Gary Jones was born and raised in Missoula, MT, where he learned the joy of music from early childhood, when his mother would drag him off to concerts at the U of M. Going into High School, his interest in music took the form of playing in a rock band, as well as singing in two of the school’s choirs, plus a church choir.
After giving two years to the Army as a field medic, Gary started his formal studies in music at the U of Montana, then transferred to the U of Washington, where he graduated with two undergraduate degrees in music in 1980. During this time, he also served as choirmaster and organist at an Episcopal church in Seattle. His work in church music continued for most of his life: directing choirs, playing organ and piano, leading worship teams, organizing and directing concerts, etc., which eventually took him to Denver, CO, where he received a Master’s Degree in conducting from the U of Denver Lamont School of Music in 1999.
From Denver, to Sacramento, CA, Gary led a large choral program that included performing various concerts, from patriotic musicals to Christmas programs, etc. While there, he initiated a 16-voice a cappella choir that specialized in 16 th and 20 th century counterpoint. From Sacramento to the Tri-Cities (SE Washington state) Gary led a multi-faceted music program that included directing a community chorus and orchestra, performing such works as Handel’s Messiah, Brahms Requiem, Fauré Requiem, Vaughan Williams Dona Nobis Pacem, and several other major works.
Gary and his wife Carolyn ‘retired’ in 2017 and moved to Buhl in order to be close to grandbabies. Gary and Carolyn continue to work in various fields of music, counseling (that would be Carolyn), and other endeavors, finding themselves just as busy as they were before they ‘retired’. In addition to music, Gary enjoys gardening, cooking, woodworking, and hiking.
Gary also teaches private lessons (piano, voice, guitar) and maintains the yard at the Sage Women’s Center as a volunteer.
Our Amazing Accompanist
Hello- I am Twin Falls native. I began violin lessons at the age of six and piano two years later. In my family, there was emphasis on God, family, and hard work in school and music.
The last seven years prior to college, I studied piano with Margaret Vincent. I then attended the University of Idaho, where I studied with Jay Mauchley and earned a bachelor’s degree in piano performance.
Since granduation, I have been teaching piano and violin, and participated with various music groups such as the symphony, youth orchestra, summer municipal band, and several church groups. For whatever duration I am invited to participate, I am pleased to join the Chorale, and have been enriched through the experience. Enjoy the concert!
Our Talented Organist
Karmelle was born in Vernal, UT and raised in Kimberly, ID from the age of 10. When she was 7 her grandparents delivered an upright piano to her home. The family acquired a piano book from a next-door neighbor, and Karmelle taught herself from the book. She began to develop a love for the piano through her young years, and was blessed with amazing teachers when the family moved to Idaho-Mark Neiwirth, Teala Bellini and Teala Percin. In addition to her classical training, she spent hours with her best friend chording and playing by ear. It is still a family tradition at get togethers to stump her at the piano.
Karmelle graduated from the College of Southern Idaho and received a certificate in Piano Pedagogy from Utah State University. For years she taught piano and had a large private studio. She was the founder and director of the Magic Valley Yamaha Music School, which introduced young students to the benefits of technology and learning the keyboard.
Karmelle served as an adjunct piano professor at the College of Southern Idaho for many years. In 1999 she recorded and produced a CD of Classical/Romantic music called “A Piano Interlude (Classics by Karmelle)”, available on iTunes.
Karmelle has a great commitment to today’s youth. She has mentored countless young people teaching, coaching and encouraging young people not only at the piano, but through musical theatre, scholarship pageants and church service. She has been the chairperson for the Magic Valley Distinguished Young Women Program for several years.
Karmelle is part of the Real Deals on Home Décor Franchise and has owned stores in Burley, Pocatello, Idaho Falls and Rexburg.
Karmelle resides in Buhl, ID with her husband George. They are the parents of 5 children-who are all musical- 3 girls and 2 boys. Her daughters are married to amazing son-in-law’s and they currently have 6 darling grandchildren! She enjoys baking, spending time with her family, gardening, and traveling.
Our Wonderful Storyteller
Joy Nack earned two Bachelor of Arts degrees and a teaching credential from California State University at Sacramento.
She taught in a public school in California for six years prior to raising a family. She has sung in multiple church and community choirs in California as well as in Missouri, including
performing as a soloist for several years.
Joy has also been a long-time professional storyteller and puppeteer. She is currently singing here in Twin Falls, Idaho as a member of The Magic Valley Chorale. She enjoys cooking, interior design, gardening and hiking.
Our Extraordinary Dancers
Cooper Wiggins is from Twin Falls, Idaho. He was born and raised with the natural talent to try anything and shoot for the stars. As he grew up, his parents coerced him into trying different sports and activities to try and keep him healthy. He tried all varieties of sports but didn’t find one that suited him very well. He enjoyed soccer a lot, and would try to pursue it, but dance ultimately became his muse.
As time went on, and Cooper became better at dancing, he started to explore the competitive side of things. Studying at Ovation Dance, he started competing at the age of twelve. Things only improved from there, and Cooper was beginning to look like a “real dancer,” in his words; however, a certain pandemic crushed what hope he had for that fateful year, and so he began to work extra hard.
He got his first solo that same year, but decided to keep it when things started to open up a little bit. It took many months of fixing, cleaning, and choreographing to get that solo close to perfection. And when competitions came around, he thrived. Taking first overall in one, and scoring very high in the others, his tenacity was only reinforced with those achievements. With that, came a great surge of confidence that inspired him to try harder than ever at dance and start to choreograph his own as well.
Since then, Cooper has been working hard at choreographing and improving his dance skills. As a teacher’s assistant for the dance teacher at Xavier Charter School, as well as the teacher’s assistant for Ovation Dance, he has been working as hard as ever to fulfill his dream of becoming a professional. His goal is to get into a conservatory, like Juilliard or AMDA, but ultimately to make it in the “business” as a dancer and choreographer.
Allison Donahue was born in Pocatello, ID. She moved to Jerome in 2014 when her mom received a promotion at work. She is 14 and dances on the Ovation competition and hip hop teams. She loves dance and working with kids. She is also a teachers assistant at Ovation. Her favorite style of dance is hip hop. Allison is a self taught snowboarder and loves adventure. She is in honors classes even though she dances 4 plus days a week.
Her proud parents are Mark and Julie. They admire her confidence, strength, and resilience. Allison is adored and admired by her family. She has a sweet soul and finds joy in most things.
Ground Control Kryptonix National Champion Clogging Team
Ground Control Studio, directed by Hailey & Adison Hillstead, specializes in competitive clogging, hip hop and power tap instruction for ages 4+. Hailey and Adison are national champions in dance who have dedicated their lives to the art of competitive dance performing all over the world, on cruise ships and on television and now enjoy passing on these intricate skills to the future generation. For more information visit www.groundcontroldance.com! Ground Control Studio is located at 116 Main Ave N in downtown Twin Falls.
Our Talented Soloists
Ally Tyrrell has been performing since age 4. Since moving to the Magic Valley 14 years ago, she has been involved in the music department at her church.
Ally is married to Davis and has two girls, Genevieve (8) and Magnolia (5). They enjoy having adventures around Idaho. They all spend a lot of time singing and dancing around their home in Twin Falls.
Ally is a passionate Event Coordinator and plans weddings, outreaches, and other special days with love and fun.
Theresa Pocock found a love for music/singing in her high school years where she performed and achieved much, including All-state and All-Northwest acceptance. She has continued to sing through the years and has been a member of many choirs including the Colorado Saints Chorale (the only other choir with a charter from the LDS church). She moved to Twin Falls one year ago and is loving being a part of the Magic Valley Chorale.
Breeana Wright, soprano, studied vocal performance at
Wichita State University under Dr. Pina Mozzani, and is currently under the tutelage of the spectacular Shawna Gottfredson. Wright was a featured soloist last year (summer 2021) at the Narnia Festival in Narni, Italy where she performed Pergolesi’s breathtaking oratorio the Stabat Mater, Italian and Latin American art songs, and other sacred repertoire in concerts and religious venues.
In the community’s Come to Bethlehem Christmas program, Wright was a featured soloist for six years (2014-2019) and in April 2022, she played Cinderella in Warren Marten’s The True Story of Cinderella (a role she thoroughly enjoyed). As a classical and CCM performer, she also thoroughly enjoys musical theater and has performed in various shows from
Sondheim’s Into the Woods to Pirates of Penzance by Gilbert and Sullivan.
She currently lives in Twin Falls, Idaho where, as a wife to a handsome hunk and home-schooling mom of three beautiful children, there’s never a dull moment and she wouldn’t have it any other way.
She is honored to take part in the Magic Valley Chorale’s glorious Christmas production this season!
Lori Ann Ebrecht
Lori learned her love of music at a very young age from her close knit Italian family. Mom Beverly had gone on the road with a Big Band in the 40’s and Dad Joseph’s Aunts and Uncles played guitar and organ and wrote music for the church.
From Catholic school beginnings, learning to sing the mass in Latin to 40 years of Master Chorale singing.
Now, a retired cantor from the diocese of San Bernardino in California; she still enjoys singing in church and community choir!
Patti Harvey has been singing in choirs since she was small. Church Choirs, children’s choirs, high school and college choirs and various community choirs. She has an associates in Vocal Performance from CSI, and still continues to take lessons periodically. She also performs with several local theatre groups and plays with the CSI Symphonic Band. She is a Special Education teacher in the Jerome School District. She would like to thank her husband and 6 grown children for allowing her to continue to pursue her arts hobbies.