John K. Russell, DMA
Dr. John K. Russell is the Director of Choral and Vocal Studies at Palomar College and the Music Director of the San Diego Master Chorale. At Palomar he conducts the Chamber Singers and the Palomar Chorale oversees the vocal music program. At SDMC he conducts and coordinates all artistic activities of the chorale, which include preparing the chorus for performances with San Diego Symphony and other San Diego orchestras including the Mainly Mozart Festival Orchestra and La Jolla Symphony. In addition, he serves on the summer conducting faculty at Westminster Choir College in Princeton, New Jersey where he teaches master classes in conducting for the annual Westminster Summer Choral Festival.
Dr. Russell is also frequently in demand as a tenor soloist and was recently noted for his “heart-melting legato”. His recent solo performances include Hector Berlioz’s Te Deum with the San Diego Symphony, St. John Passion (Evangelist) with Pepperdine University, Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana with the Lisbon Summer Choral Festival Chorus and Orchestra in Lisbon, Portugal, Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass with the Bach Collegium San Diego and Monteverdi’s Vespers of 1610 with the Westminster Summer Choral Festival and Piffaro: The Renaissance Band in Philadelphia and Princeton.
Dr. Russell was previously the Director of Choral Activities at California State University, San Bernardino, and has held similar positions at Albion College (Michigan), Los Angeles City College, Cypress College and the San Diego Children’s Choir. Prior to his work in California, Dr. Russell was the principal choral conductor at the LaGuardia School of Music & Art and Performing Arts (the Fame School) in New York City. At LaGuardia he was the assistant chairperson of the Music Department, conductor of the symphonic chorus and voice instructor for the school’s advanced vocalists. While in New York he conducted in over twenty performances with the world-renowned Orchestra of St. Luke’s, served as a clinician for the New York Philharmonic’s Education Department and was a guest conductor with New York City National Chorale.
Dr. John Russell is a native of Kalamazoo, Michigan and is a graduate of Western Michigan University and Columbia University. He received his Doctorate of Musical Arts in Choral Music from the University of Southern California. His primary conducting mentors are Craig Arnold, Joe Miller and Jo-Michael Scheibe and he has studied voice with William Appel, Curt Peterson, Jeanne Goffi-Fynn and Gary Glaze. He currently resides in San Diego with his wife, Jill and son, Parker.
Associate Music Director
San Diego native Martin Green enjoys a multi-faceted career as organist, singer, and conductor. He has played as both as solo recitalist and accompanist throughout the US, Mexico, Canada, and abroad. Martin has made guest appearances with the San Diego Symphony and has also appeared on NPR’s “Pipedreams Live.”
He has prepared choirs and accompanied for such notable conductors as Sir David Willcocks, John Rutter, Marvin Hamlisch, Jahja Ling, Martin Neary, and Duiane Wolfe. Martin is the Organist and Choirmaster of St. Paul’s Episcopal Cathedral near Balboa Park, San Diego.
As a singer, he has enjoyed being a member of many of the San Diego region’s professional chorale ensembles. He has appeared as a baritone, tenor, and counter-tenor soloist in a wide range of venues in Southern California and Mexico from small churches to symphony orchestras.
With a passion for teaching, he is active as a clinician both for choral and organ events, and serves on the faculty of the San Diego Summer Choral Festival. He has conducted three recordings with the St. Paul’s Cathedral boy and girl choristers and appears on a number of other recordings as organist or singer.
Bryan Verhoye is a concert pianist who trained at the USC School of Music, the Aspen Music School, and the Peabody Conservatory. He has won first-prize awards from the International Piano Recording Competition and the Carmel Music Society, as well as multiple awards from the Musical Merit Foundation of San Diego. His performance in Carmel of Stravinsky’s “Three Movements From Petrouchka” was broadcast on National Public Radio’s syndicated Performance Today program.
In addition to being featured numerous times with the San Diego Symphony in both classical and jazz settings, he has appeared every December since 2001 in the Carols By Candlelight concert alongside performers such as Kenny Loggins, America, The Little River Band, Stephen Bishop, Billy Ray Cyrus and Kim Carnes; he has also appeared in concert with Grammy-award winning violinist/composer Mark O’Connor.
Mr. Verhoye has appeared frequently as a solo recitalist, accompanist, and chamber music performer in San Diego and throughout the West Coast. He has performed for the educational outreach programs of the San Diego Chamber Orchestra, the La Jolla Music Society and the Mainly Mozart Festival.
Along with teaching piano, being a published composer and arranger, and being the accompanist for the San Diego Master Chorale since 1998, he is also Music Associate at Point Loma Community Presbyterian Church, and Adjunct Professor of Music at Grossmont College.
Katie Colleen Hickey
Artistic Personnel and Production Manager
Katie Colleen Hickey, whose voice “electrified…with operatic ecstasy” (Ken Herman, San Diego Story), is a professional soprano and arts management consultant. As a performer, Katie has sung with countless choirs in San Diego (including the SD Master Chorale), across the United States, and abroad.
Katie holds a Masters in Arts Administration and Cultural Policy from Goldsmiths College, University of London and a Bachelor of Music from James Madison University (VA). In addition to her role with SD Master Chorale, Katie is the Co-Founder of the San Diego Summer Choral Festival and San Diego Pro Arte Voices, founding board member of the Choral Consortium of San Diego, and is highly sought after as a consultant with numerous arts organizations and nonprofits in Southern California.
Katie believes in strengthening the arts and humanity through collaboration, and finds passion in celebrating the creative brilliance of artists, musicians, writers, and composers.