The Towne Singers has members from all over southern California. Here are biographies of just a few of our talented members.
Ken Kimball (South Pasadena)
A Baritone, joined the Towne Singers in 2004. He relates that membership has provided not only a great vocal learning experience, but also the opportunity to perform at many renowned venues, and the pleasure of working with a great group of people. Ken has been retired for 6 years from his “day job” as an engineering manager for JPL/NASA’s Deep Space Network. He also sings with the CalPhil Chorale during the summer season.
Chuck Hains (Pasadena)
Chuck Hains, a Bass 2, joined in 2004. He missed singing after high school. He says: “I was urged to join by my wife as well as by my neighbor and friends. It means a great deal to me to be a member of the Towne Singers since retiring, a sense of fellowship, an opportunity for contributing my talents and a joy of singing.” Chuck worked for Xerox Corporation as a Principal Scientist & Research Fellow. He also sings with the CalPhil Chorale during the summer season, and has performed with Theatre Americana.
Alan Chong (Pasadena)
Alan Chong, a Tenor, joined in 2011. He had just spent a month in the hospital for a serious illness and had time to think and reflect creating a ‘bucket list’ and singing in a choir was one the list. So he googled local choirs, found the Towne Singers which said the requirements is to show up and work hard – he showed up and loves it. He describes the Towne Singer as ‘family’ as everyone is supportive, friendly and a lot of fun. Plenty of laughs during rehearsals. Alan says “it is so fulfilling to create beautiful music and share it with the audience.” In his real life Alan is a Defense Attorney.
Merrily Hake (Camarillo)
Merrily Hake, a Soprano, joined the Towne Singers 22 years ago as a 2nd soprano. She was a music major in college but hadn’t sung in 20 years and missed it. She saw an ad in the La Canada local paper about rehearsals for an upcoming Town Singers concert and went. Merrily was a teacher and school librarian. She says: “My love of choral singing and the friendships I’ve made through the years have kept me going back year after year. The Towne Singers mean ‘music’ and ‘friendship’ to me.”
Bruce Spring (Los Angeles)
Bruce Spring, a Baritone, joined in 1995. Bruce says: “I loved singing and wanted to sing. I was new to LA and placed a personal ad in the Downtown News. “Musical baritone, decent voice seeks choir’. The Ad got 4 responses.” As a profession, Bruce is a Psychiatrist. For him: “the Towne Singers is a place to have fun, express myself, and grow as a singer, performer, musician and person. Towne Singers is also a place to share music, sound and adventure, including great trips in California, the USA and Europe. It is a way to deal with the stresses and strains of everyday life.”
Bennett Nelson (San Marino)
Bennett Nelson, a Bass, joined in 2015 on a dare by a former choir president. His profession was an Industrial Real Estate Broker, retired. Bennett says: “It’s a pleasure to be a member of such a wonderful group of people and share the joy of song with them.”
Howard Bucey (Temple City)
Howard Bucey, a Baritone, joined the Towne Singers in 2008 after retiring from 38 years as a music middle school teacher. He loves the variety of music, has a wonderful time singing, improving his ability to read music and meeting new people.
Ellen Totleben (Pasadena)
Ellen Totleben, a Tenor, joined The Towne Singers in 2018 as an Alto. She soon switched to Tenor and served as Section Co-Leader for one season, and then Artistic Director. Ellen studied classical and operatic voice as well as musical theater. She plays the French horn and the cello and is a member of the San Marino and South Pasadena Concert Bands. She also sings with the Sweet Adelines Verdugo Hills Chorus and the CalPhil Chorale. She performs professionally with the women’s barbershop quartet “Hot Topic”, the a cappella jazz quartet “Eclectic Mix”, and is the lead singer in The Graywolf Blues Band. And just for fun, she sings in the Chicago tribute band “SP Transit Authority”. In real life, Ellen is a Set Decorator for film and television where she works for Warner Bro’s, Disney, Universal, and Fox.
Ayuko Siegel (Glendale)
Ayuko Siegel, an Alto,The Towne Singers Administration Director