Astrid M. Drew | Soprano 1, Chorus President | Astrid is a writer and archivist based in Providence, RI. She has been active in the local Swedish-American community since she was 6 years old: beginning with the youth group Kristina Club, participating in the annual Saint Lucia holiday festival, volunteering with the RI Swedish Heritage Association, and singing with the chorus. When not writing, or researching maritime history like it’s her job (cause it is), you can find her at the Providence Poetry Slam at AS220, and attending live shows in her favorite little city.
Astrid S. Drew | Soprano 2, Treasurer | Astrid is a retired cardiac nurse currently studying to be a Master Weaver (ask her about her five looms). She first joined the Chorus early on in 1989, remained on and off until joining in full-force in about 1996, and participated in many AUSS Conventions over the next 25 years for which she has received an award. As a native Swede she loves getting to sing all the songs she grew up with, sharing in camaraderie with her fellow singers, and working to help the Chorus grow and thrive with its mission.
Cassandra Michael | Soprano 1 | Cass is a lifelong Rhode Islander and professional baker/cake decorator. She joined the choir after attending a Lucia festival because she loves music and wanted to learn about Scandinavian culture. (She learned about Lucia from the Kirsten series of American Girl books). Bonus: friends made!
Corinne Wahlberg | Soprano 2, Vice-President | Corinne is a Providence-based theatre maker and creative arts producer/archivist. With Norse ancestry on both sides her of family, singing in the choir has been a chance to learn the languages and celebrate her heritage. Fun fact, her Lillebjelke lineage is included in the Swedish Book of Nobility! The real joy is the singing with the other women of the chorus and being of service in helping bring it into the future.
Heather Smith | Alto |
Jessica Stensrud | Alto | Jessica Stensrud has been a member of Eastern Connecticut Symphony since 2008. She received her Master’s Degree in Violin Performance at Brooklyn College in New York while studying with Itzhak Perlman. She was employed by the New York City Ballet for 12 years and played with many prestigious groups in New York including American Symphony, New Jersey Symphony, and Philharmonia Virtuosi. She was concertmaster/soloist with the Eric Hawkins Dance Company as well as many other small chamber orchestras in the city. Upon moving to Boston in 1988, she continued her career, playing with the Handel and Haydn Society, and Boston Ballet, to name a few of the groups she played with. She now resides in Rhode Island where she is active in chamber music and the solo opportunities she finds there.
Karen Palmer | Soprano 1 | Karen has enjoyed singing songs from around the globe from Germany to Japan and now the Nordic countries. She feels music is the universal language that enriches our understanding of people, breaks down barriers and shares the joys and sorrows in our everyday life. She enjoys harmonizing with fellow singers and calls herself an activist for world peace.
Lee-Ann Anderson Hurtubise | Soprano 1 | Lee-Ann is a retired Physical Education Teacher whose Grandparents came from Oland, Sweden to Block Island, Rhode Island in the early 1900’s. She has been a member of the Scandinavian Women’s Chorus of Rhode Island since almost its beginnings in the mid 80’s. Lee-Ann loves to sing and plays the guitar. She is also a member of the VASA Order of America – a Swedish Fraternal Organization since 2001 and holds the position of Past Vice Grand Secretary.
Rose Jermusyk | Alto, Secretary | Rose is a Providence singer-storyteller (you may have seen her around AS220), and — while she may be a newer addition to our corner of New England — her family roots run deep in these parts (Danielson, CT was founded by her Swedish forebears). Rose joined the Chorus as an Alto in time for the 2015 Winter Concert to learn more about her Swedish heritage and prevent her sight-singing skills from getting rusty. Plus, the company’s not half bad.