Nancy Sieh

Nancy Sieh joined the CHICO board of directors in 2014, after retiring from the practice of law. She served as Deputy District Attorney in Ventura, then in Santa Barbara County as Assistant District Attorney . She specialized in crimes against vulnerable victims, including spousal abuse, sexual assault and child abuse.  

Upon retiring, Nancy chose to return to her roots. From a musical Italian family,  she was introduced to opera and classical music in the home early in life and saw the joy it can bring.  Tales from the great operas were her bedtime stories.  Nancy heartily recommends that others join the CHICO family and enjoy a role in producing more concerts of all kinds.

Nancy is grateful to her husband and family for their unflagging support. 

Celine Gietzen

Celine's Promo Shot 1Celine Gietzen has been teaching since 1986, and she currently has a full studio of private cello students in Camarillo.  She is also a coach for the Junior Chamber Music program.  Her students have been awarded college scholarships, have received honors in the Certificate of Merit program, have achieved principal chairs in student orchestras, and have been chosen to perform in the MTAC state convention.  She regularly adjudicates for competitions, scholarship auditions, and the MTAC Certificate of Merit program.  Celine Gietzen attended the Cleveland Institute of Music, one of the most prestigious conservatories in the nation, with a merit-based scholarship as a student of Alan Harris.  In 1997 she received a Bachelor of Music degree in Cello Performance and was elected to the Dean’s List.  She then received a Master of Music degree from UCLA in 2009 as a scholarship student of Antonio Lysy.  Another of her influential teachers has been Dr. Richard Naill of the Colburn School of Performing Arts.  She has performed professionally in solo recitals, chamber music groups, and in many orchestras.  Celine is an active board member of the MTAC and is also a member of the American String Teachers’ Association. 161022Recital

Nicole McKenzie

NICOLE MCKENZIE has performed widely as soloist and chamber musician. The Santa Barbara Independent declared, “McKenzie made a splash in the luscious and exciting music – she performed with gorgeous musicality.”

Winner of the Sutton Chamber Music Award, she graduated from Interlochen Arts Academy, earned a BM Degree from Oberlin Conservatory, an MM Degree from Florida State University, and studied with Gary Kosloski at the Music Academy of the West. Ms. McKenzie is Concertmaster of the Santa Barbara Folk Orchestra. She maintains a private violin studio, co-directs and teaches for Sandcastle Music Together, Coaches chamber music at Santa Barbara

Strings, is a member of the duo, Continental Cafe, directs and teaches at Allegro Violin Camp, was a founding member of the Nicole McKenzie Improv Group (an improvising group of dancers and musicians), was a long time member of the Klezmer/Jazz group, Kalinka, and regularly concertizes with renowned pianist, Betty Oberacker. She performs on a violin created for her by Michel Eggimann of Rome, Italy.

Craig Thomas


Saxophone, clarinet, and flute instructor Craig Thomas is a long time performer and educator whose work spans his years as a studio musician and sideman with artists like
Al Jarreau, Les MCann, the Temptations, Four Tops, Smokey Robinson, Aretha Franklin, Jim Messina, Tom Jones, Freda Payne, Mike Love of the Beach Boys, Toni Tennille and many others. With a background in classical as well as jazz, he still performs on clarinet with the Channel Islands Chamber Orchestra, as well as on saxophone with the critically acclaimed jump blues group the R&B Bombers. He also has his own jazz trio with the long time studio and Tonight Show guitarist Mitch Holder and bassist Domenic Genova.

Kathie Kottler

KKottlerCHICOKathie has been a member of CHICO since 2008. She plays on a French violin approximately 100 years old. She started playing violin in elementary school and played in school orchestras through UC Irvine where she received a B.A. in dance and music. She subsequently played with community orchestras in Santa Barbara, Concord and Ventura. In addition to performing with CHICO, she plays in a string quartet with friends.

Ann Erwin

Ann-Erwin Flutist Ann Erwin earned a Master of Music degree from USC and a B.A. with a double major in music and mathematics from UC San Diego. She studied chamber music at the Yale Summer School of Music in Norfolk, Connecticut, and was awarded Annette Kade and Harriet Hale Woolley fellowships to study the flute in Paris, where her teachers included Michel Debost and Ida Ribera. In Southern California she studied with Roger Stevens, James Walker, Anne Diener Zentner, and Damian Bursill-Hall. Ms. Erwin served as Principal Flute of the New Hampshire Music Festival Orchestra and the Ventura Symphony Orchestra. She has also performed with the San Diego Symphony and Opera Orchestras, Orchestra Nova, Santa Barbara Symphony Orchestra, Santa Barbara Chamber Music Festival, Franciscan String Quartet, California Chamber Orchestra, Strauss Symphony of America, and many other organizations. She served as Assistant Professor of Flute at the University of Wyoming and the University of Tennessee and also taught at the University of New Hampshire and the Idyllwild Summer Chamber Music Festival. Currently Principal Flute of San Diego’s Classics Philharmonic and a member of San Diego Winds as well as the Channel Islands Chamber Orchestra, she is an active performer, teacher, and adjudicator throughout Southern California. Ms. Erwin has performed in concerts and recitals in France, Spain, Germany, Mexico, Canada, and throughout the United States, including performances of contemporary music at UNESCO headquarters in Paris, the Staatsbibliothek in Berlin, and the National Flute Association convention. She is a member of the American Federation of Musicians, Music Teachers Association of California, and the National Flute Association.

Lynne Doherty


Lynne Doherty has played 1st french horn with CHICO since the orchestra was founded. She has played in the Gold Coast Wind Ensemble since 1992. She also plays with the Ojai Brass Quintet, Ojai Summer Band, the Ventura College Orchestra and freelance with other groups. Lynne Doherty has a Masters of Music Education from the University of Miami.

Ruth Kay


Ruth earned her Bachelor of Music degree at CS University Fullerton. She has performed in many different symphonies & chamber groups. Most recently the Burbank Symphony, Conejo Valley Symphony, Santa Maria Philharmonic, Santa Maria Pops Orchestra & the Ventura Baroque Strings. She is a true second violinist who loves the moving underlying themes, creating fullness to a simple melody & lower tones of the violin. She has taught children & adults for many years in her living room teaching studio giving them opportunities to play solos in recitals & preparing for auditions. She now lives in Camarillo with her husband and little dog Maggie and currently performs with the Channel Island Chamber Orchestra and Moorpark Symphony & Footworks Ballet Company Orchestra.

Liz Watts

LizWatts Originally from England, Liz Watts never actually chose to play the violin. A pianist from the age of four, she wanted to play the flute (which she tried for a few years … it was a disaster!). As a teenager, she won a full scholarship to study piano and violin at the Royal College of Music, Junior Department in London for seven years. Liz completed her bachelor of music degree with honors from the University of Manchester, and a Post-Graduate Certificate of Education from Leeds University (two subjects: music & outdoor education). Liz taught violin and viola full-time for the Cleveland Music Service and the North Yorkshire Music Service before moving to California with her husband in 1997.

As a young adult, Liz’s love of playing 2nd violin began when she was appointed as principal 2nd violin with the National Scout and Guide Symphony Orchestra (U.K.). Since then she has briefly served as principal 2nd violin with the Cal Lutheran University Symphony (Thousand Oaks) and is currently the assistant principal 2nd violin with the Moorpark Symphony Orchestra and principal 2nd violin with CHICO. As a community-minded professional violinist, Liz has performed with many groups in and around Ventura County. Some of the recent highlights have included performances with the pit orchestra for Nordhoff High School’s annual musical (Ojai), Footworks Ballet Orchestra (Oxnard), The Master’s College Orchestra (Santa Clarita), Bakersfield Symphony Orchestra, and Lompoc Pops Orchestra. In addition to her duties as CHICO’s principal 2nd violin, Liz currently serves as CHICO’s Librarian.

In recent years, Liz developed an interest in music performance anxiety. In the fall of 2015, she was admitted to the Graduate School of Psychology at Cal Lutheran University to begin working part-time on a master’s degree in clinical psychology. Also related to her academic success, Liz works in the Math Center at Moorpark College tutoring elementary statistics and algebra.

In her spare time (!!), Liz enjoys spending time with her husband and their beloved German shepherd dog at their home in Moorpark.

David Singer


The New York Times wrote about David Singer, “To describe his playing would be to enumerate a catalogue of virtues.” His career as one of the most highly respected clarinetists in the U.S. has been established through performances and recordings as principal clarinetist of the Grammy Award winning Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, frequent guest appearances with the Lincoln Center Chamber Music Society, two separate performances at the White House for Presidents Carter and Clinton, participation at the Marlboro, Spoleto and Edinburgh Music Festivals and through chamber music performances and recordings with some of the greatest musicians of our time including Yehudi Menuhin, Rudolf Serkin, Yo Yo Ma, Pinchas Zukerman and members of the Guarneri, Emerson, Orion, and Shanghai String Quartets. He has appeared on more than 100 recordings including two Grammy Award winners.

Robert Aldridge, Grammy Award winner in 2012, wrote Concerto For Clarinet and Chamber Orchestra for Mr. Singer and performances of that work with both Orpheus and the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra resulted in rave reviews: “teeming with energy”, “rowdy, ethnic and fun” (Los Angeles Times). Naxos and American Classics released Singer’s recording of the Aldridge and Copland Clarinet Concerti and from England, Gramophone Magazine wrote “…Singer’s Copland performance is one of the finest accounts around. His playing is exceptional…sensitive and expressive…technically brilliant.”

Winner of the international Naumberg Competition for chamber music in New York, David Singer, as a member of the Aulos Wind Quintet commissioned John Harbison to write his now famous “Wind Quintet”, a piece which has become one of the most important works in the repertoire of the woodwind quintet. Mr. Singer also participated in the premiere of Charles Wuorinen’s quartet, “Fortune” in Bonn, Germany, with the composer as pianist.

David Singer was a judge with Grammy Award winner John Corigliano for the Corigliano Clarinet Competition at the Juilliard School as well as one of three judges for the Lincoln Center Chamber Music Society II International Competition.

As a co – star with Stockard Channing in “The Lady and the Clarinet”, he also performed the entire musical score for the play unaccompanied.

Prof. Singer helped establish the now thriving chamber music program and collaborative faculty/student performances at Montclair State University, where he served as Coordinator of Chamber Music and Woodwinds, Professor of Clarinet for twenty-three years. He was awarded Emeritus status from the University in October 2012.

Today David Singer serves on the Music Advisory Board of Young Musicians Foundation, an organization dedicated to helping many of the most accomplished young musicians in Southern California, ages 10 – 26, thrive through creating performance opportunities and scholarships. Mr. Singer also coaches and conducts the woodwind section of the top ensemble, the “Debut” Orchestra, giving the musicians – many of whom attend the leading schools in So. Cal. including the Colburn School and U.S.C., his insights on how to more successfully interpret the music. Mr. Singer prepares the musicians for their full orchestral rehearsals with their regular conductor.

David Singer is also very proud to have created a new and exciting chamber music ensemble called the Singer Chamber Players. This group has already received standing ovations and immediate re engagements from presenters throughout So. Cal. Go to for information.

Mariana Smith

MarianaSmithMariana Smith began her flute studies in California with Burnett Atkinson, Damian Bursill-Hall and Ann Diener-Zentner. She is a UCSD music graduate. At Edinburgh University, Scotland she studied with David Nicholson and continued her flute studies with Trevor Wye at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, London. Later, as a postgraduate student, she received an Artist Diploma from the Musikhochschule Stuttgart, Germany, while studying with Klaus Schochov.

Mariana has performed all genres of music in various combinations from soloist to orchestral performer throughout Europe. After over 20 years in Europe she returned to California in 1998 and has been on the music faculty of Ventura College since her return. As music director of both the Ventura Chamber Music Series and Santa Paula Concert series, she organized over 70 concerts. She is principal flutist with the Channel Islands Chamber Orchestra, has an active music studio and continues to work as a freelance flutist, pianist and organist in both California and Britain. She is a member of the MTAC and the AGO.

Miriam Arichea

Miriam has been privileged to perform with CHICO since its inception in 2004. Miriam has also performed with the Ventura College Symphony and San Luis Obispo Chamber Orchestra, as well as in solo and collaborative performances at the Ojai Arts Centre and Ventura Music Festival.

Miriam has also served as music director and pianist for a number of community groups and events, including the Rubicon Theatre Company, the Ventura Unified Festival of Talent, and Temple Beth Torah.  Miriam was the honored recipient of the 2014 Ventura Mayor’s Arts Award for Arts Educator.

Miriam studied for many years with the late, renowned pianist Sofia Cosma, as well as with Tibor Szasz and Loren Withers at Duke University, and Halimah Brugger.  She presently receives valuable coaching from Natasha Kislenko, faculty at University of California Santa Barbara.

A lawyer by training, Miriam received her undergraduate and law degrees at Duke University.  She presently handles criminal appeals as a court-appointed attorney with the California Appellate Project.  Miriam also coaches and coordinates the Ventura High School mock trial and academic decathlon teams.  Miriam and her husband Jeff Brackett have three children – Josh, Arielle, and Daniel.

Karen Nelson


Karen Nelson grew up in Riverside, California. During her high school and college years at UC Riverside, she played with the  Riverside Symphony, Redlands Bowl Orchestra and University of Redlands Orchestra.

During her undergraduate years, Karen attended a study program in Göttingen Germany and played with the University Symphony. During those years she met fellow student Jim Wimmer who asked to borrow her violin for closer inspection, and that led to Jim’s extensive apprenticeship with violin makers in Germany.

Since moving to the Central Coast in 1983, Karen played with the Ventura County Symphony and Santa Barbara Civic Light Opera.

In 1990 Karen received a Master’s degree in education from USCB. She has taught bilingual and special education in the public schools for many years.

Karen joined CHICO when it was founded in 1993. She also enjoys participating in weekly services with her church band, and fiddling with Irish musician friends.


Natalie Spevak

0IdGqCVDNatalie Spevak has been playing viola and violin for 26 years and received her Bachelors in Orchestral Strings performance with emphasis in Viola from California State University, Northridge. She taught music privately in the public school setting, and most recently, teaches with the New West Symphony Harmony Project of Ventura County.  She is currently a school administrator with the Ventura Unified School District, a musician, mother of two, and an advocate for community building processes including Restorative Justice.

Delores Walker

Delores received the BME degree from Northwestern University in 1964 and moved to Ventura County, where she taught instrumental music in Oxnard and Port Hueneme until 2003. She joined Ventura County Symphony in 1964, where she played until 1995. She has held positions in Santa Barbara Symphony, Santa Maria Philharmonic, Channel Islands Symphony, Ventura Piano Quintet, Ventura College Symphony, Ventura County Master Chorale and Pacific Shores Philharmonic. She has been a member of CHICO since it was founded in 2003.

John Fare

jfareNew West Symphony cellist John Fare rehearses with the group at the Oxnard Performing Arts Center.Photo/Art by:Bryan Chan

John Fare’s life in music began with a chance mid-year invitation to join the orchestra in his sixth grade elementary school in Abilene, Texas. After a nurturing path through the public schools there, he earned his Bachelor’s Degree at Texas Tech University, followed by professional positions with the North Carolina Symphony and the Denver Symphony. John moved to California in 1974, where he received a Master’s Degree at USC, and began to perform for movies, television, and audio recording, musical theater, and orchestral concerts including the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the Pasadena Symphony. Along the way he performed live with the Eagles, at the Oscar, Emmy, and Grammy Awards, the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics, and was on camera for movies, TV shows, and commercials. John and his wife Joannie live in Thousand Oaks.

Chris Dimond


Chris Dimond started playing cello in fourth grade in his elementary school’s music program. He  has performed in the Fresno Philharmonic Orchestra under Guy Taylor, the Ventura County Symphony under Frank Salazar, and the Ventura Community Orchestra under Burns Taft. As a small ensemble musician, he has played for fun and profit in the Seaside Quartette, the Fiori Musicali ensemble, the Ventura Piano Quintet, Ventura Baroque, and other groups of chamber music friends. For a series of commissions by the Ventura Piano Quintet, he arranged several pieces for their use as encores. He now occasionally prepares arrangements of classical music for performance in his church. Chris is a semi-retired radar engineer and a licensed amateur radio operator who enjoys serving as a member of the Amateur Radio Emergency Service and Ventura County Sheriff’s Auxiliary Communications Service. He is grateful to his parents and the school systems for giving him the gifts of music appreciation and music performance.

Laura Mihalka

Laura started piano lessons as the age of four and quickly moved on to cello. In high school, she studied with cello professor, Nils Oliver, at UCLA. She completed her degree in Sociology from UCSB in 1993 and spent the next two years touring with a rock band as their lead guitarist. She has been playing cello with Channel Islands Chamber Orchestra since 2010 and composes string arrangements for recording studios in Ventura County. Laura lives in Ventura with her husband Shayne and teenage daughters, Erin and Allison.

Cavit Celayir-Monezis


Cavit Celâyir-Monezis graduated from UCLA with a degree in bassoon performance, and has studied with Charles Coker, Jack Marsh, Norman Herzberg, and Andy Radford. After graduating, he worked with the woodwind chamber ensembles at UCLA, and currently coaches woodwind, brass, and chamber ensembles for the Conejo Valley Unified School District. Cavit also enjoys playing woodwinds for musical theatre productions throughout the Los Angeles and Ventura areas. Cavit is also a composer and has had compositions performed at UCLA, the Shrine Auditorium, Santa Monica College, Moorpark College, and the California Junior Philharmonic.  He has served as assistant conductor for the Palisades Symphony and the Los Angeles Lawyers Philharmonic.  In addition to the Channel Islands Chamber Orchestra, he has appeared as a soloist with the Ventura Baroque Players, Santa Monica College, the Goethe Institut, and the California Junior Philharmonic. Cavit joined the Channel Islands Chamber Orchestra in 2003.

Sharon Cooper

SharonCooperSharon Cooper is an active freelance violinist and violist in central and southern California. She studied chamber music at San Francisco Conservatory and holds a BA degree in Music from Stanford University.

Sharon has performed throughout California, Europe and Australia in numerous recitals, chamber ensembles, orchestras and civic events. She has performed solo works with symphonies including Moorpark, Valley (LA), New Valley and Antelope Valley. Sharon has been featured soloist with the Channel Islands and Palo Alto Chamber Orchestras, Ventura Baroque, Santa Maria Philharmonic, Symphony of the Canyons, Junior Bach Festival (Berkeley) and on KQED Public Television (San Francisco). In addition, she has performed on chamber music concert series including the Mount Cross Classical, Lompoc Music Association, St. Patrick’s (Thousand Oaks), Ojai Art Centre, Moorpark Orchestra Chamber Series, Santa Maria Philharmonic Rendezvous Series, and the Beethoven Festival (Santa Barbara). She is also regularly concertmaster of Cabrillo Music Theatre (Thousand Oaks), Santa Maria Philharmonic and Moorpark Symphony. Sharon has played solo violin in Arizona as well as California theater pits.

On a lighter note, Sharon can frequently be heard on the soundtrack of Fox TV’s animated features as well as other TV, movie, original theater cast and diverse musical recordings. She has performed with many including David Benoit, Seth MacFarlane, Electric Light Orchestra, Riders of the Purple Sage, Frank Sinatra Jr., Duke Ellington and the Modern Jazz Quartet.

Sharon makes her home in Ventura with her husband Bob and two cats.

Cyndi Hall

CYNDI HALL, Violinist, is a native to Southern California. Having picked up the violin as an adult, she never dreamed of performing as a professional musician. Yet through hard work and discipline she found herself performing in her church orchestra after just eight months on her violin. Within four years she was performing in symphonies, teaching, and pursuing a second Bachelors Degree in music, her first two being a BS in Psychology from California State University, Northridge and an AS degree in Math and Science from College of the Canyons. Her coaches have included Miwako Watanabe, Diane Gilbert, Leslie Katz and Sharon Cooper.

Cyndi has performed in symphonies, orchestras and musical theaters throughout Los Angeles and Ventura counties for the past 14 years, including: Grace Baptist Orchestra,The Masters’ College Orchestra, Santa Clarita Master Chorale Orchestra, LA Valley Symphony, Moorpark Symphony, CSUN Orchestra, Red Cross Benefit Orchestra, Channel Islands Chamber Orchestra, Ventura Baroque Chamber Orchestra, Escape Theater (Santa Clarita Performing Arts Center), and Footworks Youth Ballet Orchestra (Oxnard Performing Arts Center).

She can be heard as a studio musician on numerous Fox animated television recordings such as American Dad, Family Guy, Cleveland and King of the Hill, and has performed with the Walter Murphy Orchestra, Ron Jones Influence Orchestra, Seth McFarlane Live to tape variety show.

Steven Chang

Dr. Steven Chang began studying the violin at the age of 5 in Seattle, Washington, and continued intensive study throughout his youth. He played in numerous youth orchestras, including the Northern Virginia Youth Symphony and the Orange County Youth Symphony Orchestra, and entered and won many competitions before beginning college. He was offered a scholarship to continue his violin training at the prestigious Thornton School of Music at USC, but declined it to pursue a career in medicine. At UCLA, where he completed his pre-med studies, he served as assistant concertmaster of the UCLA Symphony, and studied privately with Alexander Treger of the LA Philharmonic. Continuing to play through medical school and post-doctoral training, he served as concertmaster of a chamber orchestra in Richmond, Virginia. After completing his medical training, he took a 15-year break from the violin as he engaged in building a busy ophthalmology practice in Ventura. Returning to actively playing again in 2010, he determined to never stop again.

Dr. Chang currently serves as co-concertmaster of the Channel Islands Chamber Orchestra (CHICO), and plays in various chamber ensembles, including weekly string quartet meetings comprised of past and present members of CHICO. And whenever possible, he plays chamber music with his 3 sisters and parents, who are all accomplished musicians.

Dr. Chang plays on fine violins by Vincenzo Panormo (1810), Jean Baptiste Vuillaume (1864 and 1870), and Gregg Alf (2010). He maintains a busy ophthalmology practice and is privileged to provide medical and surgical eye care to the Ventura community. He is married to his lovely wife Sylvia, who, although paralyzed from a spinal injury, is still more capable than her husband at everything important in life.

Irving Weinstein

birdsandroses5_9572231_ver1.0_640_480 Irving received a Master’s degree from DePauw University and an Artist Diploma at the Los Angeles Conservatory where he studied with Toscha Seidel, a student of Leopold Auer. He played viola in the Roth Quartet, in residence at UCLA, and as a member for 10 years performed concerts throughout the U.S., England, and Scotland and performed all the Beethoven String Quartets in 5 performance at New York’s Lincoln Center. He was also a member of the Lukas Foss Improvisation Ensemble. Irving taught music in the Los Angeles Unified and in the Community College Districts and retired as the college district’s Vice Chancellor for Instruction and Student Services.

Ervin Klinkon


Ervin Klinkon received his musical training at the Musik Hochschule in Freiburg, Germany (Atis Teichmanis, Maurice Gendron), and at the Mannes College of Music in New York City (Lieff Rosanoff). He earned his Master of Music Degree from the Catholic University in Washington, D.C.  Ervin has performed as cello soloist and with various chamber ensembles in Europe and in the United States.  His orchestral playing career includes the  orchestras in Houston, Texas, and in Washington, D.C. (National Gallery, Kennedy Center Opera House, National Symphony).  Ervin taught cello at various universities in the D.C. area and served as chairman of the music department at Montgomery College. He also conducted the Montgomery College Symphony Orchestra for twenty years.  Since he moved to Santa Barbara, he continues to lead an active musical life, performing chamber music with various ensembles, teaching the cello and coaching chamber music groups.

Ervin fondly remembers some of the highlights that influenced and shaped his career: being a  member of the premier Youth String Quartet in Germany; performing for the first time the Dvorak Concerto for cello in New York; successfully auditioning and performing under maestro Leopold Stokowski; participating in the world premiere of “Mass” by Leonard Bernstein for the opening of the Kennedy Center of the Performing Arts; performing for several presidents at the White House; finding and being inspired by the sound of his beloved cello.

Bruce Walker (emeritus)

Bruce started oboe studies with Salvatore Spano in September 1954, after having spent two weeks with the Trapp Family Singers the previous summer. He moved with his family from West L.A. to Ojai in 1956 and joined the fledgling Ventura County Student Symphony, attended ISOMATA in the summer of 1957 and in 1958 spent the summer at Kinhaven in Vermont, where he studied with Amanda Dushkin and developed a love for chamber music. Following recovery from a mouth injury and military service, in 1965 Bruce re-started oboe studies with William Criss and joined the Long Beach State College orchestra directed by Henri Temianka, where he was privileged to play under guest conductors Aaron Copland, Roy Harris and Hans Lampl.

While in military service, Bruce played with the San Luis Obispo Symphony and was invited by Frank Salazar to participate as third oboe in the inaugural concert of Ventura County Symphony. Bruce joined the VCS as English horn in 1966, became principal oboe and married violist Delores in 1967, and continued as principal until the orchestra’s demise in 1995. He served as English horn with Santa Barbara Symphony from 1978 to 1999 and as oboe/English horn with Santa Maria Philharmonic from 2001-2012. Bruce and Delores are founding members of CHICO. Bruce has been privileged to perform concertos by Donizetti, Barber, Biggs and Bach with CHICO, and is grateful for the opportunity to play the “Bach Double” with Dr. Chang.

In Dr. Walker’s “other life” he received M.S. in physics and Ph.D. in engineering from UCLA, is a consultant and researcher in acoustics, and has worked with NASA, Rocketdyne and others on active control of aircraft engine noise, Space Shuttle return to flight and other acoustical issues, and with the wind turbine industry on noise reduction, infra-sound emission assessment and ultrasonic bat repellent development.

Paula Dublinski

PaulaDPaula grew up in the Chicago area, gradually moving west until settling in the Los Angeles area in 1981. She was principal oboe in the Santa Maria Symphony, then the Santa Maria Philharmonic from 1992 to 2015, solo English Horn in the Bakersfield Symphony from 2002-present, and a member of the Channel Islands Symphony and CHICO since 1996.

Karen Darnall

Karen is an attorney and violinist. Her music career began 50 years ago with Albuquerque Youth Symphony. During college she studied with Leonard Felberg and played with the UNM Orchestra and the New Mexico Symphony Orchestra. She moved to California in ’74 and joined Ventura Symphony in ’76. During her first year of law school in ’86, she established Fiori Musicali, an organization that provides chamber music for weddings and special events. She has played in countless venues in Ventura County. She joined CHICO in 2005, and one year later, she performed the solo violin part for “Winter” from Vivaldi’s Four Seasons.

Jim Wimmer made Karen’s violin in 2012.