About 2019-11-17T16:15:53+00:00

ABOUT US

Who are We?

New West Symphony & Chorus started in 2010 with 30 volunteer members, and has grown to close to 100 members, each committed to New West’s vision to use music as a conduit to bless others.  They have quickly gained recognition in Calgary, and consistently fill churches and auditoriums at their concerts throughout the year.  New West Symphony & Chorus holds three major sell-out events per season: Christmas with New West at the Jack Singer Concert Hall, a major fundraiser, and a Spring Concert at the Bella Music Hall at Mount Royal University.

New West performs approximately 15 times per year, performing choral and orchestral music that includes genres such as classical, pop, gospel and contemporary.

They exist to “bless people of all age, leading them to experience love through music, community and compassionate giving.”

The members of New West value living with Christ-like behavior, constantly pursuing excellence, and fostering a sense of belonging with their membership and audiences. They uphold honesty and respect, paired with being fun and inspiring others.

New West Symphony & Chorus is a registered charity, and is committed to using their platform as a means to help people who are vulnerable and are experiencing challenges.   Each year its members choose two organizations, one local and one international, to support through its New West Gives Back program.  Throughout the year, these partner organizations are highlighted at concerts to help raise funds and awareness for these worthy causes.

Meet our Musical Director: Henric Idestrom

Henric has been the Musical Director of New West Symphony & Chorus in our 2018-2019 season.  Amazingly, he is also currently the Director of New York’s SymphoNYChorus, travelling weekly between the two cities.  Henric had an eight-year tenure as Chair of the Arts at Rocky Mountain College in Calgary. While at RMC, he conducted numerous productions including Night at the Oscars and Give My Regards to Broadway.

Henric spent a number of years at Centre Street Church conducting the choir and orchestra and building their worship and arts department.  He also produced six recordings, two of which won SHAI Gospel Music Awards in 2007. He was then honored in 2008 with the Gospel Music Association’s Covenant Award for Choir Album of the Year. Henric received his Masters in Conducting from Azusa Pacific University in California.

Our Executive Leadership Team:

  • Executive Director: Darryn Werth
  • Associate Executive Director: Steve Lenz
  • Operations Director: Dulaine Lough
  • Associate Operations Director: Desiree Arthur
  • Creative Director: Nicole Blenkin
  • Musical Director: Henric Idestrom
  • Associate Musical Director: Chris Neufeld

Members of the Board:

  • Joe Essenburg – Chair
  • Lily Lau-Porta – Secretary
  • Gail Thiessen – Treasurer
  • Ruth Esau
  • Edi Dygert
  • Steve Lenz
  • Dan Clarke

Our History:

New West Symphony & Chorus was founded in 2010 by Jonathan & Kristin Schorr.  Their vision for musical excellence, community and generosity created a legacy that we are proud to continue to this day.

Past Musical Directors:

  • Jonathan Schorr (2010-2015)
  • David Klob (2015-2017)

Our Conductor

New West Symphony and Chorus is proud to welcome Henric Idestrom as Musical Director.

Henric graduated from Azusa Pacific University in 1995 with a Master of Music in Conducting.  He served as the Senior Worship Pastor at Centre Street Church (CSC) in Calgary, AB (1995-2005) as well as Music Director at Rocky Mountain College (RMC) (1999-2007). In 2007, Henric and his family decided to embark on a new musical journey and moved to New York City.

When Henric moved to NYC, he saw the need for a new kind of group that showcased the diversity of the city, performed with professionalism and enthusiasm, and shared God’s love through music.  He founded The SymphoNYChorus in the summer of 2008.

Henric has inspired loyalty and engagement from his members by challenging them to perform like professionals and introducing new music every season. The chorus and orchestra provides an environment for deep camaraderie to form in a city that can be a rather lonely place. Audiences keep coming back to be energized and inspired by the ever-changing repertoire and enthusiastic performances.  In a city that has it all, Henric brought something new.  

Still loving Calgary, he has graciously joined NWSC in 2017, bringing them new repertoire, new challenges, and inspired performances.

Symphony Members

STRINGS

Bridget McLeod

Viola

Member since 2013.

Leanne Wilkie

Violin

Member since 2010.

Andrea Elias

Violin

Member since 2018.

Rachel Hersey

Violin

Member since 2013.

Lynnae Calderwood

Viola

Member since 2018.

Chris Neufeld

Violin

Member since 2018.

WOODWINDS

Joanne Sampson

Clarinet

Member since 2010.

Lily Lau-Porta

Flute

Member since 2010.

Melanie Dewar

Oboe

Member since 2010.

Scott Regnault

Bassoon

Member since 2012.

BRASS

Jon McInnis

Trumpet

Member since 2014.

Robert Calderwood

French Horn

Member since 2011.

Ron Strem

Trombone

Member since 2010.

Russell Dick

Trumpet

Member since 2016.

Steven Lenz

French Horn

Member since 2015.

Sylvia Polachuck

Trombone

Member since 2017.

Zakk Relf

Ephonium

Member since 2018.

Walter Hildenbrandt

Trumpet

Member since 2018.

RHYTHM & PIANO

Colleen Roller

Piano

Member since 2010.

Jennifer Bodiguel

Piano

Member since 2010.

Gabriel Amaya

Percussion

Member since 2013.

Steven Warren

Percussion

Member since 2012.

Joe Essenburg

Bass Guitar

Member since 2011.

Stephane Swinton

Electric/Acoustic Guitar

Member since 2018.

Chorus Members

SOPRANOS

Carrie Lynne Johnstone

Member since 2010.

Christina Wiebe

Member since 2014.

Connie Albers

Member since 2013.

Desiree Arthur

Member since 2010.

Eve Wollin

Member since 2010.

Gail Thiessen

Member since 2017.

Jackie McLean

Member since 2010.

Kayla Cronk

Member since 2017.

Kristin Waterhouse

Member since 2017.

Laura Jay

Member since 2010.

Madi Lepine

Member since 2016.

Nicole Warren

Member since 2012.

Rachel Thorne

Member since 2013.

Shannon Plintz

Member since 2013.

Sylvia Brophy

Member since 2010.

Vanessa Calderwood

Member since 2015.

Michelle Heibert

Member since 2018.

Amy Ly

Member since 2018.

Kristin Schorr

Member 2010-2015, 2018-

Breanne Neufeld

Member since 2018.

Samara Brown

Member since 2018.

ALTOS

Andrea Elliott

Member since 2013.

Ashley Dueck

Member since 2015.

Michelle Schalm

Member since 2015-2016, 2018-

Candace Hiebert

Member since 2013.

Cathy Kokot

Member since 2017.

Cindy Zarn

Member since 2016.

CJ Wiseman

Member since 2018.

Dallas Belbeck

Member since 2010.

Evelyn Eisses

Member since 2017.

Jackie Swinton

Member since 2017.

Melanie Loewen

Member since 2018.

Maureen McAnally

Member since 2016.

Melanna Heebner

Member since 2010.

Nicole Youngash

Member since 2012.

Rose-Anne Bishop

Member since 2010.

Tilly Hiebert

Member since 2017.

Ana Kerley

Member since 2018.

Nicole Conrad

Member since 2018.

Val Wedel

Member since 2018.

Chelsea Jani

Member since 2018.

Dulaine Lough

Member since 2018.

TENORS

Charles Arthur

Member since 2010.

Daniel Clarke

Member since 2017.

Darryn Werth
Brian Li

Member since 2012-2014. 2017-

Tod Bowen

Member since 2017.

Samuel Klassen

Member since 2018.

Kevin Calvert

Member since 2018.

Dan Blenkin

Member since 2013-2015. 2017-

Kent Potter

Member since 2018.

BASSES

Christopher Wiebe

Member since 2012.

Daniel Bontje

Member since 2011.

Jameson DeBruyn

Member since 2010.

Kevin Weir

Member since 2010.

Will Benner

Member since 2018.

Travis Loewen

Member since 2013-2015. 2018-

Technical Support

JP Waterhouse

Member since 2016.

Conductors

Chris Neufeld

Member since 2018.

Henric Idestrom

Member since 2017.