Photo by Thomas Patrick Photography

Artistic Staff & Singers

Dr. Mary Kay Geston

Artistic Managing Director

Mary Kay Geston has led Great River Chorale since 2010. Previously she taught at University of Northwestern–St. Paul, University of Colorado–Boulder,  Northern State University, University of Wisconsin–River Falls, University of Minnesota–Twin Cities and Morris, Concordia University–St. Paul, and St. Olaf College. She has prepared choirs for the St. Cloud Symphony Orchestra and Minnesota Orchestra, directed all-state and honor choirs across the U.S., and was a guest conductor in Taiwan and South Korea.  Choirs under her direction have performed at state, regional or national conferences of Chorus America, ACDA, MMEA, and SDMEA, and she has presented sessions at professional conferences of ACDA, MMEA, SDMEA, AGO, NAfME, and NATS. She sang professionally with the Robert Shaw Festival Singers, at Carnegie Hall under the direction of Charles Dutoit, and as a soloist with the Black Hills Symphony Orchestra, the Bismarck-Mandan Symphony Orchestra, and the Longmont Symphony. Geston is a past president of ACDA North Central Region and ACDA-MN, and past chair of the F. Melius Cristiansen Endowment Fund Committee. She received ACDA-MN’s 2012 Choral Director of the Year award. She has a DMA in choral literature and conducting from University of Colorado–Boulder, an MM in choral conducting from University of Minnesota–Twin Cities, and a BA in vocal performance and teaching certification from North Dakota State University.

Barbara Brooks

Collaborative Pianist

Vocal coach and pianist Barbara Brooks has worked with opera companies in the USA and Canada and is on staff at the Wesley Balk Opera/Music Theatre Institute. She has been a music director for Theatre de la Jeune Lune and The Minneapolis Children’s Theatre Company, and coached opera at universities in Texas, Colorado and Minnesota. Barb studied with Gyorgy Sandor, Martin Isepp, and at England’s Britten-Pears School.

Fall 2022 Choir Roster

Artistic staff

  • Mary Kay Geston, conductor Sponsored by Donna Harris, Charles & Judith Welter
  • Barbara Brooks, pianist Sponsored by Gary Sneide


  • Jamie Deering
  • Deborah Ferrell
  • Anita FischerSponsored by Gina Bystedt, Heather Latterell, Don Fischer, Mike & Jeanne Woods
  • Amanda Koubsky Sponsored by Bob & Cindy Koubsky
  • Nina Lasceski, OSBSponsored by Gary Osberg
  • Ardis Nelson Sponsored by Stephanie Delorie Rindelaub
  • Stephanie OtrembaSponsored by Rachel Otremba
  • Marit Ortega
  • Samantha PoundsSponsored by Najib Nassani
  • Lori Satterness Sponsored by Beste & Associates Ameriprise Financial
  • Jennifer Schroeder
  • Carol ShowalterSponsored by Brad Petry
  • Amy Walker


  • Natalie CopelandSponsored by Stacy Christianson
  • Eileen Farrell
  • Lisa FinkenSponsored by Emma Finken
  • Kate Gardner
  • Donna Harris Sponsored by Delores Weatherill, Margaret Weatherill-Tate, Roberta Basol, Lorraine Cannon, Karen Larken
  • Mila Hanson
  • Anne Meyer Jarrell
  • Chris Ann Johnson
  • Jean KraftSponsored by Mark Larcom
  • Gayle LarsonSponsored by Thomas Ritter, Lester & Teresa Johnson
  • Aera Moscho
  • Maureen Otremba Sponsored by Jim Otremba
  • Kendra Penke
  • Gabby Ouedraogo
  • Lori Roggenkamp
  • Marcelyn SmaleSponsored by Stephen Berglund
  • Claire StudtSponsored by Larry Studt
  • Kerry TrnkaSponsored by Lauren Vick
  • Amber Wright


  • Paul Houston
  • Jake Lohman
  • Mark NelsonSponsored by Stephanie Delorie Rindelaub
  • Tim Seeman
  • Aelred Senna, OSB
  • Barry Toland
  • Brad Ufer
  • Don Waage
  • Riley Wenisch
  • Chuck Wright


  • Wayne Anderson
  • Bill Cook
  • Dennis Douma
  • Dirk Edmonds
  • Timothy Ostby
  • Paul Paddock
  • Ross Resley
  • Tim Rysavy
  • Gary Sneide Sponsored by Ozzie Mayers in loving memory of Stephen Fuller
  • Chris Stadther
  • Mike Stadther
  • Charles WelterSponsored by Judith Welter, MOverland Consulting, Beste & Associates Ameriprise Financial, Lee Zimmerley, Cheryl Monson
  • Matthew Zook