Steven Phillips

SARASOTA, FL, August 4, 2021 – As Key Chorale gets prepared for its 37th season, they announce four new additions to their professional core of singers and auditions for new singers. 

Key Chorale, the Suncoast’s premier symphonic chorus, is a fully auditioned ensemble of more than 100 singers with a paid professional core of 16. 

“For this season we have increased the size of our professional core and increased compensation for those positions,” said Maestro Joseph Caulkins. “This allows us to continue presenting programs and concerts of the highest caliber and to recognize and reward those appointed singers who are such a big part of our musical team. We are lucky to have so many talented singers both as our paid core and our incredible volunteer singers who bring so much love and passion for their art.”

Melissa Simmons, soprano section leader, is a lab scientist at a bioanalytical science lab and a recent graduate of New College. She is also the soprano section leader at St. Boniface Episcopal Church and was a member of her college chorus for 4 years. In high school, she attended Westminster Choir College Vocal Camps and sang in a community choir for 11 years.

Thomas Tryon, tenor section leader, recently retired to Sarasota following a career of more than 30 years working in Entertainment, Special Events and Catering at the Walt Disney World Resort. Through the years he has sung with the Orlando Chorale, First Presbyterian Church Orlando, St. Luke’s United Methodist Church in Windermere and at First Methodist Winter Park.

Steven Phillips, tenor section leader, is a versatile artist with several recordings to his credit as performer, composer, arranger, conductor, and producer. He works in classical, jazz, and popular styles, and serves as Director of Music for First Presbyterian Church, Sarasota.

Stuart Lurie, core singer, joined Key Chorale in early 2021 after more-than-20-year hiatus from organized singing, save for a 2013 role as Marcellus Washburn in a community theater production of The Music Man. Lurie has performed with The Philadelphia Chamber Chorus, and earlier was an active member of The Headnotes, the University of Michigan Law School’s a capella group, as well as the Syracuse University Men’s Glee Club.

Key Chorale will be holding auditions for new members and two openings for paid core singers on Saturday, August 28 and Saturday, September 11 at First Presbyterian Church, Sarasota. To schedule an audition, contact Joe Waldron at 941.378.4786, [email protected], or visit their website for more information,