she also sang in choirs and took voice lessons. In addition, she had the privilege of singing with the San Francisco Opera on several occasions, including as a young soloist in Massenet’s Werther. She eventually became a professional concert pianist, performing with the San Francisco Symphony and other orchestral and chamber ensembles, television and live radio broadcasts, and concertizing. But she never lost her love of singing. In recent years, she resumed her vocal training and sang with the Capilano Festival Chorus before joining the Laudate Singers in 2021.
Alanah Ellsworth is a multi-disciplined artist based in West Vancouver, British Columbia. A classically-trained vocalist, she is set to receive her Bachelor of Music degree from UBC in 2023. She is also a trained audio engineer, graduating in 2022 from SAE Institute and working with local studios, producers and artists. Her performance experience includes several prestigious choirs, the UBC Opera Ensemble and a leading role in Players and Singers’ 2019 production of Benjamin Britten’s ‘The Little Sweep’. She is excited to perform and tour with Laudate Singers this season.
Born and raised in Stuttgart, Germany, Nathan Kaleta began developing his love for music at the age of 7 with piano lessons. Inspired by his father’s musical career at the Stuttgart State Opera Chorus, he joined his first choir at age 11 and has been a passionate choir singer ever since. During his studies, he was part of Stuttgart’s Academic Choir and performed many concerts, including Beethoven’s 9th Symphony, Orff’s “Carmina Burana”, Brahms’ “Deutsches Requiem” and Mendelssohn’s “Elijah”.
After moving to Canada, he contacted Lars Kaario for an opportunity to continue his musical journey on a new continent. Nathan is very excited and honored to be a part of Laudate Singers this season and is looking forward to creating beautiful music together with all these wonderful and talented singers.
André Luiz Machado
Composer in Residence, Tenor
André Luiz Machado is a classical singer and an award-winning composer of music for film, games and the concert hall. He has been working internationally within film and visual media, writing music for projects in the UK, USA, Canada and award-winning Brazilian films. In 2018 he won Best Score at the Los Angeles Film Awards and was also nominated for the Crystal Pine Award at the International Sound & Film Music Festival, in Croatia. André Luiz Machado has a master’s degree in Composition of Music for Film and Television at the University of Bristol (UK), and a bachelor’s degree in Singing and Composition at the Federal University of Goiás (Brazil). He immigrated to Canada in 2020, and decided to make Vancouver his new home. He joined Laudate Singers in 2021 and he is very pleased to be its composer in residence for a second season.
Soprano Veronica Roenitz grew up in Vancouver singing for church chamber choir and chorus, specializing in Renaissance polyphony and Gregorian chant. After graduating from UBC Engineering Physics, she balances her love of music with an active international career as a satellite ground system integration and test engineer. She has sung with Belle Voci, MOTET, Vancouver Bach Choir, Capilano Festival Chorus, and Washington Choral Arts Society in DC, and attended the Tallis Scholars Summer Schools in UK and US. Veronica is honoured and excited to sing with Laudate Singers and Paragon Singers this season.
Andrew has been studying music from a very young age, starting with the piano when he was 5 years old. He began singing and taking voice lessons when he was 12 and has since been singing in churches and choirs. Moving from the Okanagan in 2011 to study the drums, Andrew has been singing bass in various choirs on the North Shore. After recently graduating from Capilano University with a Bachelor of Music in Jazz, Andrew is excited to be returning to Laudate Singers this season as he hopes to continue to spread the joy of music as he moves to the next chapter in his life.