A gala celebration was held at the Oakmont Country Club recently to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Towne Singers, a local community chorus founded by Phyllis Winnaman on April 1, 1987. Winnaman hosted the party for 80 singers and guests, including a few of the original nine members of the choir.
Several past and present singers shared humorous memories from the early days of the choral organization. To thank her for her vision and ongoing support over the last 30 years, Winnaman was serenaded by the guests with an altered version of “Thanks For The Memories.” Towne Singers President Ann Elgar presented Winnaman with a glass heart inscribed with the words, Phyllis Winnaman, Towne Singers 30th Anniversary, Our Love and Gratitude to a Very Special Lady.
The grassroots choral organization was started by a few La Cañada friends who wanted to sing choral music. Since all singers at that time resided in the same town, they named the chorus The Towne Singers. Today the chorus has grown to 90 members and includes singers from the entire Los Angeles area. Led by Lance Merrill, conductor, and Ben Mason, accompanist, the chorus is open to anyone who likes to sing. For more information, visit the website at townesingers.org or their Facebook page.
In addition to giving two choral concerts each season, the chorus has performed at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Grace Cathedral in San Francisco and the Aegean Festival in Greece. The group has traveled to England, Scotland and Ireland for a 10-day British Isles concert tour and are currently preparing for the Mozart Festival in Salzburg.
The Towne Singers just performed its spring concert, “And The Winner Is …” featuring Oscar, Tony and Grammy award winning songs accompanied by an orchestral ensemble, and video imagery, at the Arcadia Performing Arts Center in Arcadia.