Danya Tiller, Artistic Director
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DANYA TILLER has conducted choirs of all age ranges and levels for more than 25 years. In 2016 she was presented in her conducting debut at Carnegie Hall with a 200 voice women’s choir comprised from singers all across the country, including our Bella and Cantabile choirs and PGC Alumni. Earning a Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance with a minor in Vocal Performance and a Master of Music in Choral Conducting from the University of Alabama, she is A.B.D. for the Doctoral Degree in Choral Conducting from the University of Oklahoma. A native of Knoxville, Tennessee, Ms. Tiller has been choral clinician for many regional festivals and workshops around the country and has toured extensively worldwide, including performances in England, Italy, France, Spain, Germany, Austria and Canada. Ms. Tiller is is in her twelfth season singing with the Grammy Award-Winning Phoenix Chorale and is also a founding member of Helios, a seven voice early music ensemble in its second full concert season.She was Music Curriculum Consultant for Great Hearts Academies, where she trained new music teachers for their network of charter schools; she also founded and conducted the annual Great Hearts Academies High School Honor Choir and was the high school Music Theory and Choir Instructor at Great Hearts’ Chandler Preparatory Academy. Other past positions include Men’s Choir Director at Arizona School for the Arts, Associate Director of the Phoenix Boys Choir, Director of Choral and Vocal Activities at New Mexico Highlands University, Conductor/Director of the Jefferson Children’s Chorus in New Orleans, and Assistant Director of the Alabama Boychoir.
Kandis Tutty, Associate Director
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KANDIS TUTTY graduated from Boise State University where she received her Master of Music in Piano Pedagogy. Her bachelor’s degree was completed at the University of Washington in music and speech communications. She has taught at Arizona School for the Arts, sung in the Phoenix Chorale, played for Opera Idaho, accompanied Cantabile, and currently teaches 4th grade at Benjamin Franklin Charter School. Mrs. Tutty loves working with Melodia and Harmonia, reading, hiking with her three children and going on coffee dates with her husband.
Dana Bender, Theory Instructor
DANA BENDER came to Arizona in 1993 to study Choral Conducting at A.S.U. She has taught choral music in the Mesa Public School and Tempe Elementary School Districts, taught music theory classes at Phoenix College, and has served as a church musician and children’s choir director for many years. Currently, Ms. Bender is a Choral Arts teacher at Arizona School for the Arts. Ms. Bender was a soprano in the Grammy Award winning Phoenix Chorale from 1995 until 2014, under the direction of Jon Washburn and Charles Bruffy. Ms. Bender is thrilled to be teaching the talented singers of the Phoenix Girls Chorus!
Rebekah High, Cantabile, Bella and Dolce Accompanist
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REBEKAH HIGH is a freelance collaborative pianist and piano instructor from Mesa, Arizona. In May of 2007 she received her Bachelor of Arts degree from the International Baptist College. From June to November 2009, she studied privately with Dr. Andrew Campbell and Professor Lisa Ehlers, of Arizona State University’s School of Music. Rebekah currently works as staff accompanist for Scottsdale Community College and a freelance accompanist for Glendale Community College and Grand Canyon University. Additionally, she accompanies the Scottsdale Oratorio Society, Scottsdale Community College’s community choir. Rebekah maintains a small private piano studio and is on faculty with the Chandler School of Fine Arts. She is so very happy to be part of the PGC family.
Olivia Gardner, Harmonia and Melodia Accompanist
OLIVIA GARDNER is a graduate of Arizona State University’s music program, where she studied choral music education with an emphasis in piano. She is currently working on her master’s degree in vocal performance at ASU, teaching choir at Peoria High and Liberty High Schools, and teaching private piano lessons.
Jamie Arnett, Choral Intern and Choreographer
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JAMIE ARNETT graduated from Arizona State University with a bachelor’s in Music Education. She has taught in a variety of different musical capacities, including: choir, orchestra, band, musical theater, and elementary general music. She currently has a studio of piano, voice, and violin students that she gets to teach from home to be with her two kids. She is so happy to be a part of the PGC family and make incredible music and memories.
Melissa Larsen, Choral Intern
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MELISSA LARSEN is a senior in Music Education at Arizona State University with emphasis in piano, a student of Dr. Caio Pagano. She also studies flute and voice and sings in Concert Choir, the top undergraduate choir at ASU. In addition to working at PGC, Larsen is an instructor at Arizona Music Academy and maintains a private studio.
Laura Stevens, Theory and Choral Assistant
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LAURA STEVENS is a Junior at Grand Canyon University studying Music Education. She is a former member of the Phoenix Girls Chorus and was in the choir for 10 years. She enjoyed many trips with the choir including Toronto, New Orleans, Orlando, Austria, and Germany. She is excited and please to be a part of the Phoenix Girls Chorus again.
Susie Shannon, Executive Director
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SUSIE SHANNON comes to the Phoenix Girls Chorus with over 27 years of experience working in both corporate management and non-profit organizations. She has served more than 17 years with the Phoenix Girls Chorus as a parent, volunteer, Board Member and as Staff. As the sole administrator, she oversees the fiscal and administrative aspects of the organization. Some of the highlights of Ms. Shannon’s tenure with PGC include creating and developing the fun!RAISER fundraising campaign, securing a $500,000 individual donation, purchasing and remodeling a new choir building, and more than doubling the organization’s revenues in the past seven years. Prior to PGC, Ms. Shannon served as the Special Events Director for the Phoenix Boys Choir, generating over one-third of the choir’s 1.1 million dollar budget for five years and overseeing all aspects of both internal and external events for the organization. Ms. Shannon started her career in sales and corporate management for both the restaurant and banking industries. A proud mom of two PBC alums and two PGC alums, the Phoenix Girls Chorus is her passion and she loves serving the families of PGC!