Susan Senft founded Pacifica Children’s Chorus in 1993 and has served as its Artistic Director for the last 21 years. Ms. Senft was music director for the Puget Sound Revels (1993-2003), a local offshoot of John Langstaff’s Revels in Boston. She served on the faculty of Seattle Pacific University for 20 years teaching conducting, musicianship, choir and choral techniques in the Kodály Certification program. She was formerly active in opera and music theater with lead roles in Mozart’s Impresario, Menotti’s Amahl and the Night Visitors, Music Man, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, No Strings, and The Boyfriend, among others. She was a member of Gamelan Pacifica, a resident ensemble at Cornish College of the Arts and director of the Gamelan Pacifica Chorus. She sang with The Esoterics, a 24-voice a cappella ensemble devoted to performance of 20th century vocal music.
As a voice specialist, Ms. Senft maintains private voice studio in Snohomish County. Ms. Senft received a Master of Music in Music Education with Kodály Emphasis from Holy Names College in Oakland, California; a Bachelor of Fine Arts in vocal performance from Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle, Washington. Ms. Senft has completed two levels of Creating Artistry with Henry Leck and the prestigious Indianapolis Children’s Chorus at Butler University, Indiana. She has also done post-graduate conducting studies with Abraham Kaplan, University of Washington; and Eva Vendrai and Edward Bolkovac, Holy Names College.
Mary K. McNeil
Mary K is one of Seattle’s most loved music teachers, having taught in several Seattle schools over the past 20 years. Mary K organized the mass choir of over 1,000 voices when the Dalai Lama spoke at Safeco field. Mary K has completed three levels of training in the summer Kodály program at Seattle Pacific University.
Dr. Sarah Riskind is a recent graduate of the University of Washington’s doctoral program in Musical Arts in Choral Conducting.
Sarah has also attended the University of Wisconsin in Madison, and Williams College in Williamson, MA, receiving, respectively, a Master’s Degree in Choral Conducting and a Bachelor of Arts in Music. She has also done selective coursework at the University of Massachusetts in Boston.
Among the many musical interests Sarah pursued in university are Spanish traditional music, Jewish composers, Medieval and Renaissance music and Brahms’ choral music. Sarah’s most recent conducting history includes Music Director at the Magnolia United Church of Christ, graduate assistant with the University of Washington Chamber Singers and University Chorale and co-conductor of University Singers, and Choral Director at the Walden School of Young Musicians. Sarah’s other conducting experiences span 8 years, beginning as Interim Conductor of the Schola Nocturna, in Newton, MA, where she lead approximately a dozen singers in plainsong and polyphony for Compline services.