The Peninsula Singers bring additional musicians and entertainers on stage to deepen our sound and create the magic. Here are some of our favourites from previous concerts:
Christie Norman – Piano – Accompanist
Christie is excited to return for another season with the Peninsula Singers.
Christie, a born and raised Victoria girl, is also raising her twin daughters here. Christie has been accompanying since she was 15 years old. She began playing for ballet classes, then accompanying every instrument from flautists to violinists and soloists to choirs. Christie excels musically at listening and capturing their energy.
As well as being a classical pianist, she is a local artist, and can be found summer or winter at some of the local markets in the Victoria area. Christie’s glass bottle art was featured on The Upside in 2020 and she has created her own website christienorman.com.
Jennifer Bennett – Double Bass – Musician
Jennifer was introduced to the double bass at a community band in Kingston, Ontario, where she was impressed by the instrument’s beautiful low notes and versatility. She thanks her mother for forcing her to take violin lessons, which instilled a lifelong love of the strings. Jennifer’s involvement in choral music inspired her to create the non-auditioned Frontenac Women’s Chorus, who still rehearse and perform in the small towns north of Kingston. She earned a Bachelor of Music degree with distinction from Queen’s University. Since moving from Kingston in 2014, Jennifer has played double bass with the Bayside Band. “When I moved here, I didn’t have room in my car for my double bass, which I called Basie,” says Jennifer. “For some reason the bass I found here is female, so she’s Bella.” She was born in B.C. so, she adds, “It’s great to be back home, surrounded by beauty and music, with so many opportunities to listen and to perform. I live in Sidney, so the Peninsula Singers concerts have been favorites of mine. The choir’s love of singing and the care for one another shine through.”
Hollas Longton – Violin
Born and raised in Victoria, Hollas Longton began studying the violin at age 3 with Yasuko Eastman. His public debut came at age 12 playing Saint-Saëns’ ‘Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso’ with the Civic Orchestra of Victoria. He holds a BMus from Uvic, winning the school’s Bach competition and the concerto competition, an MMus from the Royal Conservatoire at The Hague (Holland) and a PhD in music composition from the University College Cork (Ireland). In addition to teaching and working as a violinist, Hollas is currently the concertmaster of the Victoria Chamber Orchestra.
Margaret Dzbik – Violinist – Musician
Originally from Poland, she is a graduate of the University of Victoria. A violin teacher and a professional violinist for over 20 years, including seven years with the Victoria Symphony, she is also trained in choral, strings and band conducting. Margaret was a Sessional Instructor at the University of Victoria and has been teaching in elementary, middle and secondary schools in District 61. Margaret is also a busy mother of 2 daughters, and she enjoys hiking, reading, and travelling.
Kim Pugh – Bass Guitar
Kim Pugh began learning music in 2013, spending 4 years in guitar lessons at the Brentwood Bay School of Music. From there, she picked up the bass guitar, joining the band at North Saanich Middle School. Kim is currently in Grade 9 at Parkland Secondary, where she plays bass in both the Concert Band and Jazz Band. Along with music, Kim’s passions include writing and art.
Michael came to Canada in 1999 to open a drum store in Nanaimo. He has played with Oceanside’s Arrowsmith Big Band since 2001, and has worked with numerous productions all over Central Vancouver Island.
Elin R. Williams began studying the recorder at age 9. She went on to complete her Bachelor’s degree in Early Music – Recorder Performance. Elin completed her Master’s of Library Science and is currently Music Librarian at the Victoria Conservatory of Music and continues to perform.
Alexandra Yates, studied violin with Joan Milkson of The National Arts Centre Orchestra in Ottawa and was accepted to study Operatic Studies in Australia. Currently, Lexa collaborates and writes for local artists, and teaches from her private studio in Sidney. She enjoys working with her students of all ages.
Roger was first drawn to the pipes as a youngster. His grandparents had a cottage, and a piper used to play early in the morning at sunrise. Roger has previously performed at the Mary Winspear Centre for a Canada Day immigration ceremony and for numerous Rotary events.