About Us

The Westside Concert Choir was formed in 1994 to provide an affordable, high-quality choral music education program for youngsters whose busy lives could only accommodate one rehearsal a week.

The following directors and accompanists of Westside Concert Choir are all professional musicians and teachers whose goal is to achieve the highest artistic standards with the finest, most challenging treble repertoire available:

 

Elizabeth Di Marino (B. Mus., B. Ed.)


Elizabeth Di Marino takes pleasure in helping children develop their hearing and voices to produce excellent choral singing. She is a trained vocalist and has completed significant instruction
in Orff Schulwerk.

Mrs. Di Marino is a respected elementary music teacher with the Calgary Board of Education and the mother of two boys. She is the director of the Senior Choir (grades 6 and up).

 

Caroline Parker (ARCT, B.Ed., M.A.)


Caroline Parker is a former teacher and administrator with the Calgary Board of Education and Calgary Girls’ School. She is currently furthering her musical pursuits by studying the harp. Additionally, she enjoys teaching as a sessional instructor at the University of Calgary. Caroline is the accompanist for the Senior Choir (grades 6 and up).s

 

Heather Nail (BMus., B.Ed.)


Heather Nail is an elementary music teacher with the Calgary Board of Education.She is a past president of the Calgary Orff Chapter, and has presented workshops for teachers in music and literacy. Mrs. Nail is a trained pianist and skilled vocalist, and is the mother of two active daughters.  She currently is the conductor of the Junior Choir (grades 3 – 5).

 

Amy Walton (B.A.)


Amy Walton is a Museum Educator at the Glenbow Museum.  She has taught piano for twenty years and has accompanied many other choirs including the Mount Royal Children’s Choir.  Amy is a trained cellist and is the mother of two boys.  She is currently the accompanist for the Junior Choir (grades 3 – 5)

 

Gail Danysk (B.Ed., M.Ed.)


Gail recently retired after a long, rewarding career with the Calgary Board of Education as classroom teacher, Early Learning Strategist and Early Learning Specialist. Another highlight of her endeavors involved Highland Dancing, as she spent a lifetime first as a competitive dancer, then a dance teacher, and later as an International Adjudicator with the Scottish Official Board of Highland Dancing and an Examiner with the Scottish Dance Teachers’ Alliance, both headquartered in Scotland. Currently she is a Sessional Instructor with the Werklund School of Education at the University of Calgary. Gail has worked with Mrs. Czaja for a number of years, adding movement (choralography) to some pieces in the Choirs’ repertoires.

 

Bev. Monro (ARCT)


Bev. Monro is an outstanding accompanist and piano teacher.  She has accompanied the Calgary Boys’ Choir, several of the Westwinds Choirs and formerly was the principal accompanist for the Westside Concert Choir.  She has returned to the Westside Concert Choir to assist with sectional rehearsals in the Senior Choir and to act as artistic advisor for both the Junior and Senior Choirs.

 

Jean Czaja (B.A., B.Ed.)


Jean Czaja is the founder of the Westside Concert Choir and the Westside Women’s Choir. She is a respected choral music director and clinician, dedicated to educating children and sharing her love of choral music.

Her choirs are noted for their musicality and their superior tone.  Jean taught in Winnipeg, New Orleans, Toronto, and was a classroom teacher, music specialist, and music consultant with the Calgary Board of Education.

 

Judy Dofoo, (B.Ed., M.A.)


Judy was a teacher for many years working with both adults and children in Jamaica, England and Canada. She is a pianist and cellist and currently plays with various chamber ensembles.

 

Ian Staples, (B.Ed., M.A.)


Ian is a retired teacher, having started his career in England teaching high school geography and concluding it in Calgary teaching upper elementary grades. He has pursued a life-long interest in wilderness landscape photography and can occasionally, be persuaded to photograph people.