Marissa Chalker, Alto Section Leader and Soloist, is an active chorister, soloist and teacher in the greater Philadelphia area. She performs with local ensembles such as the Opera Philadelphia Chorus, Curtis Opera Theatre, the Philadelphia Symphonic Choir and Philadelphia Orchestra, the Philadelphia Singers, the Thirteen Chamber Choir, and the Princeton Festival. She has a B.M. degree from Baldwin-Wallace College and Conservatory of Music and a M.M. degree from Westminster Choir College. Marissa currently lives in Philadelphia with her husband, George (NPC tenor section leader), and chihuahua best friend, Todd.
Don Dolan, Assistant Organist, has been singing and ringing in choirs as well as playing piano and organ in churches ever since since growing up in Basking Ridge, New Jersey. Music has taken him around the world as a piano soloist, choral singer, and accompanist. Holding degrees in piano performance from Vanderbilt University and The University of Michigan, Don had his Carnegie Hall solo debut shortly after moving back to his native New Jersey. He later received his D.M.A. in piano performance from Rutgers University. Don previously served as accompanist and organist at Pennington Presbyterian Church for 22 years. He has taught at Westminster Conservatory in Princeton and at Temple Music Prep in Philadelphia. As an accompanist, he toured with the American Boychoir and accompanied the All-Eastern Honor Choir, again at Carnegie Hall. Don is currently on the faculty of The Pennington School, where he is the director of the instrumental music program. He lives on campus with his wife, Sarah, and their photogenic cat, Fluffernut. When not playing and teaching music, Don enjoys cycling, cooking, and repairing model trains.
Elem Eley is Bass Section Leader and Soloist. Elem creatively blends his active performing career with an extensive life as teacher of singing. He is frequently heard in recital and in master class, boasts a discography of ten CDs, and has performed in concert and opera in New York’s most prominent venues, throughout the country, and in Europe. Winner of the 1996 Joy in Singing Award, Elem Eley is Professor of Voice Emeritus at Westminster Choir College and founder/director of Westminster’s study program, Vienna: Language of Lieder. He currently serves as Adjunct Professor of Voice at Rowan University.
Carol Fagundus is our Choral Librarian. When not managing our extensive musical library, singing and ringing in our vocal and handbell choirs, and playing clarinet in the Princeton Presbyterian Quintet, Carol is enjoying her retirement from 39 years as a librarian at Princeton University.
Kelsey Hendler is Soprano Section Leader and Soloist. Kelsey earned her Bachelor’s Degree of Music Education from Penn State University, and her Master of Music in Choral Conducting from Michigan State University. She is the high school choir director and middle school general music teacher for the School District of Haverford Township, and she is a member of the Essence of Joy Alumni Singers, an organization of Penn State Alumni.
Robert James Lamb
Robert James Lamb, Handbell Director, is a handbell conductor, composer, and technician. Since 2018, he has served as Deputy Supervisor of Handbell Production and Refurbishment at Malmark Bellcraftsmen, Inc. Recent engagements include the MidCarolinas Handbell Festival in Charlotte, NC; the International Handbell Symposium in Nashville, TN; the Ecumenical Handbell Festival in Toms River, NJ; and the Grand Ring: the Area 5 Spring Festival on Mackinac Island, MI. Also, he has served as clinician at Montreat Conferences on Music and Worship and contributed to the journal, Call to Worship. His works are published by Beckenhorst Press, Inc., the American Guild of English Handbell Ringers, Inc., and From the Top Music. Robert is a founding member of Quadrants Handbell Quartet, an elite small ensemble which has performed at several national events for Handbell Musicians of America. Robert studied handbells with Kathleen Ebling Shaw at Westminster Choir College and rang in the Westminster Concert Bell Choir. An equally accomplished vocalist, Robert currently sings with the Philadelphia Orchestra Symphonic Choir.
George Ross Somerville
George Ross Somerville is a Tenor Section Leader and Soloist. George has sung with many opera companies including Sarasota Opera, Des Moines Metro Opera, Opera Saratoga, Opera Theater of Saint Louis, Opera Philadelphia, and The Metropolitan Opera. As a professional chorister, he has sung in the ensemble with The Cleveland Orchestra, The Philadelphia Orchestra, The New York Philharmonic, and The Berlin Philharmonic. He is on the full chorus roster of Opera Philadelphia and is a member of the Extra Chorus at The Metropolitan Opera. He currently lives in South Philadelphia with his wife and Nassau Presbyterian Alto section leader, Marissa Chalker.
Steven Updegraff is a Tenor Section Leader and Soloist. Steven is a teacher of vocal music at Old Bridge High School. He received his BM from Westminster Choir College in 1995. He has performed at Spoleto Dei Due Mondi, Spoleto USA, and the Opera Festival of New Jersey. He has been a member of Nassau Presbyterian Church for eight years along with his wife Jessica and their children Cassie, Hannah, and Nathaniel.